Tuesday 24 March 2015

The Cenotaph of Chui Mal in Nuh

Adjoining the Chui Mal Talaab (pond) is a large two-storied structure, the Samadhi (tomb) of Seth Chui Mal. According to Chander Bhan, now a retired teacher, these magnificent structures were built by his forefathers seven generations ago.

Cenotaph of Chui Mal in Nuh

This structure has surprisingly got very little publicity despite its proximity to Delhi and Gurgaon. Located in the Nuh town of the Mewat district of Haryana, 75 min drive from Gurgaon, the 300-year old structure reminds you of cenotaphs of Rajasthan.

The Samadhi (tomb) of Seth Chui Mal

It has beautiful engravings on the first floor with a variety of motifs – soldiers, dancing girls, men playing musical instruments, processions of men and women, elephants, lions and deer. The ground floor also had engravings etc but with time they were completely destroyed by vandals. Now the ground floor has been repaired with cement arches only.

Engraved Antelopes & others in flight 

Particularly fascinating for me was a carved piece of a deer/antelope that captures the animal in motion with its legs in the air and head turned back − the the hunted looking at the hunter.

Engraved soldier with Rifle

Some other engraved figures that surprised me were of soldiers in uniform carrying rifles on their shoulders. From the uniform it was obvious that they were from the British-Indian army. Most unusual I must say!

The interior of the upper floor of the Chui Mal cenotaph

The structure was subjected to neglect and vandalism till Mr Chander Bhan and his brother took matters in their hands and built a brick wall around it. It is their family legacy after all! The wall sadly blocks somewhat the frontal view but then these are two individuals trying to protect and preserve these beautiful structures. The Government of Haryana or the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is conspicuous by its absence.

The inside of the majestic dome of the cenotaph of Chui Mal

The architecture is definitely Rajasthani and infact there are similarities in the cenotaph (or Chattri) of Chui Mal with those of the Cenotaph of Bakhtawar Singh of Alwar.

The carved pillars on the upper floor of Cenotaph of Chui Mal

Infact like at Alwar here also there is a water pond next to this cenotaph but then I am going to write a separate post on that soon.

The Rajasthani style architecture of the Chui Mal Cenotaph

For those interested in visiting these structures, keys are with Mr Chander Bhan who lives in the house nearby. You may even be served tea by the extremely nice family members that include Chander Bhan’s grandchildren who are now studying in Delhi. They gave us a guided tour.

Mr Chander Bhan, the 7th generation descendant of Chui Mal

Seth Chui Mal was a salt merchant and had built most of this cenotaph as well as the water pond during his life time itself though finally it was completed by his son Hukam Chand

Must see for those who look beyond the mainstream tourism!

Also See:
Cenotaph of Bakhtawar Singh of Alwar


Anonymous said...

What a lovely building.

Anil Yadav said...

Yes indeed it is a lovely building ladyfi.