Updated: Jun 29, 2020
Most of the big cities have reference point from where all the distances are measured to other cities and different important places. It is almost universal across world to have such zero mile stones. And distances of major cities are designated from this reference point.
In Canada there are cities named like 80 Miles ,90 miles etc.
This reference stones also provide much needed bench mark for doing surveys and maps. India has 80 odd zero mile stones across different cities,used during the trigonometric survey.The most prominent in India is in Nagpur, because it is considered as geographical centre of India. An impressive sculpture of Sun god, in his chariot , has been erected as a zero point.
Pune has its own zero mile stone located outside G.P.O. Near Pune station.
On Pune's zero mile stones, places like Sinhagad, Paud, Purandar, Sholapur, Alandi, Nasik, Bangalore have been mentioned. It is understood that this stone was erected in 1872,when G.P.O. (General Post Office) was constructed.
A trigonometric survey of India was done during 1800 to 1872. During this survey the zero mile stone had been used as bench mark point. Such a important mark generally comes under heritage structure's list.
However Pune zero stone was lying under gross neglect for years,until 2019.
Hawkers, beggars ,were sitting surrounding the landmark stone almost invisible. Newspapers had raised their voice, and local corporation and a team of a local corporator Mr.Arvind Shinde , architect Abhijit Kondhalkar, and social personalities for restoring the neglected benchmark point.
In August 2019 this stone was was reconfigured with a marble plaque showing trigonometric survey map done during British time. The foot path was widened the hawkers relocated ,and this monument was fenced for safeguard .A neglected monument was thus saved and restored to anew glory.
Very few of us must have known and visited this heritage point in Pune.
In memories of Pune this stone can not go without a worthy mention.
Its time for us to visit this heritage.
Disclaimer: Photographs are not taken by me and are only for representational purposes. Original copyrights lie with the owners.