Interesting place names….. A nostalgic trip through Lucknow III

My last post on this subject was on the places I mostly avoided…. and this was a pretty comprehensive, covering the outskirts of the city on three sides. Nevertheless I breached this cordon several times on way to what – then at least – were the city’s suburbs. But of that later… for the present, let me stick to the municipal areas of the city.

By the process of elimination, I was left with a dozen police station areas. I will remove another one… on second thoughts, let it be. It had a couple of things of interest and I will come to them in due course.

To recapitulate, I was now left with 12 police stations. For the convinience of readers, I will recapitulate the names. In alphabetical order, there are Aminabad, Bazarkhala, Cantt, Chowk, Hasanganj, Hussainganj, Kaiserbagh, Naka Hindola, Saadatganj, Talkatora, Thakurganj and Wazirganj.

I’ll proceed in an alphabetical order.

Aminabad was overwhelmingly a market area. I recall so many trips with my mother and grandparents when I was small and I was not particularly impressed with the crowded area – where I was forced to endure long waits in clothing or jewellery stores or for that matter, grocery stores. 

There were quite a few ways to get to the centre of Aminabad. From Kaiserbagh, you could try the Nazeerabad road, if you were a capable driver and had strong nerves, or go slightly ahead and try the Khayaliganj route, from next to the Kaiserbagh Kotwali or even further and enter it by the BN Verma road, on that Aminabad-Kaiserbagh-Wazirganj interface.  The other way was the LaTouche road, referred by that name only despite it being rechristened the Gautam Buddha Marg, but old habits are hard to break… and they even teach them to the following generation.

Incidentally, people used to pronounce it the “Latoose” road, and it was much later I found the correct name and even later when I found it commemorated Sir James John Digges LaTouche, the Lt Governor of the United Provinces (1901-06). Like the first two routes I mentioned above, this also originated from the Kaiserbagh circus – that bustling roundabout with the Ashokan column in its midst.

The LaTouche Road, which started with a vegetable market, then a couple of arms dealers, some equipment supliers and then had a plethora of plumbing and electric supply vendors. Meeting the Shri Ram road (on the right) midway, it ran on – with now the Hewett Road on the left. This one (despite being called Shivaji Marg), chose to retain its imperial name, commemorating LaTouche’s successor, Sir John Prescott  Hewett (Lt Gov 1907-12). But of it later… La Touche road ran all the way to the Naka Hindola area.

But lets back to Aminabad. As I said, the Sri Ram Road was at right angles to LaTouche Road. A small road leading into the Aminabad market proper, it had the police station… right hand side near the market side, if you came from LaTouche Road. Diagonally to the police station was a grave on the roadside, and a couple of sweetshop cum restaurants known as the “Kabar-waali dukan” or Netram. They used to have good lassi… I wonder if it still survives. Behind them was the pin and button market, which was for some reason called Garhbharhjhala.

Going on from Sri Ram Road, you came to the beginning of the Aminabad market proper – on the other side than had you come by the Nazeerabad or Khayaliganj routes. Turning right you entered the market proper. Go left and you passed by Ganeshganj and Pandeynagar and all, as you reached Naka Hindola again.

But go right, and then you could turn left after about 50 m or go the whole 100+ m of the market and then turn… Wait for the next one

To be continued…

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