Udaipur city of Rajasthan, India is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is the most loved destination of many tourists and travelers worldwide. This city is known by different names such as Venice of the east, the city of lakes, Kashmir of Rajasthan, and White City. Do you know how the beautiful city Udaipur was built? In this article, you will get to know complete details about Udaipur History related to lakes and palaces.
How It All Started
On March 16 1556 Maharana Udai Singh Ji II who was the Rajput ruler of Mewar and father of the great warrior Maharana Pratap was blessed with a grandson Kunwar Amar Singh, on this joyous occasion Maharana Udai Singh Ji visited their worshipped deity ‘Eklinji’ temple, which is lord shiva’s temple situated in Udaipur, Eklingji was considered as the protector and first ruler of Mewar by the Rajput rulers of Mewar. After doing the Darshan he went for hunting towards the Ahar village, in the way he saw the Berach river flowing through the huge mountains and going towards the plain. Maharana suggested to his nobles and advisors that the current capital Chittor is situated on a single mountain due to which it gives a chance to the enemy to surround it for capture, also the ration supply also gets cut, if we establish our capital here in the Aravalli then there would be the advantage of adjoined hilly areas which proves beneficial during the war also the ration supply will remain uninterrupted, our forts will be more secured. All nobles agreed to his suggestion so he began the construction of some palaces towards the north of Present Udaipur. Some ruins of those palaces are still present with the name Moti Mahal.
The second day he again went out for hunting, he met a sage on a hill near Pichola lake, the sage advised him that if he establishes the city here then his generations will never lose control over the city. Maharana accepted his advice and decided to build the palace and city at this place, he laid the foundation of the palace at the place where the sage was sitting, that palace is known as paneda palace, the coronation ceremony use to take place in this palace only.
A canon was fired from a hill known as Machala Magra to signal the laying of the foundation and thus the development of the beautiful city commenced.
Construction Of Lakes
The beauty of Udaipur is by its lakes, the Lakes of Udaipur were bestowed by its rulers, almost all the lakes of Udaipur are man-made lakes, the lakes gradually got added during the reign of different maharanas(rulers), below is the detailed history of Lakes of Udaipur.
- Pichola Lake-The oldest lake in Udaipur is the Lake Pichola, this lake was constructed by Pichhu Banjara from the Banjara Tribe in 1362 A.D. Pichhu Banjara used to transport grains during the reign of Maharana Lakha. Pichola is the most important lake from the tourist point of view as the palace is constructed at its bank and the old city got developed around it. Doodh Talai, another small lake nearby Pichola is built by a Banjara tribe man for feeding the cattles.
- Udaisagar Lake-The first lake during the founding of Udaipur is the Udaisagar Lake constructed by Maharana Udai Singh 2 to fulfill the irrigation needs of the people of Udaipur. He constructed a dam at the Berach river and thus Udaisagar was formed.
- Subsequent maharanas added to the development of lakes like Amar Kund which is situated between Pichola and Rang sagar was built by the then prime minister of mewar Amar Chand Badwa, Rang Sagar lake was constructed by Maharana Raj Singh II, swaroop Sagar was built by Maharana Swaroop Sinit connects to Rang Sagar and Fatehsagar.
- Maharana Jai Singh constructed Asia’s biggest freshwater artificial lake, Badi lake was constructed by Maharana Raj Singh I to deal with the famines. Dhebar Lake or Jaisamand lake which is the world’s second-largest artificial lake was built by Maharana Jai Singh in 1682 .The Then Maharana Fatehsingh Ji organized the whole river network of Udaipur, he constructed the dam to form Fatehsagar, which was already created by Maharana Jai Singh Ji but at that time its shores got washed away due to flood. Maharana Fateh Singh Ji organized the whole water system of Udaipur and thus it became the world’s first man-made micro water system further subsequent maharana kept adding and developing the lakes and thus the beautiful city of lakes finally took its shape.
This is quite evident that the princely era rulers of Udaipur were so visionary and intelligent who managed to make such impeccable water management system and architecture which resulted in the creation of the world’s most beautiful city.