Jaipur is the capital city of the state of Rajasthan, India. Jaipur has Sikar and Mahendranagar districts of Rajasthan on its North, Tonk on its South, the districts of Alwar, Dausa and Sawai Madhopur on its East and the districts of Ajmer and Nagaur on its West. Being surrounded by the Aravalli hills on three sides, it is fairly saved from the torrid conditions of the adjoining Thar desert.
At a height of about 1417 ft. above mean sea level, it is a very populous city with a population close to 7 million, is a much-visited tourist destination and a well planned city with a rich historical background. Jaipur is a very important destination for many reasons and is well-connected to Delhi, Agra and other cities in neighbouring states by road, rail and air.
The largest city in the state of Rajasthan and in the top ten most populous cities of India, Jaipur sprung up in 1727 under the rule of Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II, the ruler of Amer. This city has been constructed with care and with a purpose. 110 Km stretch from North to South and 180 Km from east to West, this city is known for its architectural marvels. The rivers Banganga and Sabi pass through Jaipur, There is a surplus provision of drinking water to the city with the Ramgarh dam situated on Banganga river. Close by is Sambhar, the natural salt water lake, which also provides good quality salt to Rajasthan as well as to other states.
The city that has been constructed in the 18th century seems like a pre-planned and organized modern city of the current age. The streets are regular, and the city is divided into six sectors separated by broad streets of 34 m (111 ft) width. These streets are called urban quarters and are further segmented by a network of interconnected streets. Five quarters surround the East, West and South sides of a Central dPalace quarter. The sixth quarter directly lies to the East. The Palace quarter has a huge sprawling complex known as the Hawa Mahal complex known for its excellent construction that provides very good natural ventilation, a spread of formal gardens and a small lake. In the north west end of the city, lies the towering Nahargarh Fort, once the residence of its ruler Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II. Jantar Mantar, the observatory in Jaipur, is a smaller version of the Jantar Mantar in Delhi.
Tracing the history of Jaipur, the city was founded by Jai Singh II, the Raja of Amer in 1727. Initially the capital of the kingdom was Dausa which is close by, but looking to increasing population and scarcity of water growing day by day, the new city was planned. A number of battles had taken place with the Marathas, hence security of the Palace and the City was also a major aspect to be taken care of. Using the architectural knowledge of Vidyadhar Bhattacharya, a Brahmin scholar from Bengal, and having his own thoughts on a well-planned city built on the principles of Vaastu Shastra and other classical treatises, the city of Jaipur came into existence.
Though it took four years after construction began in 1727, the major palaces, the roads and the square that were built still remain a symbol of good planning and execution with huge ramparts and seven fortified gates being seen even to this present day. The principles of construction that were used were from Shilpa Shastra, the authoritative treatise on construction.
During the rule of Sawai Ram Singh, prior to the visit of Edward, Prince of Wales, Jaipur had most of its prominent buildings painted pink as a sign of welcome. This has remained so and become a customary color for the city. No wonder it is known as the Pink City.