Delhi's iconic Hotel Janpath to soon shut doors
It seems to be a bad time for Delhi's iconic landmark. Less than two months after Regal Cinema shut down, the Janpath Hotel is now pulling down its shutters. The India Tourism Development Corporation property is likely to house government offices next. The hotel's assets will be transferred to the Urban Development Ministry after PM Narendra Modi granted "in-principle" approval.
Janpath was draining the exchequer
Despite its prime location, the hotel had failed to garner traffic. Although Janpath was used by the government, it was draining the exchequer. During Vajpayee's rule, its ITDC-owned neighbours Ashok Yatri Niwas and Kanishka were divested, but the NDA was defeated before Janpath's turn came.
What will happen to it next?
The cabinet secretary will lead a to-be-formed committee to work out the finer details of the exit. Among others, it will also determine land usage, and how the property should be utilized. The building also has to undergo major rehabilitation work. "The building did not meet the necessary seismic requirement," confirmed an official. An IIT-Roorkee report found it "unserviceable" and in "distressed condition".
All this part of disinvestment strategy
Last month, ITDC exited from three other hotels in Bhopal, Guwahati and Bharatpur as part of the government's Rs. 72,500cr disinvestment plan for 2017-18. It was decided that the properties would be leased out in collaboration with states, or returned to them after valuation. States can then either bring in private players to run the hotels, or use them for other necessary requirements.