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The tombs of Ghaus Mohammed and Tansen

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The city’s most famous Muslim building is the sixteenth-century Tomb of Ghaus Mohammed, an Afghan prince who helped Babur take Gwalior fort. It’s a fine specimen of early Mughal architecture, and a popular local shrine. Elegant hexagonal pavilions stand at each of its four corners; in the centre, the large central dome retains a few remnants of its blue-glazed tiles. The tomb’s walls are inlaid with exquisite pierced-stone jali screens.

The second and smaller of the tombs in the gardens is that of the famous Mughal singer-musician Tansen, one of the “Nine Jewels” of Emperor Akbar’s court. Every year, performers and aficionados from all over India flock here for Gwalior’s annual music festival (Nov/Dec). Local superstition holds that the leaves of the tamarind tree growing on the plinth nearby have a salutary effect on the singing voice, which is why its bottom branches have been stripped bare.

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