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The India Gate, originally named All India War Memorial, was built to pay homage to the 82,000 soldiers of the Undivided Indian Army who lost their lives fighting for the British Empire in World War I (1914-1918) and the Third Anglo-Afghan War (1919). It was undertaken as part of the Imperial War Graves Commission (IWGC) initiated by the British Imperial Mandate in 1917.
The foundation stone was laid by the visiting Duke of Connaught on 10 February 1921, at 4:30 PM, in a military ceremony attended by members of the Indian Army as well as the Imperial Service Troops. The Commander in Chief, and Frederic Thesiger, 1st Viscount Chelmsford who was the Viceroy of India at the time, was also present. The ceremony hounored the 59th Scinde Rifles (Frontier Force), 3rd Sappers and Miners, Deccan Horse, 6th Jat Light Infantry, 39th Garhwal Rifles, 34th Sikh Pioneers, 117th Mahrattas, and 5th Gurkha Rifles (Frontier Force), with title of ” Royal ” in recognition of their gallant services in combat.
The project was completed ten years later in 1931 and was inaugurated on February 12, 1931, by the Viceroy, Lord Irwin. Every year on 26th January, the Republic Day parade starts from the Rashtapati Bhavan (the President House) and progresses around the Gate. The parade displays the latest achievements in the field of defense technology as well as the rich cultural heritage of the country.
The India Gate is located at the heart of India’s capital city, New Delhi. About 2.3 km from the Rashtrapati Bhavan, it is located on the eastern extremity of the ceremonial boulevard, Rajpath. India Gate is a war memorial dedicated to honor the soldiers of the Undivided Indian Army who died during World War I between 1914 and 1921. War memorials are buildings, installations, statues or other edifices dedicated either to celebrate victory in war, or to pay tribute to those who died or were injured in war.
Delhiites and tourists alike throng the India Gate Lawns surrounding the monument for a leisurely evening, enjoying the light show at the fountains along with snacking on street food. A National War Memorial to honor all armed forces members killed after 1947 is under construction at the ‘C’ Hexagon of India Gate.
- Type : War Memorial
- Construction Started : 10 February, 1921
- Construction Completed : February 12, 1931
- Where is it Located : New Delhi, India
- Why was it Built : Memorial to Undivided Indian Army soldiers who died during World War I
- Dimensions : 42 m in height; 9.1m in width; the complex is 625m in diameters and 306,000 m² in area
- Materials Used : Yellow and red sandstone and granite
- Architectural Style : Triumphal Arch
- Designer : Sir Edwin Lutyens
The Victoria Memorial Hall is one of the most magnificent monuments of not only the city of Calcutta but of our entire country. Representing the resplendent and majestic British architecture, Victoria Memorial Hall stands today, as a veritable icon of the city of Kolkata. Located on 1 Queen’s way, the VMH was envisaged by Lord Curzon, the Viceroy of British India, as a memorial to the deceased Queen Victoria. Hence, according to Curzon this memorial should take form of a great marble hall, which was to be erected on the Calcutta maidan to serve primarily as a monument to the Queen and secondarily as a national gallery and Valhalla of the Indian Empire.
The national gallery which Curzon speaks about would in future take the shape of a museum. The Victoria Memorial hall was therefore set up to function more than just a memorial for the deceased Queen Victoria. The memorial was to be designed with a museum housed within its realms. The memorial with the museum would act as a “standing record of our wonderful history” This was to be a historical museum where people could see before them pictures and statues of men who played a prominent part in the history of this country and develop a pride in their past. Curzon’s writing bring forth that it was a part of his imperial duty to put into execution to set up a “Great Imperial memorial worthy of Queen Victoria and worthy of India.
Within few weeks after Queen’ death in January 1901 a great meeting was convened in the Town Hall of Calcutta on 6th February, 1901, whereby a resolution for constituting an all Indian Memorial Fund for building of the memorial was moved. The princes and people of India responded Architects generously to his appeal for funds and the total cost of construction of this monument amounting to one crore, five lakhs of rupees, was entirely derived from their voluntary subscriptions. King George V, the then Prince of Wales, laid the foundation stone on January 4, 1906 and it was formally opened to the public in 1921.
