Ajmer

Ajmer (अजमेर; pronounced [ədʒmeːr] (listen)) is one of the major and oldest cities in the Indian state of Rajasthan and the centre of the eponymous Ajmer District. It is located at the centre of Rajasthan and is an important tourist spot. According to the 2011 census, Ajmer had a population of 542,321 in the city, 551,101 including its suburbs.[2]

The city was established as "Ajayameru"(Translated as 'Invincible Hills') by a Shakambhari Chahamana (Chauhan) ruler, either Ajayaraja I or Ajayaraja II, and served as the Chahamana capital until the 12th century CE.[3][4]

Ajmer is surrounded by the Aravalli Mountains. It is the base for visiting Pushkar (11 km), an ancient Hindu pilgrimage city, famous for the temple of Lord Brahma. Ajmer had been a municipality since 1869.[5] The nearby town of Kishangarh stands as one of the largest markets for marble and marble products.[6]

One of the early meetings between the Mughal King Jahangir and the Ambassador of the Court of Queen Elizabeth, Sir Thomas Roe, took place here in 1616.

Ajmer has been selected as one of the heritage cities for the HRIDAY - Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana [7] and Smart City Mission schemes of Government of India.[8][9]

Ajmer
Ajayameru[1]
Metropolis
Dargah of moinuddin chishti
Mayo college in a sunny day
Ajmer is located in India
Ajmer
Ajmer
Ajmer is located in Rajasthan
Ajmer
Ajmer
Coordinates: 26°27′00″N 74°38′24″E / 26.4499°N 74.6399°ECoordinates: 26°27′00″N 74°38′24″E / 26.4499°N 74.6399°E
CountryIndia
StateRajasthan
DistrictAjmer
Founded byAjayaraja I or Ajayaraja II
Named forAjayaraja I or Ajayaraja II
Government
 • BodyAjmer Development Authority (ADA), Ajmer Municipal corporation (AMC)
Elevation1574.8480 m (1,570 ft)
Population (2011)[2]
 • Metropolis542,321
 • Urban5,51,101
Languages
 • OfficialHindi
 • RegionalMarwari, English
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
PIN305001 to 305023
Telephone code0145, +91145
Vehicle registrationRJ-01(Ajmer)

RJ-36 (Beawar) RJ-42 (Kishangarh)

RJ-48 (Kekri)
Nearest cityJaipur, Udaipur, Jodhpur
Websitewww.ajmer.rajasthan.gov.in

History

Jahangir Receives Prince Khurram at Ajmer on His Return from the Mewar Campaign
Jahangir receives Prince Khurram at Ajmer on his return from the Mewar campaign

Ajmer was originally known as Ajayameru.[10] The 12th century text Prithviraja Vijaya states that the Shakambhari Chahamana (Chauhan) king Ajayaraja II (ruled c. 1110 – 1135 CE) established the city of Ajayameru.[4] Historian Dasharatha Sharma notes that the earliest mention of the city's name occurs in Palha's Pattavali, which was copied in 1113 CE (1170 VS) at Dhara. This suggests that Ajmer was founded sometime before 1113 CE.[11] A prashasti (eulogistic inscription), issued by Vigraharaja IV and found at Adhai Din Ka Jhonpra, states Ajayadeva (that is, Ajayaraja II) moved his residence to Ajmer.[3]

The later text Prabandha-Kosha states that it was the 8th century king Ajayaraja I who commissioned the Ajayameru fort, which later came to be known as the Taragarh fort of Ajmer.[4] According to historian R. B. Singh, this claim appears to be true, as inscriptions dated to the 8th century CE have been found at Ajmer.[12] Singh theorizes that Ajayaraja II later expanded the town area, constructed palaces, and moved the Chahamana capital from Shakambhari to Ajmer.[13]Mughal prince Dara Shikoh was born here in 1615. Jahanara Begum powerful mughal princess also born here.

