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Genda Phool Mandi At Fatehpuri

Delhi ranks first in the country in flower trafficking. All imports to the country happen via Delhi. This “from here to anywhere” attitude has a concrete foundation. Authorities take up this intensive flower trade very seriously. So much so that there had been three distinct flower markets or “Phool mandi” in Delhi – the Mehrauli flower market, the Connaught Place flower market and the Fatehpuri flower market.

The flower hawkers gather in these markets at the wee hours of morning and wrapped up their business by 9 a.m. In the span of these few hours, they would have dealt in business worth crores. It is needless to say that flower trade in Delhi is one of the most flourishing and lucrative.

Fatehpuri flower market is some 70 to 80 years aged market. It is said to be the oldest thriving flower market until some years back. It rests adjacent to the Fatehpuri mosque near the Fatehpuri spice market.

The Woe

Until the year 2010, the three important flower markets of Delhi – the Mehrauli flower market, the Connaught Place flower market and the Fatehpuri Phool mandi had been flourishing boundlessly. In 2010, the Delhi Flower Market Board decided to merge the three wholesale flower markets into a single one at a landfill site at Ghazipur. Ghazipur lies along the Delhi – UP border area.

Although, there had been protests from several quarters against the move, the markets were actually removed. It is said that the flower hawkers could not hold stand against their leader who was in support of the Government.

The state authorities argued that the move was meant for the betterment of the flower sellers as they would have state-of-the-art facilities in Ghazipur and each one would own their stall rather than putting up makeshift ones. So, the flower markets were grazed and vacated.

Despite Government’s promise to move came at the cost of some inconveniences on the parts of both the sellers and the customers. The sellers now have to travel longer distance to reach Ghazipur and at the same time, the cost of the flowers went up.

Genda Phool Mandi at Fatehpuri

The flower market at Fatehpuri dense sharp at the crack of dawn. The market place gets thick with buyers and hagglers at small hours of the day. It was from this wholesale market that retailers, florists and garland-makers purchased loose marigold flowers. Some hawkers also sell rose petals.

Sack loads of marigold filled the market. The stack of gunny bags piled up with yellow-orange coloured flowers peeping out made a ‘click’-worthy sight for many shutterbugs. The colourful shots of the Phool mandi are flashed across many websites on the Internet.

This flower market of old Delhi has a great many tales to narrate. The origin of the market goes to some 70 to 80 years back. It was located between Kotwali and Dariba Kalan during the colonial rule. It later shifted to Khari Baoli, an area adjoining the mosque of Fatehpuri where it thrived until 2010. Fatehpuri flower market exuded not only an intoxicating charm in the loose flowers tucked inside coarse brown sacks but also that in the surrounds of nostalgic old Delhi fresh from History text books.

Each of the above mentioned stops bear great significances in the history of Delhi. Quite interestingly, records in history seem insipid, when compared their counterparts narrated from the native residents who consider them a legacy. The latter versions are unquestionably more colourful. Although sans truth, their tales definitely fosters a feel of the ancient in the travellers.


The neighbourhood of Fatehpuri derives its name from the Fatehpuri Mosque, a 17th century specimen of Mughal architecture made primarily from red sandstones surmounted on high pillars. The Fatehpuri Mosque in turn draws its name from Begum Fatehpuri, who built the mosque. Begum Fatehpuri was one of the wives of Shah Jahan who hailed from Fatehpur. The Fatehpuri mosque stands at the heart of Chandni Chowk.

Right next to Fatehpuri Mosque is the road to Khari Baoli. The foundation of Khari Baoli was laid in the 16th century by Khwaja Abdullah Lazaar Qureshi. ‘Baoli’ means step well and ‘Khari’ means salty – implying a saline water step well used for bathing purposes. Along this road, the Phool mandi had blossomed, of course alongside other markets such as the spice market (the largest in Asia).

Over the years the neighbourhood surrounding Fatehpuri Masjid and Khari Baoli has remained a prime tourist attraction, predominantly the ones featuring in the heritage circuit of Old Delhi.


The flower market of Fatehpuri rests in the western end the street of Chandni Chowk in old Delhi. The Genda Phool Mandi occupies the heartland of the Chandni Chowk area. It is around 18 kms from Indira Gandhi International Airport.

The nearest metro station is Chandni Chowk. It takes a 10 minute Mini Green Bus or auto rickshaw ride from the metro station to reach Fatehpuri Masjid.


Landmarks to the Genda Phool mandi at Fatehpuri include:

  1. The Chandni Chowk
  2. The Red Fort
  3. The Fatehpuri Mosque
  4. India gate
  5. Humayun’s Tomb

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