History/City Profile

History During the Buddha's period

During Buddha’s time there were sixteen Mahajanapadas in Bharatvarsh Dholpur at that

time was included in Matsya Janpad. During the Mauryan rule it was included in the Mauryan

Empire. From Gupta period to the arrival of Chinese traveler Huansuang Bharatpur, Karauli and

Dholpur were a part of Mathura Janpad. Around the 8th to 10th centuries, Chauhans ruled over

it. In the year 1194 it remained under Mohammed Gauri.

Tomar rule

Raja Dholan Deo Tomar was a ruler of Dholpur and most likely the name of city was

changed to Dholpur after him. He resided 10 km south west of Dholpur at a place called Bilpur

near chambal where a fort still exists. His descendants are still living in the area and till

independence were rulers of many small chieftainships like Kayasthapad and many villages in

Morena and Gwalior. He was ruler of country between Chambal and Banganga. The

Dholeshwar Mahadev Temple built by this Raja was washed away in Chambal floods of 1868

AD.The Tomars lost sovereignty to Jadu's of Karauli.Dholpur or Dhawalpuri was established in

700 AD by Raja Dholan Dev Tomar. His descendant Raja Dhawal Deo built the new town of

Dholpur in 1050 AD.

Yadava rulers of Karauli

The Dholpur fort was built by Dharampal, Raja of Karauli in 1120 A.D.

During Delhi sultans

Any invader, who wished to capture Gwalior and Malwa, had to pass through Dholpur. In

the year 1489 Bahlol Lodi before fighting with Gwalior king, faced the forces of the ruler of

Dholpur. During the year 1502 Sikandar Lodi had to fight with Dholpur King Vinayak Dev for

about a year and then with great difficulty was successful in defeating him and capturing

Dholpur. Thus Dholpur came into prominence and bore the brunt of all the invading forces of

the North Realising the strategic and geographical importance. It was Sikandar Lodi who first

thought of having a military cantonment at Agra which was a small village under Bayana and at

Dholpur in the year 1504, so that he could successfully carry out military designs against

Gwalior and Malwa region. Dholpur being situated on the banks of the river Chambal was

considered sate for the establishment of military cantonment and forts, during the medieval

period. According to the "Tawarikh Shershahi" and "Babarnama" written by their courtiers, the

credit for the construction of the Shergarh for goes to Shershah Suri.

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Mughal period

Dholpur State part of the Rajputana Agency, 1909

After the battle of Panipat, Babar became the first Mughal ruler of Hindustan. His rule was

not a bed of roses in the early years of his reign. After the death of Ibrahim Lodi, many states

declared themselves independent. Talai Khan became the ruler of Gwalior. Similarly,

Mohammed Jaifoon declared himself the ruler of Dholpur. Babar sent Junniad Barlas to

Dholpur, who crushed the rebellion and took over the administration of Dholpur in his own


Dholpur was known for its natural beauty, dense forests and ample games that attracted

the royal princes regularly visiting this region during Mughal period. According to

Humayunnama, Babar once took all his wives and consorts to Dholpur on the death of his son

Anwar Mirza for a change. The beauty of Dholpur fascinated Akbar so much that he constructed

the palaces at Khanpur on the banks of Talab-shahi near Bari. According to legends he

constructed these palaces to make this place his capital. Later, on being offended by the

residents, he left them and founded Fatehpur Sikri. The incident which paved the way for

Aurangzab's stability occurred at the place which sealed that fate of Dara Shikoh.

Once Dholpur became a matter of dispute between Shahjahan and Nur Jahan. Shahjahan

requested Emperor Jehangir to give him the pargana of Dholpur. Shahjahan, taking it for

granted that the Emperor would give his consent, sent his faithful officer to Dholpur. On the

other hand, Nur Jahan had already acquired the Paragana of Dholpur for prince Shahryar. She

deputed Sharif-ul-Malik to take charge of the administration. There was a clash between the

two, in which Sharif-ul-Malik had an eye injury and many people died. For this act of insolence

Shahjahan was reprimanded and was asked to send his troops from the south to Agra


Bhadauria rule

After the death of Aurangzeb, Raja Kalyan Singh Bhadauria occupied the fort till 1761 AD,

whence Raja of Bharatpur, the Jat ruler Maharaja Surajmal took control of the fort.