Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya
The Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya which is commonly known to all as the 'Nizamuddin Dargah' or 'Hazrat Nizamuddin Tomb' is situated west of Nizamuddin and approximately 2 km from Humayun Tomb in New Delhi. It is also approachable from the eastern end of Lodi Road or from Mathura Road via local transport or from Central Secretariat Metro Station.
This Dargah is the Mausoleum of a World renowned Sufi Saint of the Chisti Order named Nizamuddin Auliya who was born in 1238 at Badayun in Uttar Pradesh to Ahmad Badayuni and Bibi Zulekha. After the demise of his father, Nizamuddin, who was then only 5 years old, shifted to Delhi with his mother and settled here. In 1269 and at the age of 20 years, Nizamuddin travelled to Ajodhan which is presently known as Pakpattan Sharif in Pakistan to become a disciple of a famous Sufi Saint named Fariduddin Ganj-i-Shakkar also known to his followers as Baba Farid. Nizamuddin would theoretically study in Delhi and subsequently practice the Sufi Devotional litanies religiously. He would travel to Ajodhan every year to spend the month of Ramadan with his Master, Baba Farid. During the third visit of Nizamuddin, Baba Farid saw great spark in this disciple and announced him as his successor. After Nizamuddin returned to Delhi, he received the news that Baba Farid passed away in Ajodhan.
Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya then travelled around Delhi preaching the Order of Chisti and finally settled in Ghiyaspur which was situated on the outskirts of Delhi due to its peaceful and undisturbed atmosphere. He constructed a 'Khanqah' at Ghiyaspur where he would feed people from all walks of life and at the same time preached the spiritual Order of Chisti. This place became so famous that it was perpetually packed with rich and poor people irrespective of their religious backgrounds.
Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya had many followers like Hazrat Nasiruddin Mahmud Chiragh Dehlavi who later earned the title of 'Roshan Chirag-e-Delhi' and Amir Khusro who became a renowned Scholar, Musician and Royal Poet in the Courts of the Delhi Sultanate. Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya passed away on the morning of 3rd April 1325 and his Dargah was constructed by Muhammad Bin Tughlaq of the Tughlaq Dynasty who was an avid follower of his teachings. It lies atop a tank which has an interesting tale attached to it. Legend has that Saint Nizamuddin Auliya and the Sultan of Tughlaqabad had an argument over the construction of this tank and in anger, this Sufi Saint cursed the Sultan that his city (Tughlaqabad) will never prosper and remain barren forever which literally happened. Tughlaqabad survived only from 1321 and was abandoned by Sultan Muhammad Bin Tughlaq in 1327 after the untimely demise of his father, Sultan Ghiyas-ud-din Tughlaq in 1324 who was the founder of the Tughlaq Dynasty and who had built the city of Tughlaqabad.
Post construction, the Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya saw many renovations and changes and what exists today is a structure that was finally renovated by Faridu'n Khan in 1562. The Dargah is seen with a square shaped chamber covered with a dome shaped roof adorned in vertical stripes of black marble and crowned with an ornamental lotus cap. The gateways of this Dargah are seen with arched openings and Verandahs which is typical of the Islamic style of architecture. Every evening after the evening prayers, Quwwali Singers would perform beside his Dargah and many would attend this mystical experience and get enlightened. This place remains packed with devotees especially during the festivals of 'Id' and 'Urs' fair which is held twice in a year during the death anniversaries of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya and Amir Khusro who was also buried within the complex of this Dargah next to Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya and was one of the favourite disciples of this Saint.
The Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya is considered as a sacred Muslim Pilgrimage centre due to its ancient and religious significance and is visited by people from different religious backgrounds who offer their prayers here including those who believe in the secular teachings of this great Sufi Saint. Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya was renowned across South Asia for his preaching of the Order of Chisti wherein he taught people that love and peace can bring anyone closer to God including the realisation of God through community service and kindness irrespective of a person's caste, creed, religion and materialistic possessions.
The Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya Complex and its surrounding area are considered very sacred and have buried many Muslim Royalties too. It enshrines the Tomb of Jahan Ara Begum, who was the daughter of Mughal Emperor ShahJahan and the famous Persian and Urdu Poet named Mirza Ghalib. The Tomb of Inayat Khan also lies at the corner of this Dargah Complex. Avid readers can find a detailed biography of this World famous Sufi Saint in a document named 'Ain-i-Akbari' which was written by Abu'l-Fazl-ibn Mubarak who was a Vizier at the Royal Courts of Mughal Emperor Akbar. The residence of this Sufi Saint is situated north-east of Humayun Tomb and is known as 'Chilla Nizamuddin Auliya' which is also one of the well known tourist spots in Delhi and visited by thousands of devotees and tourists from across the globe.