Ajmer (pronounced [ədʒmeːr] ) 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. It is also known as heart of Rajasthan. The city was established as Ajayameru (translated as "Invincible Hills") by a Chahamana ruler, either Ajayaraja I or Ajayaraja II, and served as their capital until the 12th century CE.[4][5]

Clockwise from the top:
Mayo College
Ajmer is located in India
Ajmer is located in Rajasthan
Coordinates: 26°27′00″N 74°38′24″E / 26.4499°N 74.6399°E / 26.4499; 74.6399
Country India
Founded byAjayaraja I or Ajayaraja II
Named forAjayaraja I or Ajayaraja II
 • TypeMunicipal Corporation
 • BodyAjmer Municipal Corporation
 • MayorBraj Lata Hada[1] (BJP)
 • City55 km2 (21 sq mi)
480 m (1,570 ft)
 • City542,321
 • Density9,900/km2 (26,000/sq mi)
 • Urban
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
305001 to 305023
Telephone code0145, +91145
Vehicle registrationRJ-01

Ajmer is surrounded by the Aravalli Mountains. Ajmer has been a municipality since 1869. Ajmer has been selected as one of the heritage cities for the HRIDAY[6] and Smart City Mission schemes of the Government of India.[7]

History edit

Jahangir receives Prince Khurram at Ajmer on his return from the Mewar campaign

Ajmer was originally known as Ajayameru. Maharaja of Parmar Rajputs founded the Ajmer city in the 11th-century, which was admired from Chahamana king Ajaydeva. 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.[8] A prashasti (eulogistic inscription), issued by Vigraharaja IV and found at Adhai Din Ka Jhonpra (Sanskrit college), states Ajayadeva (that is Ajayaraja II) moved his residence to Ajmer.[4]

A 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.[5] 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.[9] Singh theorizes that Ajayaraja II later expanded the town area, constructed palaces, and moved the Chahamana capital from Shakambhari to Ajmer.[10]

In 1193, Ajmer was annexed by the Ghurids and later was returned to Gaur Rajput rulers under condition of tribute.[11]

By 15th century Ajmer was captured by Mewar and in 1506 Ajja Jhala was appointed as the Governor of Ajmer.[12]

In 1556, Ajmer came under the Mughal Empire after being conquered by Mughal Emperor Akbar.[11] It was made the capital of the eponymous Ajmer Subah. The city enjoyed special favour under the Mughals, who made frequent pilgrimages to the city to visit the dargah of Moinuddin Chishti. The city was also used as a military base for campaigns against Rajput rulers, and on a number of occasions became the site of celebration when a campaign bore success. Mughal Emperors and their nobles made generous donations to the city, and endowed it with constructions such as Akbar's palace and pavilions along the Ana Sagar.[13][14][15] Their most prominent building activities were in the dargah and its vicinity.[16] Jahanara Begum and Dara Shikoh, children of Shah Jahan, were both born in the city in 1614 and 1615 respectively.[17][18]

Mughal patronage of the city had waned by the beginning of the 18th century.[19] In 1752, the Scindias conquered the city,[20] and in 1818, the British gained authority over the city.[11] A municipality was established at Ajmer in 1866.[21] Colonial-era Ajmer served as the headquarters of the Ajmer-Merwara Province and possessed a Central jail, a large General Hospital, and two smaller hospitals according to Gazetteer, 1908. It was the headquarters of a native regiment and of a Railway Volunteer corps. From the 1900s, the United Free Church of Scotland, the church of England, the Roman Catholics, and the American Episcopal Methodists have mission establishments here.[22] At that time there were twelve printing presses in the city, from which eight weekly newspapers were published.[23]

At the time of India's independence in 1947, 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 Upadhyay was the first chief minister of the erstwhile state, with 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 the addition of Kishangarh sub-division of Jaipur district.[24] [25]

Other names edit

A Gujarati historic Novel named Gujaratno Jay written by Zaverchand Meghani, based on various Jain Prabandhas, describes the city as sapādalakṣaṇa (સપાદલક્ષણ).[26]

Geography edit

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 Nagapathar Range of the Aravali Mountain Ranges which protects it from desertification from the Thar Desert.

