कितना जानते है आप उदयपुर की इस ऐतिहासिक 450 साल पुरानी रथ यात्रा के बारे में ?

उदयपुर शहर और इसके आस पास ऐसे तो काफी धार्मिक स्थल प्रसिद्ध है लेकिन शहर के बीचों-बीच स्थित प्राचीन जगन्नाथ मंदिर या जगदीश मंदिर की माया अद्भुत और निराली है.

जगदीश मंदिर का निर्माण सन् 1652 में तत्कालीन मेवाड़ के महाराणा जगतसिंह प्रथम ने करवाया था. मंदिर में श्री जगदीश स्वामी जी की मूर्ति की प्राण प्रतिष्ठा के बाद इसी मंदिर से भगवान जगदीश स्वामी की जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा तत्कालीन महाराणा जगतसिंह जी प्रथम ने आषाढ़ सुदी द्वितीया पर निकाली. तब से जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा विगत कई वर्षों से निकाली जा रही है. उसी समय से ठाकुर जी, लालन जी और अन्य देवी देवता नगर भ्रमण पर निकलते है. जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा केवल एक यात्रा ही नहीं है बल्कि उदयपुर की ऐतिहासिक और सांस्कृतिक धरोहर को खुद में संजोए हुए है.

Credits: Siddharth Nagar

इस यात्रा के लिए विशेष रूप से भगवान जगदीश स्वामी, माता महालक्ष्मी, दाणिराय जी(कृष्ण भगवान), लालन जी और जुगल जोड़ी के विग्रह बनवाये  है.

जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा की तैयारियां आषाढ़ मास की सुदी द्वितीया के 15 दिन पहले से शुरू हो जाती है. लालन जी, जगदीश स्वामी और जुगल जोड़ी यानि कृष्ण भगवान और राधा जी अपने शयन कक्ष से मंदिर के गर्भगृह मैं पधारते है. इस समय सभी देवी देवताओं को काढ़ा पिलाया जाता है और वो फिर से अपनी निद्रा अवस्था में चले जाते है.

ठीक 15 दिन बाद आषाण मास की कृष्ण एकम को सभी देवी देवता स्वस्थ होकर वापस से प्रस्थान करते है. उसी के अगले दिन यानि कृष्ण द्वितीया को भगवान जगदीश स्वामी, माता महालक्ष्मी और दाणिराय जी(कृष्ण भगवान) रजत रथ में और लालन जी, जुगल जोड़ी छोटे रथ में सवार होकर नगर भ्रमण पर निकलते है.

रथ यात्रा की सुबह सबसे पहले सभी देवी देवताओं को पंचामृत से स्नान करवाया जाता है और नए श्रृंगार एवं पौशाक धराये जाते है. फिर एक बजे रथ में बिराज कर सभी देवी देवता जगदीश मंदिर की परिक्रमा करते है. इस परिक्रमा में अलग अलग फेरे होते है, इन्हीं फेरों  के दौरान मंदिर में रथ विशेष और पारम्परिक कीर्तन एवं भजन गाये जाते है. नार्तिकायें अपने नृत्य से सभी देवगण को प्रसन्न करती हैं. जगदीश मंदिर में स्थित सूर्यनारायण भगवान की देवरी पर रथ रुकता है और भगवान को ऋतुफल जैसे अनार, जामुन, आम, आम की बर्फी और अन्य मिष्ठानो का भोग लगाया जाता है. रथ को खींचने वाले घोड़ो को चने की दाल जिमाई जाती है.

Jagannath Rath Yatra of Udaipur
Credits: Siddharth Nagar
Credits: Siddharth Nagar

फिर दोपहर 3 बजे सभी देवी देवता मंदिर से प्रस्थान कर अपने रथ में विराजमान होकर नगर भ्रमण पर निकलते है. ठाकुर जी एवं अन्य देवी देवताओं की शोडशो मंत्र उच्चार से आरती होती है और फिर ही भगवान जगदीश स्वामी, माता महालक्ष्मी और दाणिराय जी(कृष्ण भगवान) रजत रथ में और लालन जी एवं जुगल जोड़ी छोटे रथ में सवार होकर नगर भ्रमण के लिए निकलते है.

Jagannath Rath Yatra of Udaipur
Credits: Siddharth Nagar
Credits: Siddharth Nagar

जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा एक अकेला ऐसा महोत्सव है, जहाँ पारम्परिक रीतियों के विपरीत भगवान स्वयं अपने भक्तों को दर्शन देने निकलते है. माना जाता है कि रथ यात्रा के दिन भगवान अपने भक्तजनों पर ढेर सारा आशीर्वाद लुटाते है. इस रथ यात्रा की विशेषता यह है की इसके दर्शन करने के लिए केवल उदयपुरवासी, राज्य या देश से नहीं, कही भक्तगण विशेष तौर से इसी महोत्सव में भाग लेने के लिए विदेश से आते है. 

जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा जगदीश मंदिर से होते हुई घंटा घर – बड़ा बाजार – भड़भूजा घाटी – मोची बाजार – भोपालवाड़ी – चौखला बाजार – संतोषी माता मंदिर – धानमंडी – झीणी रेत – मार्शल चौराहा – RMV – गुलाब बाघ – रंग निवास से वापस जगदीश मंदिर आती है.

हर जगह रथ का पारम्परिक भजनों से विशेष स्वागत होता है.

वापस जगदीश मंदिर पहुंचने पर महाआरती एवं शयन आरती होती है पश्चात् सभी देवी देवता फिर मंदिर के गर्भगृह में स्थापित दिए जाते है.

साम्प्रदायिक सद्भाव बनाये रखती है ये विशेष रथ यात्रा:

जगदीश चौक में जन्मे कई संप्रदाय के लोग काफी लम्बे समय से रथयात्रा से जुड़े हुए हैंं जो अपने आप में एक साम्प्रदायिक सद्भाव की एक अलग मिसाल है. सभी संप्रदाय के लोग धर्मोत्सव समिति कार्यकर्ता के रूप में रथयात्रा व्यवस्था संभालने में अपना योगदान देते है इसमें झांकियों को क्रमबद्ध करवाना, रथयात्रा में आये  भक्तों को प्रसाद वितरण की व्यवस्था जैसे कार्य शामिल हैं. रथयात्रा किसी व्यक्ति विशेष, एक संगठन का नहीं बल्कि सभी समाजो के लिए बडे़ त्यौहार जैसा आयोजन है. इसमें सभी चाहे वो सनातन धर्म हो या कोई और, सभी इसमें बढ़ चढ़ कर भाग लेते है. सभी समाज के लोगो के साथ साथ सरकारी प्रशासन भी इस महोत्सव को सफल बनाने क लिए अपनी पूरी श्रमता से काम करते है.

Jagannath Rath Yatra of Udaipur
Credits: Siddharth Nagar

भगवान जगन्नाथ के रजत रथ की खासियत:

भगवान जगन्नाथ स्वामी की इस पारम्परिक रथयात्रा में लोगों का उत्साह और भागीदारी बढ़ाने के लिए कुछ वर्ष पूर्ण ही भक्तों के सहयोग और ठाकुरजी के आशीर्वाद से रजत रथ का निर्माण करवाया गया. पहली बार 12 जुलाई 2002 को प्रभु जगन्नाथ एवं देवताओं को रजत रथ में विराजित कर नगर भ्रमण पर निकाला गया था. इस रजत रथ के निर्माण के लिए असम से विशेष तौर से सागवान की लकड़ी मंगवाई गयी. यह रथ 18 फीट ऊंचा है और इसे तैयार करने में 50 किलो चांदी का उपयोग हुआ है.  इसमें श्री जगन्नाथ स्वामी की प्रतिमा के साथ बलराम, सुभद्रा और सुदर्शन चक्र भी विराजमान हैं.

