Jodhpur (/ˈdʒɒdpʊər/ About this sound Listen (help·info)) is the second largest city in the Indian state of Rajasthan. After its population crossed a million, it has been declared as the second "Metropolitan City" of Rajasthan. It was formerly the seat of a princely state of the same name, the capital of the kingdom known as Marwar. Jodhpur is a popular tourist destination, featuring many palaces, forts and temples, set in the stark landscape of the Thar Desert.
The city is known as the "Sun City" for the bright, sunny weather it enjoys all the year round. It is also referred to as the "Blue City" due to the vivid blue-painted houses around the Mehrangarh Fort. The old city circles the fort and is bounded by a wall with several gates. However, the city has expanded greatly outside the wall over the past several decades. Jodhpur lies near the geographic centre of Rajasthan state, which makes it a convenient base for travel in a region much frequented by tourists.
Jodhpur topped Lonely Planet’s list of most extraordinary places to stay in 2013. Tamil movie, I, which is the costliest Indian film to date, was also shot at Jodhpur.
According to Rajasthan district Gazetteers of Jodhpur and the Hindu epic Ramayana (composed up to the 4th century AD), Abhiras (Ahirs) were the original inhabitants of Jodhpur and later Aryans spread to this region.
Jodhpur was also part of the Gurjara–Pratihara Empire and until 1100 CE was ruled by a powerful Gurjar King. Jodhpur was founded in 1459 by Rao Jodha, a Rajput chief of the Rathore clan. Jodha succeeded in conquering the surrounding territory and thus founded a state which came to be known as Marwar. As Jodha hailed from the nearby town of Mandore, that town initially served as the capital of this state; however, Jodhpur soon took over that role, even during the lifetime of Jodha. The city was located on the strategic road linking Delhi to Gujarat. This enabled it to profit from a flourishing trade in opium, copper, silk, sandals, date palms and coffee.
In between 1540 to 1556, Afghans were in control of most of North India. Rajasthan born Hemu who started his career as a supplier of various types of merchandise to Sher Shah Suri empire, held various positions in capital Delhi as ‘Incharge of Food Affairs’, ‘Minister of Internal Security’, ‘Prime Minister-cum-Chief of Army’ with Islam Shah Suri and Adil Shah, who ruled north India from Punjab to Bengal at that point in time. Hemu, who took as the military commander of Afghan army in 1553, crushed the first rebellion, killing the Governor of Ajmer province Juneid Khan and appointed his own Governor in Rajasthan. Hem Chandra won several battles (22) throughout North India against Afghan rebels and twice against Akbar at Agra and Delhi, before his coronation at Purana Quila in Delhi on 7 October 1556 as a ‘Vikramaditya’ king. Hemu lost his life in the Second Battle of Panipat on 5 November 1556, and the area came under Mughal king Akbar.
Early in its history, the state became a fief under the Mughal Empire, owing fealty to them while enjoying some internal autonomy. During this period, the state furnished the Mughals with several notable generals such as Maharaja Jaswant Singh. Jodhpur and its people benefited from this exposure to the wider world: new styles of art and architecture made their appearance and opportunities opened up for local tradesmen to make their mark across northern India.
Aurangzeb briefly sequestrated the state (c.1679) on the pretext of a minority, but the rightful ruler Maharaja Ajit Singh was restored to the throne by Veer Durgadas Rathore after Aurangzeb died in 1707 and a great struggle of 30 years. The Mughal empire declined gradually after 1707, but the Jodhpur court was beset by intrigue; rather than benefiting from circumstances, Marwar descended into strife and invited the intervention of the Marathas, who soon supplanted the Mughals as overlords of the region. This did not make for stability or peace, however; 50 years of wars and treaties dissipated the wealth of the state, which sought and gratefully entered into subsidiary alliance with the British in 1818.
During the British Raj, the state of Jodhpur had the largest land area of any in Rajputana. Jodhpur prospered under the peace and stability that were a hallmark of this era. The land area of the state was 60,980 km2 its population in 1901 was 44,73,759. It enjoyed an estimated revenue of £35,29,000/. Its merchants, the Marwaris, flourished without let or limit and came to occupy a position of dominance in trade across India. In 1947, when India became independent, the state merged into the union of India and Jodhpur became the second city of Rajasthan.
At the time of partition, ruler of Jodhpur Hanwant Singh did not want to join India, but finally due to the effective persuasion of Sardar Vallab Patel, the then Home Minister at the centre, the princely state of Jodhpur was included in Indian Republic. Later after State Reorganisation Act, 1956 it was made part of the state of Rajasthan.