Climate edit

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.

Climate data for Ajmer (1991–2020, extremes 1901–2020)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 32.6
Mean maximum °C (°F) 29.1
Mean daily maximum °C (°F) 24.3
Mean daily minimum °C (°F) 9.5
Mean minimum °C (°F) 5.4
Record low °C (°F) −2.8
Average rainfall mm (inches) 5.0
Average rainy days 0.6 0.8 0.4 0.8 1.8 3.3 8.5 8.1 3.9 0.8 0.2 0.2 29.3
Average relative humidity (%) (at 17:30 IST) 32 25 17 15 18 32 57 64 49 28 31 34 34
Average ultraviolet index 5 6 7 9 9 8 7 7 7 6 6 5 7
Source 1: India Meteorological Department[27][28] Climate of Ajmer[29][30]
Source 2: Weather Atlas[31]

Transportation edit

Pushkar Valley that connects Pushkar and Ajmer in the Aravalli Mountains

Air edit

The Kishangarh Airport is the nearest airport. It is 25 km from Ajmer city. The Ajmer Airport ground breaking ceremony was done by then Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh in 2012. The airport was finally completed and inaugurated by then Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha and Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on 11 October 2017.[32] The airport is operational since then and regular flights to/from Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Indore and Surat are currently available. The airport is now amongst main and busy airports of Rajasthan. Currently SpiceJet and Star Air operate from Ajmer Airport on daily basis. Kishangarh Airport, Ajmer is being managed and operated by Airports Authority of India (AAI).

The Jaipur International Airport which is 135 km from Ajmer is the nearest international airport.

Rail edit

The Ajmer Junction is the main railway station situated in the city.[33] It was built during colonial times.

Tourism edit

View of Ajmer from Taragarh Fort
Dargah Sharif Ajmer
A Hindu Style Pillar in Adhai Din Ka Jhopara Monument.
Swarna Nagari in Soniji Ki Nasiyan
Akbari Fort and Museum
Nareli Jain Temple is a recent addition to Ajmer
Baradari on Lake Anasagar
Tomb of Khwaja Husain Ajmeri
  • Pushkar: Located a few kilometres from Ajmer, it is an important tourist and pilgrimage destination and a satellite town of Ajmer city. It is famous for the Pushkar Lake and the 14th century Brahma Temple at Pushkar, dedicated to Brahma. According to the Padma Purana, Pushkar is an important pilgrimage site of Brahma, and is regarded to be the only major shrine dedicated to the deity.[34]
  • 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. 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. 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.[35] 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.
  • 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" (Kos Minar), 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 station in Ajmer City.[35] 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.
  • Adhai Din Ka Jhonpra: Literally meaning "shed of two-and-a-half days", it is an ASI protected monument near Ajmer Sharif Dargah and a converted mosque built after the partial destruction of earlier Hindu and Jain temples there on orders of Muhammad Ghori after he defeated Prithviraj Chauhan at the second battle of Tarain.Originally built as a Sanskrit college, the mosque underwent a transformative evolution in the 12th century under the reign of Qutb-ud-Din-Aibak.[36][37][38]
  • 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.[39] 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.[39] John Lockwood Kipling, father of Nobel Laureate, Rudyard Kipling, had been principal of Mayo College.
  • 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.[40]
  • 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.[41] It is a massive square building, with lofty octagonal bastions at each corner. It was the headquarters 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.
  • 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.[42]
  • Ana Sagar Lake: This is an historic man-made lake built by Maharaja Anaji (1135–1150 CE).[43] 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 Ana Sagar 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.The Baradari has since been closed for the public because of increased crowd and pollution caused by people.A new garden called Subhash Udhyan has been opened in the recent years in place of Baradari.
  • 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.[44] 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 Prithviraj Chauhan. It is located on the way to Taragarh Fort. This place has a life-size statue of King Prithviraj Chauhan mounted on a horse.[45]
  • Tomb of Khwaja Husain Ajmeri: Khwaja Husain Ajmeri also known as Shaikh Husain Ajmeri, he was a Grandson of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishty of Ajmer from the line of Khwaja Fakhruddin's son Khwaja Husamuddin Jigar Sokhta, he was SajjadaNasheen and Mutwalli[46] of Ajmer Dargah before and during the time of Emperor Akbar and Emperor Jahangir, his tomb is situated near the Sola Khamba (Tomb of Khwaja Alauddin another grandson of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishty of Ajmer), Behind Shahjahani Mosque Dargar Sharif Ajmer, he died sometime between the year 1619 and 1620. his tomb was built in the year 1637–38.
  • Manibandh : Also known as Chamunda Mata Mandir is one among the 108 Shakti Pitha at Gayatri hills near Pushkar, 11 km from Ajmer. It takes 14 minutes to travel from Pushkar Lake to Chamunda Mata Mandir (about 5–6 km)
  • Sri Nimbark Peeth : Located in Salemabad it is the principal seat of Sri Nimbarka Sampradaya.

