Jhunjhunu is the chief city in the Shekhawati district of Rajasthan. It is also the districts secretarial command centers of that area. Jhunjhunu is placed at a distance of about 180 km from the pink city of Jaipur. It is more or less 245 km from Delhi, the capital city of India. Around in 15th century, Jhunjhunu was established by “Khemkhani Nawabs”. Khetri is a primary town in Jhunjhunu region. It is also the 2nd chief Thikana of courageous “Shekhawat” Rajput clans. In recent times, Khetri is appreciated for mines that are prosperous in copper. In addition, a huge plant of “Hindustan Copper Limited” is also found in Khetri town. Khetri is placed amid mountainous areas of the majestic Aravalli hills.
Ancient times of Khetri:
King Khet Singh Nirban of “Nirban-Chauahn” Rajput clan was the one who found Khetri town. Shortly, the town was occupied by “Shekhawat Rajputs” and was given as a reward to “Thakur Kishan Singh Ji” by “Maharao Shardul Singh Ji” (father of Thakur Kishan Singh Ji) of Jhunjhunu region. Also, Khetri was a subdivision of Panchpana. Raja Ajit Singh Shekhawat, an intuitive and intelligent sovereign of Khetri established numerous palaces, temples and forts. What’s more, Swami Vivekananda, the great scholar was the best friend of Raja Ajit Singh. Hence, a figurine of Swami Vivekananda was established as a commemorative plaque on an avenue around Khetri. Raja Sardar Singh was the very last ostensible King of Khetri region.
A long time ago, the King (Raja) of Khetri was the boss of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru’s family unit. An interesting fact is that Nandlal Nehru, the uncle of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru was once the Diwan (chief minister) in the Khetri stately court. Moreover, Motilal Nehru (father of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru) lived in Khetri during the early stages of his life.
The key magnetism in Khetri is a fort that was established by “Raja Ajit Singh Shekhawat Saheb Bahadur”. This Fort is the summit of Khetri for a picturesque view of the city and its neighborhood. There exists a negligible influence of wall paintings in Khetri edifices. These are unadorned but the statues here are created in a truly imaginative manner. The marvelous view from Khetri fort is a spectacular experience. It also has an amazing yet tiny marble temple.
Excellent Architecture of Khetri Mahal (Wind Palace), Jhunjhunu:
Khetri Mahal in Khetri, Jhunjhunu is one of the most excellent instances of fine art and structural design of Shekhawati region. It is also called as the Wind Palace of Jhunjhunu. Khetri Mahal was built in the year 1770. It is assumed that Bhopal Singh, the originator of Khetri established it. Khetri Mahal is placed to the rear of a string of narrow roads. A surprising factor is that Khetri Mahal has no windows or doors even though it is named as the Wind palace. Despite the fact that Khetri Mahal is deserted and to some extent abandoned, the attractiveness and regularity of the well-designed archways is esteemed even now. Khetri mahal is mainly celebrated for its beautiful selections of pictures and frescos sustaining the Bhopalgarh fort and Raghunath temple.
The inimitability of Khetri Mahal lies in the uninterrupted stream of wind which perpetually makes this construction unique from countless buildings. The pillars of of Khetri Mahal have substituted the colossal barrier configurations wherever possible. This is to uphold the uninterrupted stream of breezy wind inside the Mahal. Almost all rooms of the Mahal are linked with each other through an ingenious chain of pillars and arches that offer a gorgeous proportioned vision to the fortress.
Also, one can spot 2 tiny recesses with parts of paintings (created with natural earth tint) that belong to the long-gone era in the private meeting rooms of Thakurs. Mammoth stylish hallways with elaborately built arches & columns can be spotted inside Khetri Mahal. The major aspect that makes Khetri Mahal into a unique palace is it has no doors or windows unlike other Mahals or Palaces.
Broad Ramps of Khetri Mahal:
An elongated access ramp that leads to the cosmic patio of the Mahal from the foremost entrance hall was planned for the easy access of Rajputs while they ride on their horses. In actual fact, the different levels of the fortress are united with patio or terrace all the way through a string of similar access ramps. One more reason for establishing such broad ramps was to offer tall podiums for “Thakurs” to look down at their subjects without much difficulty. The sight from the roof top is really impressive.
It is a known fact that Khetri Mahal is an exceptional and exclusive construction of Shekawati period. However, the pitiful condition of this edifice is an ill-fated truth. Khetri Mahal needs some urgent attention of the local administration as atypical structures like Khetri Mahal is a great asset to Indian tourism Industry and our inimitable culture of the nation.