Jaisamand Lake: Rajasthan’s Enchanting Jewel and Largest Artificial Lake

Asia's Largest Man Made Lake

Jaisamand Lake, also spelled as Jai Samand Lake, has an interesting history that dates back to the 17th century during the reign of Maharana Jai Singh (also known as Maharana Jai Singh II) of Mewar. Maharana Jai Singh ruled the kingdom of Mewar from 1698 to 1743.

The primary purpose behind the construction of Jaisamand Lake was to address the water scarcity and irrigation needs of the local population. During that time, Udaipur faced recurring droughts, and there was a pressing need for a reliable source of water. To address this issue, Maharana Jai Singh commissioned the construction of the lake by damming the Gomati River, a tributary of the Banas River.

The construction of the lake commenced in the late 1680s and took several years to complete. The lake was finally completed in 1691 and was named after its visionary, Maharana Jai Singh.

Key milestones in the history of Jaisamand Lake:

  1. Construction: The lake was constructed by building a massive marble dam across the Gomati River. The dam, along with its six chhatris (dome-shaped pavilions) on the crest, adds to the grandeur of the lake.

  2. Island Construction: As part of the lake construction, several islands were created within the lake. The larger islands, known as Baba ka Magra and Piari, were carefully designed and became home to various flora and fauna.

  3. Utilization: The Jaisamand Lake served as a crucial water reservoir, not only providing drinking water to the local people but also supporting agricultural activities in the region, ensuring a stable source of livelihood for the local communities.

  4. Jaisamand Wildlife Sanctuary: The lake and its surrounding areas were designated as the Jaisamand Wildlife Sanctuary to protect the diverse flora and fauna found in the region. The sanctuary is a habitat for various wildlife species and attracts birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts.

  5. Shantinath Jain Temple: On the eastern bank of the lake, Maharana Jai Singh built the Shantinath Jain Temple to honor the 16th Tirthankara of Jainism, Lord Shantinath. The temple adds a religious and architectural dimension to the area.

Over the years, Jaisamand Lake has become a popular destination for tourists seeking a peaceful retreat amidst nature’s beauty. The lake, with its rich history and cultural significance, continues to be a cherished site in the region, contributing to Udaipur’s heritage and allure as a tourist destination.

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