Stepwells in ancient India played as a solution for water conservation because of the low rainfall in some regions of the country. A stepwell is a beautiful construction around deep wells or any water bodies like a pond, resource etc. At the same time, these stepwells became the reason to gather for women of the royal families then. There are many ancient stepwells in India, adorned and exquisitely beautiful. A lot of stepwells remained undiscovered until the archaeological studies were initiated in various locations. These stepwells served a utilitarian purpose for the women of the families to spend their time while taking care of their routine chores. Amongst the many stepwells of India Agrasen ki Baoli is one of the majestic ones owing to the red stone material.
The dusky earthly red shade beams throughout the walls and descending steps as the shadows rise and set. The remarkable view, marvellous architecture, peaceful atmosphere, this is one of the must-visit cultural spots amidst the bustling city of Delhi.
Agrasen ki Baoli – Delhi’s Red Jewel
Agrasen ki Baoli also known as Ugrasen ki Baoli is located in Delhi, India. This wonderful stepwell is named after King Agrasen who belonged to the Agarwal community. According to the iconographical features it is claimed that this stepwell was built in Tughlaq or Lodi period which is in the 14th or 15th century.
Although Delhi has many stepwells which include, Rajon ki Baoli, Gandhak ki Baoli, Loharheri Baoli, Tuglagabad Baoli, etc., Agrasen ki Baoli has grown in its popularity owing to the recent Bollywood movie PK. The tourist community has unmeasurably drawn to this spot and they are growing in number day by day. This stepwell is also infamous as a suicide spot and there have been cases observed in the past. Therefore, the rooms in the lower level have been locked, the well at the north is covered and it is under special scrutiny especially at night.
Structure of Agrasen ki Baoli – Red Sandstone Marvel
Agrasen ki Baoli measures 60 m by 15 m and you will find a mosque at the south-west corner. This mosque is a spectacular piece of fine and ornate architecture. In addition, there is iron-net covered well at the northern part of the stepwell. The descending steps begin at the southern side of this architectural beauty. The outstanding pillars of the stepwell are constructed out of red sandstone. They are intricately carved with motifs of chaitya and stucco medallions.
The stepwell is extensively built down with four floors from the ground level. The decoration is in the form of recessed arches on all the floors. These arches also act as niches for the tourist to sit and enjoy the peaceful ambience apart from being the nest for millions of pigeons. Moreover, as you climb down at the lowest level you will see that it is home to many bats. There are passageways and rooms at the lower levels which are apparently locked for the tourists.
If you live in Delhi or you probably plan to visit someday, do not miss this exotic Agrasen ki Baoli.