Jhansi Travel Guide

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queen of jhansi

queen of jhansi

sameer khaldy

Jhansi lies on the Delhi-Bombay and DelhiMadras lines. Situated at ah altitude of 251 m, it also on the NH 25 and 26. The temperature varies between 45.8-23.8" in summer and 29.7-4.6°C in winter. Though it is in Uttar Pradesh, it is covenient to visit Jhansi on the way to Madhya Pradesh. It is the link stn of various Mail and Exp trains on the main line to and from Jhansi. Buses leave Jhansi et 6-00,7-00, 8-30,11-00,11-45, 13-00 to reach Khajuraho in 5 hr Distance is 172 km, fare Rs 40. In India tour; the Delhi-Agra-Jhansi-Khajuraho-Varanasi itiner­ary is extremely popular. On the way, beyond Naogaon, you can visit the Deori Hydro-Electric Project in sylvan surroundings. Beyond the project, lies Uttar Pradesh. You can go to Harpalpur on the Manikpur-Jhansi line, 100 km from Khajuraho by bus and from there take the 3-30, 7-27, 12-20, 13-30,2i-32 train to Jhansi which is 86 km away by rail. The 12-20 Chambal Exp 4 5 6 7 day leaves Howfah at 15-25, goes via Allahabad/ Matukpur/ Chitrakutdham/ Mahoba/ Harpalpur to reach Jhan­si by 15-45 and then proceeds to Gwahor. Bun-delkhand Exp goes to Varanasi from Gwahor Via Jhansi/ Allahabad.
From Jhansi there are trains to Agra 216, Gwalior 97, Lucknow 292, Kanpur 220, Varanasi 608, Bhopal 292, Delhi 414, Hajrat Nizamuddin 405, Bombay 1128, Pun 1721, Ahme-dabad 932, Pune 1185, Jammu 995 km away and to other parts of India.

There are buses to Lucknow via Kanpur at 5-30, 8-30, 13-30, 21-30; to AUabibad at 7-00; Indore 13-45; Jabbalpur 10-00, 21-30; and to Agra and Gwalior frequently. Jhansi is also connected by bus routes with many north, central and west Indian cities. The nearest Airport is at Gwalior. Bus, auto, rickshaw ply in the city. Tourist booths of both MP and UP are at rly stn.

Rani Lakshmibai, the Joan of Arc of India is historically famed for her valour. Indians paid reverence to her with bowed heads for her contribution in the Indian struggle for independence in 1857. The chief attraction of Jhansi is the fort of queen. Though built in 1613 by Virsingh Deo (1602-27), king of Orchha, it later passed into the hands of the queen. In 1803 the British came to Jhansi and extended their dominance bit by bit. In 1853, the black laws imposed by the British added to the strife. After the death of the king who had no son, the British virtually took over the administration. The indepen­dent-minded queen was not content with the allowance given to her in compensation. When there rose an opportunity for revolt, she led the sepoys in the mutiny for Inde­pendence in 1857, forcing the British to retreat. However, taking advantage of the internal strife among the sepoys that weakened them, the very next year (1858), the British occupied Jhansi. The queen leapt on horseback from this fort on Bangra Hill and took shelter in the Gwalior fort. She became a martyr on 17th June 1858 during a neck to neck battle with the British at Gwalior where she had disguised hereself as a youth. As a reward for his obedience, the Scindia ruler was given the Jhansi fort by the British. The notable sights in the fort are the pleasure grounds associated with the queen, the Shiva temple, Ganesh temple at the entrance and Kadak Bijli cannon used in the freedom struggle of 1857. The memorial board reminds one of the hair-raising feat of the queen in jumping on horseback from the fort. Open from 6-00-17-00. Nearby is the Rani Ka Mahal built in the later half of tlje 18th century where an archaeological museum has come up today. On the way to the fort a statue of the queen has been installed.

On the Jhansi-Khajuraho Road, 9 km from Jhansi and then another 8 km on the left is Orchha, the city of museums. This city on the bank of the Betwa river was also the capital of the Bundela Rajputs. Rudrapratap, the Bundela king founded the capital in 1531. However, in 1783 the capital was moved to Tikamgarh. However, Orchha became celebrated during the reign of king Vir Singh Deo (1605-27). Salim who harboured a grievance against his father Akbar had taken shelter in the Jhansi Fort of the Orchha king in 1602. The aggrieved Akbar despatched his troops who razed the fort. In 1605 Salim became Emperor Jehangir and during his reign Jhansi and Orchha had their phase of prosperity. However, after ascending the throne in 1627, Shahjehan too was irked by Orchha as its ruler Vir Singh had supported his errant son Aurangzeb.

The very breeze of Orchha seems to sing the legend of love between Indrajit of the ruling dynasty and a court dancer, Pravin. Orchha is also celebrated for its fort, frescoes of Palace, Jehangir Mahal adorned with fretwork, Madhukar Mahal with its frescoes in the Bundela style, various temples, Chatris, Phul Bagh and martyr memorials. The Lakshmi-Narayan Temple on the village outskirt has also an attractive array of painting in the Orchha style. In the middle of the village is the 17th century Ram Raja Temple whose image of Sri Ram was brought from Ayodhya. It is said that the icon could not be budged from the 7-storey Chaturbhuj temple and so had to be ensconced in the palace. Ram is worshipped here not as a god but king. On the left, on a low hillock is the Lakshmi-Narayan Temple. The memorial towers or Chatris at Kanchanghat by the side of the river are also incomparable and can be visited by bus or share tempo by day from Jhansi by the enthusiasts.

You can visit Jhansi by day and take the afternoon bus to Gwalior. It is abou t 3 hr journey.
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