From Kingsway To Kartavya Path – The Journey Of India’s Iconic Rajpath

Kingsway To Kartavya Path
Kingsway To Kartavya Path

From Kingsway To Rajpath renamed as Kartavya Path: Soon after independence, Kingsway was renamed as Rajpath and the runway perpendicular to Queensway was renamed Janpath. Following the Central Vista Avenue project, the Government of India has now renamed the Rajpath to Kartavya Path to drop its colonial context.

From the dawn of independence to hosting the annual Republic Day celebrations for more than seven decades, the historic Rajpath in India’s capital of power has witnessed colonial rule and formed the basis for the glory of an independent, democratic nation.

Kingsway To Kartavya Path journey of Rajpath

The ceremonial boulevard of the national capital running from the Raisina Hill Complex to India Gate began its journey as Kingsway, a majestic central axis in the center of New Delhi that was used to move the royal seat of administration from Calcutta (now Kolkata). Later it was built here. ) as declared by the British monarch King George V in 1911.

Soon after independence, Kingsway was renamed as Rajpath and its perpendicular running Queensway was renamed as Janpath.

Now, Rajpath has been renamed as Kartavya Path and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the newly-named section from Rashtrapati Bhavan to India Gate as part of Central Vista Avenue on Thursday.

On December 15, 1911, King George V and his wife Queen Mary laid the foundation stone of the ‘new capital’ of the British Raj.

In line with the King’s vision, the architects Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker built the new capital, the grandeur and architectural splendor of which rivaled the best in Europe and America.

The centerpiece of this new capital was the Raisina Hill complex, with the majestic Viceroy’s House (now Rashtrapati Bhavan) and the North Block and South Block forming the Imperial Secretariat.

A grand axis was laid from the Great Place (later renamed Vijay Chowk) to the India Gate, with lush lawns, fountains and ornamental lampposts on either side, forming the magnificent Central Vista Avenue.

Baker built a circular Parliament House near Rashtrapati Bhavan which was inaugurated by the then Viceroy Lord Irwin in January 1927.

The city, built between the two World Wars and which took 20 years to build, was inaugurated by the same Viceroy on February 13, 1931.

Upon India’s independence on August 15, 1947, the road from Raisina Hill to India Gate was packed with people, welcoming the dawn of an independent India that shook the yoke of a long colonial rule.

India became a republic on 26 January 1950 and the Rajpath has been the site of all Republic Day celebrations since 1951.

Only the first Republic Day celebrations were held at the Irwin Stadium (now Captain Dhyan Chand National Stadium) behind the India Gate complex, where the Rajpath section ends. Kingsway To Kartavya Path.

The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) approved the name change and Rajpath and Central Vista Lawn were officially renamed as Kartavya Path after a public notice was issued in this regard on Wednesday.

Union Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture Meenakshi Lekhi, who is also a member of NDMC, said on Wednesday that during the British rule Rajpath was known as Kingsway, while Janpath was known as Queensway.

“However, after 75 years of independence, it is felt that there is a need to rename Rajpath in line with the values ​​and principles of democracy and a contemporary, new India. Kartavya Path will also inspire all those who visit here or Let us cross the road to perform our duties towards the country, society and our families,” she said.

NDMC vice-chairman Satish Upadhyay said the proposal was received from the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (MoHUA).

On Thursday, PM Modi will also unveil a 28-feet statue of Bose at the India Gate, which is housed in its ornamental canopy.

The famous chhatris, erected on four pillars of the Delhi Order, designed by Lutyens for the main buildings of the new capital, sit in the Raisina Hill complex opposite the India Gate on a long and wide axis – the Rajpath, which has been vacant since the king’s statue. Was. George V was deposed in 1968 and later dumped at Coronation Park in northwest Delhi, ironically the site of the 1911 coronation court.

The grand marble statue of King George V, located under an ornamental canopy in front of the India Gate, was unveiled in 1939 by the then Viceroy Lord Linlithgow as a fitting monument to the British monarch, during whose reign the capital of ‘New Delhi’ was created record.