Battles begun and cannons roared as the Hindu Rajputs bravely defended the frontiers of Marwar against the Muslim Mughals.
Fort Khejarla was constructed in early 1611 A.D. for Maharajah Gopal Das Ji, who was granted ‘Jagirs’ (fiefdoms) of Khejarla and nearby villages for his great achievement in war against the Mughals, in honour of his service to the Maharaja of Jodhpur. The Mughal army rolled in to attack the Fort three times. Each time the Fort was destroyed, it was rebuilt.
Khejarla derives its name from the Khejdi Tree that can be found at the village. The tree holds significance in the village as it is believed to have saved the Fort when hit by Mughal cannons. The classic Rajput – Mughal architecture is built on a small hillock and is owned by the Bhati clan of Rajputs. The family of Khejarla has descended from the royal family of Jaisalmer. Maharajah Gopal Das Ji was the youngest son of the royal family of Jaisalmer and moved to Khejarla after being granted the fiefdom of Khejarla.
Khejarla was then one of the most important and flourishing Jagirs of Marwar with 9 Estate Managers, 400 servants, 125 horses, 15 camels, and huge area of land for cultivation. Nobles here enjoyed the highest status amongst the most trusted in the Court of Marwar. The Thakurs of Khejarla were one of the eight feudal lords to the Maharaja of Jodhpur and were known for their heroism, valour, sacrifice, chivalry, and gallantry.
The 16th generation of the royal lineage of Khejarla was Thakur Bhairon Singh Khejarla who was also the first member of the legislature assembly of Rajasthan who was elected from the Bilara constituency after India gained independence from the British Raj. He was elected and remained as MLA from 1952 – 1962. Later he was also elected as the Health Minister of the State of Rajasthan. During the 1950 famine, he made arrangements of grains and drinking water for the public of the State. Moreover, he was very close to erstwhile rulers of Jodhpur - Maharaja Umaid Singh Ji and Maharaja Hanuwant Singh Ji.
Thakur Bhairon Singh Khejarla opened a Research organization to promote the culture and literature of Rajasthan. The Noble family of Khejarla presented 550 books of history and literature to the organization, which did a great job in preserving the literature of Marwar.
The Maharaja died in July 1974 and the present heir, Maharaja Dileep Singh took over him. The Maharaja serves in essence as mayor of the Khejarla village and the surrounding villages. Thakur Dileep Singh waits to tell you more about the momentous deeds of his ancestors who had experienced the Mughal Empire and the British Raj. Take a walk through the 17 generations of history, and get enthralled and fascinated by the never – to – be forgotten experience.
A section of the Fort remains the residence of the royal family and the other section has been altered into one of the best heritage hotels in India and is open to all those who would like to travel down the eras.
The Fort is divided into four sections:
The Main Pol or archway gate to the flamboyant Fort was used as a public place with the court, jail, courtyards, and parking lots for bullock carts and horse carriages. The Suraj Pol then leads into the Fort. To respect the Rajput heritage, separate residential suites were built for Male and Female Royal Family Members, both with separa
Zenana Mahal (South Block):
Following the arched gate, we enter the Zenana Mahal – the lounge for the Royal Ladies of the house. It has two floors with 19 rooms, suites, courtyard, and terrace with a breathtaking view of all sights.
Mardana Mahal (West Block):
Meant for the Royal Male Members of the house – this building consists of 21 rooms, suites of various sizes and aesthetically done décor. The Block has been completely renovated with best of period furniture and most modern amenities. A dining hall, bar, an open garden with fountains are located in this block.
Main Courtyard (East Block):
This block has the main Reception, Swimming Pool, Gym, Spa, and Shopping Area.