Shopping in Delhi
Kamla Nagar Market
Kamla Nagar is situated in North Delhi and is known as one of the major shopping centres of the city and the commercial hub of the North Delhi area today. It is located close to the Delhi University North Campus area and just opposite Hans Raj College and near the popular Ghanta Ghar Subzi Mandi. This market place is known for featuring famous fashion brands of apparels as well as famous for its spicy street food not apt for fragile palates.
Historically, Kamla Nagar was primarily developed as an affluent residential area during the 1950s, however, due to its close proximity to the University Campus of Delhi, businessmen and traders developed a huge market place nearby to cater to the daily needs of residents as well as the students. The absence of a popular market prompted people to invest and henceforth turned this area into a profitable commercial district. It also became popular after the ‘Clock Tower’ known as ‘Ghanta Ghar’ was erected on G T Road including the establishment of a Textile Mill that prompted numerous locals to relocate to this area looking for jobs. This was possible due to the availability of a bygone Tram Service known as the ‘Tramway’ that allowed people to easily access Old Delhi. Today, the Tramway service is no longer operational and in fact was stopped post independence.
During the British rule in India, Kamla Nagar was a very politically active area. It was the epicentre of work for prominent political and social officials and leaders of Delhi including famous Freedom Fighters such as Aruna Asaf Ali, Comrade Guru Radha Kishan [Guru Ji], Dara Singh [Wrestler], Dronacharya Bhupendra Dhawan, Gulzar [Lyricist and Poet], Guru Hanumaan, Jan Sangh General Secretary Kanwar Lal Gupta, Manoj Kumar [Bollywood Film Actor], Santosh Anand [Poet], Satpal and several other affluent bigwigs.
Today, the Kamla Nagar Market homes a blend of international branded outlets as well as Indian stores dotted along the famous Bungalow Road that stretches just opposite the well known Hans Raj College. With time, this market developed exponentially and saw more retail stores cropping in and around this area. It also features a number of good restaurants located on the lower floors of a few shops while the upper levels are still retained as the residential houses of the respective owner or otherwise.
The Kamla Nagar Market place is primarily known for its traditional Indian dresses, bridal wear & accessories as well as Groom wear and accessories. The market also witnesses a lot of crowd comprising mostly of college students from the nearby Delhi University Campus [North] living close to this area either in hostels or rented accommodation and other shoppers who flock in here to shop and also enjoy the spicy yet delectable street food available at numerous roadside eateries joints also known as ‘Dhabas’ in the local Hindi language. The ‘Chacha Cholle Bhature’ is a famous street food stall that opens 6 days in a week except Mondays and is always crowded with people queuing to savour his simple dishes. Every corner of this market place is dotted with sweet shops such as ‘Gopal Sweets Shop’, ‘Lakshmi Sweets’ and ‘Vaishnav Chaat’ to name a few. Be it a variety of refreshing munchies and flavoured milk bottles, buttermilk shakes [Lassi], Samosa, Jalebi, Kachori or Cholle Puri, this place has it all, and this is one of the main reasons why it is one of the most popular places for Old Delhi cuisines.
Kamla Nagar market is also famous for very affordable and quality merchandises and items especially garments, latest trends of fashionable designer clothing and shoes including bags and accessories. International food vendors such as ‘Dominos Pizza’ and ‘McDonald’s’ seen here also attract the young crowd especially the college students and the shoppers for a quick bite.
Kamla Nagar Market also homes the offices of numerous publishers and booksellers. Lately, the MCD is removing all the roundabouts seen in this area and are constructing a huge underground parking lot at the centre of the market in order to improve the otherwise very congested tariff conditions. Also note that this market remains closed on Mondays only and is opened from Tuesdays to Sundays between 11:00 AM and 8:00 PM. Food joints generally open up till night fall.