4 Nov, 2018
by Suman Pradhan
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The Qutub Minar is one of the most celebrated monuments of the country. Located at the south of Delhi City, it is a five storeyed, red sandstone tower with a diameter of 14.32m at the base and about 2.75m on the top. Standing at a height of 76.2m (250ft), the Qutub Minar is supposed to be the tallest freestanding stone tower in the world . The foundation of the Qutub Minar was laid by the Afghan invader, Qutub-ud-Din Aibak in 1199 AD as a mark of his conquest of Northern India. Consequentially, the minar has come to be a document in history, recording the metamorphoses of the Indian culture and the different influences in architecture brought in by the relay of foreign rulers. Qutub Minar, today, stands as a salvaged ruin against the ravages of history. Due to the decay in its ancient construction, as well as a few unfortunate incidents such as accidents and suicides from the monument, Qutub Minar has been closed down. The Archeological Survey of India has been dedicating a lot of efforts in resurrecting this monument to its former glory. As a part of the ‘resurrection’ process, during the months of November-December, a three-day festival is held in the premises of this historical structure, known as the Qutub Festival.
Qutub Festival is organized at the famous Qutub Minar during the Hindu Month of Sharad Purnima. The Festival is a joint venture of the Delhi Tourism & Transport Development Corporation and Sahitya Kala Parishad. The Qutub Festival, held in the premises of the historical structure, Qutub Minar is a festival to celebrate the splendor and magnificence of the Minar and showcase its past glory and majesty to the world. There are different cultural shows and art forms that are displayed during the festival.
One of the main focuses of the Qutub Festival is the attention it gets, both national and international. A number of cultural events are held as a part of the Festival, where veterans of Indian classical music and folk musicians give spectacular performances. There are a number of cultural events and shows that are held against the historical backdrop of the Qutub Minar. There are also performances by the folk musicians and the classical musicians as a part of the celebrations. Qutub Minar wears a new bridal looks as the three days of music and dance festival begins. Music fills the air by this 12th century landmark. the festival is dedicated to the youth of Delhi and brings the whole place alive with the echoes of soulful melodies and rhythm of the ghungroos and beautiful renditions of ghazals and qawwalis and be mesmerized by Sarangi and sitar recitals. Bollywood singers also enthralls the public with their pop as well as folk music. There are Kuchipudi, Odissi, Manipuri, and various classical dance performances by famous artists from all over the nation. Artists like the illustrious three generations of Sarabai Family- Mrinalini, Mallika & Anahita Sarabai, ghazal maestros - Ustaad Ahmad Hussain and Ustaad Mohammad Hussein, Odissi dansuese Sonal Mansingh, santoor player Bhajan Sopori, Guru R.K. Singhajit Singh with his troupe of Manipuri dancers, Kuchipudi duo Jairama and Vanshree Rao and sarangi players, Ram Narayan and Aruna Narayan Kalehave have performed here too. There are also a number of regional food stalls that are set up at the premises serving mouthwatering local cuisine of Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and the north eastern states.
Qutub Festival is a perfect blend of cultural events and is an extravaganza of classical music and dance where various renowned artists take participation throughout and outside the country. The Qutub Festival is an attempt to preserve and present the rich tradition of Indian music, contemporary as well as classical. It also helps in reviving the culture and tradition of the capital city of India. The Qutub festival is attended by people not only from the country but from all over the world.