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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The City of Nawabs - Lucknow

Lucknow city is popularly known as the ‘the city of Nawabs’. Situated on the banks of the river Gomti, it dates back to the time of the Suryavanshi dynasty. Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh, was founded by Nawab Asaf-ud-Daula. In the olden times, it served as the capital of the nawabs of Awadh and it is one of the reasons why it is also called as the city of the Nawabs. The era of the Nawabs bestowed Lucknow with the courteous culture as well as mouthwatering delicacies for which it is famous today. Travel to Lucknow with us to find more information on this interesting city!Even after witnessing tremendous modernization, Lucknow has managed to retain its age-old charm and glory. The warmth, the hospitality and the formality of the city have still not been lost. The era of the nawabs also gifted Lucknow with the literature, music, dance and arts and crafts that draw tourists here. Infact, it was in the streets of the city only that Tabla and Sitar were born. Lucknow tourism brings one closer to the glorious days city, through a visit to its numerous monuments and ruins The city of Lucknow has a magical charm surrounding it. Be it its delicious cuisine or its heart melting culture, the city leaves an everlasting impression on its visitors. It is one of the few places where one can still find people saying ‘aap’, ‘janab’, ‘pehle aap’, etc. Even though flats have replaces Nawabi mansions, the city is still as charismatic as before. So, visit Lucknow and lose yourself in the magic and allure of the city.

Lucknow – The upcoming METRO is a hallmark of cultural extravaganza, known all over the world for its many splendours. A city that has a magical charm, a charm that’s forever and a charm that’s apart. Be it the cultural charm or the monumental one, all are well conserved here to make Lucknow ” The city of many splendours”. Walking through the lanes and by-lanes of Chowk and Aminabad one finds Lucknow of yore. The ‘tehzib’ or mannerism is still prominent and a topic of great appreciation. This is a city that still speaks the language of “aap-janab”"pehle aap” is still a part of everyday life for a true Lakhnawi. – and so natural it is – Aadab or salutation which has its own sophistication and style. Dress forms though have changed noticeably in the span of a century, yet the beauty and charisma of Chikan – the intricate and delicate hand embroidery, still rules the wardrobe. Lucknow is in fact among a few cities that duly understands the grace of the ‘dupattas’ or the covering cloth. Wisdom, women and wine are the three things truly understood and respected by the Nawabs. Not a thing of condemnation but an institution it was the “kothas”, where sons of Nawabs were deliberately sent to learn the culture, sophistication and respect for the fairer sex. Muzzafar Ali’s unforgettable film “Umrao Jaan” is a depiction of this social institution. Love was found in either Paris or Lucknow– a proof of this is the lovers lane in the posh modern Hazratganj: these lanes were used as a meeting place for the lonely hearts to escape the monitoring eyes of their parents. “Kan kauwe bazi” or kite flying was not only a pastime but the means of sending love letters to the beloved, “kal shaam kothe pe aana, hum intezaar kareinge tumhara”– Tomorrow in the evening come to the terrace, I’ll wait for you. Such words were written on the patang or the kite and the kite was flown and dropped on the beloved’s terrace. A story goes that once a Chhote Nawab did this with his beloved and instead of the beloved getting the letter her mother found it and the love bug bit her, assuming that the Bade Nawab has done this sweet and naughty thing, she reciprocated in the same manner writing “Intezaar tumhara hi to tha humein, umra bhar rahein takte rahe, der lagee aane mein tumko, shukr hai phir bhi aaye to”– I was waiting for this all my life, you came late yet now you have come. Thus started the love between the Bade Nawab and the Badi Begum which ended up in their marriage and left the real ones to repent. Today in Lucknow many things may have impurities but preparations like those of Tunde-ke-kabab, Rahim-ke-kulche nihari, Kababs at Akbari Gate, Ram Asrey ki malai aur lal peda, Raja-ki-thandai, Parathas naans aur sheermals ya Sharma-ki-chaat have held their heads high due to purity and standards maintained. Good eateries in Lucknow are often found in the serpentine lanes of old Lucknow. So many of you would have been born in Lucknow like me, but will agree that each day is distinct. The shades of the monuments differ with each sun and moon. You discover and rediscover Lucknow everyday. No one has known Lucknow to the full and will never. That is why : “Jisey Aap Kehte Hain Lucknow – Usey Hum Kehte Hain Duja Jahan” (The place that you call Lucknow – we call the other world) .

Lucknow The City of Nawabs !!!

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