Ajanbandh, 4 miles from Bharatpur
Photographer: Priyalall and Company
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Ajan Bund near Bharatpur in Rajasthan, taken by the studio of Priyalall & Company in c.1900. The walled city of Bharatpur is situated on low-lying land at the confluence of the Ruparel and Banganga Rivers. In 1733 it became the new capital of Bharatpur State under the rule of the Sinsini Jats, chosen in part because surrounding land could be artificially flooded and thus render the city doubly fortified against attack. The Ajan Bund or dam to the south-west of the city is one of the many irrigation works in Bharatpur State and contains the water of the Banganga. It fed into the Atal Bund adjoining the city which in turn supplied water to the moat around the city’s fort and its wells. It was constructed by Maharaja Ranjit Singh (r.1776-1805) and after falling into disrepair was improved in the late 19th century, when it measured 19.3 kilometres (12 miles) in length and supplied water to 77 villages.
The album of 'Views in the Bharatpur State and Neighbourhod' was presented to the India Office in 1912 by the Festival of Empire, held in 1911 at Crystal Palace in London to mark the coronation of George V. The Maharaja of Bharatpur was among the exhibitors in the Indian Section of the Imperial Exhibition held as part of the Festival.