Delhi, India, the seat of the union territory of Delhi. It lies on the west bank of the Yamuna River in northern India. It is sometimes referred to as Old Delhi to differentiate it from the adjacent city of New Delhi, the national capital. Delhi, the second largest city in India, is an important transportation and cultural center. It is a road and railway hub and has an international airport. Industries include the manufacture of textiles, clothing, food products, machinery, chemicals, and building materials. The University of Delhi and several colleges are located there.
In the old walled section are two of Delhi's major architectural monuments, both built in the 17th century for the Mogul emperor Shah Jahan. They are the Red Fort, a magnificent palace, and Jama Masjid (Great Mosque), one of the world's largest mosques. Also in Delhi is a shrine at the spot where Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement, was cremated. Numerous other historical monuments, including the “leaning tower” of Qutb Minar, a 13th-century minaret, are nearby.
Few Indian cities can rival Delhi's historical importance. First the center of several Hindu empires, it was conquered by Muslims around 1200 and made the capital of a Muslim empire. In 1526 the Moguls seized the city, and under the emperors Shah Jahan and his son Aurangzeb Delhi reached its peak of glory. After their rule the city declined and Mogul domination ended in 1803 when the British took control. Delhi served as colonial capital from 1912 until 1931, when the city of New Delhi, immediately to the south, was completed.