on the Rajpath in New Delhi, India Gate (originally called the All
India War Memorial) is a monument built by Edwin Lutyens to
commemorate the Indian soldiers who died in the World War I and the
Afghan Wars. The foundation stone was laid on 10 February 1921 by the
Duke of Connaught. The names of the soldiers who died in these wars
are inscribed on the walls. It was completed in 1931. Burning under it
since 1971 is the Amar Jawan Jyoti (The flame of the immortal
warrior), which marks the Unknown Soldier's Tomb.
Inscribed on top of India Gate in capital letters is the line:
To the dead of the Indian armies who fell honoured in France and
Flanders Mesopotamia and Persia East Africa Gallipoli and elsewhere in
the near and the far-east and in sacred memory also of those whose
names are recorded and who fell in India or the north-west frontier
and during the Third Afgan War.
The shrine itself is a black marble cenotaph with a rifle placed on
its barrel, crested by a soldier's helmet. Each face of the cenotaph
has inscribed in gold the words "Amar Jawan" (Immortal Warrior). This
cenotaph is itself placed on an edifice which has on its four corners
four flames that are perpetually kept alive.
The 42 metre tall India Gate is situated such that many important
roads spread out from it. Traffic passing around India Gate used to be
continuous till the roads were closed to the public due to terrorist
threats. The lawns around Rajpath are thronged by people during the
night, when the India Gate is lit up.