About Gun foundry
The Gun foundry was once used by the Nizam's army to manufacture muskets, cannons and gun powder. Gun foundry is an important historical Monument in Hyderabad, it was founded by a French General Michel Joachim Raymond who served as a 'Amar-e-jinsi', or the controller of ordinance under the Nizam's rule. It is a place which has the remnants of French in the city.
Located in the heart of the city, in the lap of the Directorate of Archaeology and Museums, right in the lane opposite to the Jamia Masjid Aliya, the very glimpse of it takes you back in time. The only difference is that the Guns have fallen silent here and all that greets you is an eerie calm and a crumbling structure.
Though the entire area houses the Head Office Building of State Bank of Hyderabad and Lepakshi, the bricks, lime and mortar which were used to build the walls of this Gun Foundry can clearly be seen.
When this place was started, it was a little far from the main city of the time. One unique thing about the construction of this Gun foundry is that it was built using the raw materials from the vicinity itself.
It is believed that at one point of time the elevation of this structure was no less than about 50 feet. But now, thanks to the rampage of time and negligence, the original height has come down to about 30 feet or less. The specimen of the cannons and cannonballs manufactured in this particular Gun Foundry can still be found in various places including some public gardens in Hyderabad. These guns and ammunition bear clear inscriptions about their manufacturing details.
Even though the Gun Foundry is a protected monument, it is being used as a dump yard by people living in the residential complexes that have come up around it . "We went for restoration and found that the precinct of the Gun foundry was encroached upon. Though we have been able to restrict further encroachment, the damage has already been done", added Ved Prakash.
Raymond's tomb in Moosarambagh, a tall, four-sided, narrow tapering monument was built in the memory of the brave French General Michel Joachim Marie Raymond, the man who inaugurated the Gun Foundry.
A French Soldier who entered service of the ruling Nizam, Mir Nizam Ali Khan in 1786, as an ordinary soldier, worked his way up rapidly. Just twelve years later, in 1798, he became the commander of a 19,000-strong army.
Raymond, also known as Musa Ram by the Hindus and Musa Rahim by the Muslims died on the 25th of March 1798, aged 43. The cause of his death was never found, some believed that it was suicide, and others believed he was poisoned. The popular local belief is he committed suicide after the Nizam joined forces with the British.
The Raymond's Tomb was built in his memory. Not only was he held in high esteem by the Nizam, but he was also beloved by the local people due to his kindness, bravery and contribution to Hyderabad. He is still greatly respected by the locals who burn incense sticks at his tomb.
This tomb made of black granite is conical in shape and about 60 m long, 30 m wide and 10 inches high. The monument is considered to be a symbol of the contribution of the French in the history of India.
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