तो क्या आप तैयार है 4 जुलाई को होने वाली इस भव्य जगन्नाथ रथ यात्रा के साक्षी बंनने के लिए ?

 

एक योद्धा, एक प्रशंसक, एक लोक कवि और एक ऐतिहासिक पत्र – Maharana Pratap

मेवाड़ के शिरोमणि शासक महाराणा प्रताप, बीकानेर के सामंत पृथ्वीराज राठौड़  और राजस्थान के सुप्रसिद्ध कवि कन्हैया लाल सेठिया: इन तीनों शख्सियतों की ऐतिहासिक पृष्ठभूमि के केंद्र में है एक पत्र; एक ऐसा दस्तावेज़ जिसने मेवाड़ के इतिहास का रुख बदल कर रख दिया| इस अहम् पत्र के पीछे छिपी है एक रोचक कहानी जो मेवाड़ के गौरवशाली नायक प्रताप के साहसिक जीवन में आये उतार चढ़ावों, टूटते आत्मविश्वास और उभरते शौर्य का भली भांति परिचय देती  है | जब भारतवर्ष के रजवाड़ों के अधिकतर शासक मुग़ल सम्राट अकबर से संधि को ही अपनी नियति समझ चुके थे, तब मेवाड़ के स्वाभिमानी के राजा महाराणा प्रताप ही थे जिन्होंने शहंशाह-ए –हिंद  से लोहा लेने की ठान ली थी| अकबर के सभी संधि प्रस्ताव ख़ारिज करते हुए, प्रताप  ने निडर व्यक्तित्व का परिचय दिया और अंततः,युद्ध निश्चित था|

18 जून 1576 को, हल्दीघाटी में अकबर की विशालकाय सेना का सामना करने चट्टान सा साहस लिए खड़ी थी, प्रताप और उनके विश्वासपात्र योद्धाओं की छोटी सी टुकड़ी| अद्वितीय बहादुरी का परिचय देते हुए प्रताप की सेना अंत तक शत्रु को चुनौती देती रही| अकबर की सेना  महाराणा को बंदी बनाने में कामयाब नहीं हो पाई और  प्रताप का वफ़ादार घोड़ा चेतक, प्रताप को एक सुरक्षित स्थान पर पहुंचाने की कोशिश में, गंभीर रूप से ज़ख़्मी होने के कारण शहीद हो गया| युद्ध के बाद, महलों का आलीशान जीवन छोड़कर प्रताप अपने परिवार के साथ जंगलों में भटक रहे थे और छापामार युद्ध पद्दति की तैयारी में मसरूफ़ थे| जीवन अभावों में कट रहा था; तभी एक दिन उनके पुत्र के हाथ से घास की रोटी छीन कर एक जंगली बिल्ला ले गया| मेवाड़ के राजकुमार की ऐसी दुर्दशा देख कर, प्रताप का दिल भर आया और उन्होंने बेबस होकर, अकबर को संधि पत्र लिखकर मुग़लों की प्रभुता स्वीकार करने की ठानी| पत्र पाकर अकबर अचंभित हो गया क्योंकि उसे विश्वास नहीं हुआ कि  प्रताप जैसा शूरवीर योद्धा भी हार मान सकता है|

राजस्थान के लोकप्रिय कवि कन्हैया लाल सेठिया ने  अकबर की इस मनोस्थिति का उम्दा वर्णन अपनी कविता “पीथल और पाथल” में किया है:

“के आज हिमालय पिघल गयो

के आज हुयो सूरज शीतल

के आज शेष रो सर डोल्यो

आ सोच हुयो सम्राट विकल”

Maharana Pratap
Creation By: Anurag Mehta

प्रताप के अनगिनत प्रशंसकों में से एक था, बीकानेर का सामंत, पृथ्वीराज राठौड़  (पीथल) जो प्रताप का अनन्य उपासक था और अकबर के सामने प्रताप की तारीफ़ों के पुल बाँध दिया करता था| अकबर ने दूत को भेजकर पृथ्वीराज को बुलवाया और वह पत्र दिखाया| भाट कह कर उसका मखौल उड़ाते हुए अकबर ने पूछा कि, कहाँ गया वो लहू जो  राजपूती रगों में बहता था; क्या हुआ महाराणा के उस पराक्रम का जो किसी के आगे झुकना नहीं जानता था| वो पत्र पाकर पीथल ने पाथल (प्रताप) को एक ‘पाती’ लिखी; एक ऐसी पाती जिसने महाराणा के हारे हुए उत्साह को ललकारा और उन्हें समझाया कि  दुनिया की हर असंभव चीज़ संभव हो सकती है, लेकिन महाराणा कभी हार मान ले, यह किसी भी हालत में मुमकिन नहीं हो सकता| सेठिया जी लिखते हैं:

“म्हें आज सुणी है‚ नाहरियो, स्याला रै सागै सोवैलो।
म्हें आज सुणी है‚ सूरजड़ो‚ बादल री ओटाँ खोवैलो
म्हें आज सुणी है, चातकड़ो धरती रो पाणी पीवेलो
म्हें आज सुणी है हाथीड़ो कूकर री जून्या जीवेलो |”

इस पत्र को पढ़कर प्रताप को एहसास हो गया कि वे भावनाओं में बहकर अपने दृढ़ संकल्प की बलि देने को तैयार हो गए थे| पत्र पढ़कर वे एक नयी ऊर्जा और जूनून से भर गए और अपने संधि पत्र वाले कदम के लिए खुदको कायर कहकर धिक्कारा| इस प्रकार एक शासक के बुझे हुए हृदय में फिर से आत्मविश्वास की ज्वाला जलाई एक प्रशंसक ने, और एक लोक कवि ने इस घटना को कविता की पंक्तियों में गुथकर हमेशा के लिए अमरत्व का जामा पहना दिया| इस तरह, ये तीन व्यक्ति इतिहास के दोराहों पर मिले और एक सुनहरे अध्याय को माज़ी के पन्नों पर दर्ज़ करके जुदा हो गए|

Article By – Sharmishtha Ranawat

Udaipur: A blessing turns 466 year old today

Every city deserves a birthday celebration, a royal one deserves after party. According to tradition, Maharana Udai Singh founded Udaipur on this day i.e. Akshaya Tritiya or Akha Teej in 1553. Today on the foundation day of this beautiful lake city where all lakes are man-made. Let’s go through some of the important stories that everyone out needs to know. Udaipur was a strategic foundation as it is surrounded by Girwa valley that is approximately 20 Km in length and 15 Km broad. Aravalli range separates Mewar from the desert area of Rajasthan. A circular fertile Girwa valley was a perfect place to settle our future in.

A history that was created:

Travelling in past always interest people because the city we live in has a part of us and that is roots. Walking on the roads of the city and thinking about how things reached here, how this valley turned into a city beautiful. The brilliant time of wonder of Chittorgarh that started with Bappa Rawal and proceeded under Rawals Khumaans to Maharana Sanga (Sangram Singh 1509-1527) lost its unmistakable quality after Sanga’s demise. The third child of Sanga i.e. Maharana Udai Singh II, luckily rescued the circumstance through balanced and venturesome standard. The political circumstance in India was changing quickly which the youthful Maharana needed to battle with.

Maharana Sanga
Maharana Sanga

The Portuguese built up themselves on the western bank of India with the new weapon of fighting the mounted guns, they set up themselves on the western shoreline of India-beginning in 1509 with development of ports and posts at Calicut, Cochin, Pulicat (Podouke), Goa, Bombay, Cambay, Diu, lastly landing in Gujarat by the 1530s. The Mughal ruler Babur set up himself in the north in 1526. He as well took the response to the new innovation of mounted guns. With the assistance of Portuguese, Bahadur Shah of Gujarat effectively attempted and tried the adequacy of cannons fighting on Chittaurgarh in 1535. They needed to inspire the Muslim ruler with the end goal of getting a decent footing on the Gujarat coast. They were likewise the primary “merchants” of black powder and gun in India. This viewpoint needs thought particularly in connection to the general discernment that Babur presented mounted guns fighting in India. Actually Portuguese beat the Mughal ruler by 25 years!

