It’s often said that you can’t quite imagine what goes through the heads of those who walk down the corridors of power, but we at #QueMag find it difficult to believe that your head would be filled with anything but wonder if you were to walk through some of our beautiful government buildings.

Here are some of the most stunning seats of power from which India is governed.


Central Secretariat Building, New Delhi

01 central secretariat government building

Architect: Herbert Baker

Style: Indo-Saracenic Revival

This magnificent building houses some of India’s most important ministries, with several cabinet ministers having offices here. It is comprised of two symmetrical blocks – North and South – and flanks Rashtrapati Bhavan. The four columns in front represent the British dominions of Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. India was supposed to be the fifth British dominion when the columns were revealed in 1930, but by 1947 that changed for the better.


Vidhana Soudha, Bengaluru

03 vidhana soudha government building

Construction supervised by: Kengal Hanumanthaiya

Style: Neo-Dravidian

This is the seat of the state legislature of Karnataka. Completed in 1956 for the unimaginable sum of approximately Rs 1.7 crore (at the time), the front of building bears the inscription ‘Government’s Work is God’s Work’ along with the Kannada equivalent. The gorgeous building is a sight to behold on on Sundays and public holidays, when it is illuminated.


Kerala Secretariat, Thiruvananthapuram

04 kerala secretariat government building

Architect: Barton

Style: Elements of Roman and Dutch architecture

Home to the important ministries and bureaucratic offices of the government of Kerala. The building, which was completed in 1869, was originally meant to accommodate the monthly Royal Durbar, where the Maharaja of Travancore would meet his council of ministers to discuss matters of state, and we can’t think of a more fitting venue for royalty.


Writers’ Building, Kolkata

05 writers building government building

Architect: Charles Wyatt

Don’t believe the misleading name – this is the secretariat building for the state government of West Bengal. The name originated from its use as an office for the writers of the British East India Company. The history of this building is intriguing and it has been a first-hand witness to the myriad changing faces of our nation.


Raj Bhavan, Kolkata

06 raj bhavan kolkata government building

Architect: Herbert Baker

Style: Neoclassical style with distinct Baroque overtones

It once served as the official residence of the Viceroy of India, before the capital shifted to Delhi in 1911, but has since turned into the official residence of the Governor of West Bengal. Here’s a fun fact – the construction of this project came to a whopping £63,291 in 1803 and cost the then Governor General of India, Lord Wellesley, his job under accusations of misuse of the East India Company’s funds.


Attara Kacheri, Bengaluru

08 karnataka high court government building

Construction supervised by: Arcot Narayanaswami Mudaliar

Style: Graeco-Roman

The name translates to ‘Eighteen Offices’ which is exactly what it says it is – the eighteen departments in the general and revenue secretariat of the Mysore Government were shifted here from Tipu Sultan’s summer palace. However, space soon ran out and the secretariat moved across the road to Vidhana Soudha, leaving Attara Kacheri to transform into the premises of the Karnataka High Court.


Raj Bhavan, Nainital

11 raj bhavan nainital government building

Architect: Stevens

Style: Gothic

Uttarakhand is one of very few Indian states to have two Raj Bhavans; but then it also has Dehradun and Nainital. The golf course here (yes, it has its own golf course) is vintage, it was laid out during the British Raj and is affiliated to the Indian Golf Union. Being a governor does have its perks.


Ripon Building, Chennai

12 ripon building chennai government building

Architect: GST Harris

Style: Neoclassical

Named after the then Viceroy and Governor-General of India, Lord Rippon, this stunning all-white building (what other colour would you choose in the sweltering heat of Chennai?) houses the city’s municipal corporation. A major attraction here is the Westminster Quartet chiming clock, which has to be wound up every day.


High Court, Chennai

13 chennai high court government building

Architect: Henry Irwin

Style: Indo-Saracenic Revival

No, this isn’t a beautiful building from Russia that you’re looking at. It is, in fact, the High Court located in Chennai. The resilient building holds the distinction of being one of the very few buildings to have been damaged by a German attack, when it was bombed during the shelling of Madras by SMS Emden on September 22, 1914, at the height of World War I.


Like this article? Also read: Why You Should Head To Mysuru For Dussera


Image Credits: 01 Flickr/ljonesimages (under CC BY-SA 2.0), 02 The original uploader was Nikkul at English Wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons, 03 By Ajeeshcphilip (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons, 04 By flowcomm (Writers’ Building, Calcutta, India) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons, 05 By Biswarup Ganguly (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons, 06 By Polytropos-Commons (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons, 07 By Utkarsh saxena (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons, 08 By PlaneMad/Wikimedia (Own work) [CC BY-SA 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons, 09 By Yoga Balaji (From a Digital Camera (Nikon)) [GFDL or CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons