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Amc To Fix 104-Yr-Old Fountain In Raikhad

A 104-year-old fountain inside the Victoria Garden in Raikhad which has great heritage value, according to AMC officials, is set to get a facelift. According to AMC sources, the fountain which has a unique design will be restored by the heritage department. The structure was installed in the garden in 1912 by a grieving Parsi couple in memory of their deceased son and was gifted to AMC. Additional City Engineer (Heritage) of AMC, Amit Patel said: “This fountain is more than a century old and is of great historic value. The fountain was built in Victoria Garden.

Over the years, the fountain has suffered severe wear and tear. Now that the road outside the garden has been widened, the fountain is visible from the main road. So, we decided to restore it to its former glory. We are sure that once restored, this will become a major crowd puller.” The fountain was built by Dr Byramji Hormasjee Nanavatty, a gynecologist, and his wife Dhanbai following the untimely demise of their 19-year-old son Phiroze.

Deputy General Manager (Heritage Department) PK Vasudevan Nair couldn’t hide his pride as he announced the restoration project. He said, “We have restored so many heritage structure but this is the first fountain that we will be restoring. The fountain has interesting architecture and can be a delight once it is restored to its former glory. It is a very significant monument to the city.”

Over the years, the fountain has suffered some damage but it is structurally sound, AMC officials said. Talking to Mirror on the restoration process, Assistant City Engineer (Heritage) Bharti Patel said, “For its 100-year- history, the fountain is in good shape. It has suffered some wear and tear over the years but it is structurally sound. We will restore the fountain in a traditional manner using Dhrangadhra stones. We will also get it chemically cleaned to restore its original beauty.” Patel will supervise the restoration process. Mirror spoke to the relatives of the Nanavattys.

Aspy Bharucha, whose mother was a cousin of Phiroze, said, “Phiroze’s death left Byramji and his wife heartbroken. But they decided ensure that his memory would live on. Today, more than 100 years after he passed away, Phiroze’s memory still lives on.” Phiroze, nicknamed Ball, died on December 26, 1910. Byramji was the first gynecologist of Ahmedabad to get a Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS), a reputed degree from UK. He had two daughters Frenny and Dr Bachoo, both of who were philanthropist.

PARSI PANCHAYAT HAPPY

The Parsi Panchayat was happy with AMC’s decision to restore the fountain. “We are happy that AMC is restoring the fountain to its former glory. We thank AMC for their initiative.”

FOUNTAIN’S HISTORY

The fountain built of stone has carvings of children on it. A face of a male, believed to be that of Phiroze, is carved in the middle of the fountain stand. However, there is no proof to substantiate this. The fountain has two marble plaques which have eulogies dedicated to Phiroze in English and Gujarati. It also has a verse from the Bible which reads: “Until the day breaks and the shadows flee away.”

Published on Ahmedabad Mirror

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