Paharganj is a neighbourhood of Central Delhi, located just west of the New Delhi Railway Station. Known as Shahganj or King's ganj or market place during Mughal era, it is one of the three administrative subdivisions, of the Central Delhi district, of the National Capital Territory of Delhi, with the other two being, Darya Ganj and Karol Bagh.Known for its concentration of affordable hotels, lodges, restaurants, dhabas and a wide variety of shops catering to both domestic travellers and foreign tourists, especially backpackers and low-budget travellers; and over the year it has becoming particularly popular as a haunt for international cuisine.The area has shelters and homes, run by Salaam Baalak Trust, an NGO, for street and working children, established in 1988.
Paharganj is also home to the historic Qadam Sharif
dargah, dedicated to the footprint of Prophet Mohammed, originally built by Firuz Shah Tughlaq, a 14th-century Sultan of Delhi.Qazi Wali Masjid, known for its intricate engravings, and arched doorways.The grave of poet laureate of Mughal court, Zauq, who lived nearby Nabi Karim and died in 1854, lies in the bylanes of Paharganj. It was restored in early 2000s, after the Supreme Court orders, but his house was never identified.
Administration & Politics:
Today Sadar-Paharganj, constitutes one of the 12 administrative zones of Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD).Paharganj was a Delhi Metropolitan Council segment, within the Chandni Chowk
, Lok Sabha constituency, 1966-93. Thereafter it remained the Delhi State Assembly constituency, under Chandni Chowk, Lok Sabha constituency, from 1993–2008, Subsequently, following the delimitation of the parliamentary constituencies, in 2008, it became of the New Delhi Lok Sabha constituency.
In popular culture:
The tourist culture of Paharganj has been a theme for many films, including, Kate Winslet starrer, Holy Smoke! (1999), parts of which were shot when she stayed at a Paharganj hotel, in September 1998. In 2008, parts of the Hindi film, Dev.D (2009) directed by Anurag Kashyap were shot in Paharganj area, depicting the seedy side of hotel industry, from prostitution to drug peddling.