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Brief history

A vibrant and exotic state where tradition and royal glory meet in a riot of colors against a vast backdrop of sand and desert, Rajasthan has been described in Indian history as the land of heterogeneous conglomeration of separate political entities with different administrative systems in different places.

india Updated: Oct 16, 2003 19:55 IST

Ancient Period, upto 1200 AD

Rajput clans emerged and held their sway over different parts of Rajasthan from about 700 AD. Before that, Rajasthan was a part of several republics. It was a part of the Mauryan Empire. Other major republics that dominated this region include the Malavas, Arjunyas, Yaudhyas, Kushans, Saka Satraps, Guptas and Hunas.

The Rajput clans ascendancy in Indian history was during the period from the eighth to the twelfth century AD. The Pratihars ruled Rajasthan and most of northern India during 750-1000 AD. Between 1000-1200 AD, Rajasthan witnessed the struggle for supremacy between Chalukyas, Parmars and Chauhans.

Medieval Period (1201-1707)

Around 1200 AD a part of Rajasthan came under Muslim rulers. The principal centers of their powers were Nagaur and Ajmer. Ranthanbhor was also under their suzerainty. At the beginning of the 13th century AD, the most prominent and powerful state of Rajasthan was Mewar.

Modern Period (1707-1947)

Rajasthan had never been united politically until its domination by Mughal Emperor - Akbar. Akbar created a unified province of Rajasthan. Mughal power started to decline after 1707. The political disintegration of Rajasthan was caused by the dismemberment of the Mughal Empire. The Marathas penetrated Rajasthan upon the decline of the Mughal Empire. In 1755 they occupied Ajmer. The beginning of the 19th Century was marked by the onslaught of the Pindaris.

In 1817-18 the British Government concluded treaties of alliance with almost all the states of Rajputana. Thus began the British rule over Rajasthan, then called Rajputana.

Post Independence

A vibrant and exotic state where tradition and royal glory meet in a riot of colors against a vast backdrop of sand and desert, Rajasthan has been described in Indian history as the land of heterogeneous conglomeration of separate political entities with different administrative systems in different places.

The atate of Rajasthan was formed after a long process of integration which began on March 17, 1948 and ended on November 1, 1956. As many as 22 princely States of erstwhile Rajputana merged with Union of India for the purpose. Before integration it was called Rajputana, that comprised 19 princely states and two chiefships of Lava and Kushalgarh and a British administered territory of Ajmer-Merwara.

The new state opted for unicameral legislature 'Rajasthan Legislative Assembly' which is running its eleventh term since it was first elected by adult franchise in 1952. The state has had Assembly Elections regularly since then with the exceptions of 1980 and 1992 when President's Rule was in force. The Assembly, which had a strength of 160 in 1952, has 200 members now following various amendments in the related law over the years.

At present there are 32 districts (including the new district of Karauli), 105 sub-divisions, 241 tehsils, 37889 inhabited villages and 222 towns in the State.

First Published: Oct 13, 2003 15:16 IST