Panna Meena Ka Kund



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Panna Meena Ka Kund, Jaipur Overview

Among the several architectural marvels that the Pink City can boast of, the ancient stepwell called Panna Meena ka Kund is quite an important yet unexplored one. Established in the 16th century, the place is also known by many other names locally, some of which are just derivations of the original name in the local language. A baori or a stepwell is a concept solely originating from the Indian subcontinent and were the most popular source of water during the old times. These are mostly man-made pools of water that can be reached by descending a series of stairwells. Panna Meena ka Kund in Jaipur is one of the many famous stepwells that still stand in the western part of India, where they were mostly constructed. The original purpose of this Baori was to supply the locals with water for drinking and other daily needs, especially during the dry summers, as well as crop irrigation.

The kund also served as a community centre for the societies living around the Kund. People would gather and sit on the multiple levels of stairwell, and exchange conversation. Although Panna Meena ka Kund has now stopped being a source of water, it still serves as a place for locals and tourists alike to gather and spend some time chit-chatting. During summer and monsoon, you can see young local boys competing among themselves by jumping into the pool from the edge of the Kund above. Elderlies sit along the many staircases, and it is also a great place for couples to spend some quality time together, dangling their legs off the edge of the stairwells. Clearly, Panna Meena ka Kund is still upholding its heritage by being the community centre it always was.

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There is no written or confirmed history about how Panna Meena ka Kund came into existence. In the absence of those, local people have taken the liberty to forge folklores of their own, and the most popular version is that there was a courtesan in the royal court of Maharaja Jai Singh in Amer Fort, a eunuch by the name of Panna Miah, under whose patronage this stepwell was created. Nonetheless, the architectural style and construction place Panna Meena ka Kund as a creation of the 16th century approximately.

The main attraction of Panna Meena ka Kund is the uniquely symmetrical look of its stairwell. In most stepwells, the stairs are plain and simple and go in a concentric manner down to the pool from the edge. But here, the stairs itself are a major attraction of the Kund. Although it had a very important purpose back in the days or storing, reserving and supplying water to the localities, the creators did not compromise with its architecture at all.
The stairs follow a zigzag pattern on three of the four sides of the Kund, and form niches where one staircase ends and another begins, thereby adding to the charm. The stairs are made in such a manner that you can reach any of them from anywhere, by simply climbing up and down some flights. These stairwells offer plenty of space for the visitors to sit, chat and spend some quality time, as well as indulge in some photoshoot. The patterns here make a great background for portrait pictures. There are four octagonal pavilions or Chhatris on four corners as well.

  • Beware of fraud guides who might try to convince you to pay entrance fees, even though there are no official charges. Stand your ground under such circumstances.
  • Do carry your cameras. Panna Meena ka Kund offers spectacular backdrops for great social media pictures.

Panna Meena ka Kund is located very close to the famous Amer Fort, on the Jaipur-Amer Road near Anokhi Museum. From the fort, it is only a ten minutes walk. The best way to reach the Kund from Jaipur or any other city is by renting a car or hiring a cab.

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