Education edit

The city has many schools and colleges. Among them, Mayo College is a prominent college. The regional office of CBSE is located here.[47]

Administration edit

Divisional Commissner of Ajmer is Shri Bhanwar Lal Mehra and District Collector is Mr. Ansh Deep.[48]

Demographics edit

Religions in Ajmer
Religion Percent
Historical population
1891 68,800—    
1901 73,800+7.3%
1911 86,200+16.8%
1921 113,200+31.3%
1931 119,500+5.6%
1941 147,300+23.3%
1951 196,300+33.3%
1961 231,200+17.8%
1968 265,200+14.7%
1971 264,300−0.3%
1981 374,400+41.7%
1991 402,700+7.6%
2001 485,197+20.5%
2011 542,321+11.8%
Source: [49][50][3]

According to the 2011 census, Ajmer had a population of 542,321 in the city, 551,101 including its suburbs.[3]

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%.[3]

Ajmer's population growth in the decade was 18.48%; this compares to a growth figure of 20.93% in the previous decade.[50]

Villages edit

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "Braj Lata Hada of BJP was elected mayor of the Ajmer Muncipa". Times of India. 8 February 2021. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  2. ^ "AMC".
  3. ^ a b c d "Ajmer City Population Census 2011 | Rajasthan". www.census2011.co.in.
  4. ^ a b Har Bilas Sarda 1911, pp. 68–74.
  5. ^ a b R. B. Singh 1964, p. 87.
  6. ^ "Hriday Cities | Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY)". www.hridayindia.in. Archived from the original on 28 September 2018. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
  7. ^ "Introduction". Hriday official website. Archived from the original on 26 August 2015. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  8. ^ Dasharatha Sharma 1959, p. 40.
  9. ^ R. B. Singh 1964, p. 88.
  10. ^ R. B. Singh 1964, pp. 131–132.
  11. ^ a b c "Ajmer". Encyclopaedia Britannica. Archived from the original on 6 September 2015. Retrieved 21 October 2020.
  12. ^ Girase, Jaypalsingh (2 August 2020). Rashtragaurav Maharana Pratapsingh: Ek Aprajit Yoddha (in Hindi). Notion Press. ISBN 978-1-64919-952-2.
  13. ^ Asher, Catherine B. (24 September 1992). Architecture of Mughal India. Cambridge University Press. pp. 77–80. doi:10.1017/chol9780521267281. ISBN 978-0-521-26728-1.
  14. ^ Asher, Catherine B. (24 September 1992). Architecture of Mughal India. Cambridge University Press. pp. 118–122. doi:10.1017/chol9780521267281. ISBN 978-0-521-26728-1.
  15. ^ Asher, Catherine B. (24 September 1992). Architecture of Mughal India. Cambridge University Press. pp. 170 & 174–178. doi:10.1017/chol9780521267281. ISBN 978-0-521-26728-1.
  16. ^ Asher, Catherine B. (24 September 1992). Architecture of Mughal India. Cambridge University Press. p. 220. doi:10.1017/chol9780521267281. ISBN 978-0-521-26728-1.
  17. ^ Government of India, MoC. "IndianCulture". indianculture.gov.in. MoC, IIT Bombay, IGNOU. Retrieved 21 October 2021.
  18. ^ Singhal, Shruti (ed.). "thebetterindia". thebetterindia.com. thebetterindia. Retrieved 21 October 2021.
  19. ^ Asher, Catherine B. (24 September 1992). Architecture of Mughal India. Cambridge University Press. p. 310. doi:10.1017/chol9780521267281. ISBN 978-0-521-26728-1.
  20. ^ Currie, Peter Mark (1 October 2009), "Ajmer", Encyclopaedia of Islam, THREE, Brill, doi:10.1163/1573-3912_ei3_com_23249, retrieved 14 December 2021