Maharana Udai Singh | Source: Eternal Mewar

With this foundation of an unfriendly and unstable north, a southern kingdom outfitted with new innovation and his own home in turmoil, Maharana Udai Singh admirably chose to conform to the changed circumstance in and around Mewar with “Krishan-Neeti”.

A Silent Warrior:

In around 1568, when Chittorgarh was attacked by Mughal Empire then Maharana moved his kingdom to Udaipur and hence the purpose of founding the city was served. Now the kingdom was defended by nature. The tall hills of Aravalli range fought hard all these years in the favour of Maharana. A silent knight.

Source: www.rajasthantrekking.com
Source: www.rajasthantrekking.com

It might interest you those Aravalli Hills are now broken beyond repair. What nature has given us we all know but maybe we don’t know how to return the favour. Inside one age, millions who once discovered it the hub of their sustenance, are presently accommodated to the loss of one of the planet’s most established physical highlights. This notwithstanding the way that a great many villages have announced changes in the nearby environment after the mountain range’s corruption, with critical effect on the general population’s lives. Knowing history might be easy but to preserve history is a task. A task for all the generations living the era that was gifted by the descendants.

Let’s take a pledge to preserve the beauty of the city and steer towards some interesting dates and facts about ‘Our Udaipur’.

1931- 1st cinema Hall – Mewar talkies

1943 1st Bank – Bharat bank ltd.

1915, 1st-time electricity was utilized in the palace.

1960 Feb 6, 1st flight from Airport-  Air India (Delhi –  Jaipur – Udaipur – Ahmedabad)

jag mandir island during the 18th century

Jag Mandir was the Inspiration for Taj Mahal: Shah Jahan mother was a Rajput woman, Maharana Karan Singh remained him securely inside the Jag Mandir Palace that was noted as ‘Gul-Mahal’ at the time. Shah Jahn adjacent to his better half and children were solid safe in Gul Mahal, it’s equivalent that sovereign religion got awed by the structure of Gul Mahal and planned Taj Mahal, one of the Seven Wonders of the earth.

Your Ultimate Guide to Monsoons in Udaipur
Udaipur- Kashmir of Rajasthan

Udaipur is also known as the ‘Kashmir of Rajasthan’: Udaipur is created like Kashmir once it comes regarding its beautiful landscapes, exciting sights and if truth be told a great thing about lakes. One more reason that connects Kashmir to Udaipur is that each of these cities is positioned on valleys that results in their spectacular beauty.

City palace
City palace

 

Maharana Udai Singh designed a six-kilometre-long town wall, with seven gates: Significantly Surajpole, Chandpole, Udiapole, Hathipole, Ambapole, Brahmpole are worth capturing. The realm among these walls and gates continues to be said the Old City or the walled town.

 

Gulabbagh

The sculpture of Queen Victoria is presently show-cased among the Saraswati Bhawan Library: In February 1890, a sculpture of Queen Victoria was unveiled among the Gulab Bagh. With the sculpture of Mahatma Gandhi stands amidst the luxurious garden;  collectively the Saraswati Bhawan Library in Gulab Bagh was initially called as ‘Victoria Museum’.

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: Pinterest

 

Sahastra-Bahu (Sas-Bahu) Temples is on a list of India’s Heritage Monument: Sahastra-Bahu Temples area is magnificently noted as ‘Sas-Bahu’ temples. Historical records say, that Sahastra Bahu means ‘Vishnu with one thousand arms’ but the native stories suggest a definite tale. They’re situated in Nagda at Udaipur, Located 20 km away from the city.

The curious case of Hare: Maharana Udai Singh II is said to have established his new capital city of Udaipur when he chased a rabbit/hare at Akshay Tritiya chase in the Girwa Valley, somewhat northwest of Ayad town. Same way chasing rabbit/hare Ahmedabad and Sirohi was found by their respective founders that too on Akshaya Tritiya.

Samor Gardens, Shiwaniwas Palace and Old Palace, Udaipur
Old Palace, Udaipur

With these stories, history is left open-ended. There is still a lot we need to know about this magical city, a book with empty pages where words need to be discovered to uncover. In the end, clinking glasses with the lakes, hills and aura of this city. We wish Venice of east a very Happy Birthday!

आज है हरियाली तीज | जानिए इस त्यौहार के बारे में

आज हरियाली तीज के मौके पर हम आपको इसी के कुछ पहलुओं से अवगत करवाने वाले है। हरियाली तीज का त्यौहार प्रतिवर्ष श्रावण के महीने की शुरुवात में मनाया जाता। देवी पार्वती को समर्पित, तीज का त्यौहार देवी पार्वती और भगवान शिव के मिलन की स्मृति में मनाया जाता है। सावन का महीना और भगवान शिव और देवी पार्वती का पवित्र रिवायत इस त्यौहार का आधार है।

 

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                            हरियाली तीज का इतिहास


हरियाली तीज का त्यौहार देवी पार्वती का भगवान शिव के प्रति अनंत निष्ठा व प्रेम का प्रतीक है। इस दिन भगवान शिव और देवी पार्वती, हज़ारों सालों के बाद, फिर से, एक हो गए थे। इस त्यौहार के रीति- रिवाज और परंपरा भी प्रेम और निष्ठा के अद्भुत संगम का आधार है। इसका का कुछ विवरण मेवाड़ के इतिहास की प्रसिद्ध किताब, महामहोपाध्याय कविराज श्यामलदास (महाराणा सज्जन सिंह जी के आश्रित कवि) द्वारा रचित  “वीर विनोद” में भी मिल जाता है। किताब का अंश कुछ इस प्रकार है-

“श्रावण शुक्ल 3 को तीज का त्यौहार मनाया जाता है। इस त्यौहार को राजपूताना में राजा व प्रजा सब मानते है, और महाराणा जगनिवास महल में पधार कर गोठ जीमते है और रंगीन रस्सों के झूलो पर औरते झूलती और गायन करती है। शाम के वक़्त महाराणा जुलुस के साथ नाव सवार हो कर राग रंग के किनारे पर पहुंचते है। यदि इच्छा हो तो वह से हाथी या घोड़े पर सवार हो कर सीधे महलो में पधार जाते है। पश्चात, जगनिवास महल और बाड़ी महल में वैसी ही तैयारियाँ होती है जैसी गणगौर के उत्सव में बयान की गयी है।”

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                                हरियाली तीज का महत्व


सावन का महीना त्यौहार मनाने योग्य ही तो है क्योंकि वर्षा का आगमन जो होता है भूमि पर। इस दिन, सभी वर्ग की औरते लहरिए-बांधनी साड़ी पहने, गेहेनो और मेहँदी से सज कर देवी पार्वती के दर्शन हेतु जाती है और बाघों में झूले लगाए जाते है।  “सावन के झूले” का प्रसंग काफी प्रसिद्ध है। तीज का त्यौहार झूलो के बिना अधूरा सा लगता है और इनकी सजावट भी कुछ राजस्थानी ढंग से की जाती है। चमकीले लाल-पीले-हरे रंग के घाघरा- चोली पहने सभी विवाहित महिलाएँ इन झूलो का आनंद लेती है और साथ ही साथ देवी पार्वती की भक्ति से सराबोर लोक गीत गाती है इसी आशा में की देवी पार्वती सदैव उन पर अपनी कृपा बनाए रखेंगी। सावन के गीत गाने की परंपरा भी काफी प्रचलित है। मेहँदी भी काफी प्रचलित और मान्य परंपराओं में से एक है। मेहँदी और चूडियो से सजे हाथ, तीज के पर्व की शोभा में चार चाँद लगा देते है।तीज के त्यौहार पर घेवर का राजस्थान में एक अलग महत्व है। यह पारंपरिक मिठाई मैदा, चीनी और अलग-अलग ड्राई फ्रूट्स सब मिलकर बनी होती है साथ ही साथ इसके ऊपर केसर का छितराव और चाँदी का वर्क चढ़ा होता है। इस मिठाई की आपको दस के आस-पास वैरायटी देखने को मिल जाएगी जिनमें केसर घेवर, पनीर घेवर, मलाई घेवर बहुत प्रसिद्ध  है। मिठाई पर घी की मोटी परत होने के बावजूद यह खाने में बेहद सुपाच्य मानी जाती है। तीज पर घेवर को शादीशुदा लड़की को देने का भी परंपरा है। सावन मैं घेवर बनाना उत्तम क्यों रहता है, इसके पीछे कारण यह है की यह सावन की नमी भरे वातावरण को पूर्ण रूप से सोख लेता है जिससे इसका स्वाद बना रहता है। ऐसा माना जाता है कि यह मिठाई वाजिद अली शाह द्वारा जयपुर लाई गई थी। इतने सालों के बाद आज भी घेवर राजस्थान के कई भागों में मिल जाता है।

