Chandini Chowk: A Gorgeous Place in the Heart of old Delhi

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“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page”

                                                                                             -Saint Augustine

Nowadays, with rapid growth in India, tourism is an important task to explore and learn aboutnew places. Every place has its own story, which could be joyful, devotional and tragic. These stories are preserved and still in memory of many people due to heritages and culture associated to them, which attracts other people and also enhances the tourism. One of the most famous place in Old Delhiis ‘ChandiniChowk’ which was established in Mughal era.

‘Chandini Chowk’ the place of moonlight was established by Shah Jahan in 1650.This beautiful  place was designed as square, consisting pool in center, which shines in moonlight. At that time, it was known for its 1,520 shops in market, established by Princess Jahanara Begum but now ChandiniChowk is full of tourist places, which always represents the beauty of Medieval India in modern times. Tourist places of‘ChandiniChowk’are categorized as religious, historical and commercial.

HISTORICAL PLACES

Mughal rulers always took pleasure in spending their time in building beautiful forts and gardens so, thehistorical places of ChandiniChowk, represents the polity, economy and culture of Mughal period.

Red Fort

Red fort was built by Shah Jahan in 1638. This beautiful fort is made up of red sandstone.  In Mughal era it served as the residence of Mughal Emperors. Nowit is the largest monument in Delhi andit was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007. One of the tourist attraction at this place is light and sound show in evening. Every year on Independence Day the Prime Minister hoist Indian flag at the main gate of the Red Fort                                                                                                                                      

Tomb of Razia Sultan

Razia Sultan, the first and only female emperor of Delhi Sultanate was buried inMohallaBulbuliKhana in ChandiniChowk along with her sister Shazia. Her tomb consists of four wall, without roofs with two graves placed in center. Chirpings of Bulbuls are very common at this place. This place is quite un- famous and only history lovers get attracted to it.

Indian War Memorial Museum

It was built in 1919 in the memory of soldiers who had joined the first world war of India. It also consists weapon of Babur through which he defeated Ibrahim Lodi.

Mirza Galibki Haveli

It was residential place of 19th century’s Urdu poet Mirza Galiband is now a heritage site. He had contributed his Gazals to Urdu literature which are now very famous inMuslim cultural events like Mushaira.

RELIGIOUS PLACES

The religious places of ChandiniChowk represents communal harmony.There are many religious places like temple, mosque,gurudwara and church and all coexists peacefully.

Jama Masjid

Jama Masjid is one of the largest mosque in India, built by Shah Jahan, which is magnificent for its beautiful architecture. It is made up of mixture of marble, limestone and sandstone. It is present on a high platform, that’s why its facade is visible from all the adjoining area and a sprawling esplanade separates it from the main road.

Gurudwara Sis Ganj Saheb

It was constructed in 1783 by military leader Baghel Singh Dhaliwal to commemorate the martyrdom site of the ninth guru, Shri Guru Teg Bahadur. It is famous for its ‘langar sewa’ or community kithchen in which free meals are served all the time, to every visitor.

Digamber Jain temple

It is the oldest Jain temple in Delhi which also consist avian veterinary hospital called the Jain bird hospital. It was built in the reign of Shah Jahan, when a Jain officer of Mughal army said to have kept Tirthankara statue in his tent for personal worship, which started attracting other Jain officer and Jain temple was constructed. 

Holy Trinity Church

It is a memorial of a priest, the Rev Alexander Charles Maitland, who died in Delhi in 1894. The church’s grey stoned building was designed by Rev A. Coore. Itconsists white domes, topped with lantern like structure.It is the cleanest area in the ChandiniChowk.

COMMERCIAL PLACES

Shopping and eateries plays significant role at tourist places and Chandinichowk is also very famous for its numerous of traditional shops in its narrow lanes.

ParantheWaaliGali

Shop of Paranthewala was opened in 1872 which is now famous for its tasty paranthas. Their deep fried paranthas of desi ghee are filled with vegetable stuffing and are served with red and green chutneys.

Silver Jewelry Shop

Silver Jwellery Shop is close to ParantheWaliGali. It is present at 17th century market of Dariba Kalan. In Mughal period this market was famous for its precious pearls and now you can buy beautiful silver jewelry at affordable prices from this shop.

Shop of traditional perfume

In the market of Dariba Kalan of ChandiniChowk, the oldest perfumery in Delhi, is also present. This perfumery is 200-year-old. Gluab Singh Jori Mal, who had sold his perfumes to Mughal Emperors was the founder of this shop.

WAYS TO REACH CHANDINI CHOWK

There are several ways to reach ChandiniChowk by metro, train and e- rickshaw.

Nearest metro station –ChandiniChowk Metro Station (yellow line)

Nearest railway station – Old Delhi Railway Station

Author: Amrit Kaur

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