Delhi is the capital of India and has many historical site seeing places. The entire city is full of historical monuments of Mogul empire. As the Moguls ruled India for around 300 years and as they were fond of art and architecture, Delhi has been gifted with many such vital monuments. The Britishers, who ruled the country, also constructed many monuments in Delhi, which have become the most important tourist’s attractions. India Gate is one such vital monument, which is located in New Delhi, just opposite to the Rashtrapati bhavan, which is the official residence of the President of India.
All the sites seeing tours in Delhi begin their trip with the visit of India Gate. India Gate has been designed by the British builder, Sir John Maurris. The India Gate is a war monument and was constructed in the year 1931 in the memory of all the soldiers who sacrificed their lives during the First World War. The names of all such soldiers are engraved on India Gate. Later on, Government of India has declared India gate as the monument for all Indian soldiers who lost their lives in Indo-Pakistan wars during the years 1965 and 1971. The structure of India Gate is around 135 feet high and the most important aspect is that it is not supported by any structure. This is a real engineering marvel and many builders and engineers visit India Gate to see its unique design. There is an Amar Javan Jyoti exactly below the gate, which is kept lighted continuously since last 41 years. The famous slogan of Jai Javan Jai Kissan, which was given to the country by the then prime minister of India, late shri Lalbahadur Shastri, is engraved at this Amar Javan Jyoti. One of the Patton tanks captured by the Indian army during the Indo-Pak war in 1971 is displayed here at the India gate as the memory of the victory of that war. The view of Rashtrapati bhavan and other buildings made of red stones from this gate is really breathtaking. Though, there is no provision to go up to the top of the India Gate, you can still get the best view of New Delhi from this point.
The most famous and prestigious parade of the Republic day starts from this India Gate every year on 26th January. This parade is around 5 miles long and all the States of India display their own float, based on the themes and specialties of each State. This parade also shows the major military achievements that are achieved during the year. All the three wings of the army demonstrate their skills and capabilities in the form of the drill. The drill of the air force aircrafts is really worth seeing that is taking place in the open sky. The cadets from NCC, home guards, and various schools all over the country also participate in this parade. It is a real occasion that is worth seeing in Delhi.
This Parade is held to appreciate the top most authority of Indian Constitution, which is the President of India. President of India comes to this parade in the Royal horse cart that is driven by 8 horses with invited chief guest. The Prime minister himself receives president of India on his arrival. One most important foreign dignitary is invited every year to participate in this parade. Many foreigners visit Delhi, specifically to see this parade, every year on 26th January. The parade starts at around 8 am in the morning and ends at around 12 noon. The parade travels on the Rajpath going towards the Rashtrapati bhavan. The preparations and the mock up drills are starting around 2 to 3 weeks in advance. The tickets are sold to view this parade. In addition to this, all the VIPS staying at Delhi are issued the free passes to see this parade.
There are daily luxury travel buses available that takes you to all the sites seeing places of Delhi in one full day. The tour starts at 8am in the morning and ends at 7pm in the evening. The AC buses are also available for such sites seeing. The ticket of this sites seeing is around Rs.400 ($10) per head for ordinary luxury bus and around Rs.600 ($15) per head for AC bus. Such travel buses start from all the important hotels and locations in Delhi. This tour is really worth taking by all the tourists visiting New Delhi. India Gate is the first place shown on all such travel buses.
When you visit Delhi next time, I am sure you shall remember the sacrifice of life given by many soldiers in the war for their country. Make sure to get down and visit India Gate for at least half an hour during your next visit to Delhi.