 

सावन, हरियाली, लहेरिये, झूले, मेहँदी, घेवर, मालपुए यह सभी इस पर्व के पर्याय है और संस्कृति व श्रद्धा से परिपूर्ण यह पर्व आज भी उसी हर्षोउल्लास से मनाया जाता है और आशा यही है की इसकी गरिमा सदैव यूही बनी रहे।

महाराणा काल में गणगौर की सवारी का दृश्य

हमारे देश में त्यौहार, समय अनुसार मनाये जाते हैं। उदयपुर के लोग राजाओं-महाराजाओं के काल से ही उत्सव-जलसे बड़े धूम-धाम से मनाते आए हैं। उन्ही त्योहारों में से एक है, गणगौर। गणगौर का त्यौहार चैत्र महीने के शुक्ल पक्ष की तीज पर आता है। 18वी शताब्दी अर्थात महाराणा सज्जन सिंह जी  के काल में गणगौर के इस त्यौहार का विस्तृत वर्णन कुछ इस प्रकार किया गया है- “नवीन वर्ष आरम्भ होते ही सभी ज्योतिष-गण उत्तम वस्त्र और आभूषणों से सुसज्जित होकर, महाराणा की सेवा में उपस्थित होते है तथा शुभकामनाओं के साथ महाराणा को नवीन पंचाग भेंट करते है। गणगौर इसके अगले दिन मनाया जाता है। गणगौर के दिन सभी स्त्रियाँ सुन्दर वस्त्र और आभूषण पहनकर बाग़-बावड़ियाँ में जाती है। महाराणा के आदेश पर राज्य भर में जश्न होता है। ये जश्न किसी धूम-धाम से कम नहीं होता। दिन के ठीक तीन बजे पहला नगगाड़ा बजता है, उसके बाद दूसरा और फिर तीसरे न पर महाराणा घोड़े पर विराजमान होते हैं। एकलिंगगढ़  पर 21 तोपों की सलामी दी जाती है। बड़ी पोल से त्रिपोलिया घाट तक दोनों तरफ़ लकड़ी के बड़े खूटे लगा दिए जाते है और उन पर रस्सियाँ बाँध दी जाती है। इन खूटों के आसपास पुलिस के जवान पहरा देते हैं। इन पर बाँधी गयी रस्सी के भीतर राजकीय अधिकारियों के अलावा अन्य व्यक्ति नहीं आ सकता है। जब महाराणा की सवारी महल से रवाना होती है तब सवारी के बाद सबसे आगे मेवाड़ के राजकीय निशान से चिन्हित हाथी चलते हैं, उनके पीछे के हाथियों पर सरदार, पासवान और अन्य अधिकारी होते है।

सवारी में जंगी घुड़सवारों के साथ साथ अँग्रेज़ अफ़सर भी शरीक होते है। विदेशी बाजा बजता हुआ निकलता है और उसके पीछे निकलते है सोने चाँदी के हौदे जो ख़ास हाथी पर कसे हुए होते है। इसके साथ ही राज्य के बड़े-बड़े प्रतिष्ठित लोग, उमराव, सरदार और चारण घोड़ों पर आते है। इस कारवाँ के पीछे जरी व सोने-चाँदी से सुसज्जित घोड़े रहते है।”

महाराणा की सवारी का दृश्य कुछ इस प्रकार होता है-

“मधुर, सुरीला बाजा बजता रहता है, उसके पीछे महाराणा अच्छी पोशाक, ‘अमर शाही’, ‘आरसी शाही’ और ‘स्वरूप शाही’ पग़डियो में से एक किस्म की पगड़ी, जामा और नाना प्रकार के हीरे मोतियों के आभूषणों को धारण किये और कमर बंध व ढाल लगाए हुए घोड़े पर विद्यमान रहते है।

महाराणा के पीछे दूसरे सरदार, जागीरदार, पासवान व जंगी सैनिक रहते है और सबसे पीछे हाथी चलते है। सवारी के दोनों तरफ छड़ीदारो की बुलंद आवाज़ और आगे वीरता के दोहो का गायन करने वाले ढोलियो की आवाज़े सवारी के आनंद को दोगुना कर देती है। इसी ठाठ बाट के साथ महाराणा धीरे-धीरे त्रिपोलिया घाट पर पहुंचते है और वह घोड़े से उतर कर नाव पर सवार होते है। इनमें से एक नाव के ऊँचे गो खड़े पर लगभग दो फुट ऊंचा सिंहासन रहता है, उस पर चार खम्बो वाली लकड़ी की एक छतरी होती है। सिंहासन और छतरी ज़र्दोजी और ज़री से सुशोभित होती है।  सिंहासन के चारो तरफ, नीचे के तख्तो पर शानदार पोशाकों व गहनों से सज्जित सरदार, चारण व पासवान अपने दर्जे के मुताबिक बैठते है और कितने ही अन्य लोग आसपास खड़े रहते है। महाराणा के पद के नीचे के सभ्यगण उसी के समीप जुड़ी हुई नाव में सवार होते है। नाव की सवारी धीरे-धीरे दक्षिण की तरफ बढती है और बड़ी पाल तक जाने के बाद फिर लौट कर त्रिपोलिया घाट पर आती है। दक्षिण के तरफ बढ़ते हुए आतिशबाज़ी चलाने का हुक्म दिया जाता है, तालाब के किनारों तथा कश्तियो पर से तरह-तरह की रंग-बिरंगी आतिशबाज़िया होती है। ये सब देखने में बहुत आनंद आता है। इस अवसर पर बहुत से लोग सवारी को देखने दूर-दूर से आते है, क्योंकि उदयपुर के गणगौर के जलसे की दूसरे  राजपुतानों में बड़ी तारीफ़ होती है। तालाब के किनारे देखने वाले लोगो की बड़ी भीड़ रहती है, इतनी की भीतर घुसना भी बहुत कठिन हो जाता है। इसके बाद महल से गणगौर माता की सवारी निकलती है, जिस के साथ नाना प्रकार की सुन्दर पोशाकों और सोने-चाँदी के गहनों से सुसज्जित दासियो के झुंड साथ चलते है। एक स्त्री के सिर पर लगभग 3 फुट ऊंची, सोने चाँदी के गहनों से शोभायमान, लकड़ी की बनी हुई गणगौर माता की मूर्ति रखी होती है। सवारी के आगे और पीछे, सवारी के लाज़मी हाथी घोड़ों पर पंडित व ज्योतिष लोग विद्यमान रहते है। त्रिपोलिया घाट पर सवारी के पहुंचते ही महाराणा अपने सिंहासन से खड़े होकर गणगौर माता को प्रणाम करते है, फिर गणगौर माता को फर्श युक्त वेदिका पर रखकर, पंडित व ज्योतिषी लोग पूजन करके महाराणा साहिब को पुनः देते है। इसके बाद दासिया गणगौर माता के दोनों तरफ बराबर खड़े हो कर, प्रणाम के तौर पर झुकती हुई, “लहुरे” (एक तरह का गाना) गाती है। यह जलसा देखने लायक होता है। यहाँ राज्य में लकड़ी की बनी गणगौर की बड़ी मूर्ति के अलावा मिट्टी की बनी हुई गणगौर और दूसरे भगवानों की छोटी मूर्तियां भी देखी जा सकती है। बाकी शहर में दूसरे भगवान और गणगौर की मूर्तियां साथ ही निकाली जाती है। राजपूताना की कुल रियासतों में इस त्यौहार को एक बड़े उत्सव के तौर पर मनाया जाता है। इस देश में ऐसी कहावत है कि दशहरा राजपूतो के लिए और गणगौर स्त्रियों के लिए बड़ा त्यौहार है। यहाँ महादेव को ईश्वर और पार्वती को गणगौर कहते है। फिर गणगौर माता को जिस तरह जुलुस के साथ लाते है, उसी तरह फिर से महल में पहुंचाया जाता है। इसके बाद उसी फर्श पर दसियों द्वारा घूमर नृत्य और गाना-बजाना होता है। रेजिडेंट लोग भी नावों में सवार होकर इस जलसे को देखने के लिए आते है। आखिर में महाराणा रूप घाट पर नाव से उतर कर तामजान में सवार हो महल में पधार जाते है जहां कीमती गलीचे- मखमल का फर्श, ज़रदोज़ी के शामियाने व सोने चाँदी से बने हुए सिंहासन व कुर्सियां इनका इंतजार कर रही होती है और इस तरह यह जलसा पुरे 4 या उससे भी ज़्यादा दिन के लिए इसी तरह चलता रहता है”

