Kaliadeh Palace of Ujjain - a forgotten heritage site

Kaliadeh Palace near Ujjain, MP.in.pinterest.com/

. Kaliadeh Palace near Ujjain, MP. google.com

restoration of  Kaliadeh Palace near Ujjain dreamstime.com

Across India there are ever so many heritage structures that remain unrestored, unexplored  or  hidden to public due to poor publicity by the state governments. Kaliadeh Palace near Ujjain is one such a place and efforts are being made to restore it soon. . 

Located on the bank of the River Shipra, near Ujjain  the popular tourist spot  Kaliadeh Palace is  set in a small island like place  separated by a small stretch of water. Lots of people visit this site drawn by the  beautiful landscape with the big palace on one side and the man-made tanks and channels on the other side. The palace that  is  restored back to old glory  was built  in 1458 AD  by the Sultan of Mandu  - Nasiruddin Khilji  during the time of Mahmud Khilji.

The palace has central dome in  Persian style architecture. Built over an elevated place,  the palace offers  a serene vista of the surrounding  greenery.  Among several  underground chambers a few were said to have been used as the royal kitchen to serve the guests. According to  Col. Stewart's  book  ''History of Central India”  the palace was ingeniously built in such a way   Sultan Naseeruddin Khilji diverted the flow of Shipra River through 52 tanks. The Sultan used to lie down in one of the tanks to cool off on hot days in a drunken state and on one particular occasion he was so drunk that he died in the tank due to drowning.  From the two  Persian inscriptions in one of the long corridors of the palace we understand that this palace was  visited  by Mogul Emperor Akbar and Jehangir.  

In 1886 Sir Michael Filose of the Raj used it as a residence.  Madhav Rao Scindia of the Scindia dynasty in 1920 took so much pain to repair and restore the structure that had been damaged  during the time of  Pindaris. The also built additional structures to  for  the government use.   The Avanti-Mahatmya of Skanda Purana has recorded a description of the Sun temple and two tanks -   the Surya Kunda and the Brahma Kunda.   The only Sun Temple near Ujjain, at the center of the palace, also underwent  restoration under the patronage of the Scindia family in the past.