Raja Gangadhar Rao ki Chhatri in JhansiChhatris are cenotaphs or monuments built in the memory of kings, rulers or warriors. Gangadhar Rao ki Chhatri, is one such monument that was built by Rani Lakshmi Bai in solemn memory of her husband Raja Gangadhar Rao in 1953, the year of his annihilation. Raja Gangadhar Rao ruled Jhansi from 1843 to 1853.
About Raja Gangadhar Rao of Jhansi
Gangadhar Rao married Manikarnika in 1842 who later came to be known as Rani Lakshmi Bai. He was aged 40 and she 12 years. He, like his father, was a lover of art and architecture and worked towards enriching the culture of Jhansi. Raja Gangadhar Rao was known to be an old-fashioned king and could not do much towards reviving the economy of Jhansi. The British were constantly eying the kingdom of Jhansi due to the series of inability of the rulers to prove themselves. He adopted Anand Rao in 1853 who he thought would be the next crown prince. The very next day the Raja expired leaving behind the Rani and his son.
Raja Raghunath Rao III was the ruler of Jhansi till 1838. During his rule, Jhansi faced the worst of financial and political crisis. After his death in 1838, his son Raja Gangadhar Rao ascended the throne in 1843 and ruled Jhansi till 1853. He faced the stupendous task of reviving and stabilizing the economy of Jhansi.
In his loving memory, Rani built this monument called Raja Gangadhar Rao ki Chhatri on the banks of Lakshmi Tal. Set within a quadrangular walled structure are the two dome structures; both the bigger and smaller dome are finely engraved with designs displaying architectural marvel. They are approached by a small flight of stairs and a small chhatri stands beside the big monument. The pillared structure capped with dome kiosks that are intricately carved and engraved with various designs, motifs and geometrical patterns.
This monument is one of its kind in Jhansi town that is a fine example of architectural adroitness built during those times.