उपरान्त दृश्य की परिकल्पना मात्र ही आनंदमय लगती है। उस ज़माने की बात ही कुछ और थी। उम्मीद है आपको ये सब पढ़कर अच्छा लगा होगा। हम आगे भी कुछ ऐसे त्योहारों के बारे में आपको बताएँगे। तब तक के लिए अलविदा।

Did You Know? Queen Elizabeth II visited Udaipur

54 years back, Her Royal Majesty, visited India just after independence in January 1961. She alongside Prince Philip landed at the Delhi airport and was greeted by the Indian President Mr. Rajendra Prasad and Premier Pandit Nehru. After her visit to Delhi, Jaipur and, Agra, she visited the Maharani of Udaipur. In Udaipur, The Queen of England was introduced to the members of Darbar who were dressed in traditional Rajasthani Paridhan including jewelry and iconic Safa Pagdi. The Queen and Duke also visited Shiv Niwas, the water palace.

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A video coverage of the Queen’s visit to India was documented by British Pathé.

 

                              About British Pathé

 

Wikipedia

In olden times, people used to rely on theaters for all the news of the world.

  ” Pathé News was a producer of newsreels and documentaries from 1910 until 1970 in the United Kingdom. Its founder, Charles Pathé, was a pioneer of moving pictures in the silent era. The Pathé News archive is known today as British Pathé”

                      -Wikipedia

 

British Pathé is considered as “one of the finest newsreel archives” in the world. It has a genuine collection of over 85,000 newsreel of historical and cultural importance.

 

The British Pathé YouTube channel consists of some bizarre, delightful and historical events from all around the world. From Fashion shows to war documentaries and from deaths of prominent personalities to some of the greatest inventions, it contains everything to keep you hooked. You might also come across some things first of their kind in their collection of documentaries.

 

The documentary featuring Queen’s visit is in three parts in which you can see how beautifully India and its monuments are captured. In the Reel- 2 of the documentary, Udaipur is featured and one can very well see how journalists, from all over the world, gathered in order to capture every moment. Moreover, local people can be seen in large numbers, sitting and waiting to catch one glimpse of the Queen.

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Furthermore, while reading this, you might be wondering about the big, white statue of “The Queen” currently placed in The Saraswati Library, Gulab Bagh, so FYI, the statue is of Queen Victoria. She was entitled Empress of India on 1 May 1876. Queen Elizabeth II is Great-Great Granddaughter of Queen Victoria. The statue was removed immediately after Independence when a riot took place. It was then replaced by the statue of Gandhi Ji.

 

Here is the video featuring Queen’s visit to Udaipur:

Karni Mata Temple- Legend and History

The beauty of the city which one can devour from the hillock of Karni Mata Temple is one of the many angles from which Udaipur is captured every day. I’d say this one is a better angle. Shri Mansapurna Karni Mata Temple, located on Machla Hills near Din Dayal Upadhyaya Park, is at a perfect height which is accessible through either around 150 m of stairs starting from Din Dayal Park and reaching straight up to the temple or a 4 min. Ropeway route. Surprisingly, the temple has a large well- maintained area covering most part of the hillock. The panoramic view of Lakes, Palaces, whitewashed, closely placed houses, Gulab Bagh and all the area surrounding the hill is addictive. One can actually see the shades of water of Lake Pichola from here.

Udaipurblog

Legend

The main Temple of Karni Mata in Deshnok, also known as “ the Temple of Rats”, is 30 km from Bikaner. Karni Mata was basically a Hindu sage who was born as the seventh daughter of Charan Rajput clan in 1387 AD in Suwap village of Jodhpur district. She was believed to be the incarnation of Goddess Durga. Her original name was Ridhu Bai. She was married to Depoji Charan of Sathika village but after just two years of married life and despite the initial mockery from her husband, she married off her sister Gulab to her husband and left the village forever in order to fulfill her desire to leave all the worldly affairs and live life like a Nomad. After wandering for some time with her followers and herd, she reached Deshnok and finally settled here and also by then she became Karni Mata. The temple is famous for its enormous population of 25,000 rats which are religiously known as “Kabbas”. The story behind the rat population is that once the stepson of Karni Mata, Laxman, fell and died in the Kapil Sarovar in Kolayat Tehsil in attempt to drink water. After continuous pleading from Karni Mata, Yama, The God of Death, agreed to retrieve her son as a Rat and also permitted all her male children to be reincarnated as Rats. The Kabbas are known to be very holy and feeding them with sweets and eating the food nibbled by them is considered as “prestigious”. The temple in Udaipur too has a considerable number of white and black Kabbas. Karni Mata laid the cornerstone of two major Forts of Rajasthan that is Fort of Jodhpur and Fort of Bikaner. On March 21, 1538, while returning Deshnok, the Convoy halted in order to drink water near Kolayat Tehsil. When the followers got back to her she was nowhere to be found and after much search, she was never found hence she just disappeared then and there at the age of 151 years.

Indo Vacations

Overview

The temple in Udaipur was built by Maharana Karan Singh to mark the boundary and safety of Udaipur when the area of Machla Magra was built for residency purposes between 1620-1628. The temple was abandoned for a long time before 1997 when the temple committee restored and renovated the premises and it is still in progress. The temple premises is quite large and peaceful. The stairway path to the temple is a 10 min long journey and it is fulfilled with viewpoints, rest shelters, and water cooler. To the left of the stairway, at a bit distance, lies a high structure with holes in the walls. The structure used to be the place where kings used to hide and hunt and place their guns out through these holes. It can be visited but only at your own risk as it is not maintained and might have snakes and other animals. If you take the stairway, you might also sight peacocks and their symphony is the loudest in the morning. Apart from the temple structure, there are elongated premises up to the ropeway station and one should be extremely careful about the monkeys as they chased me not once but twice. The  4 min. Ropeway journey in bright red, yellow and green cabins start from the banks of Lake Pichola to the Hill of Machla Mangra along the 387 m long cable.

worldtravelserver.com

“Shri Mansapurna Karni Mata Temple” is a must visit as it does hold the powers to fulfill wishes and offers more than just peace and tranquility, it offers Udaipur at its best.

