A palanquin is similar to a sedan chair. It was carried by four men in relays, with changes every 10 miles, and usually at night to avoid the heat. The design of this palanquin indicates it was intended for someone of high status - the upholstery is silk brocade or velvet, with flowers in gold thread. Palanquins for normal use were much simpler and more box-like.
If a lady was being carried the curtains would usually be drawn shut for privacy; a man would have the curtains open in daytime, but closed if travelling at night.
Company School style paintings became popular with wealthy Europeans. It was not uncommon for East India Company officials (who were not employed as medics or botanists) to build their own personal collections of paintings depicting Indian life and flora and fauna. We cannot be sure how local amateur botanist Richard Cresswell came by this collection of 86 Company School works. It is possible Henry Creighton commissioned them during his time as a judge in Calcutta and that on his death the works came back to the UK with his daughter Frances who later married Richard Cresswell.