During Colonial times Ajmer city served as the headquarters of Ajmer - Merwara Province and possessed a Central jail, a large General Hospital, and two smaller hospitals according to Gazetteer, 1908 .It was the head-quarters of a native regiment and of a Railway Volunteer corps.From 1900s ,The United Free Church of Scotland, the church of England, the Roman Catholics, and the American Episcopal Methodists have mission establishments here.[14] At that time there were twelve printing presses in the city, from which eight weekly newspapers were published.[15]

At the time of Independence Ajmer Continued as a separate state with its own legislature until its merger with erstwhile Rajputana province then called Rajasthan.The Legislature of Ajmer State was housed in the building which now houses T.T. College .It had 30 MLAs. and Haribhau Upadhaya was the first Chief Minister of the erstwhile state and Bhagirath Chaudhary as the first Vidhan Sabha Speaker.In 1956, After acceptance of the proposal by Fazil Ali , Ajmer was merged into Rajasthan to form Ajmer District with addition of Kishangarh sub-division of Jaipur district.[16]

Other Name in Literature

Gujarati Historic Novel named Gujaratno Jay written by Zaverchand Meghani based on various Jain Prabandhas describes city as Sapadlakshan(સપાદલક્ષણ).[17]

Geography

Ajmer is in the northwest of India and is surrounded by the Aravali Mountains. It is situated on the lower slopes of the Taragarh Hill of that range. To the northwest is the massive Nagapathar Range of the Aravali Mountain Ranges which protects it from desertification from the Thar Desert.

Climate

Ajmer has a hot, semi-arid climate with over 55 centimetres (22 inches) of rain every year, but most of the rain occurs in the monsoon months, between June and September. Temperatures remain relatively high throughout the year, with the summer months of April to early July having an average daily temperature of about 30 °C (86 °F). During the monsoon there is frequent heavy rain and thunderstorms, but flooding is not a common occurrence. The winter months of November to February are mild and temperate with average temperatures ranging from 15–18 °C (59–64 °F) with little or no humidity. There are, however, occasional cold weather fronts that cause temperatures to fall to near freezing levels.Amid the desert, Situated in Valley Ajmer looks like Oasis with greenery and surrounding Hills.

Climate data for Ajmer
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 22.9
(73.2)
25.7
(78.3)
31.3
(88.3)
36.5
(97.7)
39.7
(103.5)
38.4
(101.1)
33.6
(92.5)
31.3
(88.3)
32.6
(90.7)
33.5
(92.3)
29.2
(84.6)
24.7
(76.5)
31.6
(88.9)
Average low °C (°F) 7.6
(45.7)
10.5
(50.9)
16.0
(60.8)
22.2
(72)
26.8
(80.2)
27.5
(81.5)
25.6
(78.1)
24.4
(75.9)
23.7
(74.7)
18.0
(64.4)
12.3
(54.1)
8.4
(47.1)
18.6
(65.5)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 7.3
(0.287)
6.0
(0.236)
5.0
(0.197)
4.0
(0.157)
15.7
(0.618)
58.1
(2.287)
181.5
(7.146)
157.5
(6.201)
73.0
(2.874)
13.1
(0.516)
4.0
(0.157)
3.8
(0.15)
529
(20.826)
Source: IMD[18]

Transportation

Pushkar ghati (LongShot)
Pushkar Valley that connects Pushkar and Ajmer in the Aravalli Mountains

Air

Work on the Kishangarh Airport near Ajmer was inaugurated by Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in September 2013.[19] The airport was inaugurated by Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha and Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on 11 October 2017.[20] From 8 Oct. 2018 daily flights commenced from Ajmer to Delhi.

Rail

Ajmer is well connected by railways. The Ajmer Junction is the main railway station situated in the city.[21] and was built during colonial times.