 

Historical Places in Udaipur and the History Behind Them

Jagdish temple

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Picture by: Anil Vohra

Jagdish temple was made by Maharana Jagat Singh in 1651. Maharana Jagat Singh ruled Udaipur for 25 years from 1628 to 1653. The temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu (the preserver of the universe). It is the largest temple in the city. After 28 years of the construction of the temple, Mughal ruler Aurangzeb wanted the temple to get destroyed and sent his army to do so. But the army of Maharana Raj Singh (ruler of Udaipur back then) didn’t let him do so. And so, Jagdish Mandir was saved from getting destroyed. To know more about Jagdish temple, click here.

You may also want to read Famous temples in and around Udaipur

 

Saheliyon ki Bari

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: guidetrip

Saheliyon ki Bari can be translated as the courtyard of Maiden in English. It is a major garden of the city. Saheliyon ki Badi was built in the year 1710 by Maharana Sangram Singh for the royal ladies. It was built for a group of forty-eight young women attendants who came with the princess as a part of her dowry. It has beautiful lotus pools, marble pavilions, and elephant-shaped fountains. According to the legend the garden was designed by the king Sangram Singh himself and he presented it to the queen. To know more about Saheliyon ki Bari, click here.

 

City Palace

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: holidify

City Palace is the palace complex situated on the east bank of Lake Pichola. It was built over a period of 400 years back by Maharana Udai Singh II when he shifted his capital from Chittor district. The palace constantly got addition and modification by other rulers of the dynasty. It is built in both Rajasthani and Mughal architectural styles. It is designed so beautifully that it overlooks several other historical monuments such as Lake Pichola, Jag Mandir, Jagdish Temple, Monsoon Palace, and Neemach Mata temple, and a perfect view of the entire city. To know more about City Palace, click here.

To watch the video of city palace, click here.

 

Ahar Cenotaphs

Rarely visited places in Udaipur that you need to visit right now
Picture by: maximvo

About at a distance of 3 km, Ahar is called Udaipur’s royal cremation ground. It has a total of 372 cenotaphs of around 19 Maharanas who once ruled the city. This spectacular city of domes was built approx. 400 years back. The most striking cenotaph that you will be able to spot will be of Maharana Sangram Singh and the newest was built in the year 2004 of Udaipur’s last Maharana, Bhagwat Singh. At a distance of just 150 m from Ahar Cenotaphs, you can find Ahar government museum which contains copper and pottery objects of more than around 3300-year-old. It also has sculptures of Hindu gods and Jain tirthankars from the 8th and 16th century AD.

You may also want to read Maharanas of Udaipur. 

 

Bagore ki Haveli

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Bagore ki Haveli

Bagore ki Haveli was built by ‘Shree Amarchand Badwa’ who was the Prime minister of Mewar from 1751 to 1778. He remained at the position throughout the reigns of Maharanas Pratap Singh II, Raj Singh II, Ari Singh, and Hamir Singh respectively. After the death of Amarchand, the Haveli was occupied by Nath Singh, a relative of Maharana back then. The property remained in the possession of Mewar state until 1947. After independence the government of India used the site for housing government employees. But after that for almost forty years, the Haveli’s condition got deteriorated and finally, the government handed it to West zone cultural center. West zone cultural center then renovated the Haveli into a museum. To know more about City Palace, click here.

 

Sajjangarh palace or monsoon palace

Source: twitter

The monsoon palace, also called Sajjangarh palace is a hilltop palace at a distance of around 7 km from the city. It was built by Maharana Sajjan Singh in the year 1884. It is said that Maharana Sajjan Singh built it at the top of the hill so that he can see his ancestral home which was Chittaurgarh. It was previously owned by the royal family of Mewar and is now owned by the forest department of the government of Rajasthan. The beautiful palace gives you a mind-blowing view of the sunset and is supposedly called monsoon palace because it seems like the palace is floating in the heaven during Monsoon. To know more about Sajjangarh Palace, click here.

 

Moti Magri

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: Trip advisor

Moti Magri or pearl hill is a memorial of the great Rajput hero Maharana Pratap. There is a bronze statue of Maharana Pratap on the top of the hill with his favorite horse, Chetak. It is said that Chetak was a very brave horse who climbed upon an elephant in the battle of Haldighati which crippled one of his legs. But when he thought that his master needs to be rescued from the battle, he landed him in a safe spot away from the battle with his crippled legs. He also jumped upon a stream while this journey and this led him towards his death. Along with the gardens, smaarak, and a magnificent view, Moti Magri has a hall of heroes which consists of 20 large paintings on the history of Mewar and modals of Chittaurgarh and Haldighati battle. To know more about the brave horse of Maharana Pratap, Chetak, click here.

 

Ghanta Ghar

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Ghantya Ghar

Ghanta Ghar which is also called clock tower was built around 130 years back by Maharana Sajjan Singh. The reason for it being built was a conflict between Bohra and Mahajan religion. Then Maharana made them pay 5000 Rs. Each as a penalty and this money was used to build the Ghanta Ghar. That is the reason why Ghanta Ghar is called to be made from the sum of ‘Nazrana and Jhurmana’ (Penalties and punishments). The clock used in it was imported from London. The architecture of the clock is unique and splendid. The length of Ghanta Ghar is around 50 feet. It was city’s first public watch. Know more about Ghanta Ghar here.

 

Sas Bahu Temple

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: pinterest

Sas Bahu or if we refer it to its full name which is Sahastra Bahu is a temple of Lord Vishnu. It is at a distance of 17 km from the city in Nagda. Sas Bahu temple was built back in 10th century AD. Nagda was once an important city for Mewar. It was probably the capital of some Mewar ruler back then. The temple is surrounded by Bagela Lake. Although the temple is now in ruins, one can easily see the magnificent architecture and the beautiful carvings on the walls of the temple. To know more about Sas Bahu temple, click here.

 

Eklingji temple

Historical Places in Udaipur and the History Behind Them
Source: Udaipur tourism

Eklingji temple was built by Bappa Rawal who was also the founder of Sisodia clan in Mewar. The original temple was built by Bappa Rawal but it has been renovated and refurbished by the successive rulers. It is said that Bappa Rawal was a firm devotee of Lord Vishnu and that he dedicated his entire kingdom in the feet of the deity. He proclaimed that the kingdom is of the deity and he is ruling it on behalf of the deity. The temple was attacked by the enemies several times but it got rebuilt and reconstructed repeatedly. To know more about Eklingji temple, click here.

 

Jag Mandir Palace

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: Trip advisor

Jag Mandir Palace is a palace built amidst the Lake Pichola on an island. It was earlier called Gul Mahal. The history of Jag Mandir Palace is dated back to the year 1623. Maharana Karan Singh (1605-1627) extended a helping hand to protect Emperor Shahjahan (before he became the Mughal emperor) from the danger of getting thawed in his campaign. Initially, he was kept safe in city palace along with his wife Mumtaz Mahal and his two children Prince Aurangzeb and Prince Dara. After that, they were shifted to safe refuge, Gul Mahal. Gul Mahal was specially built for Shahjahan. It is said that the inspiration for one of the wonders of the world, Taj Mahal, came from Gul Mahal in Shahjahan’s mind. The palace is now converted into a resort. To know more about the Palace, Click here. 

 

Fateh Prakash Palace

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: booking.com

The palace was constructed by Fateh Singh who ruled Mewar from 1885 to 1935. The purpose of the palace back then was to serve the esteemed guests of the royal family during any royal functions. And the purpose has still not changed much. It is now converted into a heritage hotel where renowned people stay during their time in Udaipur.

You may also want to read Palaces and forts in Udaipur.

