Raj Ghat is a memorial to Mahatma Gandhi. It’s located not far from the river Yamuna and was originally the name of a historic ghat. There was the ‘Raj Ghat Gate’ of the walled city, opening at Raj Ghat on the Yamuna. Eventually, the memorial area was also called Raj Ghat. It was here where Mahatma Gandhi’s last rites were performed on January 31, 1948, a day after his death.
This memorial to Mahatma Gandhi is located between Ring Road and the banks of the Yamuna River, towards the southeast of Red Fort, and four kilometers away from Janpath, towards the northeast of Feroz Shah. A black marble platform marks the spot of Mahatma Gandhi’s cremation, attracting many tourists. His last words, ‘Hey Ram,’ are inscribed on the marble which is always adorned with flowers. The memorial was designed by Vanu G. Bhuta, who intended it to reflect the simplicity of the Mahatma’s life. It is uncovered, with an eternal flame that burns continuously at one end.
Foreign dignitaries visiting India pay respect to Gandhi by laying flowers on the platform. A remembrance ceremony is held every Friday at Raj Ghat, along with the prayer sessions held on Gandhi’s birth and death anniversaries. There is also a Gandhi Memorial Museum where a film is shown – between 9:30 am and 5:30 pm except on Thursday – about his life and philosophy. It is also presented on Sunday in Hindi at 4 pm, and at 5 pm, it is shown in English.
Within the complex, there are trees labeled near the platform, which were planted by various dignitaries, including Queen Elizabeth II, former Australian Prime Minister Gough Whitman, Ho Chi Minh, former US President Dwight Eisenhower, and many others.