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Old Delhi address book

DELHI: THE EMPEROR’S CITY (Roli, Rs 850) by Vijay Goel is a photographic “rediscovery” of Old Delhi or Chandni Chowk and its environs. Chandni Chowk happens to be Goel’s constituency, but he has also “grown up around the Walled City” variously known as Shahjahanabad, Purani Dilli and Purana Shahar. This is a rather lavishly unremarkable book, providing important information and addresses of havelis, mosques, churches, colleges, railway stations, post offices, shops and other architectural treasures in the area. This picture is of the haveli in which the poet, Mirza Ghalib, lived with his wife, Umrao Begum, from 1860 until his death in 1869. It is on Gali Qasim Jaan, Ballimaran, and is now a memorial, depicting Ghalib’s life through portraits, manuscripts and memorabilia. Goel provides suggestions for several heritage walks through the old city, and would like to see Shahjahanabad declared a “Heritage City”.

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