History of Red Fort


The Red Fort was the residence of the Mughal emperor for nearly 200 years, until 1857. It is located in the centre of Delhi and houses a number of museums. In addition to accommodating the emperors and their households, it was the ceremonial and political centre of Mughal government and the setting for events critically impacting the region.

Constructed in 1648 by the fifth Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as the palace of his fortified capital Shahjahanabad, the Red Fort is named for its massive enclosing walls of red sandstone and is adjacent to the older Salimgarh Fort, built by Islam Shah Suri in 1546. The imperial apartments consist of a row of pavilions, connected by a water channel known as the Stream of Paradise (Nahr-i-Behisht). The fort complex is considered to represent the zenith of Mughal creativity under Shah Jahan and although the palace was planned according to Islamic prototypes, each pavilion contains architectural elements typical of Mughal buildings that reflect a fusion of Timurid and Persian traditions. The Red Fort’s innovative architectural style, including its garden design, influenced later buildings and gardens in Delhi, Rajasthan, Punjab, Kashmir, Braj, Rohilkhand and elsewhere.With the Salimgarh Fort, it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007 as part of the Red Fort Complex.

On Independence Day (15 August), the Prime Minister of India hoists the ‘tricolor’ national flag at the main gate of the fort and delivers a nationally-broadcast speech from its ramparts.

Its English name, “Red Fort”, is a translation of the Hindustani Lāl Qila  deriving from its red-sandstone walls. As the residence of the imperial family, the fort was originally known as the “Blessed Fort”Mubārak , .Agra Fort is also called Lāl Qila’.

Emperor Shah Jahan commissioned construction of the Red Fort in 1638, when he decided to shift his capital from Agra to Delhi. Originally red and white, the Shah’s favourite colours, its design is credited to architect Ustad Ahmad Lahauri, who also constructed the Taj Mahal. The fort lies along the Yamuna River, which fed the moats surrounding most of the walls. Construction began in the sacred month of Muharram, on 13 May 1638.:01 Supervised by Shah Jahan, it was completed in 1648. Unlike other Mughal forts, the Red Fort’s boundary walls are asymmetrical to contain the older Salimgarh Fort.:04 The fortress-palace was a focal point of the medieval city of Shahjahanabad, which is present-day Old Delhi. Its planning and aesthetics represent the zenith of Mughal creativity prevailing during Shah Jahan’s reign. His successor Aurangzeb added the Pearl Mosque to the emperor’s private quarters, constructing barbicans in front of the two main gates to make the entrance to the palace more circuitous.:08


To prevent terrorist attacks, security is especially tight around the Red Fort on the eve of Indian Independence Day. Delhi Police and paramilitary personnel keep watch on neighbourhoods around the fort, and National Security Guard sharpshooters are deployed on high-rises near the fort.The airspace around the fort is a designated no-fly zone during the celebration to prevent air attacks, and safe houses exist in nearby areas to which the Prime Minister and other Indian leaders may retreat in the event of an attack.


The Red Fort has an area of 254.67 acres (103.06 haated by turrets and bastions and varying in height from 18 metres ) enclosed by 2.41 kilometres (1.50 mi) of defensive walls, punctu(59 ft) on the river side to 33 metres (108 ft) on the city side. The fort is octagonal, with the north-south axis longer than the east-west axis. The marble, floral decorations and double domes in the fort’s buildings exemplify later Mughal architecture.

Major structures
The most important surviving structures are the walls and ramparts, the main gates, the audience halls and the imperial apartments on the eastern riverbank.

Chawari Bazar
Chawari Bazar is located infront of Red Fort.

Lahori Gate

The Lahori Gate is the main gate to the Red Fort, named for its orientation towards the city of Lahore. During Aurangzeb’s reign, the beauty of the gate was spoiled by the addition of bastions, Shahjahan described this as “a veil drawn across the face of a beautiful woman”. Every Indian Independence Day since 1947, the national flag has flown and the Prime Minister has made a speech from its ramparts.

The most important surviving structures are the walls and ramparts, the main gates, the audience halls and the imperial apartments on the eastern riverbank.

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