|This article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2011)|
The capital of Matsya
was at Viratanagar (modern Bairat) which is said to have been named after its founder, king Virata. Meenas are brothers and kinsmen of Virata, the ruler of Virat Nagar. They ruled this area(near to Virat Nagar) till 11th century. [citation needed ] The most famous Matsya ruler was Virata, the ally of the Pandavas. Upaplavya was a city in the Meena Kingdom ruled by king Virata. It was the city where the Pandavas camped and planned their strategy for the Kurukshetra War.  Kichaka Kingdom was a part of the Matsya kingdom ruled by the Meenas rulers. Kichaka Kingdom was allied to King Virata. The Kichaka king, known by the name Kichaka was the commander-in-chief of the Matsya-army under king Virata. [citation needed ] The Meena Kingdom was known as “Matsya” as each of these Janapadas was named after the Kshatriya tribe (or the Kshatriya Jana) who had settled therein.  Around 300 BC, the Meena kingdom succumbed to the rising Mauryan empire.  The present day Meenas of Rajasthan still follow Vedic culture : they mainly worship Shiva, Hanuman and Krishna as well as the Devas.
|Elevation||430 m (1,410 ft)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
Bairat's history goes back to the time of the Mahabharata, when it was known as "Viratnagar". Viratnagar was the capital of the ancient Mahajanapada (kingdom) of Machcha or Matsya. The kingdom came under the control of the neighboring Chedi Kingdom in the 5th century and was later part of the Mauryan Empire. The ruins of the Bijak-ki-pahadi, a Buddhist Chaitya (chapel) from the 3rd century BCE located in Bairat, are the oldest free-standing Buddhist structures in India. The town is also home to ruins of a Buddhist monastery, a wood and timber shrine, and rock-cut edict from Emperor Ashoka; these date from the Mauryan period. However, Akhnoor, a town in the state of Jammu and Kashmir is also considered by many as the ancient Virat Nagar.
The town has a number of Mughal structures, including a Chhatri (cenotaph) with some of the earliest surviving murals in Rajasthan, and a lodge where the Mughal emperor Akbar hunted and stayed overnight on his yearly pilgrimage to Ajmer.
The town's Viratnagar Museum houses artifacts from Bairat's long history, including sculptures, coins, pottery, seals and metal objects. The Virat Nagar also known for Great cow lover Mahatma Ramchandra Veer's birth place. The only Hindu saint who did anshan to stop the killing of animal in the Temples of India. He had established the Panchkhand Peeth on the top of hill. He was a devotee of a well known shasthra pandit named Hanuman and the their caste was named Vanar. He had also written the Hindu epic Ramayana in Hindi language the named "Ram katha Amrit", " Vijay Pataka" "Vinash ke Marg" & "Humare Hutatma".
Bairat is located at  It has an average elevation of 430 m (1,410 ft)..
The Banganga River originates from a nearby village, Mair.
As of the 2001 census, Viratnagar had a population of 17,237. Males constitute 53% of the population and females 47%. Bairat has an average literacy rate of 50%, lower than the national average of 59.5%; male literacy is 65%, and female literacy is 34%. Twenty percent of the population is under 6 years of age.
- Viratnagar in archives & archaeology: India's perennial city, Sī. Ela Śarmā, Malti Prakashan, 1997
- A Tryst with History at Viratnagar, Florine Roche, December 3, 2012, http://www.daijiworld.com/chan/exclusive_arch.asp?ex_id=1968
- Akhnoor: Caught in a time warp - The Hindu
- Official Web Site of Akhnoor Sub-Division (J&K)
- The Early Rajput Murals of Bairat (ca. A.D. 1587) H. Goetz, Ars Orientalis Vol. 1, (1954), pp. 113-118
- "Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Bairat". Fallingrain.com. Retrieved 2012-06-05.
- "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.