Saturday, December 13, 2008

Taramati Baradari

Few notes on visiting Taramati Baradari with my office team:
Legend has it that Abdullah Qutub Shah (1614-1676), the grandson of Mohd. Quli Qutub Shah, the founder of Hyderabad was a great lover of music, poetry and dance. An admirer of Taramati, the courtesan, he built the Baradari (pavilion with 12 doorways) for her, close to the Golconda fort. He could hear her sing at the Baradari from the fort. Sounds amazing but not incredible! Remember your visit to Golconda and the awesome acoustics of the fort, and how we marvel at the way it was integrated for entertainment and safety during reign of Qutub Shahi rulers.

Cut to 2008 - there you are, in the midst of smog, noise and the din of a booming metropolis, the new Hyderabad rising to prominence with liberalized economy, globalisation and a preferred destination for job outsourcing. This was my third visit to Taramati Baradari in the last two years and I was stunned at the pace at which the surroundings are getting encroached with high rise buildings and other concrete structures. Very soon, this historic monument may lose its identity as a serene spot tucked away from the humdrum of the city. Taramati Baradari, along with Golconda fort, Qutub Shahi tombs and other heritage monuments are literally getting smothered by the uncompromising array of modern constructions. If these were not located on hillocks, probably one would have missed these landmarks of a city -that tell a thousand tales about its rich culture and heritage.

We were lucky to view the sunset, though not so spectacular as earlier when there were fewer building around this place. However, viewing the moonrise with the Golconda fort as the fainting backdrop presented a maginificent sight to behold.

As the monument gleamed in the dynamic lights of myriad hues, a strange quietness filled the air, occasionally disturbed by the vehicular movement on the road.
We attended the Kuchipudi dance performance by Raja Reddy and Radha Reddy in the auditorium (sad, it was not in the open air theatre, perhaps it was too big for this event, as the turn out of people was quite poor). This was organized by APTDC as a part of the Taramati festival. Dinner at Haritha restaurant was just a random pick of rice and curries, since the restaurant was more focused on serving the special invitees for the dance program and the tourists.

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