Delhi

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I only had two full days in Delhi but one was spent waiting for my missing luggage to catch up with me, the second day I decided to take a car and driver to see as much as I could in the very limited time available


 
 

Jama Masjid

 


Built by Emperor Shah Jahan to complement his palace in the Red Fort.  Every Friday Shah Jahan and his entourage traveled in state from the fort to attend the congressional prayers hence the name which translates to Friday Mosque

Over 5000 labourers took 6 years to complete the biggest mosque in India.  It's courtyard can accommodate 25,000 worshipers who bathe in its central marble tank before attending prayers

 

 

 

                                          Red Fort Beside the Mosque

In 1638 Shah Jahan transferred his capital from Agra to Delhi and laid the foundations of Shahjahanabad, the seventh city of Delhi.   Surrounded by red sandstone walls with 14 gates, this is Delhi Gate one of the six more important gates into the fort

  The Tomb of Isa Khan Nivazi

My driver dropped me off at the entrance of Humayun's Tomb complex but a lovely old gentleman waylaid me and escorted me here.  I completely missed my intended destination but did enjoy the company of my 'guide'


I later found out I had been to the tomb of Isa Khan Nivazi an Afghan noble in Sher Shah Suri's court.  It predates the main tomb by twenty years.  Inside the tomb are the cenotaphs of Isa Khan Nivazi and members of his family

                                                                            Rashtrapti Bhavan

 

The Indira Gandhi Memorial Museum

Is housed in her former home, a long low white bungalow. (Bungalow another gift to the English language from the Raj)  Inside you will see her living room and study, family photos, her writings and the blood stained sari she was wearing when she was assassinated.  As well as the clothes her son Rajiv wore in 1991 when he met a similar fate

Leaving her garden where Mrs Ghandi collapsed following an attack by two of her Sikh bodyguards on Diwali 1984.  The path is paved with crystal.  The  plain glass tile with the rose marks the spot where she succumbed to her injuries

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The largest residence of any Head of State is barely visible behind these magnificent Lutyens gates.  The former British Vice Regal Lodge it is  now occupied by the President of the largest democracy in the world.   It took 17 years to build and only 18 years later India no longer had need of a Vice Regal Lodge

 
   

              The Lutyens Canopy
Once housed an enormous statue of George V Emperor of India which is now consigned to a graveyard of imperial statuary in Coronation Park in north Delhi. The vast canopy now stands empty amid a continuing debate regarding it's demolition

                        India Gate
Also the work of Edwin Landseer Lutyens, is a 42 meter memorial at the eastern end of Rajpath'  across its arch is inscribed:

"To the dead of the Indian armies who fell honoured in france, Flanders, Mesopotamia, Persia, East Africa, Gallipoli and elsewhere in the near and far-east and in memory also of those whose  names are recorded adn fell in India or the north-west frontier during the Third Afgan War"

On its walls the names of the 90.000 Indian soldiers who fell fighting for the British in WW1

Whilst the Delhi Gate was surrounded by many Indian visitors,  I was the only person at the canopy that day to muse on the impermanence of Empire

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