Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Hyderabad- "The city of Nizams..." Traval Log_Ramoji Film City

Ramoji Film City

The 1666-acre Ramoji Film City, established by the Ramoji Group amid the alluring grandeur of Nature, is the world’s largest integrated film studio complex and one of Asia’s most popular tourism and recreation centres. For the discerning filmmaker, RFC offers comprehensive and international-standard pre-production, production and post-production resources.

The Film City, spread over 2,000 acres of land studded with hills, vales and lakes, has few parallels as both a tourist attraction and major film-making facility. The city looks like the result of a collaboration between P.C. Sorkar and Vishwakarma and is anytime a match to Universal Studios in Hollywood, brick to brick, gizmo to gizmo. It is a place where reality acquires all the attributes of magic and incredibility. Today, it is the filmmakers' first choice as it is a single-window, press-button facility that opens up an unlimited arena of creativity for every major and minor aspect of film production. To quote some directors and producers, the Film City has "all facilities at one place with latest technology and advanced equipment." Its brochure highlights its motto as 'make the magic happen.' However, magic happens spontaneously without human intervention as though it is the main ingredient of the entire project. Yet, everything is real, from the 50 studio floors, the support systems, outdoor locations to the high-tech laboratories, the wealth of technology, the greenery, and the hillscape.

                                     Every need of the filmmaker, imaginary and real, has gone into the planning and execution of this mega project costing hundreds of crores of rupees. Everything that goes into making a film, from raw film to cameras, to processing labs to editing consoles, stage properties, studio floors and even travel arrangements to recreation and past-time is available at the mere mention of it. All this to suit a variety of budgets, whether it is a shoestring art film or a giant formula film. Ramoji Film City is an all-in-one boundless complex offering not just film-making facilities but also customer services, technical expertise, production support personnel and comprehensive technical infrastructures attracting the attention of top film-makers, production houses and leading multinational advertising agencies. A rapid tour of the Film City complex vindicates the claim it makes in its campaign that "Ramoji Film City is geared to service several film and television productions simultaneously. It is one place in the world where you can walk in with a script and walk out, leaving despatch instructions for release of prints or television broadcast masters." The Film City, in company with the Cybercity, has put Hyderabad on the map of the world. In short, it is a film-maker's dream and a tourist's idea of a paradise.

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Hyderabad- "The city of Nizams..." Traval Log_Hussain Sagar

Hussain Sagar

                    Hussain Sagar bridges not only culturally disparate Hyderabad and Secunderabad, known as twin cities all over the country, but constitutes a continuum between history and contemporainty. It was a quiet and placid lake of 24 kilometres built by Hazrat Husain Shah Wali on a tributary of the Musi during the time of that great builder Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah in 1562 to meet the water and irrigation needs of the city. This was much before the historic Charminar overshadowed every other landmark in the city. It is now popularly known as Tank Bund, a truncated version of its original expanse, and has acquired trappings and environs that enhance its appeal to tourists as well as the denizens of the twin cities.

The simple bund that at one time connected the British and Nizam areas of the two cities is today a complex of parks, temples, statuary, sites of entertainment and the capital’s administrative hub, enriching and at the same time ecologically damaging the environs of the shrunken tank.

The aesthetically built Secretariat buildings, the NTR memorial, the Lumbini park, the Hyderabad Boat Club, a flyover nearing completion add to the attraction of the southern side of the Tank Bund, while the Secunderabad Sailing Club, the Sanjeeviah Park and the Hazrat Saidani Ma Saheba tomb on the northern side enhance its allure for the tourist. Parallel to the tank bund is what is now known as the lower Tank Bund road, which, though built to reduce traffic congestion, has now become the axis of print media activity.

From the southern side, the lower Tank Bund road is heralded by the famous and very popular Katta Maisamma temple and close to it is the sprawling green lung, the Indira Gandhi Park. A new artery known as the Necklace Road links Lumbini park in Hyderabad with the Sanjeeviah park in Secunderabad. But the centre of attraction literally and figuratively is the monolith Buddha statue in the middle of the ancient lake.

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Hyderabad- "The city of Nizams..." Traval Log_Salarjung Museum

Salarjung Museum

                                     The Salar Jung Museum was established in 1951. The major portion of the collection of the museum was acquired by Mir Yousuf Ali Khan, popularly known as Salar Jung III. In the absence of any direct descendants of Salar Jung III, the Government of India appointed a Committee to administer the Salar Jung Estate. Later on with the idea of perpetuating his name, the Salar Jung Museum was brought into existence on 16th December, 1951 in Diwan Deodi, the residential palace of Salar Jung III and opened to the public by Pandit Jawarharlal Nehru, the then Prime Minister of India. In 1958, the Government of India took over the museum through a compromise deed. Till 1958 this museum was administered by the Salar Jung Estate Committee. Thereafter the Museum continued to be administered by the Ministry of Scientific Research and Cultural Affairs, Government of India till 1961. In 1961, through an Act of Parliament, the Salar Jung Museum along with its library was declared as an “Institution of National Importance”.

                            The administration of the museum was transferred to an Autonomous Board, having the Governor of A.P. as its Chairman. The museum was transferred to its present building in the year 1968.

The family of Salar Jungs had assumed such great importance that five of its family members served as Prime Ministers to the Nizams, who were the erstwhile rulers of Hyderabad.

