Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dilli Diary: At Mahatma Gandhiji’s Samadhi - Rajghat

I just had 3 hours at my disposal after the shoot in Delhi…What do I do…Where do I go? Ok Jama Masjid? India Gate? Qutab Minar? Jantar-Mantar or Lotus Temple? 

But all these have been visited before and last time I was in Delhi, I felt really proud visiting his memorial. 

The reason being, the moment you enter Raj Ghat, (translation King’s court) and see Gandhiji’s Samadhi (memorial, resting place), you actually feel aura of peace around you. Something in your soul will stir you; there you feel calm, easy and all peaceful vibrations. I wonder what it would be for people who lived and met Gandhiji when he was alive in flesh and blood…if his Samadhi can give a person so much calm, serinity & peace imagine how much his real life presence would have given to those around him. Gandhi Ji’s Mortal frame was consigned to flames here at Rajghat on the bank of river Yamuna.

This memorial was built through an act of parliament of India in 1951 in keeping with Gandhi’s ideal of simplicity. So here you wont find any flashy things or any English type of memorial but just simple resting place. You have to go barefoot even in sun. There is a brick platform on which his body had been laid, and a black marble platform of the same size surrounded by a white marble fence was erected. 

This memorial was designed by Vanu G Bhuta. Now any foreign dignitaries who visit Delhi make it a point to visit this place. The latest being Hillary Clinton. If you are a tourist visit this place on Friday as there are prayer meets. I sat there took snaps and then still had some time and exactly opposite Raj Ghat I found out that there is another Gandhi hall and not museum where a senior citizen of Delhi told me to visit if you want to see some of his rare pictures and other vehicles. Below are some of the pictures This gun carriage that carried mortal remains of Mahatma from Birla house now called Gandhi Smriti to Rajghat on 31st January, 1948 This is the boat Gandhiji travelled when he launched Salt Satyagraha 1930, Gandhiji launched civil disobedience moment as salt satyagraha became central issue. 5th may 1930 he was jailed and put in Yeravada. Here he wrote letters to all Satyagrahis. He continued to inspre Indians and be trouble to British. In this jail he started fast-unto-death and wanted equal rights for the then Harijans. He was released in the year 1933 Actually, I was at this place at noon! There was powercut and nobody was there hence I took the opportunity to take some pictures. Charlie Chaplin is my favourite is the rare photo of Gandhiji visit to London and Charile came to meet Mahatma. When ever I visit Dilli, will make an effort to go to his Samadhi. At least Indians can do this to the father of the nation. 

Jai Hind!