H! Factor: The youngest scion of the Jaipur royal family, he actively supports the Princess Diya Kumari Foundation and aims to preserve and promote his region’s heritage.
HELLO!: Share some of your earliest memories of growing up in a royal household.
Lakshraj Prakash: “Being brought up in a royal household was truly a huge privilege. Some of my earliest and fondest memories would be of spending my childhood at City Palace, where I grew up and also got to spend time with my grandfather, Maharaja Sawai Bhawani Singh of Jaipur.”
H!: What is your relationship with your siblings like?
LP: “My siblings, Maharaja Padmanabh Singh and Princess Gauravi Kumari, have always provided immense support, assurance and guidance in all my endeavours. The three of us are close and share a strong bond, for which I’m so grateful. In times of need, they always have my back. They form an integral part of my life.”
H!: What are you currently pursuing? Tell us a little about your life at school.
LP: “I’m currently studying economics, business and history at Millfield School in the United Kingdom. Life at Millfield, which is a boarding school, has made me step out of my comfort zone and given me a lot of exposure. Independence, teamwork, a sense of unity and responsibility and mutual cooperation are just a few of the many qualities I imbibed in the UK. I also made many new friends from different countries, cultural backgrounds and walks of life, which taught me a lot about the world, aside from what we learn in the classroom.”
H!: Are you treated differently because of your royal background?
LP: “No, we’re all treated equally at school. We’re all part of the modern world, and I was brought up like any other child. From the outset, my parents and grandparents raised me with values of kindness and humility. In fact, I think because of my royal background, I feel even more inclined to be empathetic and humble, to feel a kind of responsibility to care about others.”
H!: What do your responsibilities as the Maharaja of Sirmaur include?
LP: “My legacy is not just a privileged one of pomp and ceremony More importantly, it’s a legacy of service that will require a great amount of dedication and hard work to promote, protect and preserve Sirmaur’s cultural, artistic and architectural heritage, as well as the scenic beauty of its hills, lakes, rivers and forests, to bring more development and upliftment to the people of the region.
It’s an honour for me. I feel a sense of duty and commitment towards the people of Sirmaur, and I look forward to taking on more and more challenges and responsibilities there on completing my studies.”
H!: Share some of your passions in life.
LP: “In India, cricket isn’t just a game; it evokes strong feelings of patriotism in people, which is why I’m so passionate about it. Being a team sport, it instilled in me great collaborative skills and sportsmanship. I hope to be able to play professionally someday.
Travel is another passion, perhaps because it runs in the family. For me, travel is making new memories, meeting locals with different backgrounds, beliefs and cultures, the exposure, and natural beauty of every place. It makes me an explorer, a naturally curious being, and an ardent adventurer.”
H!: How fashionable are you?
LP: “I wear a mix of streetwear brands like Stussy and Palace, as well as luxury brands like Ralph Lauren.”
H!: Tell us about your closest friends and what you seek in a friendship.
LP: “I was able to find a close group of friends in the UK, who have helped me learn about different cultures and traditions. I still maintain my close friendships in India, people who have been very supportive of me throughout. Like any other person, the qualities I seek in a friendship are loyalty and sharing the same values.”
H!: Are there any charities you endorse?
LP: “I support the Princess Diya Kumari Foundation, founded by my mother Princess Diya Kumari to promote the social and economic empowerment of women and to support sustainable livelihoods, especially for those from less privileged backgrounds. The foundation works for a spectacular cause and has my full support and commitment.”
H!: What are your future plans?
LP: “I don’t think anyone has an idea of their future, though my education and family legacy are preparing me to lead an active life. This includes dedicating myself towards the social and economic development of Sirmaur. I also hope to play a more active role in overseeing the family trusts and the palace.”
Interview: Nayare Ali; Photos: Ashish Chawla; Creative Direction & Styling: Amber Tikari
This story has been adapted for the website from a story that was originally published in Hello! India’s January 2023 issue. Get your hands on the latest issue right here!