Landmarks and monuments

A view of ajmer city
View of Ajmer From Taragarh Fort.
  • Pushkar : Located few kilometres from Ajmer, is an important tourist and pilgrimage destination and a satellite town of Ajmer city. It is famous for Pushkar Lake and the 14th century Brahma Temple at Pushkar, dedicated to Brahmā, according to the Padma Purāņa, Pushkar is important pilgrimage site for Lord Brahmā.[22]
  • Taragarh Fort : It is reputed to be the oldest hill fort in India . It stands, with precipitous surroundings, at a height of 2,855 ft. above sea-level, and between 1,300 and 1,400 ft. above the valley at its base; and it is partially enclosed by a wall some 20 feet thick and as many high, built of huge blocks of stone, cut and squared and are about two miles (3 km) in circumference.This hill fort guarding Ajmer, was the seat of the Chauhan rulers. I. It was built by King Ajaypal Chauhan on the summit of Taragarh Hill and overlooks Ajmer. The battlements run along the top of the hill. and the fort can only be approached by way of a very steep slope. When it fell to the British Raj, the fort was dismantled on the orders of Lord William Bentinck in 1832 and was converted into a sanatorium for the British troops stationed at the garrison town of Nasirabad.and Mhow[23] Within it stands the shrine of a Muhammadan saint, Saiyid Husain, known as the Ganj Shahldan.In the older city, lying in the valley beneath the Taragarh hill and now abandoned, the Nur-chashma, a garden-house used by the Mughals, still remains, as also a water-lift commenced by Maldeo Rathor, to raise water to the Taragarh citadel.[5]
Dargah of moinuddin chishti
Dargah Sharif Ajmer
  • Ajmer Sharif Dargah : It is a shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti which is situated at the foot of the Taragarh hill, and consists of several white marble buildings arranged around two courtyards, including a massive gate donated by the Nizam of Hyderabad, and the Akbari Mosque, built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan and containing the domed tomb of the saint. Akbar and his queen used to come here by foot every year on pilgrimage from Agra in observance of a vow when he prayed for a son. The large pillars called "Kose ('Mile') Minars", erected at intervals of about two miles (3 km) along the entire way between Agra and Ajmer mark the places where the royal pilgrims halted every day , they are also seen today , one such is near private bus stand in Ajmer City.[23] About 125,000 pilgrims visit the site every day. The Urs of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti is celebrated every year on the 6th and 7th of Rajab.
  • Soni Ji Ki Nasiyaan : It is architecturally rich Jain temple built in the late nineteenth century whose main chamber Swarna Nagari "City of Gold", has prominent depiction of Ayodhya made from 1000 kg of gold.[24]
Ayodhya Nagri
Swarna Nagari in Soniji Ki Nasiyan
  • Mayo College: The college was founded in 1875 at the suggestion of Lord Mayo as a college where the sons of chiefs and nobles might receive an education to fit them for their high positions and important duties.[25] It was known as "Indian Eton", as a number of Indian princes studied in this college. The main building, in white marble, is a classic example of Indo-Saracenic architecture. In front of the college is memorial marble statue of Lord Mayo. The boarding-houses are arranged in the form of a horseshoe, with the college in the centre of the base. . Some of the Native States built boarding-houses, while the Government of India presented the college park, comprising 167 acres and formerly the site of the old Residency, and erected the main building, the residences of the principal and vice-principal, and the Ajmer boarding- house. It provided the salaries of the English staff. The foundation-stone of the college was laid in 1878, and the building was opened by the Marquis of Dufferin in 1885.[25] John Lockwood Kipling, father of Nobel Laureate, Rudyard Kipling, had been principal of Mayo College.
Akbar Fort
  • Akbari Fort & Museum: The city's museum was once the residence of Prince Salīm, the son of the Emperor Akbar, and presently houses a collection of Mughal and Rajput armour and sculpture. This is a magnificent example of Mughal architecture, construction of which was commissioned by Akbar in 1570. This is where Salim, as the Emperor Jahangir, read out the firman permitting the British East India Company to trade with India.[26] It is a massive square building, with lofty octagonal bastions at each corner. It was the head-quarters of the administration in their time and in that of the Marathas. It was here that the emperors appeared in state, and that, as recorded by Sir Thomas Roe, criminals were publicly executed. The interior was used as a magazine during the British occupation until 1857; and the central building, used as a tahsil office. With the fort the outer city walls, of the same period, are connected.These surround the city and are pierced by the Delhi, Madar, Usri, Agra, and Tirpolia gates.[27]
Jain Temple-Ajmer
Nareli Jain Temple is a recent addition to Ajmer
  • Nareli Jain Temple: is a Jain temple complex of fourteen temples recently built. It is known for its architecture and intricate stone carvings which gives it both a traditional and contemporary look.[28]
    Anasagar Lake, Ajmer
    Baradari on Lake Anasagar
  • Anasagar Lake: This is an historic man-made lake built by Maharaja Anaji (1135–1150 AD).[29] By the lake is the Daulat Bagh, a garden laid out by Emperor Jahangir. Emperor Shah Jahan later added five pavilions, known as the Baradari, between the garden and the lake embankment of the Anasagar supports the beautiful marble pavilions erected as pleasure-houses by Shah Jahan. The embankment, moreover, contains the- site of the former hammam (bath-room).Three of the five pavilions were at one time formed into residences for British officials, while the embankment was covered with office buildings and enclosed by gardens. The houses and enclosures were finally removed in 1900-1902, when the two south pavilions were re-erected, the marble parapet completed, and the embankment restored, as far as practicable, to its early condition.
  • Lake Foy Sagar : It is a picturesque artificial lake that was created as a famine relief project in 1892 some 3 miles to the west of the city. It offers excellent views of Aravali mountains range as well migrating birds.[30] The city used to derive its water-supply from it during colonial times .The water was conveyed into the city and suburbs through pipes which were laid underground.The capacity of the lake is 150,000,000 cubic feet.
  • Prithviraj Smark : Prithviraj Smark is dedicated to Maharaja Prithviraj of Rajput Chauhan dynasty of Ajmer. It is located on the way to Taragarh Fort. This place has a life size statue of King Prithviraj Chauhan mounted on a horse.[31]
  • Victoria Clock Tower : Located just in front of the railway station this tower was built to mark jubilee of Queen Victoria in 1887.
Anasagar Lake, Ajmer
Baradari on Lake Anasagar

