If you want to have a look at the architectural beauty of Dhaka, Ahsan Manzil is a place for you to visit. This is located on the north of Buriganga River in the Dhaka city – capital city of Bangladesh. Dhaka which is among the popular cities is known for its mosques, rickshaws and the fine muslins have a long history which makes it an attractive place for the historians. This city was ruled by the Sultans in the 14th Century. Afterward in the 17th century, this became a popular Mughal Capital. The entire city was ruled by the British in 1757. This Ahsan Manzil was popular as Nawab Bari which was a mark of luxury, influence, and aristocracy. Moreover, this wonderful structure was the very first building constructed in this city that had electricity. Its extraordinary history excites the people and compels them to visit this historical location.
The story behind this is the area where now this structure stands, there stood a summer house of the Sheikh Enayet Ullah. He purchased a huge area beside Kumartuli that he incorporated into the summer house. Here he constructed a wonderful palace that was named as Rang Mahal. Post his father’s death, his own son sold the property to the traders. They used to conduct tax-free commerce which was even better than the European and English countries.
The construction consists of a huge grand palace and where they dug a pond known as “Les Jalla”. Even now, you can still find the pond. However, due to the growing power of English, French started getting defeated. This resulted is selling the property where later on the family mosque was constructed along with some renovation works. Soon this trading house was converted into Khwaja Alimullah’s house.
In the 19th century, this Ahsan Manzil became a residential palace which was a place for Dhaka Nawab Family. This was the only popular and elite society present in the city. Abdul Ghani the Nawab named this palace as the Ahsan Manzil. Another popular name of this building is the Pink Palace which is due to the wall colors. On 1992, this building was transformed into a museum in order to preserve the history and rich culture.
Historical Significance of The Ahsan Manzil:
In the 19th century, this Nawab family used to play a significant role in the political and independence of India. In this palace, several crucial decisions about the Muslim movement were taken. This, as a result, formed All-India Muslim League. In the old Dhaka city, this was the only high point. Even the Governor General of British India, Lord Curzon also visited this place in the year 1904.
The Construction History of Ahsan Manzil:
The construction started in the year 1859 and completed in the tear 1872. The formerly French factory now stood a building that has a great significance. Restoration of the building resulted in further enlargements. You will find the models of both new and old Ahsan Manzil inside this place in the silver filigree.
In the year 1888, this building was attacked by tornado along with the earthquake which resulted in damaging the entire palace. Almost most of the palace was being reconstructed after this calamity. During the reconstruction phase, the doom was being constructed which made the palace even more spectacular. Due to this dome, one can easily detect the palace from distant.
The whole popularity and glory of this palace ended after Nawab Khawaja Ahsanullah’s death. Next to this, due to some financial difficulties later the Nawab’s was unable to maintain this property. The entire palace was deteriorating, which is why the government took the whole initiative to renovate after complete repair of this construction. This is how this historically significant building was restored. This was a huge step towards the preservation of the history of the nation.
If you to have a look at the amazing lifestyle of Dhaka’s high society, you definitely need to take a look at this historical building. With 5m high ground floor and 5.8m high first floor, you can actually find the ancient architecture. The octagonally shaped dome made with is 27.13m in height. Towards the southern part, you will find a spacious stairway that will end to the front garden.
Anhan Manzil is an India-Saracenic reform architecture. To be more simple, this structure is a blend of Islamic and subcontinental constructional style. The most amazing part of this area is its grand palace, Sitting around the center along with having a crowning dome, this was the highest point in old Dhaka.
Conclusion: With beautiful architecture, large verandah, marbled rooms and wonderful architecture in the walls of this building, Ahsan Manzil became a place for the historians along with the visitors of Dhaka. Its historical significance makes it one of the most visited places in the Dhaka city. If you are a history bug, you will love spending each and every minute inside this building as each and every corner reveals a story that will keep fascinating you.
So spend time in the Ahsan Manzil and find the ancient culture of the Dhaka city.