Tilak descendant unhappy with space for memorial at historic Vinchurkar Wada

May 30, 2012, 07:39 IST | Vivek Sabnis

Premises where Lokmanya started Ganesh Utsav in 1894 poised for redevelopment; MoU signed between Deepak Tilak and Paranjpe Constructions says developer will give 250 square feet for memorial

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) has been signed between Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak’s descendant Dr Deepak Tilak and Shashank Paranjpe, executive director of Paranjpe Constructions Ltd, according to which the developer has agreed to allot 250 sq ft of space for Vinchurkar Wada Sarvajanik Vishwastha Man-dal’s memorial. Tilak claims that the space allotted for the purpose is too little.

Vinchurkar Wada, which is of historical importance, is poised for redevelopment. Lokmanya Bal Gangadhar Tilak started Ganesh Utsav in 1894 in this wada. The wada was bought by Paranjpe and will be redeveloped.

Steeped in history: Trust treasurer Ravindra Pathare with the Vinchurkar Wada in the background. Lokmanya Tilak started the first Sarvajanik Ganesh Utsav at the wada in the city. PIC/Vivek Sabnis

According to the MoU, the developer agreed to provide 250 sq ft on the first floor adjoining the parking lot in the new building.

“Vinchurkar Wada is in a prime area where the rate is around Rs 8,000 per sq ft. We look into the change positively,” Tilak said.

He added that apart from the memorial, Paranjpe had shown readiness to provide a hall or auditorium for cultural activities in the new complex during the 10 days of the Ganesh festival every year.

Ravindra Pathare, treasurer of the trust, and trustees Sheela Ghaisas and Jaywant Matkar had welcomed Paranjpe’s initiative. “We are hopeful the memorial will be such to match its historical importance,” Pathare said.

Paranjpe refuted the charges of a small memorial.

“The 250 sq ft is only for the Lokmanya Tilak (Vinchurkar Wada) Sarva-janik Vishwasta Mandal’s office. A separate place will be allotted for the memorial, which may be about 2,000 sq ft,” he said. “The details will be finalised soon. I am aware that Vinchurkar Wada is the place where Lokmanya Tilak printed the initial issues of his newspaper Kesari. We are developing the Vinchurkar Wada property and also including the Tilak memorial as a part of this agreement. The construction will be done in three years.”

Sharve Dhongade, member, PMC Heritage Committee, said the civic body had included the Vinchurkar Wada in the Heritage List earlier and also gave permission to have a memorial at the new construction made at the wada.  

Ganesh fest may move to Kumthekar Rd
Dr Deepak Tilak, president, Lokmanya Tilak (Vinchurkar Wada) Sarvajanik Vishwastha Mandal and great-grandson of Lokmanya Tilak, said, “We might celebrate the Ganapati festival on Kumthekar Road this year, as there is a possibility of construction starting at Vinchurkar Wada.” Shashank Paranjpe said construction will start when the settlement and agreement is completed with the tenants in the wada.

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