As per provisional reports of Census India, population of Jodhpur is 1,033,918 in 2011; of which male and female nearly constitute 52.62 percent and 47.38 percent respectively. Average literacy rate of Jodhpur city is 81.56 percent of which male and female literacy was 88.42 and 73.93 percent respectively. Total children under 6 years of age constitute nearly 12.24 percent of city population. Jodhpur city is governed by Municipal Corporation which comes under Jodhpur Urban Agglomeration. The Jodhpur Urban/Metropolitan area include Jodhpur, Kuri Bhagtasani, Mandore Industrial Area, Nandri, Pal Village and Sangariya. Its Urban/Metropolitan population is 1,137,815 of which 599,332 are males and 538,483 are females,On the date: 01/07/2015 the record of citypopulation.de website shows Jodhpur city is having Population of 1,300,000
The climate of Jodhpur is generally hot and semi-arid, but with a rainy season from late June to September (Köppen BShw). Although the average rainfall is around 450 millimetres, it is extraordinarily variable. In the famine year of 1899, Jodhpur received only 24 millimetres, but in the flood year 1917 it received as much as 1,178 millimetres.
Temperatures are extreme throughout the period from March to October, except when monsoonal rain produces thick clouds to lower it slightly. In the months of April, May and June, high temperatures routinely exceed 40 degrees Celsius. During the monsoon season, average temperatures decrease slightly. However, the city’s generally low humidity rises and this adds to the normal discomfort from the heat. Phalodi, near Jodhpur, is the driest place of the district as well as in the state.
The Handicrafts industry has in recent years eclipsed all other industries in the city. By some estimates, the furniture export segment is a $200 million industry, directly or indirectly employing as many as 200,000 people. Other items manufactured include textiles, metal utensils, bicycles, ink and sporting goods. A flourishing cottage industry exists for the manufacture of such items as glass bangles, cutlery, carpets and marble products.
After handicrafts, tourism is the second largest industry of Jodhpur. Crops grown in the district include wheat and the famous Mathania red chillies. Gypsum and salt are mined. The city serves as an important marketplace for wool and agricultural products. The Indian Air Force, Indian Army, Indo Tibetan Border Police and Border Security Force maintain training centres in Jodhpur.
The administration of Jodhpur consists of a District Collector, followed by 4 Additional District Magistrates (I, II, Land Conversion and City ADM). Presently, the Collector and District Magistrate is Dr. Preetam B. Yashwant (IAS). The city is also under Police Commissioner system, with Mr. Ashok Rathore (IPS) as Police Commissioner of the city.
The upcoming 9 MMTPA Refinery and Petrochemical complex to be set up by Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) in Pachpadra, Barmer will transform the industrial scene of the city drastically. Pachpadra lies just 60 kilometres from the industrial area of Boranada in Jodhpur. Around 120 by-products that are produced by the refinery are going to provide opportunities for new industries to be set up in and around Jodhpur.
India’s most ambitious industrial development project, the over USD 100 dollars Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor Project is also going to impact industry in Jodhpur. Marwar Junction which is located about 100 kilometres from Jodhpur will be one of the nine freight loading points along the DMIC route. Jodhpur and Pali districts fall under the region that is going to be developed as a manufacturing hub for the DMIC.
Jodhpur is the most important city of western Rajasthan and lies about 250 kilometres from the border with Pakistan. This location makes it an important base for the Indian army, Indian Air Force and Border Security Force (BSF). Jodhpur’s air base is Asia’s largest and one of the most critical and strategically located (Jodhpur Airport played the crucial role during Indo-Pakistan wars in 1965 &1971) airbases of the IAF deployed with fighter jets Sukhoi Su-30MKI and Advanced Light Helicopters Dhruv.
The city is famous for its food and its popularity can be judged from the fact that one can find sweet shops named ‘Jodhpur Sweets’ in many cities throughout India. Being at the onshore of Thar desert, life has been influenced with ways of the desert folks (gypsies can be found in many parts of the city).
Jodhpur’s attractions include Mehrangarh Fort, Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jaswant Thada, Ghanta Ghar (Clock Tower) and Flying Fox (Mehrangarh Fort). Tourists can make excursions to Mandore, Kaylana Lake and Garden, Balsamand Lake, Santoshi Mata Temple, Mahamandir, Siddhnath Mahadev, Achalnath Mahadev, Udai Mandir, Mandaleshwar Mahadev Temple (Mandalnath), Ratanada Ganesh Temple, Sardar Samand Lake and Palace, Masooria Hills, Rai Ka Bagh Palace, Veer Durgadas Smarak (monument, park and museum), Bhim Bhirak Cave.
