and the City
The Story of an
Q46. How did the Old City of Delhi change under British rule?
What did the British do to remove the marks of Mughal beauty and
glory in Delhi after the 1857 war?
Ans. The British changed the old city of Delhi
entirely. The British wanted Delhi to forget its Mughal past.
The area around the Fort was completely
cleared of gardens, pavilions and mosques (though temples were left intact).
The British wanted a clear ground for security reasons.
Mosques in particular were either
destroyed, or put to other uses. For instance, the Zinatal- Masjid was
converted into a bakery. No worship was allowed in the Jama Masjid for five
One-third of the city was demolished, and
its canals were filled up.
In the 1870s, the western walls of
Shahjahanabad were broken to establish the railway and to allow the city to
expand beyond the walls.
The Delhi College was turned into a school,
and shut down in 1877.
Q47. Discuss the construction plan of New Delhi.
Write a short note on construction plan of New Delhi.
Ans. Construction plan of New Delhi
New Delhi was constructed as a
10-square-mile city on Raisina Hill, south of the existing city. Two
architects, Edward Lutyens and Herbert Baker, were called on to design New
Delhi and its buildings.
The government complex in New Delhi
consisted of a two-mile avenue, Kingsway (now Rajpath), that led to the
Viceroy’s Palace (now Rashtrapati Bhavan), with the Secretariat buildings on
either sides of the avenue.
The features of these government buildings
were borrowed from different periods of India’s imperial history, but the
overall look was Classical Greece (fifth century BCE).
For instance, the central dome of the
Viceroy’s Palace was copied from the Buddhist stupa at Sanchi, and the red
sandstone and carved screens or jalis were borrowed from Mughal architecture.
But the new buildings had to assert British
importance. Therefore, the Viceroy’s Palace was kept higher than Shah Jahan’s
Q48. What attempts were made to decongest the old city?
Ans. Attempts made to decongest the old city were:
In 1888 an extension scheme called the
Lahore Gate Improvement Scheme was planned by Robert Clarke for the Walled City
residents. The idea was to draw residents away from the Old City to a new type
of market square, around which shops would be built. Streets in this
redevelopment strictly followed the grid pattern, and were of identical width,
size and character. Land was divided into regular areas for the construction of
neighbourhoods. Clarkegunj, as the development was called, remained incomplete
and did not help to decongest the Old City.
In 1936, The Delhi Improvement Trust was
set up and it built areas like Daryaganj South for wealthy Indians. Houses were
grouped around parks. Within the houses, space was divided according to new
rules of privacy. Instead of spaces being shared by many families or groups,
now different members of the same family had their own private spaces within