New Delhi is the capital of British India from 1st April 1912 and continues to be the Capital of free India since 15th August 1947.
Delhi was the capital of many empires. It is stated to be Indraprastha, the capital of the Pandavas, mentioned in the mythological epic Mahabharata, though no proof is available.
There are clear proof about the city from 6th BC onwards. This was the capital of Maurya Empire, Tomara, Chauhans, Slave dynasties, Lodhi, Khilji and Mogul Empires. It has changed hands umpteen times.The Mogul empire continued from 1526 when Babur attacked and conquered and made Delhi the capital. In between, the capital was shifted to Agra, but again it was brought back to Delhi. The Mogul Empire continued till 1857-58 when the last Emperor Bahadur Shah was exiled by the British after the First War of Independence was crushed.
The British made Calcutta their capital, being their major centre for a long period. Shimla was its summer capital. However, considering all factors, the capital was shifted from Calcutta to Delhi in 1912.
A new city was built at Delhi, which is the present New Delhi. The construction was completed in 1931, including the Viceroy’s House (present Rashtrapati Bhawan), Central Secretariat buildings, Connaught Place etc. New Delhi is also called Lueton’s Delhi, based on the architect who planned and constructed the city.
1 April 2014 is the 112 anniversary of the shifting of Capital from Calcutta to Delhi. New Delhi is one of biggest cities in the world and India’s first. It has got a population of more than 2.2 crore according to 2011 census. People from all over India has migrated to New Delhi and it is a real Metro City. It is the city of Qutab Minar, Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, Purana Quila and much more heritage sites.
The changes that have taken place in the last few decades after Independence have been phenomenal, both good and bad. It has expanded far beyond the old Delhi. Alwar, Baghpat, Gurgaon, Sonepat,Faridabad, Ghaziabad, Noida, Noida and other nearby towns in UP, Haryana and Rajasthan are part of the National Capital Region centred by New Delhi. It is still expanding. People from all over the country reach Delhi for jobs. At the same time, it is one of the most polluted city. Yamuna has moved away from the sides of the Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, Purana Quila etc. during the centuries. Metro has come. The Delhi Airport is one of the best in the world. It is the centre of government, the power centre. It is a city non-parallel.
Most of all, one thing. With all its best and worse, those who come to Delhi want to continue in Delhi. It has its own magic and attraction.