This article has been extracted from
THE IMPERIAL GAZETTEER OF INDIA , 1908.
OXFORD, AT THE CLARENDON PRESS.
Note: National, provincial and district boundaries have changed considerably since 1908. Typically, old states, ‘divisions’ and districts have been broken into smaller units, units, and many tahsils upgraded to districts.Many units have since been renamed. Therefore, this article is being posted mainly for its historical value.
Capital of the State of Idar in the Mahi Kantha Agency, Bombay, situated in if 23 degree 34' N. and 73 degree 1' E., on the left bank of the Hathmati, and on the Ahmadabad-Parantij Railway. Population (1901), 3,200. It is surrounded by a stone wall, built about 1426 by Sultan Ahmad I (1411-43), who is said to have been so fond of the place that he thought of making it, instead of Ahmadabad, the capital of Gujarat.
When the present dynasty took Idar (1728), Ahmadnagar soon fell into their hands. After the death of Maharaja Shiv Singh in 1791, his second son, Sangram Singh, took Ahmadnagar and the country round, and, in spite of the efforts of his nephew, Gambhfr Singh, became an independent chief. Sangram Singh was succeeded by his son, Karan Singh.
The latter died in 1835, and Mr. Erskine, the British Agent, who was in the neighbourhood with a force, moved to Ahmadnagar to prevent the Ranis from becoming sati. The sons of the deceased Maharaja begged Mr. Erskine not to interfere with their customs. Finding him resolved to prevent the sacrifice, they secretly summoned the Bhils and other turbulent tribes, and in the night, opening a way through the fort wall to the river bed, burnt the Ranis with their father's body.
The sons then fled, but subsequently gave themselves up to Mr. Erskine ; and, after entering into an engagement with the British Government, Takht Singh was allowed to succeed his father as Maharaja of Ahmadnagar. Some years later he was chosen to fill the vacant throne of Jodhpur. He tried to keep Ahmadnagar and its dependencies, but, after a long discussion, it was ruled in 1848 that Ahmadnagar should revert to Idar. The chief remains are the Bhadr Palace, built of white stone, and a reservoir, both in ruins.
The palace is said to have been originally constructed in the reign of Ahmad Nizam Shah, the founder of the town. A new palace has been erected on the Bhadr site by the present Maharaja of Idar.
The town contains a hospital treating annually about 7,000 patients, and is administered as a munici- pality with an income (1903-4) of Rs. 1,755 anc an expenditure of Rs. 1,401.