Education

Ajmer is called as the Education City of Rajasthan.[32] The Mayo College and the Government Arts college were the principal educational institutions in the Ajmer - Merwara during late 19 th century. Ajmer is also home to the prestigious Sophia Girls' School, Sophia College, and the historic Ajmer Music College, founded in 1942, the first accredited institution in Rajputana for teaching classical Hindustani music.

Other educational institutions from Pre- Independence times include Ajmer is ap: the Government College, Savitri Girls' School & College, D.A.V. College, Government High School, St. Mary's Convent Girls' School, King George Royal Indian Military School, St. Paul's School, St. Anslem's High School, Moinia Islamia High School, Oswal Jain High School, Husband Memorial High School, Govt. Central Girls' High School, Arya Putri Pathshala, and Saraswati Balika Vidyalaya.

The RBSE Is the oldest Board of Secondary Education in Rajaputana

Among the other accredited institutions currently in Ajmer include one of the four RIE, MDS University, JLN Medical College, Government Engineering College.

Demographics

Population growth of Ajmer 
CensusPop.
189168,800
190173,8007.3%
191186,20016.8%
1921113,20031.3%
1931119,5005.6%
1941147,30023.3%
1951196,30033.3%
1961231,20017.8%
1971264,30014.3%
1981374,40041.7%
1991402,7007.6%
2001485,19720.5%
2011542,32111.8%
source:[33][34][2]


[33][34][2]

The population of Ajmer city was 542,321 placing Ajmer in the top 100 major cities of India and 5th in Rajasthan. Including suburbs outside the city limits the population was 551,101. The female to male ratio in the city was 947/1,000. The literacy rate in the city was 86.52%, male literacy being 92.08% and female literacy being 80.69%.[2] Ajmer's population growth in the decade was 18.48%; this compares to a growth figure of 20.93% in the previous decade. [34]

Population growth through the years
Year Population
1891
68,800
1901
73,800
1911
86,200
1921
113,200
1931
119,500
1941
147,300
1951
196,300
1961
231,200
1968
265,200
1971
264,300
1981
374,400
1991
402,700
2001
485,197
2011
542,321

