New Delhi is the capital city of the Republic of India. It hosts the government’s legislature, executive and judiciary arms of the government. It also happens to be the seat of authority for the Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi.
The city was founded in 1911 by George V, Emperor of India during the Delhi Durbar of 1911. The city was designed by the British architects Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker. It started serving its functions as the country’s capital in 1931 after inauguration by the then India’s Viceroy Lord Irwin.
Below are a couple of cool facts about the city.
1. Delhi is one of the greenest cities in the world. Surprised? I was too, but according to statistics, it has about 20% of its landmass covered by forests. This is a no mean feat to accomplish for a country that is home to a fifth of the world’s population.
2. This is cool…the entire public transport system in New Delhi runs on environment-friendly Compressed Natural Gas.
3. Five of the original 14 gates of the walled city of Delhi are still standing. They include;
i. Ajmeri Gate: Facing Ajmer in Rajasthan;
ii. Lahori Gate: Facing Lahore in Pakistan;
iii. Kashmiri Gate: Pointing North to Kashmir;
iv. Delhi Gate: Road to earlier cities of Delhi;
v. Turkman Gate: Named after pious saint Hazrat Shah Turkam.
4. New Delhi’s population is low by Indian standards. It is home to about 300,000 people, and its metropolis has about 14 million people. Of these, 88.8 % are Hindus. The rest are Muslims, Sikh, Jain and Christian.
5. New Delhi’s Khari Baoli Market is Asia’s largest wholesale spice market. It also might be the largest in the world. If you love spiced food, then this market is a must visit.
Your Indian tour must include the nation’s capital. There is probably more to learn about India in Delhi than in any other city in the country. Besides, it is the place you get to mingle with the Indian policy makers. You never know, you may overhear a policy shift that can turn you into an overnight millionaire…the country is a market of 1.1 billion people.