Mr. Pragnesh Parikh

Architect's Voice, Sep 2017
Mr. Pragnesh Parikh
MD of Real Estate Construction Company

What are the different kinds of projects you have undertaken? How has the experience shaped you?

To start with, I was born in Gujarat and completed my graduation from Mumbai. I came back to Ahmedabad and did my management in planning and forecasting. Following my post-graduation, I started working with a pharma company in sales department, then as a medical representative and later got promoted as All India Project Manager and held this position for seven years or so. However, destiny had different plans for me so I changed my profession and became a scrap dealer for the next 2 years. Simultaneously, I started making industry printing machines which were used for book binding and folding papers. The machine was manufactured in India and was marketed throughout the country with a market share of 90%. So, we expanded and started making ball bearing units as well. By 1998, I ventured into the construction industry with Rembrandt being my first project, which also brought me in contact with Dr. Rao.

What are your thoughts on Architecture and Vaastu in modern times?

The younger architects are quite adaptable when it comes to bringing new and innovative ways to make

Vaastu compliant designs. From designing Vaastu compliant multi storey building plans to incorporating the need for earthquake and flood resistant buildings, the younger architects try and adapt Vaastu compliant designs to keep their habitants stay healthy, wealthy, and peaceful so they are able to enjoy the common amenities at an affordable cost.

Do you think that Vaastu is a key aspect that architects, interior designers, urban planners should consider?

Vaastu is a science of architecture which was developed between 6000 BC and 3000 BC. Vaastu means a dwelling with corresponding plot of land to make habitation for human life with an intent to live a peaceful and harmonious life. It is a science developed by people following Hinduism and the best examples are the world heritage sites of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro as well as Angkor Wat; the largest religious monument in the world which is located in Cambodia.

The kings of medieval period used to build their dwellings, forts, and palaces keeping in mind the direction of wind, sun, rain, and land proportion for peace and prosperity. The principles of Vaastu are adopted by all the young architects today, including the likes of Architect Charles Correa.

Architects since ages have incorporated their designs using Panch Dhatus. i.e. copper, brass, aluminium, iron, and zinc. They plan the use of these dhatus in different directions. For example, the South direction is ruled by Yama, North by Kuber, East by Indra, and West by Varun. A lot of architects plan the houses, offices, and cities based on the directions. For instance, North East is good for entrances, South West (Nirutti) is good for bedrooms, South East (Agni) for Kitchen and store room, and North West (Vaayu) for open spaces or toilets.

Open gardens and sitting areas are to be located in the center of grabha graha. These pancha dhatus are in coordination with the five elements – air, water, earth, fire, and space.


Tell us about your experience with Dr. Rao.

I met Dr. Rao in 1998 during his onset of the career in Ahmedabad. He was looking for interesting projects and had great value for his own learnings. I too, was into the initial phase of my career – it was my first building and the concept of Vaastu was very new to me.

When he looked into my project plan, he asked me to remove the garage because it was blocking the entire North-East corner. I didn’t pay much heed to it; however, my engineer Mr. Anish Shah didn’t take his suggestions lightly and demolished the garage area. He had also suggested to close the small pool on South East corner as it was like an open water tank. We followed his advice and closed that down. To our surprise, the project started moving faster than before.

By the time the building underwent design, he had suggested a lot of good changes which were materialized too. He even told us that a financial company will start business soon in this building. A few months later, Citi bank was the first company to occupy business space in our building. Eventually, a lot of financial companies started moving in.

The major change in Rembrandt was changing the entire ramp. Dr. Rao asked us to make the ramp on North East side so it will go downward into an open space. So, we re-planned the layout and incorporated the proposed changes. It did help us.

It is because of Dr. Rao’s inputs that the tenants who have occupied business space in this building have prospered and some of them have even expanded by acquiring more offices. We have known each other for almost 20 years now and my experience with Dr. Rao has been a wonderful one.

Rembrandt Building (Artist’s Impression)

Vaastu is a science of architecture which was developed between 6000 BC and 3000 BC. Vaastu means a dwelling with corresponding plot of land to make habitation for human life with an intent to live a peaceful and harmonious life. It is a science developed by people following Hinduism and the best examples are the world heritage sites of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro as well as Angkor Wat; the largest religious monument in the world which is located in Cambodia.
The kings of medieval period used to build their dwellings, forts, and palaces keeping in mind the direction of wind, sun, rain, and land proportion for peace and prosperity. The principles of Vaastu are adopted by all the young architects today, including the likes of Architect Charles Correa.