Further to my post on Lahore and its various colours, the picture below offered a little reality check..

This ugly commercialism is unbecoming...

From Today’s Daily Times – the photo above, captioned “Taking a Backseat” laments: The Genesh Building on Lakshmi Chowk, one of the older buildings in the city, is obscured by billboards.

I had earlier written about this, quoting an Urdu verse:

Ek ham hain liya apni hi soorat ko bigaar
Ek woh hain junhay tasveer bana aati hai

Loosely translated (for the non-Urdu readers)

We who have distorted their own countenance
While there are many who create newer images
Click here for more on this theme of architectural neglect.

Lakshmi Chowk named after the goddess of prosperity and wealth – Lakshmi – is an essential landmark of Lahore’s history. I think it was re-named after partiton but no one uses that name. It is still known as what it used to be before 1947.

The buildings there require conservation. After all, what is the meaning of the present without a link to the past. Devoid of heritage, a city loses its identity and this is what we are aiming for…?