Toorji ka Jhalra is an ancient stepwell or Baoli located in the Blue city Jodhpur of Rajasthan. This historical stepwell is a perfect example of primordial creation and beautiful imagination of the past era. This stepwell is among the favorite destinations of historical tourists visiting Jodhpur.
History of Toorji ka Jhalra-
This impressive stepwell known as Toorji ka Jhalra was constructed by Jodhpur’s ruler Maharaja Abhay Singh Ji’s spouse Maharani Tanwar Ji in the year 1740. She was better known by the name Toorji Ji among the people of Jodhpur. Baolis or step-wells were built by the ladies of the royal families as an ancestral tradition. This stepwell of Toorji was another one in the continuity of that tradition and was a part of the water harvesting system of the city.
Fetching water from such water bodies had always been among the most important daily tasks of women in those times. A sense of community prevailed in them while they all gathered at such places to discuss daily kinds of stuff. It still needs some attention for raising its importance for the tourists, as most of the common visitors just skip this location due to the marvelous Mehrangarh Fort, which is just 3 kilometers from here.
The architecture of Toorji ka Jhalra-
The artistry of the stepwell has been done in an exquisite manner depicting the perfection in engineering. Cow and Lion shaped waterspouts were carved for giving the water outlet. The stairs taking you to the water level are beautifully designed with some statues of Gods and Goddesses in between. Viewing galleries also known as Jharokas are constructed around the steps that were used to keep lamps to illuminate the place at night. These are now used as a platform to make a dive deep into the water by the locals.
Recently, precious sculptures of elephants in dancing positions were extracted during the cleaning and renovation of the Jhalra, which had been underwater for more than 200 years. These stunning masterpieces are elegantly carved out of the famous Red Ghatu or the Lal Ghatu stone. The technology of Persian Wheels was used to raise the water to higher levels. A pair of oxen used to rotate those wheels from the above platform and water then rose to two different levels.