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Delhi Former capital of India, on the River Yamuna, union territory of Delhi, n central India. Delhi has held a key position throughout India's history, and is built on the site of at least seven settlements, dating back more than 2000 years. In the 17th century, it was capital of the Mogul Empire. In 1912, it became capital of British India (replacing Calcutta) and remained so until independence in 1947, when the capital became New Delhi. Sites include the Red Fort, Qutb Minar, the Rajghat (a shrine where Gandhi was cremated), the Jamii Masjid, and the Jai Singh Observatory. Industries: cotton textiles, handicrafts, tourism. Pop. (2001) 9,817,439.