Sunday, September 2, 2012

Discovering Kashmiri Gate 2

As we walked out of Kashmiri Gate we stopped by to admire another reminder of the by gone era of Delhi.  The Bengali club which was the hub of Bengali culture .  This too is no longer active.

Nest, we walked along the  Bara Bazaar market of Kashmiri Gate where there is this edifice .

Next we visited the oldest Church in Delhi - St James Church.
St. James Church also known as Skinner's Church, was commissioned by Colonel James Skinner ( 1778 - 1841), a distinguished Anglo-Indian military officer, famous for the cavalry regiment Skinner's Horse. it was desgined by Major Robert smith and built between 1826-36.

It was a Sunday morning, we entered the Church premises with welcoming sound of the bells chiming.  I was visiting a Church after a long time and would have loved to go inside, but we were in a group.  I Stopped by for a minute in front of the open door and bowed.

Besides, Skinner, there are graves of other members of the family in an enclosure.

And here is an interesting epitaph :)

 Walking ahead of St James Church, we crosseed by Old Delhi.  Here, right in the middle of the road is an smaal garden island.  This area was a key center during mutiny.  It was used to realy inflormation about activites in Delhi.

It has two inscriptions, on by the British and the other by the Government of India.

Inside the garden is  a pillar in memory of the magazine ' The Telegraph' which  was the medium used to convey information.  No, there is no legacy of that activity today, sadly.

It was now time to head for the old building, which once used to be the Guru Gobind Singh Indraprasatha University.

Guru Gobind Singh Indrasprasthe University ( formerly known as Indraprastha university),  a state university of new Delhi, is also located in Kashmiri Gate.  it is housed in the building which was formerly DCE or Delhi college of Engineering.  The University has shifted to bigger campus in Dwarka and now the campus is handed over to Indira Gandhi Institute of Technology.

Inside was a banner forbidding Ragging....

And lush greenery and seasonal flowers.

Also housing here is an old Library.

A library established by the Mughal prince Dara Shikoh,  still exists in Kasmhere Gate, and is being run as an archaeological museum by the Archaeological Survey of India.

It now serves as the Department of Archaeology.

 We now walked past the Indian Post Office, with a red and white facade.

And guess, what we saw....

Yeah.... they still exist, despite Email and IT revolution.

And with this, we came to the last stop of the Heritage Walk.  The oldest cemetery of Delhi. The LOTHIAN Cemetery.

And thus ended out tow hours of morning walk, discovering Kashmiri Gate which was just a hazy name of  old Delhi in my mind.  It is steeped in history and it  is a good move  on part of ASI to preserve many such monuments spread across Delhi.

Till my next Walk, signing off now.

Discovering Kashmiri Gate 1

Today morning was well spent.  I participated in a Heritage Walk in Kashmiri Gate, my second such walk, the first one being  heritage Walk in Chandni Chowk.

The Kashmiri Gate is a gate located in Delhi, it is the northern gate to the historic walled city of Delhi. Built by Military Engineer Robert Smith in 1835, the gate is so named because it used to start a road that led to Kashmir.
Today it is also the name surrounding locality in North Delhi,in the Old Delhi area, and an important road junction as the Red Fort, ISBT and Delhi Junction railway station lie in its vicinity.

We were a small group of Delhi lovers, both Indian and foreign and we started with out meeting point was Nicholson Cemetery.

The Cemetery has a run down gate,

 which  gives no clue at all to the lush green acres of land , the final resting point of many Britishers , around the 1857 rebellion, which the Britishers called 'The Mutiny'.

The  Cemetery is named after John Nicholson, a British commander who was fatally injured during the British attack on the walled city of Shahjahanabad.  Just as you enter the cemetery and turn right, you come across his grave.

Another important person to be buried here is Yasudas Ramachandra, a professor of Mathematics at the Delhi College.

He was one of the key personalities of the Delhi Renaissance. His conversion to Christianity was talk of the town back then. 

Embedded in the wall are more engravings and more graves....

And more graves spread across the expanse of the cemetery.

As we walked out of the cemetery for our next stop, i was amazed at what i saw. Right across the nearby Aggrasen park

 runs the Metro. 

 yes , it does!.  A vivid example of the old and contemporary  co existing  in harmony.

WAlking out of the Maharaja Aggrasen park we passed by Gate No2 of Metro, and spotted a popular eatery - Nirualas :)

Next, it was time to visit the Kashmiri Gate itself, which gave the name to the area.  It is one of the remaining  4 gates of the old city of Shanjahanbad, out of a total of 14. The rest were demolished and vandalised  at different periods of history of the City of Delhi.

This gate was at he center of the 1857 Rebellion. 

 The walls dented by bullets and other war atrocities bare a silent testimony to the times gone by.  Now, pigeons perch up on those broken walls.