MEHRAULI ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK: STANDING TALL IN THE SHADOW OF QUTUB
Visit the Mehrauli Archaeological Park, near Qutub Minar, and be a part of Delhi that has been witness to over a thousand years of continuous occupation
Overlooking the world heritage site of Qutub Minar and spread over 100 sq km, Mehrauli Archaeological Park is dotted with remains of every era of Delhi’s history. There are monuments all over Mehrauli Archaeological Park, from Jamali Kamali Mosque and tomb, Rajon Ki Baoli, tomb of Quli Khan, Hauz-e-Shamsi, Gandhak Ki Baoli, Jharna and the depression below Quli Khan Tomb which earlier formed a pond. Let us explore this heritage park
Quli Khan Tomb
Standing on the edge of Lal Kot, Quli Khan Tomb was built in 17th century. Quli Khan was the son of Maham Anga, the wet nurse of Mughal emperor Akbar. The tomb was converted into a weekend retreat in 1840s by the last British resident in Bahadur Shah Zafar’s court, Thomas Metcalfe with landscaped gardens, terraces and guesthouses. It was named Dilkhusha with the main residence planned with the tomb as its core and landscaping done by introducing water channels and other structural additions.
Located on the western side of Mehrauli Archaeological Park is the 13th century tomb of one of the several Slave rulers of early Delhi Sultanate, Balban. It is said to be the first major building in India that used true domes and arches. You can approach Balban’s Tomb through an entrance gateway with beam and column structure which you would commonly find in pre-Turk Indian architecture.
Jamali Kamali Tomb and Mosque
The Mughal complex, Jamali Kamali Mosque and Tomb, located around 300 m south of the tomb of Balban, consists of a mosque and a tomb, built by the 16th century traveller-poet Sufi Sheikh Fazlullah who wrote under the pen name of Jamali. He is said to have been the famous court poet of Mughal and Lodi dynasties. Built in 1528, the mosque is surmounted by a high dome with five recessed niches on the western wall.
Adham Khan Tomb
A general in Akbar’s army, Adham Khan was the son of Maham Anga. It was in 1562 that he killed Atgah Khan, the husband of another wet nurse of Akbar, Jiji Anga. As a punishment, Akbar had him thrown over from the roof of the Agra Fort. He and his mother were buried here by Akbar in 1566. This early Mughal style tomb is a domed octagonal chamber in Lodi style with a verandah on each side.