(Last Updated on : 10/04/2013)
The history of Ajmer district is full of the splendid tales of Kings and palaces. The earliest inhabitants of the place, in fact all of Rajasthan, were the people of the great civilisation of Harappa. In about 2000 B.C. the horse-riding Aryans came here from Central Asia. One of the very first dynasties to rule over large parts of India, the Mauryan dynasty, ruled over this area in around 400 AD. Ajmer was founded in the 7th century AD by Raja Ajay Pal Chauhan. When Ajay Pal Chauhan founded Ajmer, he constructed the hill fort of 'Ajaimeur', meaning the Invincible Hill. Following the Chauhan dynasty
, Ajmer was ruled by many dynasties. It continued to function as one of the major centres of Chauhan power till 1193 AD. In this year, Prithviraj Chauhan
lost it to Muhammad Ghori
. Thereafter, it became a part of the Delhi Sultanate
. Ajmer was also a favourite residence of the rulers of the Mughal dynasty.
It was here in Ajmer
that one of the first contacts between the Mughal King Jahangir
and Sir Thomas Roe took place in the year 1616. One of the most significant periods in the history of Rajasthan
is the modern period, which lasted between 1707 and 1947. Though the Mughal Emperor Akbar
was able to create a separate province of Rajasthan, political disintegration began with the fall of the Mughal dynasty
. When the Marathas got an opportunity to invade Ajmer in 1755, they finally captured Ajmer. The Scindias took over the city in 1818 and then handed it over to the British and it became one of the only parts of Rajasthan controlled directly by the British East Indian Company
The history of Ajmer still resounds in the various monuments that are strewn around here, echoing the district's past glory. Ajmer is a popular pilgrimage centre for the Hindus as well as Muslims. Especially famous is the Ajmer e Sharif
-Tomb of the Sufi Saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti, which is equally revered by the Hindus and Muslims. Ajmer is a great centre of culture and education. The British chose Ajmer for its prestigious Mayo College, a school exclusively for Indian nobility. Ajmer is also the base for visiting Pushkar (11 km.), the abode of Lord Brahma
, lying to its west with a temple and a picturesque lake. The Pushkar Lake
is a sacred spot for Hindus. During the month of Kartik (October-November), devotes throng in large numbers here to take a dip in the sacred lake.