Despite Owaisi’s visit, uncertainty looms over Mir Alam Mandi restoration

Hyderabad: The 200-year-old Mir Alam Mandi in the Old City continues to be in shambles and in a near state of collapse with the civic authorities still not having undertaken restoration works there. The precarious situation of the market infrastructure puts in danger the lives of visitors and vendors who are now growing concerned about the future of the age-old mandi.

The renovation has been in talks again due to the recent visit of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) Asaduddin Owaisi to the place. He visited the site for an inspection alongside Urban Development special chief secretary Arvind Kumar in early September, following which an announcement was made that the mandi would be restored.

“Asad Sahab visited the place over a month ago in the early morning hours. He took a stroll around the mandi, inspecting it. Photographers and other officials surrounded him as he looked around,” said Abdul Kareem, a vendor at the age-old market.

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“We weren’t aware of his arrival. He paid a flying visit and the next day we saw the news in newspapers that there were talks of renovation. But no official visited us to talk about it. He looked around, took a walk, and left within a few minutes. A few days after his visit some officials came to the market, took measurements of the corrugated tin sheets that cover the market, and left. No official has returned since and we have received no news,” said a vegetable vendor, Mohammed Raouf.

The Mir Alam Mandi has a history that dates back to the Asaf Jahi or Nizam era (1724-1948), and adds value to Hyderabad. It is named after Mir Alam, a former prime minister under the third Nizam of Hyderabad, Sikander Jah. However, the market today is in a dilapidated condition, which should be an alarm for authorities to restore it at the earliest. The market is in shambles with tin sheets falling apart and concrete falling-off the entrance as well.

“It will be convenient if the place is properly renovated with the tin sheets replaced as they are falling apart. The sewage system is also very bad with the condition of the market going from bad to worst during the rains. It becomes difficult for us as well as the visitors,” said Muzzakir another vegetable vendor.

There is still uncertainty regarding the future of the market in the minds of traders whose livelihoods depend on it. The state government has reportedly handed over major projects of restorations to the Quli Qutub Shah Urban Development Authority (QQSUDA) including the restoration of the Mir Alam Tank, Mir Alam Mandi, Sardar Mahal, Murgi Chowk, and other heritage structures in the Old City.

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