Delhi has seen a tumultuous past. Despite invasions by the Mughals and the rise of the British era, the capital of India and its people have managed to stick by their convictions and faith.
Delhi, the capital of India has been the focal point of India for centuries. Notwithstanding foreign invasions, Hindu, Jain, and Sikh temples and gurudwaras have withstood the test of time.
Nestled along the banks of the Yamuna River is the Akshardham Temple. Built in red sandstone and marble, it took five years of non-stop construction to complete. Bhagwan Swaminarayan is the presiding deity here. The Animatronics show depicting the life of the deity through song, lights and music is famous.
The Laxmi Narayan Mandir, also known as the Birla Mandir, was built by B.D. Birla and inaugurated by Mahatma Gandhi. The deities are Laxmi, the goddess of wealth and Narayana, the lord of the universe. There are two towers, one at a height of 165 feet and the other at a height of 116 feet. The Geeta Bhavan is famous for its paintings from Indian mythology.
The Sree Uttara Swami Malai Mandir, popularly known as Malai Mandir, is situated on a hillock in the Vasant Vihar area of Delhi. The main deity is Lord Kartikeya.
Chattarpur and other Temples
The Chattarpur Temple, which is close to the Qutub Minar, is a beautiful temple with modern architecture. This temple is dedicated to Goddess Durga. The Baba Hanumanji Temple situated near the Ranmal Lake is also a must see. This temple has entered the Guinness Book of Records for the continuous chanting of mantras since 1964. The ISKCON temple at Delhi is also another must see.
No trip to Delhi is complete without a visit to the famous Lotus Temple. Built by the followers of the Bahai faith in 1986, it was designed by Fariburz Sahba, an Iranian-born Canadian architect. The Lotus shape emphasizes the symbol of purity.
The Gurdwara Bangla Sahib, where Guru Sri Har Krishan stayed; Gurdwara Nanak Piao where the first Sikh Guru Sri Nanak Dev stayed; Gurdwara Rakab Ganj built in the memory of Guru Tegh Bahadur who was beheaded by the Mughal Aurangzeb; and Gurdwara Majnu Ka Tila are some of the important Sikh shrines in Delhi.
Delhi’s religious ethos does not clash with its cosmopolitan nature. Do you agree? Which is your favorite shrine or holy place in Delhi? Do you think people in Delhi are more tolerant of other religions than elsewhere?