Saturday, October 3, 2009

A Historical Expedition to Siri Fort

Few days ago, with some of my friends, I went to Hauz Khas for shopping. The shop that impressed me the most was an antique shop that had newspapers & lamps ages old & 60’s cinema posters and book prints. There were these several high-end shops and designer boutiques. We did a good deal of window shopping and kept walking the lane and at the end of the lane was something more interesting. It was a monument or should I say it was a huge complex of monuments. Then, I realized I had reached the Delhi Green Park and Hauz Khas Complex. We were extremely impressed by this place; it was an example of Tughlaq architectural splendor.

The Entrance gate of Siri Fort

As far as I know, Siri Fort in Delhi had the Palace of Thousand Pillars. Only the embattlements have left of the entire fort. Alauddin Khilji established Hauz Khas fort in the year 1284. The word comes from urdu word 'Hauz' which means Pond. The emperor commissioned a very large pond or tank in this area for the use of the inhabitants of Siri Fort, the second city of Delhi. Earlier it was named as 'Hauz-i-Alai' after the name of emperor Alauddin Khilji. Firuz Shah Tughlaq later ordered to clean the tank, which was full of silt. He also built royal baths on the southern side of the tank.

Tomb complex entrance and grounds, with the adjacent Hauz Khas village

Firoz Shah's tomb

Firoz Shah's tomb at the junction of the two arms of the madrasa buildings.

Madrasa buildings from the Hauz Khas tank.

Firoz Shah's tomb entrance

the interior of tomb.

Madrasa and tomb complex from across the Hauz Khas

Moods of sky

Friday, October 2, 2009

Durga Puja & Dussehra

DURGA PUJA (also referred as Durgotsab ) – Not to confuse this festivity with Dussera and Navratra though observed for the same reason 'triumph over evil' (on different days). Durga Puja, though it falls in between Dussehra and Navratra, they are yet different and are being observed by different people and states of India.

Durga puja is a festivity which is celebrated with great magnificence and grandeur in states like- West Bengal, Assam , Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa and Tripura. Durga Puja includes the worships of Shiva, Lakshmi, Ganesha, Saraswati and Kartikeya. It is observed to worship goddess Durga's victory over, the buffalo demon, Mahsasur. The last 3 days of Durga puja is celebrated with highest grandeur and festivity and on the 4th day, it is immersed into the water.

NAVRATRA & DUSSEHRA – Both of these events fall into one festivity and celebration, however, Navratra is the beginning of the festival, while Dussera is the end of it. Navratra is a nine days fast observation (always) which had begun this year on the 19th Sept.’09 to 27th Sept’09. The fast is broken on the 10th day, i.e. the day of Dussera which occurred this year on the 28th of Sept. Dussera is observed to rejoice the victory of good over evil. It was during this day that Rama had killed Ravana, coincidentally & ironically, it is during this day Godess Durga is immersed into the water; people grieve & mourn on the immersion of Godess Durga & on the other hand people rejoice & make merriment by burning Lord Ravana.... ironical & strange, ain't it?

Of the many Durga Puja spots observed in Delhi, we visited one of the most acclaimed spot, i.e. the C.R Park. Find some few photographs of the same below-

The enterance gate of the Durga puja "pandal".

The magnificient Goddess "Durga".

A distant shot from the enterance gate.

...yet another Idol of Goddess Durga.

People inside the premises of the Durga Puja pandal.

A brotherly friend of mine busy ordering parantha's & stuff in a bengali-vendor-stall inside the premises of the pandal.

A queue, far-off, could be seen before the enterance gate of the Puja.

The two sisters in glee @ the festivity.

Another queue could be seen at the back, the queues were atleast 2kms. long.

A shot with "Krish" @ C.R. Park, before signing off from the place, the 27th Sept. '09.

A couple.

Goodbye Durga Puja 2009, hope to grace it again on 2010.