References

  1. ^ Majumdar, R.C. Volume 5: The Struggle for Empire. Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan. p. 107. |access-date= requires |url= (help)
  2. ^ a b c d e "Ajmer City Population Census 2011 | Rajasthan". www.census2011.co.in.
  3. ^ a b Har Bilas Sarda 1911, pp. 68-74.
  4. ^ a b c R. B. Singh 1964, p. 87.
  5. ^ a b "Ajmer City - Indpaedia". indpaedia.com. Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  6. ^ Rajnagar is the world's largest marble producing area,large number of gangsaws units are located in the nearby town of Kishangarh to process the materials produced, Indian Minerals Yearbook 2016 (Part- III : Mineral Reviews) (September 2018). "Indian Minerals Yearbook 2016 (Part- III : Mineral Reviews)". Mines Yearbook. GOVERNMENT OF INDIA MINISTRY OF MINES INDIAN BUREAU OF MINES. 55th.
  7. ^ "Hriday Cities | Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY)". www.hridayindia.in. Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  8. ^ "Smart City Program: Rajasthan - Smart Cities - RajRas.in". RajRas.in. 2018-01-25. Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  9. ^ "Introduction". Hriday official website.
  10. ^ "Ajmer Tourism: Places to Visit in Ajmer - Rajasthan Tourism". tourism.rajasthan.gov.in. Retrieved 2017-03-10.
  11. ^ Dasharatha Sharma 1959, p. 40.
  12. ^ R. B. Singh 1964, p. 88.
  13. ^ R. B. Singh 1964, pp. 131-132.
  14. ^ "#World Tourism Day 2018:सूफियत की महक और तीर्थनगरी पुष्कर की सनातन संस्कृति". www.patrika.com (in Hindi). Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  15. ^ THE IMPERIAL GAZETTEER OF INDIA , 1908. OUP. pp. Extract.
  16. ^ "Clipping of Patrika Group - Ajmer". Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  17. ^ Meghani, Zaverchand (April 2011). Gujaratno Jay. Ahmdabad: Gurjar Sahitya Bhavan. p. 62. ISBN 978-81-8461-481-7.
  18. ^ "Monthly mean maximum and minimum temperature and total rainfall of important cities (PDF)" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-04-13. Retrieved 2013-07-28.
  19. ^ "Focus on connecting small cities by air: Manmohan". The Hindu. 21 September 2013. Retrieved 2013-10-02.
  20. ^ "Kishangarh airport inauguration ends decade long wait of Ajmer residents: CM Raje". Deccan Chronicle. 12 October 2017. Retrieved 13 October 2017.
  21. ^ "Rajasthan finds favour in railway budget". The Hindu. 26 February 2010. Retrieved 7 June 2014.
  22. ^ PADMA PURANA - Significance of Pushkara Tirtha
  23. ^ a b  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Ajmere". Encyclopædia Britannica. 1 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 452–453.
  24. ^ "This Temple In Rajasthan Has A Golden Chamber Where 1000kg Of Gold Was Used To Carve Out Depictions Of Ayodhya. It's Truly Mesmerizing!". Daily Bhaskar. 24 Jul 2017. Retrieved 29 Jul 2017.
  25. ^ a b Mayo College, Ajmere - British Library
  26. ^ "Akbar Ka Kila, AJMER".
  27. ^ "Ajmer - Indpaedia". indpaedia.com. Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  28. ^ "Enlightenment completed the pilgrimage area - www.bhaskar.com". dainikbhaskar. Retrieved 14 April 2016.
  29. ^ Gopal, Madan (1990). K.S. Gautam, ed. India through the ages. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. p. 173.
  30. ^ The Future of Power - summary report, Ajmer - February 2014
  31. ^ Prithviraj Memorial Ajmer
  32. ^ "Ajmer Tourism: Places to Visit in Ajmer, Tour Package - Rajasthan Tourism". www.tourism.rajasthan.gov.in. Retrieved 2018-09-28.
  33. ^ a b "Historical Census of India".
  34. ^ a b c "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.

Bibliography

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