Bharatpur: Rajasthan through districts
Bharatpur is situated in the Brij region of Rajasthan at an average elevation of 183 m above sea level. It is also known as “Eastern Gateway to Rajasthan”. Ban Ganga, Gambhir and Rooparel rivers run through the district. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, famous for its bird sanctuary. Bharatpur junction is located on main Delhi-Mumbai line. Bharatpur is referred to as eastern gate of Rajasthan and is situated between 26° 22′ to 27° 83′ North Latitude and 76° 53′ to 78° 17′ East Longitude, with an average elevation of 100 meters above sea level. Bharatpur touches district of Alwar in the Northwest. The northern border of the Bharatpur touches Gurgaon district (Haryana), eastern border touches district of Mathura (Uttar Pradesh), and southern border touches district of Agra (Uttar Pradesh) and district of Dholpur of Rajasthan. It touches Dausa in southwest.
Bharatpur has population of 25, 49,121. Bharatpur has an average literacy rate of 82.13%, which is higher than the national average of 74.04%; with male literacy of 90.41% and female literacy of 72.80%. The languages commonly spoken in Bharatpur are Hindi and Braj-Bhasha.
Bharatpur is part of ancient mythology with Bharatpur being place of Pandavas residence in the 13th year of their exile. During 5th Century BC, Bharatpur was part of Matsya Kingdom. The town was named Bharatpur after Bharata.
At the end of the 17th century, Jat Baija with his son Rajaram, Zamindar of the village of Sinsini, took advantage of the weakness of the Mughal Empire to enlarge his territory. Lord Ram’s brother Laxman is the family deity of the erstwhile royal family of Bharatpur. The name ‘Laxman’ was engraved on the arms, seals and other emblems of the state.
The Ban Ganga originates in Ramgarh hills in Jaipur and passes through Dausa and Bharatpur districts to meet the Yamuna River in Uttar Pradesh. The Rooparel River starts from Udainath hills in Alwar District and enters the district in Kaman Tehsil. The Gambhir River starts from Pachana Dam of Karauli District, and meets the Ban Ganga in Bayana Tehsil.
Bharatpur is located in the arid terrains and is drained by seasonal rivers Ban Ganga, Rooparel, Kankud, Gambhir and Parvati. Bandh Baretha Dam has been constructed on the Kakund River to supply water for drinking and irrigation purposes.
Historical/Geographical Places of Bharatpur
1. Lohagarh Fort
Lohagarh fort was built by Jat Raja Surajmal in 1733. True to its name, Lohagarh Fort has withstood many attacks by the British, but was ultimately captured by Arthur Wellesley. The famous door of Lohagarh fort was brought by Maharaja Jawahar Singh from Delhi in 1765. Lohagarh Fort differs from others by its aura of rugged strength. The fort is surrounded by a moat which used to be filled with water to keep enemies out. Interesting monuments inside the fort are Kothi Khas, Mahal Khas, Moti Mahal and Kishori Mahal. Raja Suraj Mal built Jawahar Bhurj and Fateh Bhurj to commemorate victories over the Mughals and the British.
2. Keoladeo Ghana National Park
The Keoladeo Ghana National Park is considered to be one of the richest bird areas in the world today. It is a UNESCO world heritage site, Ramsar Wetland & included in Montreux Record. Every year, thousands of migratory waterfowl birds such as green sandpiper and cranes visit the park during winter. In mid 18th century as a small reservoir Ajan Bund (dam) was constructed that has led to one of the world’s most fascinating and spectacular bird reserves. The National Park is bound by Ban Ganga in north and Gambhir in south.
3. Bandh Baretha
Band Baretha is an old wildlife reserve of the rulers of Bharatpur, currently under the administration of the Forest Department. The construction of the dam on Kakund River was started by Maharaj Jaswant Singh in 1866 AD and completed by Maharaj Ram Singh in 1897 AD. The palace inside the reserve was built by Maharaj Kishan Singh and is the private property of the Bharatpur royal family. Band Baretha has been declared a wildlife sanctuary by state government and is a bird watcher’s paradise because of over 200 species of birds, including the elusive Black Bittern.
Estimated 2.5% of the total area of the district comes under the area of mines and minerals. Minerals are generally found in the area of Bayana, Kama, Weir, Bhusawar, Deeg, and Roopwas & Bharatpur. Main mineral found in the district are Saltpeter, Copper, Lead, Barytes, Silica Sand, Soap stone, Brick clay, quartzite etc. Brick clay is found generally all over the district.