Maha Prez inaugurates refurbished 110 year old Darbar Hall in Raj Bhavan Lead

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Mumbai, Feb 11

 President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated the historic, 110-year-old Darbar Hall of the Maharashtra Raj Bhavan at Malabar Hill on the shores of the Arabian Sea, here on Friday.

The President was flanked by his wife Savita Kovind, Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Bombay High Court Chief Justice Dipankar Datta, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, Maha Vikas Aghadi ministers, and top dignitaries.

This is the first major renovation of the glittering Darbar Hall which is the traditional venue for top state events like swearing-in ceremonies of Governors, Chief Justice, Chief Ministers and Cabinet Ministers, Lokayuktas, investitures, meetings of large delegations, mega-cultural events, hosting important foreign VVIPs, etc.

In its new dazzling 'avatar' both inside and outside, the Darbar Hall seating capacity has been enhanced by more than triple, from 225 to 750, though all the heritage features of the place have been retained.

The renovation works started in 2019 and was completed in December 2021 with a new balcony and a viewing gallery being added for a magnificent view of the Arabian Sea and surroundings.

The President said that the modern concept of 'darbar' promotes transparency and is becoming popular as a mode to connect people and the public authorities.

He also paid rich tributes to the memory of the late Bharat Ratna Lata Mangeshkar, who died on February 6 in Mumbai, saying he experienced an "emptiness" , for, a genius like her is born only once in a century and her music is immortal.

The Darbar Hall was designed by architect George Wittet and built in 1911 to welcome Great Britain's King George V and Queen Mary.

The inauguration function was originally scheduled for December 8, but was cancelled as a mark of respect to the victims of the helicopter tragedy in Tamil Nadu which left at least 13 killed, including the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Bipin Rawat and his wife Madhulika, other army personnel and civilians.


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