 Salar Jung Museum has an excellent library with a rare collection of 8,000 manuscripts and 60,000 printed books. 40,000 of these books were collected by Mir Yousuf Ali Khan, Salar Jung III, and his ancestors. Salar Jung III was a great connoisseur and a bibliophile, a passion which persisted with him till the last. The present Salar Jung Museum and library are a living testimony of his life long interest and devotion.

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Hyderabad- "The city of Nizams..." Traval Log_Mecca Masjid

Mecca Masjid

                      Mecca masjid is one of the oldest masjids in the city and easily the biggest. Muhammed Quli Qutub Shah began building it in 1617 under the supervision of Mir Faizullah Baig and Rangiah Choudhary. Mughal emperor Aurangzeb completed the construction in 1694. It took 77 years to come up as the magnificent edifice we see today. Like many other ancient buildings in the city, the mosque is a granite giant with awe-inspiring innards. The main hall of the mosque is 75 feet high, 220 feet wide and 180 feet long, big enough to accommodate ten thousand worshippers at a time.

Mecca masjid is just a hundred yards southwest of the historic Charminar. Between Muhammed Quli Qutub Shah and Aurangzeb, Abul Hasan Tana Shah of Golconda also continued the task launched by the Qutub Shahi kings. It is believed that Muhammed Quli commissioned bricks to be made from earth brought from Mecca and inducted them into the construction of the central arch of the mosque, which explains the name of the mosque.

The Mecca Masjid bombing occurred on May 18, 2007 inside the Mecca Masjid. The blast was caused by a cellphone-triggered pipe bomb. Fourteen people were reported dead in the immediate aftermath, of whom five were killed by the police firing after the incident while trying to quell the mob.

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Monday, November 29, 2010

Hyderabad- "The city of Nizams..."Traval Log_Charminar


Charminar, which is synonymous with Hyderabad is one of the magnificent structures built by Mohammad Quli Qutub Shah, the fifth ruler of the Qutub Shahi dynasty and also the founder of the City, in Hijri 1000 (A.D.1591-92). This is a square structure measuring 31.95 mts. on each side with imposing arches spanning a distance of 11mts. There are four minarets, each having three storeyes, rising to a height of 56 mts.

The spiral staircase inside the minarets has 149 steps leading to the top with 12 landings. The double screen of arches on the roof and the ornamental arches on the minarets add to the aesthetic value.
The notable feature of Charminar is the location of a mosque on the western section of the second floor, probably one of the most beautiful of this period. There are forty-five mushallas (prayer spaces) with an open courtyard in front.
The structure is also known for its profuseness of stucco decorations and arrangement of balustrades and balconies. The floral designs are varied and delicately executed. It was a synthesis of Mughal and Hindu architecture executed by the local artisans.

 There are various theories regarding the purpose for which Charminar was constructed. However, it is widely accepted that Charminar was built at the center of the city, to commemorate the eradication of plague. In the middle of the eighteenth century, Bussy the French Commander made Charminar his headquarters.
The four clocks were added later, on the four cardinal directions in the year 1889. At the base of Charminar was originally a Vazu (water cistern) at the center with a small fountain for customary ablutions, before offering prayers in the mosque.

Charminar has the signature style of Islamic architecture. This great tribute to aesthetics looks sturdy and solid from a distance but as one moves closer, it emerges as an elegant and romantic edifice proclaiming its architectural eminence in all its detail and dignity. Charminar looks equally spectacular at night when it is illuminated. Apart from being the core of the city’s cultural milieu, it has become a brand name.

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Hyderabad- "The city of Nizams..."Traval Log_Golkonda Fort

Golkonda Fort

Golkonda Fort
Lying to the west of Hyderabad city at a distance of 11 km, the historic Golkonda Fort derives its name from a Telugu word ‘Golla Konda’ which means Shepherd’s Hill. With its extensive and elevated fortifications it was a landmark that governed the destiny of the south. The fort originally belonged to the Kakatiyas of Warangal. This is testified by the over-door carvings and relief work in stucco consisting of lions, peacocks, griffins and lotus at the entrance of Balahisar. In AD1363 it was ceded to the Baihmanis. After their downfall in AD1518 it became the capital of the Qutb Shahi kings (AD 1518-1687).
The fort was extended and substantially strengthened by these kings with massive fortification walls having bastions and battlements. Subsequently Aurangazeb annexed it to the Moghal Empire (AD 1687) during the reign of Abul Hasan Tana Shan, the last ruler of the Qutb Shahi dynasty and appointed Asaf Jah as the Subedar of the Deccan province. Asaf Jah declared independence in AD1713 as Nizam-ul-Mulk and the Nizams held sway over Hyderabad until AD 1948
Golkonda Fort

Golkonda fort, one of the most famous and the biggest fortress in the Deccan plateau, was built on a 400 ft. high hill. It has three lines of massive fortification walls one within the other and rise to a height of over 12 m.

Golkonda Fort

 The outer most wall was provided with a deep moat all around covering a vast area of the town with a circumference of 7 km. It has 8 imposing gateways and is buttressed with 87 bastions rising to a height of 15 to 18 meters. Each of these bastions was surmounted by cannons of varying caliber rendering the fort impregnable and strong among the forts of the medieval Deccan.

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