Pragati Maidan, where big exhibitions and conventions happen in New Delhi is about 72,000 sq.m and is under the management of India Trade Promotion Organization. ITPO is also the trade promotion agency of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, by the Government of India.
It also includes about 61,290 sq.m of enclosed space with 16 halls for exhibition, apart from the 10,000sq.m of open area. In the meantime, before the 2010 Commonwealth Games, in the year 2006, the Governement had plans to invest about 1,260 crore for redevelopment. Pragati Maidan is expected to encompass a latest convention center, which could hold about 5 to 8 times higher capacity as compared to the Vigyan Bhavan.
Raj Rewal, the designer for a few of the important buildings including the Hall of Nations also has designed the compete blueprint and project. Indira Gandhi, the Indian Prime Minister had launched the Pragati Maidan, on the Novmeber 3 1972, the day before the International Trade Fair, by the name of Asia 72. The site as well as the event is used to commemorate the twenty five years of Independence of our country.
On to the western border of the Pragati Maidan, there is the Mathura road, whereas to the southern border there is the Bhairon Road. In the meantime, the main railway line to central and southern India is located to the eastern border of the maidan. At the same time, the pincode for the Pragati Maidan, located in the middle of Delhi is 110001.
A big compound encompassing about 150 acres or 0.61km2, strewn with a large number of lawns is the Pragati Maidan. It is located opposite to the No.1 Gate and faces the Purana Qila, which is a historic place. In the meantime, some of the pavilions situated in the compound includes the Defense Pavilion, the Son of India Pavilion,Nehru Pavilion and the Indira Pavilion.
The maidan also covers a assortment of buildings of diverse sizes and shapes as well as an auditorium that was the venue for a large number of rock shows and plays, till date. In the meantime, if a tourist does not plan on walking, they can also make use of the in-house shuttle service.
Other facilities open in the Maidan includes Shakuntalam, the movie theatre, a hit with the college kids, offering low-priced tickets. The compound consists of 18 exhibiiton halls, eateries, a large number of buildings, space for performances as well as the ITPO headquarters.
In the meantime, about seventy national and international exhibitions were conducted evey year at the Pragati Maidan. One of the biggest exhibition conducted here includes the India International Trade Fair that brings in nearly ten thousand exhibitors and above thirty lakhs visitors.
Events and Exhibitions
The Nehru Pavilion, The Defense Pavilion as well as the Atomic Energy form the part of five exhibitions that are organised permanently within the premises of the maidan. Some other events conducted at the Maidan includes the Auto Expo or the India International Trade Fair as well as the World Book Fair.
The IITF lasting for 2 weeks is conducted annually on 14 November. During the year of 1999, amidst the fair, the halls 12 and 13 halls of about 9000sq.m equipped with AC is left open to public. In the meantime, about 5,200 enterpirses, above seventy companies and 14 countries took part in this exhibition.
At the same time, in the year 2003 for the IITF, some 25 lakh people visited Pragati Maidan. Now, the Nothern Railways as well as the Delhi Metro also introduced special trains to Pragati Maidan, for the annual fair, bringing about 50,000 visitors every day for the fair in 2008.
Meanwhile, to one corner of the Pragati Maidan situates the ‘Matka Peer’ on the Mathura Road. This also known as the Dargah Shrine of the Hazrat Sheikh Abubakr Tusi Haidari Qalandari, who came down from Iran to Delhi, in 1260s CE. Meanwhile,down the Bhairon road, is the National Handicrafts and Handlooms Musuem as well as the National Science centre.
The Delhi Metro Station, at Pragati Maidan is one of the biggest station. It was set up over 6,800sq.m in the November of 2006, on the 8th day of the India International Trade Fair in November 2006. It is believed that over 2 lakhs passengers have made use of this metro.
Every year, the income tax department sets up some 150 counters at the exhibition hall to fill in the income tax returns. The maidan also is the house for Wills Lifestyle Indian Fashion Week organised by the Fashion Design Council of India, for the first time in the year 2008-2009.
At the same time, other than displaying products or services from all the big industries such as toys, leather, lifestyle and so on, exports to medical as well as sports equipments or even job fairs are organised here.
How to Reach
To get to the Pragati Maidan, making use of the Delhi Metro, one needs to travel on the blue line. The Pragati Maidan Metro Station is situated close to the Gate no.10. The Exhibiiton center near to the station can be reached by walking.
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