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Delhi (NCT): The Capital of Empires


Built to be the capital, Delhi had seen the rise and fall of many Kingdoms and Empires. Every dynasty that ruled Delhi left behind some kind of a seal or monument for the world to admire and remember.

History

Qubminar, Delhi

Delhi, situated between the Aravalli hills and the River Yamuna, had the attention of almost every conqueror in this part of the world. The oldest reference to Delhi is made in the Mahabharata that states that Pandavas founded a city called Indraprasta beside the River Yamuna in 1450 BC.

Since then conquerors from the north treated Delhi as the gateway to the Indian sub-continent, with repeated invasion and creation of empires and kingdoms, Delhi was built and demolished time again. Thus in the course of history seven medieval cities were formed.

King Anangpal of Tomar built the first city of Delhi in 1069 AD. Prithviraj Chuhan, the famous Rajput hero, and Qutub-ud-din Aibak the first sultan of Delhi improved on it. Qutub Minar from the time of Qutub-ud-din is still a dominant structure in Delhi.

During the 11th century AD Alaudin-Khalji built a new city called Siri. This magnificent city located northeast of original Tomar city is the second medieval city of Delhi.

When Tughlaq dynasty came into being in 1320, Ghias-ud-din Tughlaq built Tughlaqabad, the third city of Delhi, in the hills of South Delhi. The forth city of Delhi was Jahanpanah. Sultan Mohamed Tughlaq, the son of Ghias-ud-din Tughlaq built it between Lalkot and Siri. With Feroz Shah at the helm of reign, Delhi prospered and peace prevailed. He built the fifth city of Delhi along the banks of River Yamuna. He also built many palaces, mosques and gardens.

New Delhi

After the battle of Panipat I in 1526 Mughals established their supremacy over Delhi. Humayun started building the Mughal capital of Dinapana. But Sher Shah, the Afgan warrior drove him out and established a mighty empire with the best administration system that the city had ever seen. His capital Shergarh, the sixth city of Delhi, extended from purana Quila (old fort) to the edge of Feroz Shah Kotla.

In 1555 Humayun regained power and Mughals ruled Delhi once again. During Akbar's reign Agra was the capital of Mughals. In 1638 Shahjahan shifted the capital to Delhi and built the seventh city of Delhi, Shahajahanabad by 1648. Many monuments of Shahjahanabad remain in old Delhi.

The decline of Mughal Empire began during the reign of Aurengazeb. In the 19th century British East India Company rose into power. The last of Mughal Emperors, Bahadur Shah Zafar surrendered to the British. In the coronation Durbar in 1911, King George V formally announced the transfer of British Indian Capital from Calcutta to Delhi. British architects Sir Edward Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker designed New Delhi, the eighth city of Delhi. In 1931, New Delhi was inaugurated as the capital of Imperial India. After independence New Delhi continued as the capital of Union of India.

Tourist InformationTourist Information

Delhi is best to visit from October to March when the temparature is moderate. during summer the temparature soars upto 45o Celcius. Winters are colder when temparature range between 20o C and 7o C. The Monsoons are during June - Sept. Delhi's Indira Gandhi airport has one international terminal and one domestic terminal to handle the air traffic.

Relevent tourist information can be obtained from Delhi Transport and Tourism Development Corporation in Delhi. Their tourist information counters are located at Connaught Place, airports, railway stations and bus terminals. Most of the star hotels also provide tourist information for their inmates. For more details follow the link .Travel Information

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