Khooni Darwaza

Khooni Darwaza

The Khooni Darwaza, one of the 13 surviving gates in Delhi, stands on a traffic island on Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg, almost opposite the entrance to Firoz Shah Kotla. Originally called as Kabuli Darwaza, it was built in 1540 AD  as the northern gateway of Sher  Garh- the capital city of Sher Shah Suri. The gateway got its current name after the revolt of 1857 AD when two sons and a grandson of Bahadur Shah Zafar were executed by the British Officer, Captain William Hudson. According to popular legend, the Khuni Darwaza still runs red with the blood of the princes whenever it rains.

Built largely with Delhi quartzite and red sandstone, the gateway is almost square in plan with chamfered edges in the south-east and south-west corner. Entry to the gateway is through a short flight of steps and arched openings leading to the central part of the built structure. Two staircases on either side of the structure lead to the upper floors. The ceiling has a vaulted roof. The north side arched facade is comparatively ornamented than the rest of the exterior. It has kangura battlement on top and projected zigzag pattern at each floor level. Rectangular window openings with recessed arches have carved brackets supporting the chhajjas. Flower-like motifs on either side of the entrance arch, lamp niche and inscriptions on the wall are the highlights of the gateway.

Currently hidden behind the lush green foliage of trees and shrubs, the gateway appears dead and trapped inside the cage-like iron grill, which even prohibits one to enter and appreciate the architecture.

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