Aga Khan Palace

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Label : Top Attraction

Tags : Forts & Palaces

Timings : 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM

Time Required : 3-4 hours

Entry Fee : Indians: INR 5,
Foreigners: INR 100

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Aga Khan Palace, Pune Overview

The mighty edifice of Aga Khan Palace is situated in Pune and was built by Sultan Muhammed Shah Aga Khan III in the year 1892. It is one of the most important landmarks in Indian history and has been instrumental in many defining moments of India's independence. It was once the site where Mahatma Gandhi, his wife Kasturba Gandhi, as well as Sarojini Naidu and Mahadev Desai were held prisoners. Aga Khan Palace is well known both for its architectural excellence as well as its historical significance. Spread over a vast land of 19 acres, the palace is now the headquarters of the Gandhi National Memorial society. Here, making khadi is still one of the prime activities.

The Sultan built the palace to support the poor in the neighbouring areas who were hit by a famine. In the memory of Kasturba Gandhi and Mahadev Desai, architect Charles Corea had their memorials built in the premises of the palace. The palace houses a museum which holds a rich collection of pictures. There are also other items like the personal belongings of Gandhi. The Palace also has the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi buried in its ground. In 2003, the monument was declared to be of national importance.

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Historical significance of Aga Khan Palace

The Aga Khan Palace has a deep - rooted history associated with the father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi. He along with his wife Kasturba Gandhi and secretary Mahadev Desai were interned in the Palace from 9 August 1942 to 6 May 1944, soon after the launch of the Quit India Movement. Unfortunately, Kasturba Gandhi and Mahadev Desai died during their captivity in the Aga Khan Palace and have their Samadhis located over here as well. 

The Aga Khan Palace was donated to the Indian people by Aga  Khan in the year 1969 so as to commemorate Gandhi and his philosophy. Prime Minister Indira Gandhi visited the palace in the year 1974 when she allocated an amount of INR 20,000 for its yearly maintenance, which was later increased to INR 1,000,000. Memorials dedicated to both Mahatma Gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi are located here as well.

Aga Khan Palace Architecture

The complex of the Aga Khan Palace is a unique combination of Italian arches and expansive lawns, where meetings of Gandhi Smarak Samittee are held regularly. The building is spread over an area of 19 acres and houses five halls in its premises. A 2.5 - metre wide corridor encircles this two-storey structure, and it now acts as the headquarters of the Gandhi National Memorial Society. in addition to these, the Aga Khan Palace houses a number of pictures, photographs and artefacts associated with the Gandhis. It also hosts a shop that deals in khadi and other hand loomed textiles.

Important celebrations at Aga Khan Palace

There are many public functions celebrated at the Aga Khan Palace organised by the Gandhi Memorial Society. Some of these include Martyr's Day which is celebrated on 30th January, Maha Shivratri, Kasturba Gandhi's Death anniversary which is celebrated as Mother's Day, Independence Day which is celebrated on 15th August, Republic Day on the 26th January and Mahatma Gandhi's birth anniversary on 2nd October every year.

How To Reach Aga Khan Palace

The Aga Khan Palace is situated 7 km away from the heart of the Pune city. You can travel there either by city bus or autorickshaw. However, it is more convenient to hire the autorickshaw since it will take you to the palace directly. Alternatively, you can also take a taxi from any point in the city to reach the Aga Khan Palace.

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