Private [Public] Spaces

Delhi claims to provide the best of both worlds to shopaholics; inexpensive streets and extravagant boutiques, traditional and contemporary, routine and tourist leisure. Indeed, Delhi has a variety of marketplaces, ranging from Chandni Chowk, to Connaught Place, to Khan Market, Sarojini Nagar and many more.

A public space should be accessible to people.

Janpath Market ©D'Source

Being the seat of political power, Delhi has transformed and evolved with the ruling dynasties. One among the recent transformations that demands attention is the changing perception of ‘public’ spaces. While street markets are being perceived as unsafe for women, the private sector is taking over the public realm.

Privatised-public spaces have become the new identity of public place.

Select Citywalk Mall ©Navni Kumar

While new privately-owned shopping malls are being added to our cities with a claim to compensate for the shortage of public spaces, it only adds to the exclusive nature of public spaces. Although such spaces claim to be gender-inclusive, they cater only to a specific income group within the city. Therefore, the demand for public spaces by the city’s people continues to remain unaddressed.


Sophiya Islam


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