Sailana is a town and a nagar panchayat in Ratlam district in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh. It is located in the Malwa region of Madhya Pradesh. Sailana is 25 km from Ratlam city and 50 km away from Banswara district of the neighboring state of Rajasthan.

Sailana is located in Madhya Pradesh
Location in Madhya Pradesh, India
Sailana is located in India
Sailana (India)
Coordinates: 23°28′N 74°55′E / 23.47°N 74.92°E / 23.47; 74.92Coordinates: 23°28′N 74°55′E / 23.47°N 74.92°E / 23.47; 74.92
Country India
StateMadhya Pradesh
Founded byRaja Jai Singh Rathore
479 m (1,572 ft)
 • Total11,989
 • OfficialMalvi, Hindi
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)

Sailana was once the capital of the Sailana State before it merged into India. A fort belonging to the former royal family still stands tall in Sailana. The Kedareshwar temple, situated 4 km from Sailana is a notable shrine.



According to tradition, the town derived its name from its location at the foot of the hills (in Sanskrit, anana means mouth and shaila means hills).[1]


As of 2011 India census,[2] Sailana had a population of 11,989 of which 6,145 are males while 5,844 are females . Sailana has an average literacy rate of 86%, higher than the state average of 69%: male literacy is 93%, and female literacy is 78%. In Sailana, 11% of the population is under 6 years of age.


Sailana is located at 23°28′N 74°55′E / 23.47°N 74.92°E / 23.47; 74.92.[3] It has an average elevation of 479 metres (1,571 feet).


Sailana State was founded by Raja Jai Singh (r. 1736–1757), great-grandson of Maharaja Ratan Singh, founder of Ratlam State. In 1716 Jai singh took revenge against his uncle for the murder of his father, he killed him in a pitched battle at sagode and secured Ratlam for his elder brother. The two brothers then divided the state between themselves. Jai singh's capital was initially at Raoti. He built Sailana city as his new capital in 1736. He fought 22 battles in his lifetime, turning Sailana into an independent state.[4][1] During Raja Mokham Singh's rule (r. 1782–1797), Sailana suffered in war against the Scindias of Gwalior, most of the states eastern and southern lands were annexed. Raja Lakshman Singh of Sailana (r. 1797–1826) tried to push the Scindia's out of his kingdom, in 1818 he refused to pay chauth which was regularly levied, the Scindias retaliated by sending an army under Bujang Rao, the Gwalior army which had european arms and was French trained lost its advantage on the hills en route to Sailana and was defeated by Lakshman Singh, the captured soldiers were allowed to leave but all of their guns and artillery were taken. In 1819, Bapu Rao was appointed to punish the raja of Sailana and enforce tribute opon him. Bapu Rao had previously been sent by the Scindia's to defeat and exact tributes from the Maharaja of Jaipur and the Maharana of Udaipur.[5] However on 5 January 1819, John Malcolm mediated between Gwalior and Sailana upon which Raja Lakshman Singh accepted British protection and agreed to pay a fixed tribute of Rs.23,000 to Gwalior (until 1860), in return for Scindia agreeing to refrain from any interference in Sailana. During British rule Sailana saw development under the capable rule of Raja Jaswant Singh (r. 1895–1919) and then under his son Raja Dilip Singh (r. 1919–1948), many reforms were introduced over the coming years, with particular attention being paid to education and the provision of vernacular educational facilities. By 1947, education and medical aid were provided free of charge, the local municipality was placed on a democratic footing and the judiciary and executive made independent of each other. Although the economy was primarily agricultural, some limited industrialisation included oil mills, and iron and steel works. On 15 June 1948, Raja Dilip Singh signed the accession to the Indian Union.[6][7]

Royal CuisineEdit

In the days of the British Raj Sailana was famous for its hospitality, cuisine and wine. The culinary culture dating back from three generations of master culinary expert Raja Sir Dilip Singh Ji K.C.I.E of Sailana excelled in the culinary arts and collected recipes of bygone era from the Nizam of Hyderabad, Maharaja of Kashmir and Begum of Bhopal amongst others, from where emanated the most exotic culinary recipes. He took pains to translate ancient recipe books in Sanskrit, Urdu and Persian to ensure that these recipes were preserved for posterity. The current head of the family, Vikram Singh Ji, has a collection of more than 2,000 ancient recipes out of which only 164 have been made public through the cookbook, "Cooking Delights of the Maharajas" written by the former ruler of Sailana, Digvijay Singh Ji.[8][9]

Cactus GardenEdit

The Sailana Cactus garden was built by Raja Digvijay Singh Ji. The garden is behind the Sailana Palace and has over 1,200 species of cactus out of which 50 are Indian.

Kedareshwar TemplesEdit

The Kedareshwar temples (Bada Kedareshwar and Chota Kedareshwar) of Lord Shiva are famous in Sailana, there are two of them, both are 4 km from the fort in opposite directions. The temples are situated in man made caves carved out from a cliff of igneous rocks. The initial structure of Bada Kedareshwar was built by Raja Jai Singh (r.1736 – 1757), Raja Duleh Singh (r.1850 – 1895) later spent Rs.150,000 on the temple and built several structures in and around the temple including a man-made lake that flows over the temple. Chota Kedareshwar is built on a cliff which is surrounded by a small valley. From the top of the cliff, a small stream of monsoon rain water forms a waterfall and joins a small pond of water in the valley. From here a river originates and flows down into the plains of Rajasthan.

Sailana Kharmour Bird SanctuaryEdit

The Kharmour Bird Sanctuary, also known as Sailana Bird Sanctuary, is situated in Sailana Village of the Ratlam District. This sanctuary is spread in a total area of 13 km2 and was established in 1983. This sanctuary is home to and is named after the 'Kharmour' bird, a very rare species; and it is also a major stop for a wide variety of migratory birds. It is also one of the breeding habitats of Lesser Florican in India. The famous ornithologist Salim Ali visited the sanctuary and spotted 89 species of birds. This sanctuary is recognized as a part of the ecoregion of Kathiawar-Gir dry deciduous forests.[10]


The Government College in Sailana was founded in 1989. It is affiliated to Vikram University, Ujjain.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Imperial Gazetteer of India. Vol.21. Oxford: Clarendon Press. 1908. p. 385.
  2. ^ {{cite
  3. ^ Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Sailana
  4. ^ Malwa in Transition Or a Century of Anarchy: The First Phase, 1698-1765 pg.123-125
  5. ^ History of the Marathas By R.S. Chaurasia p.41
  6. ^ Princely States of India
  7. ^ Sailana through the ages by Jayantilaal Mehta
  8. ^ Cooking Delights of the Maharajas
  9. ^ Dining with the Maharajas pg. 194
  10. ^ "Kathiawar-Gir dry deciduous forests". Terrestrial Ecoregions. World Wildlife Fund. Retrieved 29 January 2017.

External linksEdit