The Sunder Nursery, New Delhi
The Sunder Nursery, New Delhi | Nayanika Chatterjee
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A photo essay that takes a close look at the newly-renovated Sunder Nursery which is next door to Humayun’s tomb.

New Delhi: A short distance away from Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi, one of the most popular tourist sites in the country, lies a lesser known heritage site — the Sunder Nursery built around the Batashewala complex. The UNESCO declared Sunder Nursery a world heritage site in 2016.

The Sunder Nursery consists of six monuments spread around a 90-acre piece of land.

The nursery is a part of the Humayun’s Tomb complex, and was in a derelict condition until 2007, when The Aga Khan Trust for Culture undertook a massive renewal project.

It took the Trust ten years to fix the site and it was finally opened to the public last month on 21 February, 2018.

Unlike how the Archeological Survey of India renovates monuments, the Aga Khan Trust even took on the beautification of the entire area around the complex, including the historic Nizamuddin Basti.

The Sunder Burj: The 16th century monument is best known for an intricate chamber that consists of exquisite plaster-work, a band of inscriptions and a dome that exhibits fine geometric patterns.
Sunderwala Mahal: Probably built as a tomb, due to improper conservation methods in the 20th century, several key architectural features have been lost. However, with the efforts of the Aga Khan Trust, it has now been included as a world heritage site under UNESCO.
The interior or Sunderwala Mahal

The interior of Lakkarwala Burj has intricate plasterwork on both the exterior and interior surfaces.
Sunder Nursery Lake: The lake at the northern edge is not only a relief from Delhi’s otherwise arid landscape, but also  attracts migratory birds

 

The nursery also consists of Azimganj Serai that stands within the National Zoological Park. Although it is in poor condition, AFTC’s efforts since 2014 should make it ready to be open to the public soon.
The Azimganj Serai has lush greenery around it, including water gardens lined with flower beds and a seating area.

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