Hill citizens revamp wall of fame

wall at Chowk Bazar in Darjeeling

The wall of Chowk Bazar, which has stood the test of time as a newscaster and an integral part of Darjeeling, is getting an unusual facelift.

A group of citizens from Darjeeling will beautify the over-30-foot-tall wall with a collage and infographics that depict Darjeeling’s rich history and culture. So far, the wall has been used to convey messages of every sort from politics to social issues, by organisations to individuals.

The team that prefers to go without a name, but wants to see this Rs 2-lakh-project project as an initiative of every individual, is relying on crowdfunding.


The idea, team members say, is to showcase Darjeeling in a positive light, "above" the poster politics of "zindabad and murdabad" plastered on this wall.

In this process, Darjeeling has already started showing its true spirit, say the movers of the project.

Team member Anjani Sharma Bhujel said people of Darjeeling are coming with offers of help of every kind.

“We needed bamboos for scaffolding and one gentleman from Badamtam tea garden Karna Bahadur Pariyar cut bamboos from his backyard and donated us, saving us almost Rs 40,000,” Anjani said. “A priest, Father Alexendar Gurung, volunteered to provide premises of his diocese area for storage of materials. A shoe shop owner from Chowk Bazar, Anant Thatal, did the same,” she added.

The wall-revamp team believes that while politics has its own place, the social aspect of Darjeeling is more important.

“We look at the wall every day, the writers change but the political content of murdabad and zindabad hardly changes. Yet we look at the wall more than newspapers. So we strongly believe that this wall too should send out a message on the need for the social fabric to be stronger and social inclusiveness,” said Anjani. “The political discourse of the day might be important but other aspects of Darjeeling are more important…”

Anjani added that about 10 to 15 feet of the wall space will be left for pasting posters but the rest of the space would showcase the things that made Darjeeling special.

“We want to come up with a painting collage depicting aspects of Darjeeling, including its culture, and infographics about things like the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway and Sidrabong hydel project (the first hydro project in India),” said Anjani.

Money from crowdfunding is being pooled from website gorkhalines.com and offline donations are accepted at RK Enterprise, a hardware store at Judge Bazar, and Amigos, an eatery at Chowrasta.



The wall of Chowk Bazar, which has stood the test of time as a newscaster and an integral part of Darjeeling, is getting an unusual facelift.

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