Dear Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy,
I read today with dismay that the iconic Brindavan Gardens is to be redeveloped on the lines of Disneyland USA.
The dream project of the Mysore’s teenaged King, Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar was to construct a dam across the Cauvery for human benefit and he appointed Sir M. Visvesvaraya as the chief engineer. The Brindavan Gardens, located just a level below the dam, earlier was called Krishnaraja Terrace Gardens.
The Inspiration came from the Mughal Garden of Kashmir — The Shalimar Gardens. This achievement goes to the then Dewan of Mysore, Sir Mirza Ismail and my Great Grandfather G.H. Krumbiegel, Superintendent of Parks and Gardens of Mysore the man behind Bangalore’s Lalbagh and largely credited for the title of The Architect of The Garden City.
They completed this 60-acre garden in a period of 5 years (1927-1932). Isn’t this short synopsis of the history wonderful? And can Disney compete with it? May be it will in the short term!
The Tourism Minister will want international tourists to come to experience the HISTORICAL vibrant city of Mysore during the most famous Dasara festival of Karnataka started in 1610 by Raja Wadiyar in honour of Goddess Chamundeshwari.
Most international tourists are hoping to experience such heritage, why travel halfway around the world to see a theme park just like those back home?
India is a land replete with cultural, historical and religious artefacts, which draw a sense of wonder for the visitors and certainly makes every Indian feel proud of this valuable possession. The Brindavan Gardens is of International value and must be treated following the ICOMOS guidelines.
It is also about the very spirit of the place that just has to be preserved; the so called “genius loci” Disneyland would put the whole idea, the concept of a representative garden, “ad absurdum” – a total neglect of history.
I would be only too willing to meet you to discuss alternative restoration for this most iconic landmark.
Alyia Phelps Gardiner Krumbiegel, London