The Rashtrapati Bhavan is the official residence of the President of India located in New Delhi and is one of the most iconic monuments in India. It includes Gardens, Museum, Ceremonial hall, large open spaces, residence of bodyguard and staff etc. And in terms of area it is the largest residence of head of state in the country. The most prominent and distinguishing aspect of Rashtrapati Bhavan is its dome which is superimposed on its structure.
20 amazing facts about Rashtrapati Bhavan are as follows:
1. Rashtrapati Bhavan also known as Presidential palace is the second largest in the world after the Quirinal Palace, Rome, Italy.
2. Took 17 years for its completion as its construction was started in 1912 and completed in 1929, around 29,000 people have worked.
3. It has more than 300 rooms including the presidential office, guest rooms and staff rooms.
4. It has strength of 750 staff, of which 245 are in the President’s Secretariat.
5. It has been built using 700 million bricks and 3 million cubic feet of stones.
6. It is built on Raisina Hill which was named after one of the two villages (Raisini and Malcha) and was cleared in order to build this mansion. It was constructed by an architect namely Sir Edwin Landseer Lutyens.
7. Before Independence it was formerly known as the Viceroy’s House and is the largest residence in India.
8. Every year in February Mughal Garden behind the Rashtrapati Bhawan is opened during the festival called Udyanotsav.
9. It comprises of various gardens of different shapes such as rectangular, long and circular. Most mesmerising sight of them was the Circular Garden having terraced bowl flower beds blooming with various colours.
10. Statue of Gautama Buddha which belongs to the golden age of art and culture during Gupta age around 4th-5th Century was there at the back of Durbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
11. The statue at which it is placed is same as that of the height of India Gate.
12. One more impressive thing is the Banquet Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan in which 104 guests can sit at one time. Not only it consists of secret galleries for the musicians, but the system of lights are amazing as they are situated over the portraits of former Presidents, which serves as a signal to the butlers about when to serve, when not to serve and when they have to clear the hall.
13. In the Gift Museum of Rashtrapati Bhavan, the King George V’s silver chair of 640 Kg is there in which he sat at the Delhi Durbar in 1911.
14. In the Marble Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan some rare portraits and statues of Viceroys and British Royalty are there. And amazing is it displays the lifelike wax statue of our current President, Shri Pranab Mukherjee which was created by Asansol based artist.
15. Ashoka Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan which is used for holding the ceremonial functions like swearing-in of Ministers etc. and consist of amazing paintings like of Fateh Ali Shah, Qajar rulers of Persia and some paintings are made by an Italian painter Colonnelo of forest theme etc.
16. One more amazing thing is that the Presidential Palace has two galleries for children. One is to showcase the work of children i.e ‘By the Children’ and another is to display variety of items of children interest i.e ‘For the Children’.
17. Most amazing is Science & Innovation Gallery of Rashtrapati Bhavan which has a robotic dog called Clumsy which resembles a real dog.
18. “A Talking Wall” and “A Planet Wall” that provide interesting audio video display which generate interest among kids.
19. A Virtual Tabla which will enable visitors to play the drums and hear its sound without touching the drums at all etc.
20. Every Saturday at 10 am a ceremonial ‘Change of Guard’ ceremony held which is of 30 minute and open to the public i.e at the entry of Rashtrapati Bhavan you have to produce a photo ID.