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News18 » India
1-min read

Good News for Red Fort Enthusiasts, Asad Burj to Welcome Visitors from June

Asad Burj was bombarded and destroyed in the Harnath Chela riots and was repaired and restored at the expense of Mohammad Akbar Shah II. It was then brought to its original structure, although public visits were restricted.

Eram Agha | News18.comEramAgha

Updated:February 27, 2018, 1:45 PM IST
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Good News for Red Fort Enthusiasts, Asad Burj to Welcome Visitors from June
File image of Red Fort. (Image: Reuters)

New Delhi: Asad Burj, an octagonal tower situated on the south eastern corner of Red Fort, is being cleared and conserved to woo visitors from June 2018. It is one of the structures being worked upon by the conservation archaeologists for the pleasure of travellers.

Its topmost pavilion crowned with a dome is similar in size and design to Shah Burj, which has been open to public for long.

Asad Burj was bombarded and destroyed in the Harnath Chela riots and was repaired and restored at the expense of Mohammad Akbar Shah II. It was then brought to its original structure, although public visits were restricted.

Legend has it that Asad Burj was called “Haathi gate” as the elephants would go down the stairs to drink water. The structure also has a wide open sky pathway leading to an underground chamber and gateway to the riverside.

The structure which was earlier shut for travellers is now being developed to enhance touristic of Red Fort.

The Archaeological Survey of India has taken up the task of conservation on war footing to open two-thirds of the unexposed Red Fort area for public viewing in three months.

At one point in time, the Indian Army was stationed at the Red Fort, but withdrew in 2003, leaving behind some structures that will be demolished according to the new plan.

Widespread horticulture activity would be carried out to develop gardens around the newly identified spaces at the Red Fort.

Another building to be opened to public is Jehangir Gate, which is close to the Salimgarh Fort that was built by Islam Shah, the son of Sher Shah Suri.

An official at Archaeological Survey of India said, “We have taken up work in our protected sites, and it is being pursued in a stipulated time – from three months, to six months and to even a year, depending upon the required amount of work.”

“We realised that the public gets to experience only one-third of the Red Fort. Therefore, we are currently working towards opening the remaining two-third area to the public. Among other things, Red Fort will also be illuminated at night like the North and South Block,” the ASI official added.

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| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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