Forgotten history of Bhool Bhulaiyan

Forgotten history of Bhool Bhulaiyan

Obscure Past

Amidst the bustling city traffic of Mehrauli bus terminal is a forgotten sliver of Indian history from the times the Mughals held sway over this land. The monument is Adham Khan’s tomb which is popularly known as ‘Bhool Bhulaiyan’.

The beautiful tomb has a rich history of tragedy and reverence behind it that many people know about. Adham Khan, son of Mahem Anga, Emperor Akbar’s wet nurse, was a general in Akbar’s army. In 1562 AD, he killed Ataga Khan, husband of another wet nurse Jiji Anga, whereupon he was thrown down from the roof by the order of the emperor. Despite the harsh death sentence, Akbar ensured proper burial and rememberance of both Adham Khan and his mother by building the tomb for the departed souls.

Constructed in an octagonal form with an elaborate corridor outside the central dome, this mausoleum has two other entrances, other than the main, which are not used because of its decrepit condition. The centre hall has a restored grave, supposedly of Adham Khan. It is claimed that the original grave was allegedly destroyed by British and the structure was converted into the residence of Lord Curzon from Bengal Civil Services. After being converted from a resting place to a residential place, it was turned into a police station and then a post office. Later this tomb was recovered and one of the graves was restored. The location of Mahem Anga’s grave was not recorded hence it was not restored.

The tomb got its name from an unusual incident wherein people mysteriously
disappeared one night. It is said that a group came to Mehrauli for marriage and all the relatives took shelter at this tomb in the night. Allegedly the next day morning, not even a single person was to be found. In spite of being an unfathomable tale of getting lost in the corridors of the tomb, it is believed that the dense forest of Lal Kot behind this monument is enough to consume an entire village.

Today, the monument is a part of daily morning and evening walk routines of scores of people living in and around Mehrauli. Even though they might be unaware of its enigmatic history, people who come to this place on a daily basis enjoy the ambience around. “I daily come for a morning walk here and it’s very peaceful early in the morning” says Sachidanada, who has been visiting the place for the past 10 years.