Devi Kund

Devi Kund, Bikaner

Located 8 km from the main city, Devi Kund is one of the most popular attractions in Bikaner, due to its wonderful architecture. This site is the royal crematorium with chhatris (cenotaphs), wherein each is dedicated to the memory of rulers of Bikaji dynasty. They are constructed on the spot where they were cremated.

History of Devi Kund Sagar

The royal crematory, Devi Kund was erected for commemorating the founder of Bikaner, Rao Bikaji, his descendants and the other members of the Bikaner royal family. There are several cenotaphs and memorials here. Built in the memory of deceased royal family members, each cenotaph is lined by Chattris (ornamented canopy), along with a stone slab that has beautiful carvings. In chronological order, the chattris belong to Rao Bikaji, his great grandson Jet Singh, Rao Kalyan Singh (1542-1571), Maharaja Anup Singh (1669-1698), Maharaja Gaj Singh (1745-1787), Maharaja Surat Singh and Maharaja Karni Singh (1950-1988), the last ruler of Bikaner.

Architecture of Devi Kund

These cenotaphs are known for their wonderful architecture. Some of the highlights include inscriptions, oral patterns, engravings, beautiful designs and splendid portraits. The main difference that can be noticed in the cenotaphs is that while the cenotaphs that were built earlier were in red sandstone, but the newer ones are in white marble. There architectural pieces are a mix of Rajput and Mughal style of architectures.

It was with the memorial cenotaph of Raja Ratan Singh that the art of paintings started to be done on these monuments. The cenotaph of Maharaja Anup Singh is one of the best as far as art work is concerned. This chattri stands on 16 decorated pillars. There are animals and floral designs along with sculptures depicting the life of Lord Krishna. Another attractive chattri is that of Maharaja Surat Singh, made from white marble. The roof has Rajput paintings and exquisite decorative designs.

The cenotaphs of the royal ladies and the wives of Rajput rulers can also be found here. These royal chattris have a canopy and inscriptions with stunning decorative designs along with footprints on their bases. The canopy of the male members is white in color with stela that contains their portraits and names.

Another notable feature of Devi Kund Sagar is that the cenotaphs of 22 female Satis (royal ladies who self-immolated themselves on their husband’s pyre) and 1 Sata (self-immolation by man on his wife’s pyre). A reservoir lies close to this attraction.

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