 

Lake Palace

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: travel triangle

Lake Palace was built under the direction of Maharana Jagat Singh during his ruling time from 1743 to 1746. It was initially called Jagat Niwas or Jan Niwas. Lake Palace was built as a winter palace by Jagat Niwas, however later on the successive rulers used it as a summer resort by holding their durbars in its courtyard. Now, it is converted into a luxury hotel where renowned guests and celebrities stay during their visit to Udaipur. To know more about Lake Palace, click here.

 

Shiv Niwas Palace

Historical places in Udaipur and the history behind them
Source: booking.com

The work of Shiv Niwas Palace was started by Maharana Sajjan Shambhu Singh and finished by his successor Maharana Fateh Singh at the beginning of 20th century. Initially, it was the royal guesthouse for all the royal guests coming to visit the Maharanas. In those times it hosted a number of royal gatherings which includes George V of the United Kingdom in 1905, and Edward the Prince of Wales. But later it became difficult for the royal family to afford the cost of large number of royal residencies that it owned and so along with the Lake Palace, they decided to convert it into an income-generating hotel.

You may also want to read A list of the Best Hotels and Resorts of Udaipur.

 

Mewar has always been rich when it comes to its history and culture. While most of us knew some of these places and their history behind, some of these were quite new for us, isn’t it? If you have any feedback regarding the article, you can either share it with us in the comment section below or write to me at juhee@udaipurblog.com.

Maharanas of Udaipur

“Many Indian capitals have greater claims of size or grandeur, many are wealthier by far, But none can boast a proud heritage. His Highness Maharana of Udaipur, direct descendant of the Sun God, a natural leader by birth and tradition of all the Indian princes of the Hindu faith…….and no city could be more lovely”   
                                                                      -The Secrets of India
                                 ( Gaumont-British Picture Corporation Limited, 1934)

Maharanas of Udaipur were indeed magnificent. Hereby we bring all about the Maharanas of Udaipur.

Eternal Mewar

                    Maharana Bhim Singh of Mewar (r. 1778-1828)


Maharana Bhim Singh Ji, Son of Maharana Ari Singh II, was the First Maharana of Udaipur and Twenty-Fifth Maharana of Mewar. He became King at a minor age of 10 years and during his minor years of age and even adulthood, he ruled under the inspection of his mother Rajmata Sardar Kunwar Jhali Ji. He inherited an unstable kingdom and it was the same during his reign. Marathas took off from the region, taking along all the riches and farmers too abandoned the region. Apparently, Maharana too was very broke to even get his sons married, which arguably were 32 in number. To deal with the financial mess, Maharana signed a treaty with Britishers which gave them full power over the kingdom. According to the treaty, a British agent will be appointed in the kingdom to see all the affairs with no interference of the King. It was a fortunate stroke of serendipity when Col. Tod was appointed as the British agent and during his time in Udaipur, kingdom experienced good returns on revenue. He believed that Maharana was rather slothful and least interested in ruling the kingdom effectively. Maharana died at an age of sixty in 1828.

     

Eternal Mewar

                    Maharana Jawan Singh of Mewar (r. 1828- 1838)


Maharana Jawan Singh Ji, son of Maharana Bhim Singh Ji, inherited a bankrupted kingdom and ruled for a very short time span of 10 years. The treaty signed by Maharana Bhim Singh Ji turned out to be insignificant as it did not serve the purpose. Maharana Jawan Singh Ji too tried hard to lift kingdom financially but failed and kingdom did not prosper significantly. At a young age of 17, Maharana died with no designated Heir.


                    Maharana Sardar Singh of Mewar (r. 1838-1842)



Due to the failure of the preceding king to choose an heir, Maharana Sardar Singh Ji, the successor of Maharana Sangram Singh Ji II, was chosen as the King. He then went on to rule Udaipur but he died only after 3 years of sitting on the throne and left behind obsolescent kingdom.

Eternal Mewar

                    Maharana Swaroop Singh of Mewar (r. 1842-1861)



Maharana Swaroop Singh Ji, younger brother of Maharana Sardar Singh Ji, was adopted and appointed the Heir as Maharana had no son. Swaroop Singh Ji inherited an unstable kingdom but brought about some reforms to get the state back on track. He introduced a new coinage, outlawed “Sati” tradition and brought some administrative reforms. He also gained the trust of Britishers by terminating rebellion in Nimbahera and Neemuch and providing the roof to British refugees. Kingdom started uplifting. He died soon after adopting Shambhu Singh as his appointed heir.

 

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                    Maharana Shambhu Singh of Mewar (r. 1861- 1874)



Maharana Shambhu Singh Ji, the successor of Maharana Sangram Singh Ji II, became a minor king of the comparatively progressive kingdom and when he attained full power, introduced various policies and reforms and the state blossomed. He got Military reassembled under his rule, formalized various policies to arrange administrative resources, institutionalized offices for temples and holy places and the first-ever school for girls was established in the state. “Sati Pratha” was on the path of termination as a legal practice and fines were introduced for practitioners. Infrastructure saw a surge this time as roads and railway tracks were constructed. He died at an early age of 27 years, leaving behind no heir.


Eternal Mewar

                    Maharana Sajjan Singh of Mewar (r. 1874- 1884)



Maharana Sajjan Singh Ji, the first cousin of Maharana Shambhu Singh Ji, inherited the kingdom after Shambhu Singh Ji’s death. Under his rule, true prosperity set its foot in the kingdom. Development of railway tracks, roads, and water supply took place, Schemes for afforestation, farming techniques, and irrigation were formalised, di-siltation of Lake Pichola was done post- floods in the region, the magnificent Sajjangarh Palace aka “monsoon palace” was built and Udaipur became the second city in India to have the Municipal Corporation after Bombay. Medical and educational institutions were developed, corruption was checked and guilty were executed. On the contrary, Maharana had a profound fondness for Art and Culture and he used to compose Dohas and Sawaiyas in Thumri, Folk, and Ghazal style. The book “Haqiqat Bahida” was the version of his daily journal. He had a short yet a remarkable reign period of a mere 10 years and these 10 years are written in Gold in the history of Udaipur.


Eternal Mewar

                    Maharana Fateh Singh of Mewar (r. 1884-1930)



Maharana Fateh Singh Ji, the descendant of the fourth son of Maharana Sangram Singh Ji II, was adopted by Maharana Sajjan Singh Ji as his appointed heir. He shaped and brought to life all his vision during his reign. He worked towards the path of the betterment of kingdom by modernizing and improving roads, railways, settlements, medical and educational facilities. He built the Majestic Shiv Niwas Palace, which is now a luxury hotel. Fateh Sagar Lake too came into existence after the extension of Dewali Lake when Connaught dam was built. He was a true Suryavanshi King, who did not believe in the graciousness of the “the Queen”. With an extraordinary life as “the Maharana”, he died at the age of 80 years.


Eternal Mewar

                    Maharana Bhopal Singh of Mewar (r. 1930-1955)



Maharana Bhopal Singh Ji, son of Maharana Fateh Singh Ji, became king when India was struggling for independence. He wholeheartedly supported the political and social modifications that were taking place in the country. He institutionalized schools and colleges in the kingdom, especially for girls and also took care of the natural beauty of Udaipur. He constructed Bhopal Singh Dam and several projects for afforestation in the Aravalli region. After independence, he merged the kingdom with the Rajasthan Union and was appointed as “Maharaj Pramukh” of it by Indian Government. Even though being physically inefficient, as he was paralyzed from the waist down, he was no less than any ruler in terms of greatness and courage. He adopted Bhagwat Singh as his appointed heir and died soon after.


