Dariba Kalan

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Dariba Kalan (Hindi: दरीबा कलान, English: Street of the Incomparable Pearl), is a 17th-century street in Chandni Chowk area of Old Delhi or Shahjahanbad.[1][2] It lies within the walled city of Delhi, and connects the Chandni Chowk area with Jama Masjid.[3]


It derives its name from the Persian Dur-e be-baha, which translates as "unparalleled pearl",[2] while suffix Kalan means big. There was also a smaller street near by, known as Dariba Khurd or Chhota Dariba, both Khurd and Chhota meaning "small"; it is now known as Kinari Bazaar.[3] This is in reference to its history as a popular market for precious stones and gold and silver jewelry, especially under the reign of the 17th-century Mughal emperor Shah Jahan. The street witnessed the bloody massacre of Delhi in March 1739, ordered by the Persian invader Nadir Shah, when hundreds of innocent civilians and soldiers were killed and the gold shops were looted.


Today, most of the shops in Dariba Kalan trade in costume jewellery.[1] Some also deal in authentic ittar, a special variety of perfume.[1] These stores claim to date back to the early 19th century. Also near by is Kinari Bazaar, Gali Kazanchi, and Gali Paranthe Wali, also at both ends of the street are famous jalebi shops.[3][4]

In popular culture[edit]

Dariba Kalan is mentioned in the popular song Kajra Re from the hit Hindi film Bunty aur Babli (2005)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Dariba Kalan, Kohinoor of Delhi". Deccan Herald. 10 July 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
  2. ^ a b Nabanita Dutt (2010). To North India With Love: A Travel Guide for the Connoisseur: To Asia With Love. ThingsAsian Press. p. 115. ISBN 1934159077.
  3. ^ a b c Danish Shafi (21 Oct 2007). "Big Bazaar". Indian Express. Archived from the original on 16 June 2013. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
  4. ^ "True to its name". Business Standard. 31 October 2010. Retrieved 23 May 2013.