Heritage Walk Ahmedabad- Part II
Ahmedabad is the biosphere’s first UNESCO Heritage site. Nevertheless, I have expended a foremost part of my lifespan here, it never ceases to startle me. Justly said, unless you learn the rock-hard history of the dwelling, you do not incline to respect it the way it should be. Earlier, Ahmedabad occurred only in the walled city, slow and steady suburbanization led to the expansion of the town and has taken a striking structure today. The walled city is the factual Ahmedabad that voices history. The entire city was fenced by a strong wall and it was not only grim but almost dreadful to get in. There are 12 Darwaja (gates) and each Darwaja (gate) has its history devoted to it. Walk through the gates and the walled city and it will take you to the world where King ruled, passed his orders and rules were strict to perform any delinquency. Each common man relished the ruler and was fulfilled and pleased with the king. Houses, architecture, drainage systems, edifices will not only stun you but will leave you in awe. For, appreciating the reign we wished to take the heritage walk tour organized by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation and I repented not taking it well before. It was a marvellous Heritage Walk tour that helped me keep my feet in the shoes of the folks that enjoyed the walled city to the core.
Are you aware of the parrot holes?
Parrot holes were built on high walls to bounce space to parrots and other birds. I was amazed thinking about the credence of the people and the love that existed for fellow beings. Since walls were built and buildings took over, it was problematic for the birds to stay and build nests. Parrot holes were erected to give space to the birds and thus, every being co-existed. One such gorgeous structure I found amazing was the Chabutaro. You can read more about Chabutaro by clicking here. Chabutaro is an amazing example of co-existence and love for birds. Relation between humans and birds can be seen in this type of edifices that speak the unsaid kindred. It is so weird; with each daybreak, we tend to cut trees and instead structure concrete jungles without even thinking about the rights of other creatures that co-exist. Humans in olden times were progressive and that can be noticed from the structures erected with zeal but when we come across such structures as parrot holes and Chabutaro (bird feeders) we fail nowadays in the race of growth. We fail as humans.
Our ancestors were well advanced beyond our imagination and that can be depicted from the historical frames that we observe today in the form of remains
Fernandes Bridge – First Bridge of Ahmedabad
Fernandes Bridge is the first-ever bridge of Ahmedabad. It was constructed on the river Manek that crossed the city. Though you cannot find this river today some remains and the structure built gives you the vibes of the river flowed. Herkuver Shethani ni haveli is one such haveli that was built on the edge and the cross-section is tilted wherein two areas merge and the fall appears. This is where the river flowed. At present, it is widely known as Gandhi pool and it is the biggest market for books. Every student in their lifetime would have surely visited this place. Fernandes Bridge is one such small bridge that stands erect speaking about the past and the flow of people that moved across.
Muhurat pole is the first-ever pole built-in Ahmedabad. To read more about the place read my other post on Heritage Walk of Ahmedabad. While moving across Manekchowk you will also come across AEC (Ahmedabad Stock Exchange) and Saint Manek Samadhi. He helped Ahmed Shah Badshah to lay the foundation stone of the city of Ahmedabad. To read more about the city of Ahmedabad click here.
Each building in Ahmedabad’s walled city had a structure carved that spoke about the relation a person carried even in the business. Structures like a temple, space of watchkeepers at height, gutter system, wells, chabutaras, parrot holes, carvings and various other features speak about the creativity and the humanity that our ancestors had in their blood but somehow, we have lost in the period. The walled city consists of Mandir and Masjid is a city to respect. Mosque where you will find diyas burning. Do you know why? Ahmed Shah Badshah wanted people of every religion to come and pray the way they want. You will find one such place in Raja no hajiro located in Manek Chowk, Ahmedabad. This is the place where the largest cash transaction occurs without any fear. The safest place in Ahmedabad. When we think of the history of Ahmedabad, I was not aware of many facts that I could learn from the heritage walk. Also, the place where it started is the Kalupur temple and it is the very first temple of Lord Swaminarayan Sect built under the guidance of Lord himself. I was amazed. Many such facts unfolded as we moved the lanes of the old walled city.
Ahmedabad has turned well beyond walls and the walled city is considered to be old enough because of the narrow lanes and the congestion it faces. But still, it remains to be the most organized place in the city which doesn’t even face a single water block it rains to the max. We are systematic and learning and evolving but we should not forget that our ancestors were way beyond our imagination. Such heritage walks help us understand the facts. It is a super eccentric step carried out by the government of Gujarat.
One such historic icon exists in Kutch. Read Here.
If you want to enjoy the scening beauty of Gujarat with pictures that will amaze you, click here