For so many years I was so proud to be the entrance gate to the beautiful city of Belgaum. You may come in from Mumbai or Bangalore, all of you saw me stand in the center and welcome each and every one.
For years and years I have smoked in the emissions of those state run buses and of course lately the two wheelers. I never complained that no one looks after me, but one day Indian Oil corporation thought of giving me a face lift and fountains were repaired, I was repainted and I was feeling like a dulhan. I would envy all the others as anybody coming to Belgaum would first look at me.
On every Republic Day, Independence day, Rajotsav day I was cleaned and painted, I used to feel fresh.
But one morning in March, in view of the Vishwa Kannada Sammelana I was shocked to see a JCB machine in front of me, when I thought he must be here to dig the road again and I will have a tough time ahead.
I was just looking at the passersby and a few employees who were staring at me. I could not realize why are all looking at me in this fashion, I thought I am here for a makeover again and I overheard a police man on duty saying that my area would be decreased for the easy flow of traffic.
But I got a shock, I saw 4-5 big vehicles with G passing come near me and when the people got out from them they ordered the JCB to remove the Ashoka Pillar and keep it at a safe place.
I was shocked to hear this, I was known because of that pillar.
A crane came in from nowhere and pulled the pillar out and took it away. The JCB then broke all the fountains and brought in mud and filled me up and I was asphalted in no time and a pillar which looked robbed from somewhere was kept at my center with some filthy stones in a circular motion to give me a look of a circle.
From beautiful I was made to look ugly and I never understood as to why?
There were some protests after this happened and people who liked me said that I be restored as I was earlier. The administration also promised that but its May now but I am looking so ugly that I am ashamed to welcome each one to the city of Belgaum.
This is my story of ASHOK CIRCLE, near the fort lake, beautiful to ugly.