Mysuru: Alyia Phelps Gardiner Krumbiegel, great granddaughter of German Horticultural legend Gustav Hermann Krumbiegel who had designed the iconic Brindavan Gardens at the Krishna Raja Sagar (KRS) Dam, has taken serious exception to the State Government’s plan to develop the Brindavan Gardens on the lines of Disneyland in the US.
Gustav Hermann Krumbiegel is credited with meticulous detailing of the greenscape and bringing many exotic plants to Lal Bagh Botanical Gardens in Bengaluru. Gustav Krumbiegel was appointed by Krishnaraja Wadiyar to work on developing the layouts of gardens in Mysuru and Bengaluru. Krumbiegel has worked on numerous gardens and structured a layout for a green belt in Bengaluru which was called ‘eco zone.’
Speaking to Star of Mysore from her home in London, Alyia Phelps Gardiner Krumbiegel said that she was disappointed to read about the Karnataka government’s plans to transform Brindavan Gardens as Disneyland to attract more tourists.
It may be recalled here that Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy had sanctioned an initial funding of Rs.5 crore for the Disneyland proposal in his Budget speech. Following this, Tourism and Sericulture Minister S.R. Mahesh visited the Dam site last week and held preliminary discussion with officials and asked them to come up with a blueprint for Disneyland.
Alyia Krumbiegel, who has written an open letter to Kumaraswamy (the letter is reproduced here), has requested him to drop the Disneyland proposal as Brindavan Gardens is of international value and must be treated following the guidelines issued by International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS).
ICOMOS guidelines say that any historic garden cannot be isolated from its own particular environment, whether urban or rural, artificial or natural. The garden must be preserved in appropriate surroundings and any alteration to the physical environment which will endanger the ecological equilibrium must be prohibited, the guidelines say.
“No restoration work and or reconstruction work on a historic garden shall be undertaken without thorough prior research to ensure that such work is scientifically executed. Before any practical work starts, a project must be prepared on the basis of said research and must be submitted to a group of experts for joint examination and approval,” the guidelines say.
“I know the Brindavan Gardens is not the same historical value as the Taj Mahal. But it should be. The Tourism Department in Karnataka must promote their valuable assets well enough to the international tourism industry,” Alyia Phelps added.
Note: It may be recalled here that Star of Mysore Editor-in-Chief K.B. Ganapathy had written an Abracadabra on July 9 titled ‘Accidental Chief Minister Must Not Present Bogy Budget’ wherein he had expressed concern about Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy’s plans to develop the Brindavan Gardens on the lines of Disneyland.
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“I have seen three Disneylands including the one in Tokyo, Japan, known as Disney World. Is the land available at KRS enough for an ambitious project like this? Is it safe to have a Disneyland under the menacing, intimidating massive dam with water gushing from its crest gates, specially during monsoon? It is as ridiculous as Modi saying he would make Mysuru like Paris. Irresponsible statement and we gullible people believe these utterances. The budget allocated for Kumaraswamy’s Disneyland is Rs. 5 crore. Impossible. But, a Kumaranna’s fan tells me it is only for preparing the Project Report. So be it.”