Chandni Chowk, originally meaning moonlit square or market, is one of the oldest and busiest markets in Old Delhi, now in central north Delhi, India
. Built in 17th century by the great Muslim Emperor of India, Shah Jahan and designed by his daughter Jahan Ara, the market was once divided by canals to reflect moonlight, now closed, yet it still remains one of India's largest whole sale markets.
The area lies in the historically important Shahjahanabad, between the Lal Qila (The Red Fort
) and Fatehpuri Masjid
. On both sides of the wide Chandni Chowk streets are historical residential areas served by narrow lanes (galis).With the most famous mosque of Delhi, Jama Masjid
, built in 1650 in the vicinity, it is an unusual street that has several famous religious shrines, belonging to different religions, that coexist, lending the street a genuine cultural harmony.
Starting from the Red fort, the street has:
- Sri Digambar Jain Lal Mandir, established in 1656 with a bird hospital established in 1929. There is also a Naya Mandir built in 1807 nearby in Dharampura, which was the first temple with a shikhar permitted.
- Hindu Gauri Shankar Temple built by a Maratha general Appa Gandgadhar in 1761.
- Christian Central Baptist Church built in 1814.
Chandni Chowk in Indian films:
Chandni Chowk was featured in the 2001 Bollywood film Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham where the leading lady Anjali (Kajol) and her sister Pooja (Kareena Kapoor) lived. Though portrayed as a neighborhood populated by a lower-class population, Chandni Chowk is shown to be a rich, cultural hub.The 2008 Bollywood movie Black and White starring Anil Kapoor, Anurag Sinha, Shefali Chhaya, and Aditi Sharma is set in Chandni Chowk. Crew stayed in Hotel Tara Palace
opposite Red Fort.
The 2009 Bollywood movie Chandni Chowk to China
starring Akshay Kumar, Deepika Padukone, Mithun Chakraborty, and Ranvir Shorey features some scenes depicting the city. Crew stayed in Hotel Tara Palace opposite Red Fort.The 2009 Bollywood movie Delhi-6 starring Abhishek Bachchan, Sonam Kapoor, Waheeda Rehman, Om Puri, Atul Kulkarni and Divya Dutta is set in the ancient Walled City of Old Delhi and centred around Chandni Chowk.Crew stayed in Hotel Tara Palace opposite Red Fort.