Taj Mahal in the north, Charminar in the south, Ajanta & Ellora in south –west and Adina Masjid in the east are just like the beautiful leaves of the tree named India .
But some of the leaves of this tree have dried and fallen apart, forgotten by the busy crowd of modern India. Paths to these places are the roads not taken which wait in hope for the day when people will once again set their foot on them to reach the places once inhabited by their ancestors . These monuments have spread their eyes on these paths in a hope that once again people will unlock their doors untouched for many years .
An initiative is taken by Indian Express to make the youth aware of one such place called Mehrauli or Mihirawali,home of Raja Mihir where stands the forgotten tomb of Balban, the first tomb in India.
The beautiful mosque made by Babur,the court of Jamali and Kamali, the poet of the last Lodhi dynasty and first Mughal empire, and the tomb of Quli Khan.
The places have stood against the race of time telling the stories of their youth now old demanding nothing but little care.
The newspaper has helped us to remain connected to the forgotten heritage of India by organising a heritage walk to the M ehrauli Archiological Park. This surely has helped the students of our school to remain connected with that heritage sight of our nation that seemed lost to the world .
Thank you .
STAYING CONNECTED TO OUR NATION’S PAST THROUGH THE HERITAGE WALK!
In this fast moving world, GenX is forgetting its rich heritage and culture gradually. History is the root of a nation. If we don’t water the roots of a plant, the plant doesn’t grow and then dies. Similarly, if we do not nourish our roots i.e our ancient culture, monuments, values, food, tradition, etc, can we progress ?
THE INDIAN EXPRESS, a local daily newspaper, organized a short tour to an archeological park located in Mehrauli, earlier known as Mihirawali means Home of Mihir, so that we stay connected with our history.
First we visited the Balban’s tomb which belongs to Balban of Slave Dynasty. We never knew this tomb had been the first Indo-Islamic tomb of India. Then we witnessed baoli or stepwell which was used to store water, then the Jamali Kamali mosque and finally Quli Khan’s tomb.
Through this tour we could stay connected to our beautiful past, rich heritage and culture. And as we saw the monuments while walking, we even could stay connected to our health.
HERITAGE WALK TO MEHRAULI
Indian Express organized a heritage walk for the students of ST.MARK’S SCHOOL to an archaelogical park in Mehrauli. The main purpose of this heritage walk was to know more about our past through various monuments which were being excavated five years back.
Firstly, we went to the first tomb constructed by Balban from Delhi Sutanate in Mehrauli which was first known as Mehravali.Balban’s tomb was made using stones of plundered temples, limestone and brickjeera. The tomb consists of three parts, the upper part is called domb, the middle portion is called a drum and the drum rests on the plinth. Balban’s grave is also there. Tiles were used for decoration. There was a settlement area which was similar to Harappan Civilisation. Proper drainage system was there. Purification of water could be done using pits.
Then we saw Jamali-Kamali’s mosque which was built in Mughal period. Jalal Khan’s pen name was Jamali who was a poet in the courtyard of the mosque. A well called Wazu was used for water purification. The mosque faces west and every western wall of the mosque is highly decorated. Jamali started constructing the mosque but Babur finished it. Rajputana architecture is used. Jamali and his froster brother Kamali’s grave is also there. Fresco painting is done on the walls.
And lastly we visited Qulikhan’s tomb who was the froster brother of Akbar and he converted his tomb into library and residence. One tomb is at a height where they used to drink evening tea. The concept of Baoli used in his tomb came from Rajasthan. It was used to collect rainwater and use it for domestic interest.
It was a wonderful experience to visit such a place.
Trip to the past - A Visit to The Archeological Park,Mehrauli,Delhi.
By Danish Girdhar.
We started our day with a lot of excitement and enthusiasm because of the Heritage Walk which was even more exciting thanks to reaching the destination with the reporters of Indian Express, a local newspaper. It was a special walk for us because we got to see what we had been taught in our history class. Taking a glimpse of the pre-Mughal empire and dating back to Lodhi times was fun and a learning process too. The entrance of the archeological park is made from red sandstone posts coming up every now and then, further leading to tombs made up of local sandstone ,lime etc. The remains in the site tell us how people of that era used the material then available to them to create masterpieces!
I must not forget to mention why the place is called Mehrauli. Previously called Mehra Valli-Raja Meher Ki Jagah..or the Place of Raja Meher, over a period of time the name was changed to Mehrauli. The tomb of Ghiyasudin Balban - although it is in ruins now, we get to see the beautiful tile carving work done in those days. Moving ahead we find the settlement areas of the local people, with small chambers used for storage, residences, shops etc.
The highlight of the park is the tomb of Jamali Kamali which have two mal graves inside.It has some beautiful work done on its ceiling and side walls with fresh lime carving. The tile work done is similar to the lotus patterns done in blues and reds, that makes it even more attractive and eyecatching. There is a special place called the Rajon-buliding of head mistris,from where the mistris brought stored rain water for construction purpose. It is really huge and beautiful!
Thanks to Indian Express and St Mark’s School for such a Memorable Walk!