The city of gardens

History lives in Delhi, the capital of India.The ancient and the modern, the old and the new are in constant juxtaposition here,not only in the remains of a succession of empires, but in contemporary social structures and lifestyles. The name Delhi, Dehali, or Dilli is derived from "Dhillika", the name of the first medeival township pf Delhi, located on the southwestern border of the present Union Territory of Delhi, in Meharauli.Two architects, Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker, were assigned the task of designing and building the new capital Some of the landmarks of Lutyens Delhi are Rashtrapati Bhawan, official residence of the president of India, built in the commanding position on Raisina Hill.Some of the other notable arhcitectural contributions include the Connaught place, India gate, and the Parliament house to name a few

General Information

Delhi is the third largest city in India, surpassed in population only by Calcutta and Bombay. New Delhi, the capital of India, lies immediately to the the south of what is considered old Delhi (often referred as just "Delhi").The present day area of New and Old Delhi is located on the west bank of the Yamuna River, a tributary of the Ganges, and is landlocked by Haryana to the North, South, and West and Uttar Pradash to the East.

History of Delhi

The earliest recorded mention of a settlement at Delhi is found in the Hindu epic Mahabharata, which mentions a city called Indraprastha. Indraprastha was built in 1400 B.C. under the direction of Yudhisthira, a Pandava king, on a huge mound somewhere between the sites where the historic Old Fort (Purana Qilah) and Humayun's Tomb were later to be located. The first reference to the name Delhi seems to have been made in the 1st century BC when Raja Dhilu built the first city of Delhi near the site of the future Delhi went through many ups and downs and did not reemerge into prominence until the 12th century A.D., when it was made the capital of the ruler Prthviraja III. After his defeat later that century, the city passed into Muslim hands. Qutb-ud-Din Aybak, builder of the famous tower Qutab Minar (completed in the early 13th century), also chose Delhi as his capital.

The second city of Delhi was built by Ala-ud-Din Khalji at Siri, three miles northeast of the Qutab Minar(near what is today Hauz Khaus and the Asian Games Village). The third city of Delhi was built by Ghiyas-ud-Din Tughluq (1320-25) at Tughlakabad but had to be abandoned in favor of the old site near because of a scarcity of water. The ruins of Tughlakabad are located on the present-day Delhi-Haryana border towards Faridabad.

His successor, Muhammad ibn Tughluq, extended the city farther northeast and built new forticications around it. It then became the fourth city of Delhi, under the name Jahanpanah. The new settlements were located between the old cities near the Qutab Minar and Siri Fort.

Muhammad ibn Tughluq's successor, Firuz Shah Tughluq, abandoned this site altogether and in 1354 moved his capital farther north near the ancient site of Indraprastha. Thus, the fifth city of Delhi, Firuzabad, was founded on what is now the Firoz Shah Kotla area. Delhi was invaded and partially destroyed by Timur at the end of the 14th century, and the last of the sultan kings moved the capital to Agra. Babur, the first Mughal ruler, reestablished Delhi as the seat of his empire in 1526. His son and successor, Humayun, built a new city on the site of the previously demolished Firuzabad and called in Din Panah.

Sher Shah, who overthrew Humayun in 1540, razed Din Panah and built his capital, the Sher Shahi (the Old Fort or Purana Qilah), as the sixth city of Delhi.

Delhi once again lost importance when the Mughal emperors Akbar (1556-1605) and Jahangir (1605-1627) moved their headquarters to Fatehpur Sikri (near Agra) and Agra, respectively. The city was restored to its glory in 1638 when the son of Jahangir, Shah Jahan, laid the foundations of the seventh city of Delhi, Shahjahanabad. What was Shahjahanabad has come to be known as Old Delhi. The greater part of the city is still confined within the space of Shah Jahan's walls and several gates built during his rule -- the Kashmiri Gate, the Delhi Gate, the Turkman Gate, and the Ajmeri Gate -- still stand.

With the fall of the Mughal empire during the mid-18th century, the city of Delhi witnessed many invasions and power changes. The arrival of the British in 1803 marked the beginning of a new period in Delhi's history. Under British rule, Delhi grew to become a large city. In 1912 the British moved the capital of British India from Calcutta in West Bengal to the partially completed New Delhi. Construction of New Delhi was completed by 1931.

Images of Delhi