Sunday, December 16, 2007

Delhi Thrills - A Photo Blog

I am not a historian nor someone who fared very well in history in school, but over the years I have begun to love places and monuments that will outlive me ands many others and speak of a civilization we call, Indian. And in that respect, I am a proud Indian.

So, let us take a tour around Delhi, through my eyes.

The star attraction of the Qutb complex is, of course, the Qutb Minar (1200-1210) itself, started by Aibak but finished by Iltutmish. The decreasing in size as the tower moves up and so if you look up it looks really high. The two topmost storeys, were added later by Feroze Shah Tughlaq. It is an excellent example of Afgan architecture. The Minar is 72.5 metres high.

Design on the inside of the many domes at the Kutub Minar...

Crowd at The Baha'i House - Lotus Temple

Baha’I House of Worship is also known as The Lotus Temple. It was built in 1987 and signifies the purity and equality of all religions.

Lotus Temple

The Main tomb at Lodi Garden....

Lodi Gardens With the Lodi dynasty and most Mughal kings sthe capital had shifted to Agra. Delhi wasn't really abondoned but its importance played down.
Yet the buildings that stand in Lodi Gardens today are a joy forever and a remembrance of the austerity and impressiveness of Tughlaq times.

A glace of the same from a different angle

Lodi Gardens, was landscaped in 1968 by the famous Joseph Allen Stein. It has the mid-15th century Bada Gumbad and the Shish Gumbad. And the Tomb of Sikandar Lodi (1517), near a bridge called Athpula, the latter built in Akbar's time. Lodi Garden continues to remain the joggers and walkers paradise.

Isha Khan's tomb

Humayun's Tomb It is a place of silence, the Tomb as well as its surrounding garden. You can sit there for hours, just lost in thoughts. Such a quiet dignity surrounds it. Babur's son Humayun and daughter-in-law Haji Begum had spent a good five years in Persia in exile. When they returned they came with a retinue of Persian architects and artisans. And thus began the formal interface of Persian trends with Indian architecture, which you find in the Taj Mahal as well.

Humayun's Tomb (1565-66) was built by Haji Begam. It is a prototype of The Taj and replicates the garden tombs of that thus the first of the famous garden tombs of the Mughals, the first tomb in . We are grateful that this building has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO (1993).

Inside Isha Khan's tomb Tomb

Humayun's Tomb

Without mention of the silence of Humayun’s tomb and the surrounding areas, it is in fact a sin to leave this short account. Blissfully, silent, one which everyone must experience.

Red Fort This was built by Shah Jahan who also built The Taj Mahal. The historic Red Fort at Chandni Chowk (Shahjahanabad) is a perfect example of Persian urban-planning precepts, which believed in expressing the relation between human beings and the world when designing cities.

Shahjahanabad (1648) was established when Shah Jahan desired a formally planned capital as opposed to the sporadic collection of buildings that was Agra. It's a travesty to speak of 'Shahjahanabad', since the city was systematically destroyed by the British after the Revolt of 1857, cut through by a railway line, turned over to the Army in independent India.

Inside The Red Fort - Deewan'i Khaas, Dewan'i aam...
Entrance of The Red Fort

The Red Fort houses the Diwan-i-Aam with its painted marble canopy; Khaas Mahal (the king's quarters) with its incredibly intricate marble jaali; the adjacent Diwan-i-Khaas ('Hall of Private Audience'); the Shah Burj in a secluded corner, built for no other known purpose except the emperor's luxury of whiling away time... 'marble tents' all of them. The construction of Red Fort started in 1639 and ended in 1648.

Outside Red Fort

Opposite the Red Fort you have the Jama Masjid which is the largest mosque in India and stands across the road from Red Fort. It was built in 1656 by Shahjahan. Also opposite are the Jain temples.

At Raj Ghat - The Father Of The Nation - Hey Ram

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