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The strategic location of Delhi, between the Aravalli hills and the river Yamuna, had attracted the attention of almost every king or conqueror in this part of the world.

The earliest known capital city of Indraprastha was founded by the Pandavas in c1450 B.C. They leveled the forest of Khandava near the Yamuna and a splendid palace was build for them by Maya, the Danava architect. Recent finds support the view that it was located in the Purana Qila area.

Other cities recorded are Surajpals' Surajkund c1024 A.D. Qila Lal Kot c1024 A.D. which was built by the Tomar king Anangpal and Qila Rai Pithora c1170 A.D. of Prithviraj Chauhan. Qutb-ud-din-Aibak the first muslim sultan of Delhi, built his capital at the same place in the year c1199 A.D. Here he began the construction of the Qutb Minar which was finished by his successor Iltutmish and the fifth floor been added by Firoz Shah Tuglaq after it was damaged by lightning in the years 1326 and 1368. It stands 72 metres high, and still dominates the landscape of Delhi. Ala-ud-din Khilji built a magnificent new city for himself at Siri, c1302 A.D. The tank Hauz Khas, was built by him and had enough water to meet the needs of the city.

Ghias-ud-din Tughlaq, in c1320 A.D., built the fort city of Tughlakabad on the rocky southern ridge, a few miles east of the Qutab Minar. Though strategically located, it was deserted within five years as his son and successor Muhammad Shah Tughlaq built Adilabad just south of Tughlakabad but soon abandoned it too. He moved north and gave his city the name of Jahanpanah in c1334 A.D. His son, Firoz Shah Tughlaq created his own city Firozabad, in the year c1351 A.D., along the bank of the river Yamuna.

After the historic battle of Panipat in c1526 A.D., Babur invaded India and set himself up as the first Mughal emperor of Hindustan. His son and successor Humayun, in c1530 A.D., built a fort and called it Din Panah (Haven of Faith). But Sher Shah Suri, the Afghan King, drove Humayun out of his capital and built his Dilli in c1542 A.D., encompassing a very large area with an excellent administrative system. In c1555 A.D., Humayun regained the kingdom of Delhi. Under the flourishing rule of his son Akbar, the kingdom was further extended, nd Agra became the centre of the activity. Many important monuments namely, the Red fort and Taj Mahal were built there during the reign of Shah Jahan. But in c1638 A.D. Shah Jahan decided to shift the capital to Delhi, and so he built his fort, the Lal Qila and the huge well laid out city, Shahjahnabad, in c1648 A.D. The city fort had 14 gates, many of which still exist. This city survives as the Old Delhi of today. The decline of Mughal empire came by the 19th century as Bahadur Shah Zafar, the last of the mughals, surrendered to the British, thereby paving the way for a new dynasty in Delhi. It was in January 1931 the British Raj shifted their capital from Calcutta to New Delhi. The famous British architects Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker were given the task of designing New Delhi, New Delhi has endured to this day, as the capital of the Indian Union.
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Places of Interest
Chandni Chowk,Old Delhi, The Ghats,Rajpath & India Gate, Humayun's Tomb, Old Fort, Safdarjung Tomb, Jantar Mantar, Red Fort , Qutab Minar, Jama Masjid, The Bahai Temple, Nizam-Ud-Din Shrine, Lakshmi Narayan Temple, ISKCON Temple, Chattarpur Mandir, Bangla Sahib Gurudwara, Sisgunj Gurudwara, Moghul Gardens, Rose Garden, Lodhi Garden, The Zoo, National Rail Museum, National Museum, Museum of Natural History, Nehru Museum & Planetorium, Crafts Museum, Gandhi Darshan & Gandhi National Museum, Dara Shikoh Library, Dolls Museum, National Science Centre.