History as Lawrence Garden
Lawrence Garden is a historical garden in the history of Lahore. It was originally built as a Botanical Garden modeled on Kew Garden in England by John Lawrence during his Viceroy of India from 1864 to 1869. It was named after John Lawrence and his statue used to stand there but now it is at Foyle and Londonderry college in Northrn Ireland where he went to school.
It originally covered 176 acres but some land was given for the Lahore Zoo and some of the roads nearby which are also planted with trees.
Present as Bagh-e-Jinnah
Bagh-e-Jinnah is situated on 141 acres now a days. It is a beautiful and well managed botanical garden in Pakistan. It has almost 150 varieties of trees, 140 types of shrubs, 50 types of creepers, 30 palms, almost 100 succulent and about same indoor along with almost all varieties of annual flowers.
The garden has a good name in Chrysanthemum shows, it was the first institute that started growing chrysanthemum and maximum no of varieties for it. It has 3 nurseries, 4 hillocks in it. The garden has some Famous and attractive points in it.
- The garden hosts a famous cricket ground since 1885, known as Gymkhana Cricket Ground
- The garden provides Tennis Courts for tennis lovers
- It houses biggest library, Quaid-e-Azam library.This library is one of the largest reference libraries in Pakistan.
- A Walking-tracks
- A beautiful mosque Masjid Dar-u-Islam
- An open-air theater and a restaurant
- A Play ground for children
- The garden has the honor of holding Gul-e-Daudi exhibition on annual basis
The library building was constructed in the mid of 19th century. This library comprises of two halls, the Lawrence Hall and the Montgomery hall. Lawrence hall was built in 1861-62 with the contribution of European community of Punjab to commemorate Sir John Lawrence, the first lieutenant Governor of Punjab, viceroy and Governor General of India.
The Montgomery hall was built in year 1886 with the contribution of the native chief of Punjab in honor of Sir Robert Montgomery. Both the halls are joined with the corridor. The building was mostly used as an assembly room for public meeting and musical performances. Both the halls were under the charge of municipal committee.
The Quaid-e-Azam library has collection of more than 110,100 books both in English and oriental languages i.e. Urdu, Arabic and Persian. Almost 3000 books are added every year. New books are displayed for month before shelving to their proper place. Books on literature, history, periodicals and literature for ladies and children have been acquired. Library is been divided into different sections dealing with English, Arabic and Urdu. Special attention is been made on acquiring comprehensive literature on Islam and the Muslim world.
The library possesses an excellent auditorium, which is frequently used for conferences, exhibition, seminars and workshops in order to improve professional knowledge.
Bagh-e-Jinnah has a famous cricket ground since 1885. It was built for the entertainment of government officers and civil servants. Lahore Gymkhana Club had regular fixture here. The ground played host to friendly matches, competitive fixtures and host to Pakistan’s first unofficial Test against the West Indies in 1948. A few more unofficial Tests later, Bagh-e-Jinnah became a Test venue when Pakistan took on India in 1954–55. New Zealand and West Indies also played a Test here before Bagh-e-Jinnah lost its Test status as it played second fiddle to Qaddafi Stadium but still hosts tour matches involving visiting nations, especially England.
Lahore Gym Khana Club
The Lahore Gymkhana was founded as “The Lahore and Mian Mir Institute” in 1878 in the Lawrence Gardens opposite the sprawling estate of the Governor House. The name of “Lahore and Mian Mir Institute” was changed to The Lahore Gymkhana on 23rd March 1906. The premises was taken over by the Government of Punjab in 1972 and now houses the Quaid-e-Azam Library. Resultantly, the Club was moved to its present location at The Upper Mall, which was previously The Golf Club of Lahore Gymkhana spread over an area of 117 acres of land leased from the Punjab Government.
Spread over an area of 73 Kanals of land obtained from the Punjab Government on long lease, the Lahore Gymkhana cricket ground had been the venue of all domestic and international matches played at Lahore before the construction of Qaddafi Stadium.
Tomb of Great Saint
The Park has a Tomb of Great Saint named Peer Sakhi Abul Faizul Hassan commonly known as Baba Turat Muraad Shah, with a heavy number of visitors.
Masjid Dar-ul-Islam is situated in Bagh-e-Jinnah, one of the largest garden of Lahore. Masjid Dar-ul-Islam is one of the places where a big gathering of people can be seen on Jumma Prayer for Daras-e-Quran by Hafiz Akif Saeed. One of the countries leading Scholar Dr. Israr Ahmad addresses the people in Jumma Prayer. Dr. Israr sahib is struggling for Khilafat Movement in Pakistan.
In their addresses to people they always stress on personal purification, repenting to Allah collectively as nation for sins and bowing theirself to Allah’s will and join a group that struggles for dominating Islam and establishment of Khilafat in the world. People’s gathering in Jumma prayer covers all sects, students, professional and intellectuals from all over the country to listen.
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