Rare century-old manuscripts on display at Delhi’s Urdu Heritage Festival

Archival Records of 19th Century Delhi on display at one of the stalls.

In an effort to promote Urdu language and culture, the Delhi government recently organized a six-day Urdu heritage fest, Jashn e Virasat e Urdu. Starting from February 15, the week-long celebration included a variety of cultural programmes besides displaying several century-old manuscripts at various stalls. The Department of Arts, Culture and Languages jointly organised the event with Delhi Urdu Academy to celebrate Urdu heritage and culture. The festival is held every year at Red Fort but this year being organised at Connaught Place’s Central Park, the very heart of the national capital ensured that it reached a wider audience.

Charges framed against the Last Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar


Copy of the order dated 12 October 1857 that two princes have been condemned to death


Telegram dated 11 May 1857 breaking the news of the Revolt at Delhi


Bhagwad Geeta with Urdu translation published by Naval Kishore Press, Lucknow.

These manuscripts, most of which date back to the Mughal era, are preserved at the Shah Waliullah Library in Old Delhi established by Delhi Youth Welfare Association in 1990. They were put on display at the stall of Purani Dilli Walo Ki Baatein, a Facebook initiative by a bunch of Old Delhi wallahs aspiring to safeguard the dilapidated heritage and culture of Shahjahanabad.