150 km from Jaipur, I traveled to visit a city named as Todaraisingh (Tonk district). I was here to visit one more stepwell which is “Hadi Rani ka Kund.”
Hadi Rani ki kund or Hadi Rani ki baori is an 800-year-old stepwell, and it came in limelight when a scene from Shahrukh Khan started movie Paheli 2005, was filmed here. Well, I came to know about this fact after I had visited the spot.
History of Hadi Rani ka Kund
Well, there is nothing on the site, like a history board, which could tell me anything about the location but as per some locals, there is a sad story behind Hadi Rani ki Baori.
Hadi Rani was the wife of Ratan Chudawat, who was the commander of Todarraisingh in the mid 17th century. That was the time when Mughal emperor Aurangzeb was strengthening his grip western India (states of Rajputana and Saurashtra which are modern days Rajasthan, Gujarat & Maharashtra).
The king of Mewar (Jodhpur) was the leader of Ratan Chudawat and ordered him to join in the battle against Mughals. Ratan was a brave warrior, but he was hesitating to join the war immediately as he had just married Hadi Rani.
After realising this situation, Hadi Rani thought that she should give a souvenir to boost the moral of his husband and she offered his head.
After this Ratan Chudawat tied the head of his wife and went to war against the Mughals and even won on that day. At the end of the war, he chopped his head off as he couldn’t bare the idea of a life without his queen.
About the Site
Hadi Rani ka Kund is a three storey stepwell, and two of them are now underwater. Previously the water was only till the last floor, but when I reached the site in Aug’16, maybe because it was the monsoon season, I was only able to view the third floor.
Never the less, this baori is quite well maintained, as compared to almost every stepwell I have visited in Rajasthan.
Entry is free for all here as its local park. The water in the kund was quite clean, and I must say that the locals love to come here as its the biggest park in the city, or even the only one.
There are rooms on the northern end of the Kund which gives an impression that this might be the same type of stepwell as Neemrana Baoli where travelers use to stay for the night. And these are the images which will give you the exact idea of this anther Made In India architecture.
And with this one more stepwell of Rajasthan is covered, making it the sixth baori I have visited in the Land of the Kings.
Now I am a big admirer of a Google Map and the free GPS service it offers on Android phones. And I am saying so as I found a historical Sikhism site which is just 35 km from Todarraisingh. I was just checking the map of Tonk District, and suddenly I noticed Bhagat Dhanna Gurdwara and Temple.
Whether you follow or have interested in the history of Sikhism, you must have heard about a Hindu priest Dhanna whose words are in Guru Granth Sahib (The holy book of Sikhism).
So we drove for 40-50 mins from Hadi Rani Kund and reached Bhagat Dhanna Gurdwara and Temple.
Bhagat Dhanna Gurdwara and Temple
As I have already mentioned some facts above, about the Sikh temple so let’s just have a look at this beautiful site. The Gurdwara is between rice field of Dhunwa Kalan village and from kilometers away I was able to see the Sikh temple as there is not even a single story house here.
The road condition for the Sikh temple from Jaipur-Kota highway is not bad and as I am from a Punjabi Hindu-Sikh family, so I’m always interested in visiting new Gurdwaras.
After arriving at the Gurdwara, I met with some travelers who came here from cities like Kurukshetra, Chandigarh, and Ambala. A Singh-Saheb from Ambala took me to a well (water well) where there is a board which suggest the history of this Gurdwara and water-well. Sadly, I didn’t study the Punjabi language (can just speak it) so had the ask the Singh Sahab to guide me about this place.
He told that at this well “Dhanna Jat” meditated and one night he experienced the pure light of God. Since then he became a real man of faith, and later his words were also mentioned in Guru Granth Sahib.
Then we went inside the Gurudwara and took these pics.
And then we also dined at the Langar Ghar, which is a symbol of Joint Kitchen (A kitchen for people of all faith & caste)
It was a good experience, and Dhanna Bhagat is also quite famous among locals, and thus I also saw a temple of Dhanna Bhagat which is a rare site, as I have never seen a Gurdwara and temple of the same men. Here are some pictures of the temple.
And with this, my list of places to visit in August is finished. I plan to visit Jaipur, Pushkar. Mandore and Jodhpur in Sep. So do subscribe my blog to stay in touch.