Friday, 28 October 2016

Delhi diaries: India Gate

Originally named the 'All India War Memorial',  India Gate is a war memorial built in dedication to all the souls who laid down their lives in service of the nation. Located astride the Rajpath, on eastern side of the ceremonial axis of new Delhi, formerly called Kingsway. It is a memorial to 82,000 soldiers of undivided Indian army who died in the period 1914-21 in First World War and Third Anglo-Afghan War. 13,516 serviceman's names have been inscribed on the gate. The Indian Gate was built as war memorial, evokes the architectural styles of the triumphal arch and was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

The India Gate reaches up to the height of 42 meters and is situated in the heart of the city with an arched structure, boasted that it is has a similar structural elegance to the counterpart in Paris. The monument is built with light brown Bharatpur stones. The monument was built under the supervision and control of Duke of Connaught during the year 1921 and it was dedicated to Lord Viceroy of that time Lord Irwin. INDIA in bold letters is encrypted on the either ends of the monument.A small simple structure, consisting of a black marble plinth along with reversed  rifle, capped by war helmet, bounded by four eternal flames was built in 1971, following the Bangladesh Liberation War, beneath the soaring Memorial Archway. The structure known as the Amar Jawan Jyoti or The Flame of the Immortal Soldier has served as India's tomb of the Unknown soldiers. The flame is manned round the clock by soldiers of all the three services of the Indian armed forces.

The cornice of the gate is inscribed worth the Imperial suns and on the both sides of the arch have INDIA, flanked by the dates MCMXIV(1914 left side) and MCMXIX (1919 right side). Below the word INDIA there is an inscription as follows:
TO THE DEAD OF THE INDIAN ARMIES WHO FELL AND ARE HONORED IN FRANCE AND FLANDERS MESOPOTAMIA AND PERSIA EAST AFRICA GALLIPOLI AND ELSEWHERE IN THE NEAR AND THE FAR EAST AND IN SACRED MEMORY ALSO OF THOSE WHOSE NAMES ARE HERE RECORDED AND WHO FELL IN INDIA OR THE NORTH-WEST FRONTIER AND DURING THE THIRD AFGHAN WAR












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