Experiencing Humayun’s tomb
A lot has been said about this tomb, but experiencing it personally, is a complete mesmerising act. This is one of the few sites where you can actually enjoy the royal grandness, admire the architecture, feel the tranquility from dawn to dusk. This is also one site where you will see photographs of different kinds, starting with a selfie, couples fantasy, friends get together, family’s outing, school’s picnic, researcher’s slide, amateur’s portfolio, wedding photoshoots to shooting parparazzi. This is why, I chose to visit a deshi place with a videshi brand. A pristine blue ‘Nila Gumbad’ welcomes on a roundel as you drive towards Humayun’s tomb. This is again recepted by a striking blue pathway that takes your attention to the hoardings displaying all the initiatives taken by different bodies attached with the renewal of this heritage site. The site looks a little different from my visit, a few months back. Passing the passage you head the Ticket booth with clearly laid prices for the tickets. At the sight of it, you feel privileged of being an Indian as a domestic visitor pay quite less than that of a foreigner. Just near to the booth , is a board that tells you about an app that you can download for complaning about any filth found inside the monument complex. This is a great initiative of ‘Swach Bharat’ ‘Swach Paryatan’. Before entering the compound, you can even fill your tummy with a good vegetarian food offered by a canteen as you are not allowed to enter with eatables. The moment you enter this vast space, you get fascinated by the grandeur of the tomb. While walking towards the gateway, you can notice few structures belonging to Mughal period that have beautiful architectue. Then you pass through a small shoppe opened up by Agha Khan trust where they sell small cultural items made exclusively by underprivileged women of that area. (Well, I couldn’t buy anything as the lady left early because of Ramzaan). You can also ease out your bladder as before the entrance are clean Toilets run by Sulabh. The main complex opens with a small exhibition laid in the arcaded gateway. The exhibition talks about various conservation works done by various bodies like Agha Khan and UNESCO. It also shows some artefacts dug out of the excavations done in the vicinity area. It also shows the intiatives by various NGOs helping in urban renewal of Nizamuddin basti. The site beyond it is spellbounding. Humayuns tomb was actually made by Humayun’s widow Haji Begum in 1569A.D. His grave was plundered at many places , finally giving a way to rest in peace in this majestic tomb.The majestic tomb is surrounded on all four sides by a beautiful garden in char bagh pattern with all the fragrance and fruit bearing trees. The green plantation is also elaborated with water causeways at the junction of every bagh. This combination of water, trees and tomb reinstates the phiosophy that someone is resting in peace in a place like heaven.
The structure is made up of red sandstone and white marble believed to be quarried from Rajasthan. It is a double domed gold finial construction. The basic plan is octagonal in shape and is constucted on a big plinth giving a two storeyed effect thereby attaining its grandness. The steps are quite high and you can really not challenge everyone for this. For visitors comfort, railings have been laid on both sides of the steps. People with height phobia are requested to step down slowly. The structure is built in persian architecture decorated with beautiful carvings of lotus petals, hexagons, octagons, tesselations (repeated geometric patterns), quranic ayats (erses from the holy quran). Inside the main complex, is a grave of Humayun resting solely in peace. There are few more chambers consisting some graves of his son and probably his wife. The graves can be distinguished as male and female on tha basis of engravings on the cenotaph. Apart from some regular visitors, we cam also spot some daily vistors that are the pegions. They sometimes come in to take rest in the cool and shady mausoleum.
In the end, I would like to conclude that my experience of this place, even on a hot sunny day was exponential and would again come back with my future generation, to enjoy its yet another unexplored emotion.
World Heritage Site