Though it isn’t your regular place for a sightseeing, the Supreme Court of India, one of the first major buildings built in post-independent India, deserves a visit by the intrepid traveller. The regal structure in Delhi is open for a visit every Saturday (for most part of the year, except public holidays), with two tours being conducted (timings are 10am and 11.30am) for an hour and a half each. Importantly, online pre-booking is mandatory to reserve a spot, though. The project was launched by Ranjan Gogoi, Chief Justice of India, late last year, and is a delight to the ever curious traveller.
The Supreme Court of India is added to the list of museums in Delhi, and the tours are conducted by guides, who take 20 visitors in a single batch. The architecture of the building is absolutely stunning; the court’s main wing was designed by architect Ganesh Bhikaji Deolalikar back in 1958.
Visitors are given a tour of the majestic courtrooms, and also get a glimpse inside the grandiose Judges’ Library where entry on other days is restricted. The tour ends with a visit to the Supreme Court museum. The tour guide (mostly an Official of the Court) elaborates upon the structure of the Indian legal system yet keeping you engaged with intriguing examples of decided cases and the historical significance behind the architecture of the building. A short film is usually shown to culminate the educational experience.
Basically, you get to see the court in two sections. While the first one is all about the development of Judiciary in India, the second is about the Federal Court, and the Supreme Court. The galleries here take you through the history of Indian judiciary, while giving you a peek into the souvenirs, ceremonial costumes, and interesting record of famous cases such as the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. Interestingly, no fee is charged for a tour of the Supreme Court, but absolute compliance with the rules and regulations is expected from the visitors.