Delhi is perhaps one of the most accurate microcosmic representations of the cosmopolitanism that characterizes India. The various influences that have sculptured the city into what she is like today include the influence of the British as well, who have left their mark on several of the architectural masterpieces in and around the city. One of these is the India gate, which can be credited to a large extent for representing India to the rest of the world.
Located in Rajpath, perhaps the most prestigious area in the entirety of the city of Delhi, the India Gate was built to commemorate the death of 90,000 India soldiers, who were killed in the North West Province during the First World War and the Afghan Conquest of 1919. Constructed in sandstone and rising to a height of 160 ft., the height of the arch is 136' externally and 87'6" internally. India Gate is also credited for being the first gate to be constructed in New Delhi. The names of the soldiers in whose memory the Gate was constructed is inscribed on its walls, beside which an eternal flame called the Amar Jawan Jyoti. The foundation stone of the memorial was laid by HRH the Duke of Connaught in 1921 and the monument was dedicated to the nation 10 years later by the then Viceroy, Lord Irwin. The Amar Jawan Jyoti was added to the memorial after India had gained her independence, in memory of the soldiers of the Indo-Pakistan War of December 1971.
Today, the India Gate is one of the most important symbols of India, being at the center of the itinerary of most of the tourists who visit the country's capital city. Whether it is eating out at the roadside eateries or enjoying a monkey show outside, India Gate offers entertainment for everyone. So in case you are planning a trip to the capital, make sure India Gate plays a pivotal role in your itinerary.
Situated at the eastern end of Rajpath in Central Delhi is the 42 m high stone arch of victory, renowned as the India Gate. Formally known as the All India War Memorial previously, the foundation stone of this magnanimous structure was laid by the Duke of Connaught in 1921 and dedicated to the nation in 1931 by the then Viceroy, Lord Irwin.
Designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, the India Gate stands on a low base of red Bharatpur stone and rises in stages to a huge cornice. Above on both sides is inscribed INDIA, flanked by MCM and to the right, XIX. The names of the 90,000 soldiers of the Indian Army who lost their lives in World War-I, and an additional 13,516 names who sacrificed their lives in the North-West Frontier in the Afghan War of 1919 are inscribed on the walls of this grand construction.
In order to honor the numerous unknown gallant soldiers who died fighting for the country, an eternal flame or Amar Jawan Jyoti was lit under the arch of India Gate in 1971. Uniformed soldiers stand guard over the flame. As a tribute to these dead soldiers, a shining rifle crowned by a soldier's helmet is placed on a high pedestal near the flame.
Situated at the eastern end of Rajpath in Central Delhi is the 42 m high stone arch of victory, renowned as the India Gate. This magnificent edifice was constructed in 1931 in memory of the Indian soldiers who lost their lives in the battlefield. Following are the special annual events that take place at India Gate
Republic Day Parade
Every year on 26th January, the day celebrated as the Republic Day of India, the Indian President places a wreath at the eternal flame Amar Jawan Jyoti under the arch of India Gate to pay his respects to the Indian armed forces who laid down their lives for the sake of the country. It is followed by a grand parade that moves along Rajpath, which comprise of marching contingents, tanks and weaponry, vibrant floats, folk dances and school children from different parts of India who participate in this colorful ceremony.
This three-day musical extravaganza is organized by the Delhi Tourism every October on the luxuriant lawns of the India Gate. The music lovers are kept enthralled by the performance of the best Indian classical musicians during this event.
Fast - Facts:
The 42 m high stone arch of victory, renowned as the India Gate, was constructed in 1931 in memory of the Indian soldiers who lost their lives in the battlefield. Following are some fast facts about India Gate.
Less than a mile from Connaught Place, (Rajeev Chowk) at the eastern end of Rajpath in Central Delhi.
Time to Visit
Open on all days of the year, round the clock, but preferably be there between 7.00 pm-9.30 pm. There is no admission fee, as it is open to all. It requires approximately an hour to look around this majestic edifice.
How to Reach
To reach the India Gate, you can fly down to the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi. You can either avail of local buses from various points within the city to reach the monument, or hire auto-rickshaws and taxis or take the metro rail. The nearest functional Metro station is Kendriya Terminal, while the nearest railway station is the New Delhi Railway Station.
Nearby Places to Eat
Some of the popular eat-outs near India Gate are Hotel Le Meridien, Imperial Hotel, Hotel Inter-Continental, Parikrama Revolving restaurant, etc.
Situated at the eastern end of Rajpath in Central Delhi is the 42 m high stone arch of victory, renowned as the India Gate. This magnificent edifice was constructed in 1931 in memory of the Indian soldiers who lost their lives in the battlefield. Following are the other tourist attractions near India Gate
- Rashtrapati Bhawan: The official residence of the Indian President.
- North and South Block: All important government offices are located here
- Parliament House: The place where the Indian Parliament meets and the world's largest democracy functions.
- National Museum: The museum has an extensive collection of historical artifacts, both of Indian and foreign origin.
- National Gallery of Modern Art: Famous for its contemporary Indian art collection, the museum exhibits around 4,000 paintings, graphics, and sculptures of modern artists.
- Connaught Place: This popular market offers everything from jewelry, books, art, leather goods and Indian and international clothes.
- Central Cottage Industries Emporium: Stores Indian handicrafts and curios.
- Baba Kharak Singh Marg: This market houses each state's exclusive art and craft created by traditional and accomplished artisans.