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It might be a bit late to submit this article but yes, Delhi had its 100th birthday on June 5 this year. Though the city has its history and culture as old as thousands of years but the foundation of the today’s modern Delhi was laid back 100 years back on 5 June 1911.Today’s modern Delhi was the brainchild of the Edwin Lutyens who is considered to be the best British architect till date.He is credited for transforming the medieval city into an urban marvel which later became the toast of Asia for years to come. The city’s planning was started as a plan by then British government in order to shift the capital from Calcutta to Delhi in order to protect its interest in North West region.
When designing the plans for New Delhi, Lutyens planned for the new city to lie southwest of the walled city of Shahjahanabad(today we know it as old Delhi). His plans for the city also laid out the street plan for New Delhi consisting of wide tree-lined avenues. Lutyens primarily designed New Delhi, situated within the metropolis of Delhi. In undertaking this project, Lutyens invented his own new Order of classical architecture, which has become known as the “Delhi Order”. Unlike the more traditional British architects who came before him, he was both inspired by and incorporated various features from the local and traditional Indian architecture — something most clearly seen in the great drum-mounted Buddhist dome of the Viceregal Lodge, now Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Built in the spirit of British colonial rule, the place where the new imperial city and the older native settlement met was intended to be a market; it was there that Lutyens imagined the Indian traders would participate in “the grand shopping centre for the residents of Shahjahanabad and New Delhi”, thus giving rise to the D-shaped market seen today.
The hard work of the Lutyens which paid after 20 years in 1931 was so fruitful that walled city (Shahjahanabad) was renamed as Delhi and incorporated in the capital region. Over the years the size of the city increased even after independence with some the parts of which were modelled on the Lutyen’s plan.
Though the modern Delhi is regarded today as mini India, yet it still has preserved its culture and glorious past in old form of old Delhi and is so rich and diverse and you can get in love with Delhi very easily. The city today has a mix of everything making it an enviable region on the planet. However the city is today facing the many civic problems like any other urban city. Rapid migration, power politics and improper distribution as well as lack of resources like electricity, water etc have worsened the matter. Although the Metro system has come as a sigh of relief in the transportation system yet many things ought to be done.
Although today Municipal Corporation and State Government pats itself for bringing in many reforms which are yet not visible as such or they have made things for worse like BRT Systems. It’s our duty to take the responsibility to force the authorities to bring the changes for good as well as ensure that we do our part by keeping the city neat and clean as well.There is no dearth for the forums, it’s just that we need to find and recognize them for the sake of ourselves and our home city. The city has given us so much and now it’s time to pay it back.
Long Live Delhi !
Jai Ho Delhi !