Jagatjit Singh Club and Silver Jubilee Hall, Kapurthala of Punjab, India - built by the Princely State rulers

Jagatjit Singh Club, Kapurthala, Punjab, India kapurthalaonline.in

Now  the district capital,  Kapurthala was once the capital of  Kapurthala State (ruled by Ahluwalia Dynasty), a princely state in British India. The  city boasts of many buildings that were built with  a blend of French and Indo-Saracenic architecture, giving importance to aesthetics.  The visitors to the city  can not escape  from observing  the secular aspects of this place. It is also known as the  city of Palaces & Gardens.

Founded by Baba Jassa Singh Sahib (1718 – 1783), who happened to be a dynamic Sikh leader of his time who ran the administration  with fortitude and firm determination.  Baba Jaaa headed the various Sikh Misaldars (Leaders) and  went past the period  of mayhem  and  ravages inflicted on the Punjab province by Ahmed Shah Abdali. The Ahluwalia dynasty takes its appellation from the Village of Ahlu near Lahore,  Baba  spent   rupees nine lakhs  for  rebuilding  the sacred Darbar Sahib at Amritsar after its sacking.

The Misals were consolidated into the Sikh Kingdom under  Maharajah Ranjit Singh (1780 – 1839).  Sardar Fateh Singh Ahluwalia, (1784 – 1836) the Ahluwalia Chief and descendant of Baba Jassa Singh, was a contemporary of Sardar Ranjit Singh as the Maharajah was known before  becoming the ruler of the Sikh Kingdom in 1801.   After the Treaty of Amritsar in 1806, with the English company by Fateh Singh and ruler  Ranjit Singh, the former  Ahluwalia became close to  Ranjit Singh and  helped him  ascend the  throne of Lahore.

A self-made and self-educated man under the English teachers, he was a polyglot knowing many languages, including Sanskrit and Persian. The state administration was run by a succession of British civilian officers  such as Sir Lepel Griffin, Sir Mackworth Young, Sir Charles Rivaz, et al during his minority.

Assuming full ruling powers in 1890, he celebrated his Silver Jubilee in 1915,  and later he ruled his kingdom for 58 long years till India's freedom in August 1947.  During the colonial rule, he had the rare opportunity  to attend the Second Plenary Session of the Round Table Conference in London in 1931 and a Member of the Indian Defense Council in 1941. Being the ruler of a small kingdom, every time he went abroad, he would introduce new innovations  or improvement in his country. These included a modern sewage and water system to meet the city' need, a telephone system in  1901 establishing vital communication  network with various parts of the State, better judicial system in 1904, modernizing state and police forces  from  1906 to 1910, a State Assembly and State Council in 1916, free compulsory primary education in 1918, agricultural co-operative credit societies in 1920, and industries at Hamira and Phagwara in the 1940’s.

Ruler Jassa Singh Ahluwallia  sanskritimagazine.com

Silver Jubilee Hall, Kapurthala, Punjab, India:
(J.S.Singh Ahluwalia College)
Maharajah Jagatjit, Punjab India Singh Pinrest com.

Maharajah Jagatjit Singh’s overseas trips helped him a lot to improve his inherent desire in architecture aesthetics and these resulted  in the construction of inspiring buildings in Kapurthala. One of the buildings being the Silver  jubilee Hall  
that presently houses the Nawab Jassa Singh Ahluwalia Government College. It  is an impressive building built in 1916  in colonial style and the occasion was  to mark the silver jubilee of the rule of  the erstwhile Maharajah Jagatjit Singh. Actually the Durbar Hall  is the place where the college functions.  It is a popular tourist spot of  Kapurthala. The design style tells us the close ties the  Kapurthala royalty  had  developed  with the French. The U-shaped building
Jubilee Hall, Kapurthal, Punjab. entrancezone.com

  with wide verandas has the modern-day classrooms  was built near the old peepal tree. It was here that the Maharaja held his public durbars. Now, this building is the auditorium.Today, the college admits 1,200 students in BA, BSc, BCom and MCom. It also offers a postgraduate diploma in computer applications.
Jagajit Singh Club, Kapurthala, Punjab, India:

Jagatjit Singh Club bldg., Kapurthala, Punjab, India.. bharatonline.com/

The building has been  put to different uses in the past. Once a church functioned here in the 19th century, later a movie hall in the 1940s. But today, it functions solely as a club. The Jagatjit Club, with rare Greek style architecture, is a complete departure from Indo-Saracenic styled structures commonly  preferred at that point of time. No mixing of Indian elements in the design. It shows the ruler's individuality and  ingenuity  in  trying something  new  not done  before. A visitor to this city will never miss the inspiring buildings and their distinctive architectural elements.