News 17 april — 14:44

In shadow of development, Lahore losing its heritage

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Pakistan’s cultural capital Lahore is known for its diverse culture, rich cuisine, social and cultural festivals, and on top of all, its spectacular old architecture, including the Badshahi Mosque and Red Fort, Anadolu Agency reports.

It has rightly earned its motto “Lahore Lahore hay” or Lahore is only Lahore,” honoring the city’s uniqueness.

Home to 11 million people, today Lahore is a vista of glitzy towers, bumper-to-bumper traffic, huge roadside restaurants, bridges, and the much-hyped Orange Line train project, but it also features spectacular mosques, temples, shrines, and towers from its Mughal and colonial past.

But in the shadow of accelerating infrastructure development, the city is losing some of its celestial architectural treasures.

According to Mian Mohammad Nadeem, a Lahore-based blogger who frequently writes on culture and heritage, almost 50 percent of the old architecture of the Walled City (meaning the old or southern Lahore sprawled over 4-5 square kilometers) has been replaced by shopping centers and markets.

“Wandering along the Akbari Mandi [market] or Shah Aalmi [two major business centers], an outsider can’t believe that these glassy buildings and shops have replaced a bunch of Edwardian- and Victorian-style buildings over the last few decades,” Nadeem told Anadolu Agency.

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