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  • December 2009 (39)
  • The Victorious City Of Fatehpur Sikri

    Thu, Dec 10, 2009


    Fatehpur Sikri is a metropolis as well as a metropolitan board. The city is located in the district of Agra. Agra is a popular place located in Uttar Pradesh state in India. It is a historical city which was constructed by a famous Mughal emperor named Akbar. The construction of the city was started in the year 1570. Fatehpur Sikhri was declared as the capital of Akhbar’s empire for almost 14 years starting from 1571 up to 1585. After 1585 this historical city was been deserted, the reasons for the same is not known till date. The palace as well as the mosque which was constructed in the city has survived till date and today are major tourist attractions. UNESCO has declared the surviving mosque and palace of the historic city as the World Heritage Site. Orginally, “Fateh” is an Arabic word for “victory”. It is also used in Urdu as well as Persian languages.


    The Mughal Empire was passed to the emperor Akbar from his father Emperor Humayun who was the son of Emperor Babur. In the year 1560 Emperor Akbar ordered for the reconstruction of the Agra fort and later declared it as the capital of this Empire. Emperor Akbar was married to Mariam-uz-Zamani. She gave birth to twin sons who had died eventually. Petrified emperor Akbar visited the then Sufi Saint named Salim Chisti. He belonged to the Chisti order and lived in a small region named Sikhri located close to Agra.

    Salim forecast that the emperor would have one son who was born in the year 1569 in the town of Sikri. The boy was later named Salim after the saint who had predicted his birth. Salim had later ruled the emperor’s empire as Emperor Jahangir. Later after a year Akbar had decided to construct a palace and establish a royal city in the town of Sikhri. At that time Akbar’s age was hardly 28 yrs. He vowed to develop the town and give it a royal as he wanted to honor the Sufi saint Salim Chishti. The tomb that was dedicated to Salim Chishti was later constructed. It was names as “Salim Chisti Ka Mazar”. The tomb was constructed on Jama mosque’s foundation.

    Fatehpur Sikri Agra

    The royal duties of the empire were shared by Fatehpur Sikhri with the empire’s capital Agra. Fatehpur Sikri shared its imperial duties as a capital city with Agra, where a bulk of the weapons store, fortune collection, and other assets were kept at Agra Fort for security. All through a disaster, the quad, harem, and assets could be easily distant to Agra which was located at hardly at a distance of only 26 miles. During that time it took nearly whole day to march to Agra.

    The popular takes about Emperor Akbar, his nine jewels commonly known as the navratnas and his famous courtiers have their base in the city of Fatehpur Sikhri. It is known that the renowned musician Tansen has showcased his art on the Anup Taalo’s island. It is believed that a tunnel is digged underground that connects the city with Agra, Delhi and Lahore. The tunnel has been closed down in the year 1950 as it was not maintained.

    The introduction of coins in the revenue system as well as the development in the land revenue and also the changes in the regional administration was made during the period when Fatehpur Sikhri was the empire’s capital. In the year 1585, Fatehpur Sikhri was deserted and the empire capital was changed to Lahore. Even the reasons for the same are not known it is believed that the changes took place as the water supply of the city was almost dried. Also it is believed that the emperor had plans of invading the Afghan and Persian region and thus wanted the capital to be located very close to him.

    Important buildings

    The various structure of Fatehpur Sikri demonstrates a fusion of a variety of local schools of architectural craftsmanship such as Bengali and Gujrati. The major reason behind this is that native craftsmen that belonged to different regions were appointed for the construction of the various buildings. Authority of Jain as well as Hindu architecture is witnessed with an exotic fusion with the Islamic art. The materials used for the construction of the various buildings were basically the red sandstone which was been digged out from the rocky projection where it was located.

    Few of the most significant structures in this historical city are as follows

    Anup Talao
    It is a simple water tank. A platform is placed in the center of the tank also there are 4 bridges that leads you up to the platform.

    Anup Talao

    Buland Darwaza commonly known as the Gate of Magnificence
    The Buland Darwaza provides you a direct way to the Jama Masjid. It is an astonishing section of architecture from the exterior, steadily making a changeover to an individual scale in the interior.

    Diwan-i-Am commonly known as the Hall of Public Audience
    It is a simple hall that is present in almost every Mughal city. It is the place where the Mughal emperor meets the common public.

    Diwan-i-Khas commonly known as the Hall of Private Audience
    The hall is very much famous for the pillar which is positioned in the center of the hall. The pillar has around 36 voluted cohorts that support the circular platform which is reserved for Emperor Akhbar. He used to meet the various religions’ representatives in this hall.

    Hujra-i-Anup Talao commonly known as the Small Chamber of Anup Talao
    The place is believed to be the home of Emperor Akbar’s Muslim wife.

    Jama Masjid commonly known as the Grand Mosque
    The mosque was constructed quite similar to the other different Indian mosques. It has a domed pavilion of a small size.

    Mariam-uz-Zamani’s Palace
    The building of Akbar’s wife shows Gujarati influence and is built around a courtyard, with special care being taken to ensure privacy.

    Naubat Khana commonly known as Drum House
    This chamber is located near the entrance mostly all the important announcements are made here.

    Panch Mahal
    It is a palatial building with five floors. The base floor has nearly around 176 columns that have impressive carvings.

    Panch Mahal

    Raja Birbal’s House
    This section is where the favorite minister of Akbar named Birbal lived. He was a Hindu. The distinguished features of the structure are the flat oblique parasols or chajjas and the cohorts which hold them.

    Sunahra Maken
    The Christian wife of Emperor Akbar lived here.

    Tomb of Salim Chisti
    It is a tomb, placed in the court yard of Jama MAsjid. It is made out of white marble.

    Tomb of Salim Chisti

    Climate in the city

    The temperature in the city during the summer season ranges from 45°C to 30°C, where as the temperature in the winter season range from 25 °C to 3 °C

    When to visit

    The best time of the year to visit Fatehpur Sikhri is from October to March. The climate during this period is quite cool rest of the year is comparatively hot.

    How to reach

    Agra airport is the nearest located domestic airport. If you are traveling in an international flight you would be required to change you flight from Indira Gandhi national airport, Delhi. It is the closest international airport to reach Fatehpur Sikhri. The nearest railway station to reach Fatehpur Shikri is Agra Cantonment Junction. You can travel further in the city’s bus services or else hire a taxi.

    Opening timings

    Fatehpur Sikhri is open all days of the week for the public visits from the sunrise till sunset. If you are using the combined tourist ticket with Taj Mahal and other monuments than you cannot visit Fatehpur Shikhri on Mondays.

    Entrance cost

    The entrance cost that every individual has to pay to visit Fatehpur Khikri is Rs 250. These days a common entrance tickets to the various monuments in Agra has been introduced which is valid for your visit to Fatehpur Shikri as well as Taj Mahal. The cost of this common entrance ticket is Rs 500 per person, also you would be required an extra amount as the taxes.

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