Posted On Sunday, June 24, 2012 at 09:37:11 AM
My reaction to the sale of the ABC Farms’ land is one of nostalgia. This is a place I continue to call Jazz Garden because I’ve had the best evenings there. I loved hanging out with my friends at Shisha Cafe especially in the afternoons. There’s also been Swiss Cheese Garden and Curve. ABC Farms is a beautiful place that gave Koregaon Park its character.
|A band performing at Shisha Cafe
As a musician and event manager, I’ve done more than 60 concerts at ABC Farms with the finest musicians. As a musician, I remember we had a concert where we attracted a crowd of over 2,000 people.
Of course, it ended up destroying all the plants in the area. Later, the late Homi Bathena and Anand told us: “You’ve destroyed all our plants, we’re never going to allow Agnee to perform here again.”
We shot our video “I believe” for the Dewarists at Shisha. I’ve got too many memories of this place. I often head to Furtados to shop and tinker with their musical instruments. Also, you amble on to North Main Road, finish up some other work and then head back.
The news of it being bought over and to be soon replaced by a commercial and residential complexes actually reminds me of Lucky Restaurant in Deccan shutting down. It’s like seeing an old Parsi building being torn down and replaced by a granite, steel and glass structure. This is the price we have to pay for living in an urban area. You can’t stop land from being put to higher commercial use.
Of course I will feel sad, but I don’t judge a big boy like Avinash Bhosale or Venketeshwara Hatcheries for profiteering or making commercial gains. We chose to live in a bustling city, so we have to make these sacrifices and deal with them. After all these companies will put Pune on the commercial map.
ABC Farms was like farmland in the middle of M G Road, you can’t expect it to remain there because you want a green patch to stay. It is, after all, located on a prime piece of commercial property between Kalyaninagar and Koreagon Park. Of course it is sad that it will be converted into a building.
But such things are inevitable. We can’t cry over it, if a group perceives its actual commercial value. I’m not against commercialism. You cannot grudge an Avinash Bhosale for buying the land and making use of it. It’s perfectly justified.
Having said that, I hope they do something to retain that old-world charm and landmark value that ABC Farms had. They should partner to make the place a destination where people can enjoy watching a live band perform. It’s like wishing for a Lucky Restaurant in R Deccan Mall.
(The author is a guitarist and songwriter with Agnee)
- As told to Janice Nesamani
► ABC Farms was like farmland in the middle of M G Road, you can’t expect it to remain there because you want a green patch to stay