Baolis or simply Step wells were ancient water tanks constructed in the olden days to harness water. This was an ancient technique of water harvesting so as use the stored water in the times of drought and dry seasons. These were mainly developed in India to cope with fluctuations in the monsoons.
Yesterday I explored yet another part and heritage of Delhi. The location of Ugrasen ki Baoli is very surprising. If you happen to be at Connaught Place area which is the Central Business District in Delhi, you cannot actually expect an ancient structure in the middle of a modern city.
Connaught Place was developed in the 1920 to cater to the needs of the growing city of New Delhi. Since then its a very prominent area visited by everyone who visits Delhi.
Walking distance from Connaught Place outer circle and behind the Statesman Building, Barakhamba Road, is Ugrasen Ki Baoli on Hailey Road, K.G.Marg, New Delhi. It is a designated protected monument by Archeological Survey of India.
As I moved from Hailey Road into the bylanes I came across large grafetti on the walls of a residential building.
Just opposite to this grafetti is an old gate of the ancient Baoli.
The Monument is surrounded by all sides by residential area very close to it. As I entered from the entry gate, on left hand side were endless stairs going deep down into the step well and on both the sides of these stairs are thick walls to support the structure and to enable the structure to hold water deep inside. The well can be accessed step by step deep into the main structure when the water level is not enormous.
Believed to be built by King Agrasen or Ugrasen and rebuilt in 14th Century, the structure is one of its kind in Delhi.
Today this ancient structure is visited by tourists and enthusiasts to look into the simple yet highly specialized structure of water harvesting developed hundreds of years back. These kind of Baolis can be seen only in the western part of India especially in Rajasthan.
Truly a place worth visiting. The place is connected by Metro Rail, the nearest station being Barakhamba Road. The Place is also very close to Mandi House, the Art and Cultural Hub of Delhi.