Eternal Mewar Blog

                    Maharana Bhagwat Singh of Mewar (r. 1955-1984)



Maharana Bhagwat Singh Ji, the fourth son of Maharana Sangram Singh II, steered the kingdom according to the changing times as independent India was witnessing a number of transformations then. In 1970, Royal titles and grants were being abolished and Maharana became Mr. Bhagwat Singh Mewar. A true visionary who believed in the welfare, he decided to sell the royal forts and palaces in order to maintain them the way they were. Jag Niwas was converted into Lake Palace Hotel and other estates on the shore of Lake Pichola like Fateh Prakash and Jag Mandir too were sold off. He died in 1984 and thus was the last Maharana of Udaipur.


With the intellect and initial efforts of our Kings, Udaipur is now amongst the most beautiful cities in the world where people live in harmony with each other. Culturally, traditionally, naturally and in every aspect, a city could be, Udaipur is perfect!

 

Sources:

http://www.eternalmewarblog.com/rulers-of-mewar/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Udaipur_State#Maharanas

Mewar in the History of the World | In the Words of Ancient Travellers

Mewar and its lineage have been in light since ancient times for its greatness and grandeur. In classical India, it was said, that “The Maharana of Udaipur is the Sun of Hindutva.” Many ancient travelers visited our land and wrote about the glory and dignity of the state of Mewar. This time we bring you the excerpts (translated in English) from various ancient “Safarnamas” in which the visitors from faraway lands sang about the glory of Mewar.

Xuanzang– The traveler from China

About– He was a Buddhist monk, scholar, and traveler and visited India in 621 AD. He, in his book, mentioned about Vallabhi (presently a district in Gujarat) which was once the capital of ancestral kings of Udaipur. After the rampage and destruction in the city due to some battle, Mewar was properly formed.

Mewar in the History of the World
Source: Pinterest

Excerpt– “The lifestyle of people is somewhat influenced by Malwa region. There are undoubtedly 100 millionaires. The precious goods from all over the world can be seen here. The current king is the nephew of King Shiladitya of Malwa. His name is Dhruv Pat, and he is cheerful and, a bit, hot-tempered man. He seems to be least interested in ruling the kingdom. Every year, he holds a congregation, and he distributes precious jewels and exquisite food for seven days. He adores all the saints and deities with three dresses and medicines or equally valuable jewelry made of all seven kinds of precious stones. The king finds kindness as the greatest and he truly respects all those who are regarded as highly intellectual in the kingdom. He also honors all the monks and priests who come from foreign lands.”

Sulaiman-Al-Tajir – The traveler from Iran

About– Sulaiman was Muslim merchant, traveler, and writer from Iran and used to write in the Arabic language. He visited India and China in 851 AD. His Arabian works were translated in French and English by a French writer, Eusebius Renaudat.

Mewar in the History of the World
Source: WikiVisually

Excerpt– “People of India and China believe that there are four most powerful kings in the world. In descending order of their power, the four kings are:

1) The King of Arabia

2) The King of China

3) The King of Greece

4) Balhara (the King of Mewar)

The Balhara is quite famous in India. All the Kings in India rule independently and are under no other king but they believe him to be the greatest. They honour him greatly. Like the King of Arab, he too distributes the gratuity lavishly. He owns many elephants and horses and possesses a ludicrous amount of treasure. Many of these kings lived for many years and some even ruled more than 50 years. Such is his generosity that even though the state is surrounded by enemy states, Balhara never orders the attack”

*Balhara is not any king particularly but all the kings of the clan were referred as Balhara.

François Bernier– The traveler from Paris

About– Mr. Bernier was a French physician and traveler. For a brief period of time, he was the personal physician of Dara Shikoh, the eldest son of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. After Dara Shikoh’s death, he was appointed to the court of Emperor Aurangzeb where he served for 12 years. He stayed in India from 1652-1669. He wrote about his experiences in India in his book, “Travels in the Mughal Empire” and wrote the following excerpt about Mewar and its bounty.

Mewar in the History of the World
Source: Alchetron

Excerpt– “There are more than 100 Kings who do not pay“Khiraj”. They are scattered all over the state with some being near and far from Agra and Delhi. Among them, 15-16 kings are unbelievably rich and strong, Especially, “Rana”, who was known as the “King of Kings” formerly and is known to be the descendant of King Porus*. If Rana, Jai Singh (King of Alwar) and Jaswant Singh (King of Marwar), join hands against Mughal Empire, they can be a huge threat to Mughal Empire because at a time, they possess, with them, the ability to take 20,000 soldiers to a battle. Nobody is as capable as these soldiers. They are known as “Sawaar-Rajput” (as in mounted on horses) and their warrior craftsmanship has been inherited from their warrior ancestors. The “Jagir” is given in the state at only one condition that whenever Times call (battle or a war), they should at once go wherever king orders them to.”

* In Col. Tod’s times, Sisodia Clan of Mewar claimed lineage from King Porus but these claims were based only on the fact that names of the descendants had supposed similarity with King Porus’s name.

Charles Umpherston Aitchison– Lieutenant Governor of Punjab from Scotland

About– Mr. Aitchison was born in 1832 in Edinburgh. In 1885 he took India’s first Civil Services Examinations and secured the fifth position. After several positions in and around Amritsar, he went on to become Lieutenant Governor of Punjab. He is also the founder of infamous Aitchison College, Lahore which was founded in 1886.

Mewar in the History of the World
Source: Revolvy

Excerpt– “The Royal Clan of Udaipur is the most prestigious and supreme amongst all the Rich Rajputs of India. King of Udaipur is said to be the descendant of the Ayodhya’s Raja Ram. This Royal Clan was founded by Raja Kanaksen of Vallabhi in 144 AD. The Kings of Dungarpur and Pratapgarh emerged from this Clan. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who founded the power of Marathas, was the descendant of this clan. None was a dominion in India which could fight Muslims (Mughals) with such valor and bravery as this clan did. They took pride in the fact that they never married any of their daughters with a Muslim (Mughals) King and for quite some time, broke all the marriage-related affairs with those Rajput dominions who married off their daughters to Muslims (Mughals).”

John Malcolm– The Governor of Bombay from Scotland

About- Sir John Malcolm was born in 1769 in Eskdale, Scotland. He arrived at Madras in 1783 and was positioned as a regimental soldier in the Army of East India Company. He was appointed Governor of Bombay in 1827. He finally went back to Britain in 1831. In his memoir, “Central India,” he wrote the following excerpt related to Mewar.

Mewar in the History of the World
Source: Wikpedia

Excerpt- He wrote about the King Of Malwa, Mahmood Khilji that “Khilji was captured by Rana Kumbha of Chittor and after some time he was mercy-released by him and his territories too were given back to him. Almost all the memoirs written till this time, have in them that how Rajput Kings used to have a huge victory over Muslim Kings again and again.”

Abul Fazl– The Author of Akbarnama

About- Shaikh Abu al-Fazal ibn Mubarak was the Prime Minister of Akbar and Author of the official written record of Akbar’s days as a Monarch. He was also amongst the nine gems of Akbar. The following excerpt is from Akbarnama.

Mewar in the History of the World
Source: Baha’i Culture

Excerpt- “After Badshah’s Procession, even the Kings, who never served beneath any King, accepted to serve Akbar. But Rana Udai Singh, the oldest, the bravest and the one who built an empire through mountains, denied serving Badshah. As a result, Badshah had to capture the Fort of Chittorgarh.”

And so there might be very few Arabic, Persian, Urdu and Hindi books of Indian History which does not have in them the Greatness of Ranas of Udaipur written. There are numerous reasons as to why their greatness is so much celebrated. Firstly, The Chandravanshi and Suryavanshi Kings were said to be “The Greatest” in ancient India, especially the descendants of Raja Ramchandra and Royal Clan of Udaipur is said to be amongst the very first branches of this dynasty. And secondly, there are numerous accounts in history where this dynasty showcased its gallantry and valor by fighting Mughals bravely rather than surrender. Mewar and its Kings were, in a true sense, Royal because from generation to generation, each and every king brought nothing but prosperity and richness to Mewar.