WCLA to restore dying Bradlaugh Hall

LAHORE: The Walled City of Lahore Authority (WCLA) signed MOU with Evacuee Trust Property Board (ETPB) here on Thursday for the conservation, restoration and re-use of the famous Bradlaugh Hall, Lahore, Pakistan Today has learnt.

Bradlaugh Hall is a property of ETPB but has been handed over to the WCLA under the agreement signed between both the government departments.

Commenting on the history and importance of Bradlaugh Hall, Tania Qureshi, historian and In charge Marketing WCLA said, “The Bradlaugh Hall, situated on the Rattigan Road in Lahore, remained as an emblem of revolution in the entire British India for nearly a century. It was established through the fundraising efforts of the Indian National Congress”.

“In Bradlaugh Hall the Indian National Congress held its annual session in 1893. All the prominent leaders of India’s freedom movement, including Bhagat Singh, Maulana Zafar Ali Khan, Lala Rajpat Rai and Jawaharlal Nehru regularly attended meetings here and remained associated with this historical building. Sad part is that very few people at present living in Lahore or Pakistan know about its importance and even the existence of such a heritage.”

According to details provided by the Director Conservation and Planning WCLA Najam Usaqib, the conservation and restoration of the Bradlaugh Hall will be completed in 24 months with an amount of 60 million rupees.

“The cost of the project will be borne by the WCLA, and PC-1 of the project is already approved by the government. Once the conservation is completed, the building will be handed over to ETPB,” Najam added.

“In two days’ time WCLA will start the documentation of the building through latest equipment and techniques. We will be using 3D laser scanner to get all details of the building and its structure. The basis of documentation and its analysis the conservation and restoration of the building will start,” Najam said.

Kamran Lashari, Director General WCLA said that it was a masterpiece of history which demanded immediate attention and restoration because of being derelict.

“In future, the hall will be used for tourism purposes with the understanding of both the departments. We are of the view that the heritage belongs to all of us and we should try our best to maintain and restore it. I am very happy and honored that WCLA has signed this important agreement with ETPB for restoring the historical Bradlaugh Hall,” Lashari commented.

Shahab Omer
Shahab Omer
The writer is a member of the staff and can be reached on [email protected]
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