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  22. ^ "#World Tourism Day 2018:सूफियत की महक और तीर्थनगरी पुष्कर की सनातन संस्कृति". www.patrika.com (in Hindi). Retrieved 28 September 2018.
  23. ^ THE IMPERIAL GAZETTEER OF INDIA, 1908. OUP. pp. Extract.
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  25. ^ Hooja, Rima (29 October 2023). A History of Rajasthan. Rupa & Company. p. 1166. ISBN 9788129108906.
  26. ^ Meghani, Zaverchand (April 2011). Gujaratno Jay. Ahmdabad: Gurjar Sahitya Bhavan. p. 62. ISBN 978-81-8461-481-7.
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  28. ^ "Extremes of Temperature & Rainfall for Indian Stations (Up to 2012)" (PDF). India Meteorological Department. December 2016. p. M173. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 February 2020. Retrieved 20 January 2021.
  29. ^ "Climate of Smart City - Ajmer" (PDF). India Meteorological Department. Retrieved 21 October 2022.
  30. ^ "Climatological Information - Ajmer(42343)". India Meteorological Department. Retrieved 12 August 2022.
  31. ^ "Climate and monthly weather forecast Ajmer, India". Weather Atlas. Retrieved 17 July 2022.
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  33. ^ "Rajasthan finds favour in railway budget". The Hindu. 26 February 2010. Retrieved 7 June 2014.
  34. ^ "PADMA PURANA - Significance of Pushkara Tirtha". Archived from the original on 7 April 2018. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  35. ^ 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. Vol. 1 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 452–453.
  36. ^ 8 must visit places in ajmer
  37. ^ "Deprecated (X)HTML Markup", HTML, XHTML & CSS for Dummies®, Hoboken, NJ, USA: Wiley Publishing, Inc., pp. 119–128, 1 November 2011, doi:10.1002/9781118257586.ch8, ISBN 978-1-118-25758-6, retrieved 19 March 2022
  38. ^ "The Sunday Tribune - Spectrum". www.tribuneindia.com. Retrieved 19 March 2022.
  39. ^ a b "Mayo College, Ajmere - British Library". Archived from the original on 7 April 2022. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  40. ^ "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 July 2017. Retrieved 29 July 2017.
  41. ^ "Akbar Ka Kila, AJMER".
  42. ^ "Enlightenment completed the pilgrimage area". dainikbhaskar. 4 April 2016. Retrieved 14 April 2016.
  43. ^ Gopal, Madan (1990). K.S. Gautam (ed.). India through the ages. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. p. 173.
  44. ^ "The Future of Power - summary report, Ajmer - February 2014" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 May 2017. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  45. ^ "Prithviraj Memorial Ajmer". Archived from the original on 7 April 2018. Retrieved 7 April 2018.
  46. ^ "Muntakhab-ut-Tawarikh - Google Search". www.google.com. Retrieved 21 April 2020.
  47. ^ "Over 3lakh to appear for CBSE exams from Ajmer region". The Times of India. 5 March 2018. Retrieved 14 February 2021.
  48. ^ "District Administration (DATA)".
  49. ^ "Historical Census of India". Archived from the original on 17 February 2013. Retrieved 22 March 2014.
  50. ^ a b "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 16 June 2004. Retrieved 1 November 2008.

Bibliography edit

External links edit