- When was it built: Built between 1906 to 1921
- Who built it: Conceptualised by George Curzon, Viceroy of India
- Where is it located: Kolkata, West Bengal, India
- Why was it built: To commemorate Queen Victoria
- Architectural Style: Indo-Saracenic revivalist style
Gateway of India
The Gateway of India was built to celebrate and honor the visit of King George V and Queen Mary to India for their formal proclamation as Emperor and Empress of India at the Delhi Durbar in December 1911. The foundation stone for the monument was laid by Sir George Sydenham Clarke, the Governor of Bombay on March 31, 1911 at what was a crude jetty used by the fishing community.
A cardboard model of the proposed structure was presented to the Royal visitors and the final design of Scottish architect, George Wittet was sanctioned on March 31, 1914. Initial work to reclaim land for building the Gateway and a new sea wall at the Apollo Bunder (English: port) was started in 1915. Following completion of land reclamation in 1919, actual construction started and was completed in 1924. The formal inauguration of the Gateway of India was done by the Viceroy of India, Rufus Isaacs, Earl of Reading, on December 4, 1924. The approach road to the Gateway was never built due to lack of funds.
- Construction Started : 31 March, 1913
- Construction Completed : 1924
- Inaugurated : 4 December, 1924
- Cost of Construction : 2.1 million Rupees in 1913
- Maintained By : Archeological Survey of India
- Where is it Located : Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
- Why was it Built : To commemorate the 1911 royal visit of King George Vand Queen Mary to Mumbai (erstwhile Bombay)
- Dimensions : The central dome is 48 feet in diameter and 83 feet in height
- Materials Used : Yellow Kharodi basalt and reinforced concrete
- Architectural Style : Indo-Saracenic with Muslim influences
- Architect : George Wittet
Mohammed Adil shah started construction of his own tomb to bury his mortal remains right after his ascent to the throne in 1626. Mohammed Adil shah intended to build for himself a mausoleum comparable and possibly grander in scale than the Ibrahim Rauza, the tomb of his father, Ibrahim Adil Shah II. The composition and ornamentation of the Ibrahim Rauza is exceptionally intricate and beautiful. Going for size, the Gol Gumbaz was planned as a mammoth single chamber structure and remains one of the biggest in the world till date.
The construction of the tomb continued throughout Mohammed Adil Shah’s regime but could not be executed to full extent due to the sudden demise of the Sultan in 1656. Buried along with the Sultan are his two wives, Taj Jahan Begum and Aroos Bibi, his mistress Rambha, his daughter and his grandson.
- Construction Started : 1626 AD
- Construction Completed : 1656 AD
- Maintained By : Archeological Survey of India (ASI)
- Where is it Located : Bijapur, Karnataka, India
- Why was it Built : To mark the tomb of Mohammed Adil Shah
- Dimensions : 47.5 metres (156 ft) on each side, capped by a dome 44 m (144 ft) in external diameter
- Materials Used : Dark grey basalt
- Architectural Style : Deccan Indo-Islamic
- Designer : Yaqut of Dabul
The construction of the five rathas is traced back to the 7th century during the reign of King Mahendravarman I from 600–630 CE and his son Narasimhavarman I from 630–668 AD of the Pallava dynasty. An ASI inscribed tablet at the site mentions that the concept of carving the rocks in the shape of chariots or rathas was made by the Pallava dynasty keeping wooden rathas as prototypes. Construction work of the structures stopped after the demise of Narasimhavarman I in 668 AD.
These structures illustrating the Dravidian architecture later became templates to temples of much higher dimensions constructed in the region subsequently. The reason for constructing the rathas, most of which have reflections of the Buddhist Viharas and Chaityas is not known till date. Although there is no connection between the structures and the Pandavas of the great Indian epic, the ‘Mahabharata’, and ASI proposed referring the structures as vimanas, but the names of Pandavas has incessantly remained linked with the structures. In 1984 UNESCO marked the place as World Heritage Site.
- When was it built: 7th Century
- Who built it: Built During Pallava Dynasty
- Where is it located: Coromandel Coast of the Bay of Bengal, Around 60 km south of Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
- Architectural Style: South Indian Dravidian architecture