Jaintapur Raj bari – The Jaintapur Palace

screenshot_391Among the famous archaeological ruins that take Bangladesh to a different level in the eye of the tourists around the world, Jaintapur Palace is one of them. It is situated about 40 kilometres north from Sylhet main town and lies at the feet of Jaintia hills. It is about 5 kilometres from Jaflong (another famous tourist spot in Sylhet). Local people of Sylhet designates the Jaintapur as ‘Pan, Pani, Nari- ai tin e Jaintapuri’ means Betel leaves, Water, Women – these three makes Jaintapuri. Jaintapur is one of the historically richest upazilla of Sylhet.

As according to the epic, puranic and tantric literature Jaintapur was the capital of Jaintapur Kingdom. Approximately near about 7th/8th century Jaintapur came under the control of Kamarupa Kingdom and followed by Chandra and Varman rulers as well. After the fall of the Varman rulers the Jaintapur was again ruled by the Deva rulers for sometime.The last ruler of Deva dynasty Jayanta Ray who had a daughter named Jayanti, got married to the Khasi Chief named Landowar. Due to the matrimonial issue Jaintapur kingdom went under the control of the Khasis at 1500 AD. The Khasi Kings ruled the historically reach kingdom independently until the British occupied it in 1835.

The remains of Jaintapur consists of a Rajbari (King’s Palace), the temple of Jainteshwari and megalithic monuments. The palace was built by Jainta King Lakshmi Sinha in 1680 which is now completely ruined. Though the holy Jainteshwari temple is also in a poor condition but the entire wall of the temple is in a better state for preservation and is vastly decorated with plastered horses, lions and winged beings. There are few megalithic structures that are worth description. There are all around 42 megalithic structures discovered around the Jainteshwari temple area. Among these sructures 19 are found by the side of the temple, 8 are near the Jaintapur Shahid Minar area, 5 are present southern side of Sylhet-Tamabil road. There are 7 other structures also found within half kilometres of the temple near the northern side of the Nayagang River.

The supreme Jaintapur Palace is a great piece of historical interest. The archaeological department should pay more heed to conservate this place to make this as one of the most important historical monuments of Bangladesh.