Delhi’s Janak Place Maintains Its Charm In spite of Challenges


Janak Puri, Delhi – ArmouredCyborg via Wikimedia

Well, a feeling of nostalgia seems to be overpowering me. I have some really fond memories of this shopping complex name Janak Place. It has always occupied a special place in my heart. I remember going to the complex with my mother when I was an 8-year old chap. It was a time when shopping malls hadn’t made their presence felt. Life used to be quite uncomplicated back then. Access to fast food wasn’t much and having burgers and pizzas used to be a once-in-a-month affair.

A Stroll Down Memory Lane

At a time when West Delhi wasn’t brimming with malls and high-end shopping complexes, the Janak Place shopping complex used to serve as the perfect weekend getaway. The McDonald’s outlet used to be my preferred destination ( you can imagine why). Back in those days, a McDonald’s burger used to be a luxury. I say luxury not because it was hard to afford, but because American fast food chains hadn’t swept over the minds of the Indian masses back then. A burger used to be something that was meant to be eaten only during celebrations and get-togethers.

Having lived in West Delhi for more than 20 years now, I can tell you that Janak Place hasn’t changed one bit. The shopping outlets available have changed for the better. There are new and better food outlets for people to choose from as well, but the overall essence of the place has remained intact. An alag si ” Delhi waali feeling” seems to engulf me whenever I get a chance to visit the place.

During the days of graduation, a lot of my time was spent at the complex. That is because I used to commute through the Metro rapid transit and get down at the Janak Puri West Metro Station.

A Foodie’s Paradise

Image – Yusuke Kawasaki Via Flickr

Also, for those of you who haven’t visited the place yet. I must bring to your knowledge that Janak Place shopping complex is a foodie’s ultimate destination. Forget the KFC’s and the TGI’s for a minute and you’d be able to find pocket-friendly eateries scattered throughout the complex. I don’t know about anybody else, but my excitement knows no bounds when I get a chance to get my hands on a smoking hot plate of momos. Many of you might disagree with me, but I strongly feel that a steaming-hot bag of momos is the perfect companion on a cold Saturday evening.

Over the years, my liking for the place has soared beyond limits. This liking was born out of my longing for companionship. I was an introvert and didn’t have many friends. This place provided me with an ideal refuge from the ups and downs of everyday life. A place where hours can be spent doing nothing. A place where you get a steaming-hot plate of momos or chilly potatoes to appease an empty stomach.  It wasn’t about the money and neither was it about the quality of food. It was about finding a transient refuge from the worries and woes of everyday life. For me, the place has always been way more than just a physical entity. It has been an experience like no other.

Shopping Experience

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District Centre, as some of us call it,  is a shopping enthusiast’s paradise. Forget the outlets selling branded clothes, There’s a specific area where you’d find countless stalls selling fashion accessories, kurtas, mobile covers, bridal clutches, artificial jewelry, etc. If you get a chance to visit the District Centre, do spend some time and treat yourself to some economical and durable fashion accessories. You’d get everything from Punjabi Jhuttis to designer kurtas at pocket-friendly prices. This place in West Delhi is a budget-oriented shopper’s paradise.

Even with a multitude of shopping malls taking the city by storm, Janak Puri’s good old District Centre has maintained its charm. Some might argue that the place is not at all posh and high-end, but that is exactly what makes the place worth visiting. The beauty of the Janak Place shopping complex lies in its rawness.

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