The Delhi Golf Club and its Monuments 

, Hazrat-E-Dilli

The Delhi Golf Club, a municipal course in the early 1930s became a corporate entity in 24th February 1950. Situated on the erstwhile Mughal lands known as Babarpur it was built around the existing monuments.

I knew that there were three important tombs inside Delhi Golf Club but nothing prepared me for the veritable feast of the senses for a monument lover like me.

The Lal Bangla as the tomb complex of Lal Kanwar, the mother of Shah Alam II and his daughter BehumJaan is visible from the road itself. 

It’s in a  separate compound maintained by the ASI and can be easily accessed fronts parking lot.

There’s was a gateway here as per Maulvi Zafar Hadan but that’s no longer visible.

That these are female graves can be seen from the takhti on the top.

There is another building which is much bigger but has no tombs inside. 

After exploring it to my hearts content and even climbing on top of both the monuments I decided to venture inside.

Saiyyed Abid a Jahangiri noble was also buried here. His tomb is mentioned and can be seen from the top of Lal Bangla 

This is a simple tomb and with the golfers near it doesn’t give a sense of the stillness of frsth but a vibrancy of life.

I went to the office of the Club and the Secretary very kindly arranged for me to have a conducted tour of the premises.

Mr Singh who has been working with the club for 35 years took me around on a golf cart. I was like a child in a toffee shop. So many riches all around me.

We passed by Saiyyed Abid’s tomb and stopped in front of a vaulted one. The graves have disappeared but the building stands.

The winding and very sloping dirt track led me to one of the prettiest tombs I’ve seen known as Barakhamba because of its 12 pillars. Originally built in the shape of a cross now only 3 side compartments remain of the four.theres a single grave in the middle compartment and it is hauntingly beautiful.

Situated at hole 17 

The scars on this side and the stumps of the pillars show where the fourth side compartment would have been. 

According toMaulvi Zafar Hasan it is of  Lodi era. 

My golf cart was very handy as it was a hot day in May, 

The pillar stump 

Another short ride on the golf cart over verdant green grass and we were in front of another beautiful Unknown tomb of Mughal vintage.

This was originally a Baghichi or small garden with enclosing walks and a low arched doorway. Those have probably given way to the greens. 

The ceiling has definitely been repainted recently but it’s been very aesthetically done.


The walls and side shave also been attractively redone. 

By now I thought we had seen everything but Delhi Golf Club had many more treasures buried inside it.

This is an early Mughal tomb. Octagonal from outside and square inside. 

The ceiling has been repainted but the original itself must have been attractive from the markings. 

On all four entrances there are guldaan or flower vase designs which in its original state must have been a riot of colours.

Painstakingly decorated for the after life!

The delicate work on the outer casing of the tomb and the inner floral patterns clearly visible were very pretty.

Some random walls and graves with which the Golf club is dotted.

From here we went to what was once the Baghichi or walked garden. Today only one wall with its imposing gateway stands. There’s a tomb inside in front of which a swimming pool has been built and drinks are served. 

Well we still weren’t done. This area was known as Babarpur and was a thriving necropolis. Of course a mosque was needed and my guide too me to one. Perhaps attached to a tomb no longer extant.its also Mughal era.

A short drive and we found glimpses of brown behind some undergrowth. That was the last tomb of the day. But what a day it was!

I have described the monuments as per popular conception. More details based on my research will be in my forthcoming book next year InshaAllah 

Where Stones Speak II

Comment List

  • Tarun 10 / 05 / 2016 Reply

    Thank you for that wonderful peek inside the Delhi Golf Club.
    Though I’ve never been inside , I was wondering if the tomb near the swimming pool isn’t the actual tomb of Syed Abid. According to Sir Syed Ahmed Khan (Aasaar Us Sanaadeed) Syed Abid’s tomb had a gateway which was mounted by a sehdari. The site also had a hauz and some canals that had run dry or caved in.
    You may view Sir Syed’s description and the accompanying illustration here :
    ( pages 84-86)
    We could try comparing the photos of the tomb next to the swimming pool with the said illustration.

    • ranasafvi 10 / 05 / 2016 Reply

      You are correct. It is. I am giving the details in my forthcoming book as mentioned in the article.

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