Delhi – India
Delhi is a very historical city. Traveling in Delhi will give you opportunity to explore the city which has been into existence for many thousand years. India especially Delhi has been plundered many times for it’s wealth. Indian Hindu Kings were the rulers of Delhi like Prithvi raj Chauhan but later Delhi was plundered by the Mughals and then the Britishers. Delhi is said to be a 3000 years old city.
There are many historical places to see in Delhi like the Qutab Minar, Red Fort, Humyaun’s Tomb, The Red Fort, The Old Fort, Jama Masjid etc. which are the epitomes of Mughal architecture and these are all UNESCO heritage centers. Bedsides that there is the Lotus temple, Akshardham temple, The Zoo, India Gate, Rashtrapati Bhawan or the Presidential Palace, Rajghat (Gandhi Ji’s remains), The Connaught Place etc. The Connaught Place is the heart of Delhi and you can find a lot of hotels, restaurants, clubs, bars around. It’s a vibrant and lively place.
Also visit the Nehru Planetarium and the Art Gallery near Pragati Maidan. The Mughal Garden will be of extreme interest in the winter with a lot of variety of flora and fauna.
To explore good and traditional food in Delhi one must go to Connaught Place, Parathe wale Gali and the Karim’s restaurant near jama Masjid. These are the few authentic places to taste the flavours of Delhi.
Visit from October to March as the summer is very hot in Delhi and Agra. NDLS, Old Delhi and Nizamuddin are the main railway stations of Delhi. IGI is the nearest airport with terminal 3 considered to be one of the Top 5 airports of the World. Delhi is well connected with Agra, Shimla, Nainital, Auli (Hill Resort) and Haridwar. So if you make Delhi a centre point, you can cover many tourist places at one go.
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Here are the photographs of India gate and the presidential palace, the examples of British architecture –
Qutab Minar one of the UNESCO heritage center was built by Qutab Uddin Ibaq in the 4th Century after defeating the Prithvi Raj Chauhan. Howerever the monument was built in a span of 20 years step by step. This site was originally a Hindu site with many hindu temples. But then they were all destroyed and islamic structures were built like the Qutab Minar. The reason for building Qutab Minar was that during that time there was no loud speaker so while reading the prayer the higher altitude would enable many people in the city to listen. There are some hindu structures left un demolished because that was used as prayer rooms for the muslim females. When we go down the photos you can see examples of many hindu architecture.
See the inscriptions on the minar in Arabic. Every storey has different inscriptions in Arabic.
Here are the examples of the Hindu temples that had been demolished to create the Qutab Minar in the 4th Century
This is the iron pillar during the time of King Prithvi Raj chauhan which still stands today. The technology is unknown but the iron pillar is still not rusted after so many years of exposure to air and water. Scripts in Pali are inscripted on the pillar if you see below pictures.
The Hindu structures which still remain intact with idols of hindu gods and goddesses.
The most important worth mentioning thing is the structure and technology used in building Qutab Minar. It is a Lock & Key type structure that has been sued instead of brick and mortar or what we call cement today. See the structures below The stones ere cut to fit into male-female pattern to get locked and then locked by iron nails. These are all made of Red Sandstone and very strong. Hence even after thousands of years The Qutab Minar still stand the same as it was before.
This is not wood but Fossil
This is the structure created by Alauddin Khilji. He conceived it to be a monument grander than the Qutab Minar. But it remained incomplete as he died. The structure has crumbled after so many years as it was made of brick and mortar and not following the lock & key unique pattern used in the Qutab Minar which will probably stay alive more for another 1000 years.
The Tomb of Iltutmish
This is another UNESCO World heritage center of Delhi. It is made of Red sandstone and is the precursor to the Taj Mahal of Agra. It is said that this monument was constructed just before the construction of Taj Mahal so the exterior of Taj Mahal has great resemblance with this monument. Humayun’s tomb, the first mausoleum for a Mughal Emperor, drew inspiration from 15th century Timurid architecture.
The Red Fort
The Red Fort was the official residence and working place of Emperor Shah jahan, the same Emperor who constructed the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort.
It is very important to notice the architecture and the design. I stressed on this point before also in my Agra chapter. The designs are typically made by embossing colored precious and semi stones on white marble stone slabs mostly brought from Rajasthan. So this is very distinctive fro the Rajputana design and architecture, I repeat.
Here below is a British architecture as you can see. After defeating the Moghuls British took control of the Red Fort, plundered it and took away all the gems that were there in the architecture and just left it naked. And they made this building as garrison for their soldiers.
So, starting from Mongols to the Moghuls and then the British, everyone has plundered and looted India. India had a lot of wealth and as the country was not united at that time so it was a sitting duck and an easy prey. Had we been united at that time, today we would have been 10 times more richer than the US or China or any body else.