Interesting Walk on a sultry evening…we were a multi-lingual and multi-national group, including two visitors from China and one from Italy. The major buildings in this garden are from the Sayyid and Lodi period. There also exist some late-Mughal structures…the garden created by the British and named after Lady Willingdon in 1936. It was renamed Lodi garden after Independence as most of the structures are from Lodi period. The walk started with an introduction about the garden. This site was originally the village of Khairpur…Britishers relocated the villagers. The first stop was Mohammad Shah’s tomb who was a ruler of Sayyid dynasty[1434-1444). This is a typical octangonal tomb…from here a path weaves along the the newly created butterfly sanctuary to Bara Gumbad…Bara Gumbad is a tall imposing building with no grave inside and there are conflicting theories about the function of the building…it is perhaps gateway to a grave of a important personon a large platform….west to the grave is a small but beautifully decorated mosque, & on the east is a pavilion that might have housed holy men/scholars/attendents attached to the mosque..to the north of this group of buildings is the Shish Gumad,a tomb of some unknown but probably important person.It probably gets its name from glazed tiles that run below the dome on the exterior. It is believed that initially the tiles would have shone like a mirror, which gives the building the name ‘shish’ or ‘mirror-like’. Further north is Sikander Lodi’s tomb. It is an octagonal tomb set in an enclosed garden. The tomb looks like a mini-fortress, so imposing is the enclosure wall…this is an early example of garden tomb that was soon to become a popular pattern under Mughals. Taj Mahal is one grand example of this style.Walking along the artificial lake outside Sikander Lodi’s tomb we reach Athpula, a 16th century bridge, orginially built over a stream that flowed into the Yamuna. A little ahead are a couple of late-Mughal strucutres. One of these is a garden pavilion. There are no traces of the original garden though a rose garden has been created just behind the pavilion. Adjacent to it is a small mosque.The last stop on our heritage walk was a stand alone.tower, probably was part of an enclosure wall…It is dated to14th century, making it the earliest structure in the garden.
Posted by Rajesh Ranjan & Vijaya Walia, Team Members, Delhi Heritage Walks