The beautiful historic buildings and scenic landscapes of the city were featured in major films including The Dark Knight Rises directed by Christopher Nolan, and The Fall directed by Tarsem Singh, Hum Saath Saath Hain, Veer, and Shuddh Desi Romance. More recently, there have been many high-profile celebrations in the city including many celebrity weddings. This has given an impetus to a nascent lavish wedding industry and increased tourism.
A number of Indian delicacies have originated in Jodhpur. To name a few, the Makhaniya Lassi, Mawa Ki Kachori, Pyaaj Ki Kachori, Hot & Spicy Mirchi Bada (A preparation made with potato, onion, chilli and gramflour), Dal Bati Churma (dal is lentils; bati is baked wheat ball; and churma is powdered sweetened cereal), Lasan Ki Chutney (hot fiery garlic chutney), Mirchi Ka Kutaa (hot recipe of crushed green chilies), Gatte Ki Sabzi (A delicacy made up of gramflour balls, curd and spices), Ker Sangri Sabzi (also known as Pachkutaa – the five ingredients of Pachkutaa are sangri, ker, kumatiya, dried goonda and dried red chillies), Raab (pearl millet flour and yoghurt curry), Lapsi (a special kind of dessert made with cracked wheat, Jaggery, coconut and ghee), Aate Ka Halwa (wheat flour dessert), Kachara Mircha Sabzi (made with chilli and Kachara, a special type of vegetable grown in desert area) and Kadhi Pakoda (recipe made with gramflour, curd and chilli) with Baajre Ka Sogra (a thick flat and round bread of pearl millet). Jodhpur is known for its sweets ranging from traditional "Makhanbada", "Mawa Ki Kachori", "Malpua", "Ghevar", "Motichur Ke Laddu", "Besan barfi", "Thorr" and "Gulab Jamun" to Bengali "Rasgulla" and "Ras Malai" prepared by a traditional house "Jodhpur Sweets".
EDUCATION AND RESEARCH
Jodhpur is fast becoming a major education hub for higher studies in India. Almost every major discipline has a dedicated institution in the city, with disciplines varying from Engineering, Medicine, Law, Design among others. With many renowned academicians, Jodhpur is also India’s largest hub for preparation of the CA(Chartered Accountant) entrance examination held throughout India by ICAI (The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India).
The city has well established rail, road and air networks connecting it to other major cities of the country.
Jodhpur railway station is the divisional headquarters of the North Western Railways (NWR). It is well connected with railways to major Indian cities like Alwar, Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Trivandrum, Pune, Kota, Kanpur, Bareilly, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Indore, Bhopal, Dhanbad, Guwahati, Nagpur, Lucknow, Gwalior, Jaipur etc. To decongest the main Jodhpur station (JU), the suburban station Bhagat ki Kothi (BGKT) is being developed as the second main station for passenger trains. At present 106 trains serves to both the stations. Some of the important trains originating from Jodhpur railway station are- Ranthambore Express (Jodhpur to Indore), Mandore Express (Jodhpur to Delhi), Suryanagri Express (Jodhpur to Mumbai), Marudhar Express (Jodhpur to Lucknow), Howrah Superfast (From Jodhpur to Howrah) etc.
For further train running information, timings, halts etc. visit the official website of Indian Railways
Luxury train service- For experiencing the true magnificence and royal opulence of Rajasthan, luxury trains Palace on Wheels and Royal Rajasthan on Wheels are run jointly by RTDC and Indian railways. Jodhpur is one of the destinations of both of the trains. Recently a plan to start metro train service in jodhpur was proposed to decongest the city traffic.however the proposal is still pending with state government for its approval.
Jodhpur Airport is one of the prominent airports of Rajasthan. The airport is due for being transformed into an international airport. The work on which is going to start very soon. At present, there are daily flights from Delhi Mumbai and banglore to the city operated by Air India and Jet Airways.
Jodhpur is connected by road to all major cities in Rajasthan and neighbouring states like Delhi, Ahmedabad, Surat, Ujjain, Agra etc. Apart from deluxe and express bus services to cities within the state, Rajasthan Roadways provides Volvo & Mercedes Benz bus service to Delhi, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Udaipur and Jaisalmer (click here for time table and reservations). Recently, Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) is launched in the city with low floor and semi low floor buses plying on major routes. Jodhpur is connected to the National Highway network with three National Highways and to the Rajasthan State Highway network with ten state highways. National Highways passing through Jodhpur:
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