AHMEDABAD - Gem of Gujarat
Founded on the banks of the Sabarmati River by Ahmed Shah I in 1411, it was ranked as the greatest city of India until Fatehpur Sikri and Delhi were built by the Mughal Kings. Sir Thomas Roe, the British envoy at Jahangir's court, described Ahmedabad as a "goodly city as large as London, the handsomest town in Hindustan, perhaps, the world". Even the fun-hating Aurangazeb called the city "the beauty and ornament of India". Shahjahan spent the early years of his romantic marriage to Noorjahan in this city. Under its many cruel but culture-oriented Sultans, Muslim ideals of architecture were blended with local arts.
Ahmed Shah's Jama Masjid used a great many pillars, carvings and inscriptions of demolished Hindu and Jain temples to build his mosque. There are 260 columns supporting the roof of the mosque with its 15 cupolas. But during the earthquake of 1819, the two shaking minarets lost half of their height and another quake in 1957 completed the demolition. It is said that a large black slab by the main arch is actually the base of a Jain idol buried upside down for the Muslim faithful to tread on.
The origin of Ahmedabad can be traced to the ruined township of Karnavati, founded on the left bank of the Sabarmati by Karna Solanki between AD 1063 and 1093. It was re-established in 1411 by Sultan Ahmed Shah I who named it after him. It was a city created with love and an excellence of design.
The city's rich and prosperous historic past has bequeathed it an architectural legacy that is a happy blend of Hindu and Muslim schools of architecture.
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Cricket Stadium is one of the famous Cricket grounds in India. It is an ultimate entertainer of cricket lovers in India and International. ODI and Test Matches are played here between India and visitor countries (Refer ICC schedule), and also local cricket series.
Ahmedabad grew under the patronage of the Ahmed Shah and Solanki rulers and today the Jama Masjid, the Sarkhej Monuments, Sidi Sayyid's Mosque and the Shaking Minarets of Ahmedabad are excellent idioms of the architectural excellence of the part.
Ahmedabad's cotton industry received patronage under its Sultans. The first mill was established by Rancholal Chotalal in 1859, and today Ahmedabad boasts of as many as 80 miles with the most modern processing plants for bleaching, finishing, mercerizing, sanforising, dyeing and printing, producing nearly 25 percent of India's total cloth.
Major Tourist Places in Ahmedabad:
1. Sabarmati Ashram (Gandhi Ashram)
2. The Shaking Minarets
3. Kankaria Lake & Cambay
4. Unique Museums