August 2008, Delhi.
I made my way to the Jantar Mantar on a hot Monday morning. The Jantar Mantar is an observatory consisting of a series of scientific instruments built in the form of buildings and used to make astronomical measurements (the huge block you see in the middle of the above photo is actually part of a giant sun dial). It was built by Maharaja Jai Singh II of Jaipur from 1724 onwards. A total of five such observatories were built in various cities in North India of which the ones in Jaipur and Delhi are most popular. Incidentally, the area to the right of Jantar Mantar is the officially designated area in which protests/demonstrations can be organized in Delhi by anyone with a grievance. The day I was visiting the observatory there were a group of Hindu holy men protesting and criticizing what they called ‘the appeasement of Christians and missionaries (while being hard on Hindus)’ by the current Indian government.
(To read this mini-travelogue in sequence from the beginning please go here.)