News Karnataka
Wednesday, December 07 2022

The Big Ben replica in Kolkata

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A picture of a Big Ben-like structure in Kolkata has gone viral. It’s all over Facebook, Twitter, Reddit and all other social media platforms. In fact, every third Bengali on your timeline is probably sharing it as “this year’s best Puja pandal.”

The bad news is, it’s not going to win any prizes this Durga Puja, because it isn’t a pandal. The good news is, it’s going to stay even after the Bhashan.

A while back, Chief minister Mamata Banerjee had said she wants to turn Kolkata into London. It seems Kolkata has started to take baby steps in achieving that dream by bringing home London’s most enduring icon.

With the help of South Dum Dum municipality, a clock tower, which is a replica of the Big Ben in London, has been finally built at Lake Town. The watchtower stands tall at 30 metres on the main road of Lake Town, falling short by a long distance from the original Big Ben that is nearly three-times taller.

The tower, worth Rs 1.36-crore, will have retro watches on its four sides, provided by the Anglo Swiss Company.

MLA Sujit Bose and South Dum Dum Municipality chairman-in-council Mriganka Bhattacharya had pushed through a project to build a ‘mini’ replica of the Big Ben, the name by which the clock and the clock tower at London’s Westminster is often referred to.

“There was a disused plot at the intersection of Lake Town and VIP Road that we wanted to beautify. The plot being small, something vertical had to be built and we hit upon the idea of a tower. Since the CM had articulated a dream to make Kolkata as attractive as London, the Big Ben became an obvious choice as it is the most popular tower in that city,” Bhattacharya had told Times Of India.

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