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The Welcome at Salimgarh Fort

The Welcome at Salimgarh Fort. Old Delhi Railway station was not considered fit to stage a Royal welcome.

Salimgrah fort Dec 9th 1911
Stanley Reed continued

Just as the straw shows which way the wind blows, so do the little things bring home to us the magnitude of the changes which in the humdrum of the daily routine are apt to be ignored . Nine years have elapsed since Lord Curzon announced in Delhi the Coronation of King Edward . Lord Curzon's was an elephant Durbar; these regal beasts were in the forefront of the State entry, and motor cars were virtually forbidden in the Durbar area. In the pomp and trappings of the State entry, and still more in the amazing medley of the review of the retainers of the Native Chiefs, we were taken right back to the days of Jehangir and Shah Jehan. This will be a motor Durbar. So far as " My Lord the Elephant " is concerned, he might be as extinct as the dodo. Simply, he will not exist. The horse will have an inferior place. He must be used to mount the cavalry and the horse guns, and in these days of preparation the strings of transport carts and and pack donkeys keep the roads busy. But once the State entry is over, the motor will come into its own. Already any form of horse conveyance is eyed askance as the refuge of the impecunious. Morning and evening grooms are seen exercising the few four-in-hands brought here for ceremonial purposes. Everybody says : "What is to be done with these when the Durbar begins?" The freakish six-unted camel carriage of the Lieutenant-Governor of the Punjab - if we coin the description - is encountered on the road; it is as anachronistic as one of Reed's prehistoric peeps. In nine years we have passed from the age of the elephant and the horse to the age of petrol and of steam. So let us hear no more about the changeless East or the grey conservatism of Asia, for it is precious nonsense.


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