The Memorials in Delhi
Delhi is a place of historical heritage and has preserved all those precious moments through its many museums and memorials. The memorials of great leaders that attract tourists and locals alike are: Mahatma Gandhi’s Samadhi at Rajghat, Shanti Van where Jawaharlal Nehru’s memorial is situated, Vijay Ghat, the memorial of Lal Bahadur Shastri and Veerbhumi, the memorial of Rajiv Gandhi. There are more memorials too. These memorials are maintained well, with beautiful landscapes where special prayer meetings are held during the birth and death anniversaries of the leaders.
The place where Mahatma Gandhi’s last rites were performed on 31 January, 1948, has been made into a fitting memorial for the father of the nation. Located on the bank of Yamuna at Ring Road, near Delhi Gate, Rajghat is just 4 km from Janpath and is situated on the northeast of Feroz Shah Kotla. The memorial is in the form of a square shaped platform of black stone and is decorated with flowers. The last words uttered by Mahatma, ‘Hey Ram’, are engraved on the platform. Prayers are held at Rajghat on all Fridays, since he died on this day. Every day, barring Monday, visitors can watch an exhibition of Gandhiji’s photographs, sculpture and philosophy at Rajghat. It starts at 10 am in the morning and goes on till at 5 in the evening.
Visitors can also watch a film on the life and teachings of Mahatma Gandhi at the Gandhi Memorial Museum, on all week days. Timings may differ on Sundays and Thursdays.
There is also another Gandhi Memorial at Tis January Marg where Gandhiji was assassinated on his way to offering prayers at Birla Bhawan. It is known at Gandhi Balidanshal.
Shanti Van, a tombstone, situated on the north side of Rajghat, is where the last rites of India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, were performed on 27 May 1964. The memorial of his grandson, Sanjay Gandhi, who was killed in a plane crash in 1980, is situated close.
Vijay Ghat, the memorial of Lal Bahadur Shastri, is where his last rites were performed after he died of a heart attack at Tashkent in Russia in 1965.
Shakti Sthal is the memorial of Indira Gandhi where her last rites were performed on 31 October 1984. A tomb made from grey-red monolithic stone has been erected in the memory. It lies between Rajghat and Shanti Van.
The memorial of Rajiv Gandhi, who was killed at Perumbatoor in Tamil Nadu on 21 May 1991, is situated at Veerbhumi.
The memorial of Charan Singh, the fifth prime minister of India is situated at Kisanghat. His last rites were conducted here on 31 May 1987.
A sculpture of Babu Jag Jivan Ram, the great leader, stands at the spot of his cremation, opposite Rajghat.
All these memorials are situated near to each other and tourists can pay their tribute to these leaders by taking a walk over the place. One can also get to touch the various trees planted by visiting world leaders since the time of India’s independence. The place is great for taking an evening walk, surrounded by cool and fresh air and soaking in the atmosphere that reminds of the life of some great men and women of India.
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