Among the various mesmerising facets of Indian culture and heritage, one that has stood the test of time has been its striking architecture and breathtaking monuments.
When we think of monuments, it is the likes of Taj Mahal, Red Fort, Qutub Minar and Charminar that usually pop up in our heads.
However, the architectural legacy of India goes much beyond the realm of these popular heritage sites and includes many forgotten monuments from different dynasties, kingdoms and bygone eras that are sadly fading away into obscurity.
For instance, did you know that there were about 35,000 to 7,00,000 structures across the country that remain unprotected and find little to no footfall? Of these, Delhi alone encompasses over 1,000 monuments.
This has been the unfortunate case with most monuments across the country, and our history books have done little towards bringing them to the fore.
In a pursuit to change this narrative, one photographer from Delhi has embarked on a unique mission of documenting heritage sites through the medium of photography.
India Lost & Found (ILF) is Amit Pasricha’s passion project, under which forgotten and lesser-known monuments are finally getting their share of long overdue limelight through masterful panoramic shots.
The 51-year-old renowned panoramic photographer tells The Better India, “The idea is to inspire conversation and create awareness about these monumental yet neglected relics, especially by mobilising the youth.”
Through a knowledge network of field experts, the project aims to create an online resource on lesser-known monuments by interpreting them both from the tangible as well as intangible viewpoints.
He continues, “We firmly believe that in order to attract the youth towards the panorama of Indian monuments, we need to redefine the meaning of our heritage and view it as a living ecosystem that it once was.”
Having led many prestigious projects that are now highly sought-after coffee-table books, Pasricha’s latest project on Instagram has hundreds of photographs. Among others, it showcases Ranakpur’s (Rajasthan) 15th-century Jain Temples, Burhanpur’s (Madhya Pradesh) 16th-century Shahi Qila, to Daman’s 17th-century Bom Jesus Church and Bijapur’s (Karnataka) 17th-century Ibrahim Rauza.
Resting as the only window to a distant past of which little remains other than these ancient ruins, this project aims to bring them back to public awareness and preservation, lest they are forgotten.
Take a look at these time-tested monuments wonderfully captured under India Lost & Found and get ready to be enthralled at the lesser-known architectural marvels of India.
Note: All the pictures have been used with Amit Pasricha’s permission.
(Edited by Shruti Singhal)