Rajgad – The first kingdom of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj

Rajgad – the beautiful fort is located to the south-west of Pune about 60 KM from Pune city center.  Rajgad is situated on a hill which was formerly called as Murumdev Hill ( मुरुंबदेवाचा डोंगर ). Rajgad fort was established as the first kingdom of Maratha Empire by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.  This fort has tremendous importance in Maratha empire history as it was the active center of Maratha empire establishment for the first 26 years.  Shivaji Maharaj stayed here for the highest number of days of his life. 

I have visited this fort many times for trekking. Click here to view the last post which has photos from summer.  This time I visited the fort with my friend Arvind and we created a documentary video about the fort. This video is published on IndiaTravelVids YouTube channel. You can see beautiful greenery and flowers after the monsoon season in this video. 

 

Historical Events on Rajgad 

The fort has stood witness to many significant historical events including the birth of Chhatrapati Shivaji’s son “Rajaram Chhatrapati”, the death of Shivaji’s Queen Saibai, the return of Shivaji from Agra, the burial of Afzal Khan’s head in the Mahadarwaja walls of Balle Killa.

The Rajgad Fort was also one of the 17 forts that Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj kept when he signed the Treaty of Purandar in 1665, with the Mughal general Jai Singh I, leader of the Mughal forces. Under this treaty, 23 forts were handed over to the Mughals.

– Source Wikipedia 

– More historical information about the fort can be found on Marathi  Wiki  ( राजगड ) 

Trekking and hiking 

Rajgad is the destination for every trekker in Maharashtra because of its beautiful view and historical importance. There are various places to see on the fort. Suvela Machi, Padmavati tank, Rajwada ( remains of the palace ), Padmavati temple, Sanjivanee machi, balekilla. 

Nowadays there are two main paths which can be used to climb the fort. One starts at Gunjawane Village. From the highway, at Nasarapur take road towards Velhe. From Sakhar village take the route to Gunjavane.   At Gunjawane village vehicles can be parked by paying small fees. 

Another main route is from Pali Daravaja  .From Kharive village – after crossing Kanand river we can take this route. This route is relatively simple and has steps in good condition. 

On weekends, some villagers sell food and water bottles however in lean seasons it’s difficult to get food and trekkers should carry their own food. 

Please enjoy the video above for more information. I would love to know your feedback. 

 

Sinhgad fort – History and Information

In an earlier post I had shared video of my bicycle ride to Sinhagad  . Sinhagad is my favourite place to visit. This time I visited Sinhagad  fort with my friend Arvind to create a informative video about fort , its history specifically during period of Shivaji Maharaj and Marath empire.  Video is posted on India Travel Vids channel on  youtube .  

   

It’s a marathi narration there is also a hindi version at this link.  This video is becoming popular on youtube . It received 200K+ views in just two months. 

Please let me know your remarks about the video in comments . 

English summary of content in video – Source – Wikipedia

Sinhagad, Sinhgarh, or Sinhgad (The Lion’s Fort), is a fortress located roughly 30 km southwest of the city of Pune,India. Previously called Kondhana (Marathi: कोंढाणा), the fort has been the site of many important battles, most notably the Battle of Sinhagad in 1671. It was also strategically located at the center of a string of other forts such as Rajgad, Purandar and Torna.
Perched on an isolated cliff of the Bhuleswar range of the Sahyadri Mountains, it is situated on a hill rising 700 m above sea level. Given natural protection by its very steep slopes, the walls and bastions were constructed at only key places; it has two gates – the Kalyan Darwaza in the south-east and the Pune Darwaza in the north-east.

One of the most famous battles for Sinhgad was fought to recapture the fort by Tanaji Malusare,a Mard Maratha Koli and a general of Shivaji in March 1670. A steep cliff leading to the fort was scaled with the help of a monitor lizard named Yashwanti,known as a ghorpad in marathi. Thereafter, there ensued fierce battles between Tanaji and his men, and the mughal army headed by Udaybhan Singh Rathod a Rajput sardar, that had the fort at the time. Tanaji lost his life, but his brother Suryaji took over and captured Kondana.There is an anecdote that upon hearing of Tanaji’s death, Shivaji expressed his remorse with the words: “Gad aala pan sinha gela” – “We gained the fort, but lost the lion”. The name Sinhagad, though, pre-dates this event, and can be seen in written communiques from the era. A bust of Tanaji has been established on the fort in memory of his contribution to the battle. It was also strategically located at the centre of a string of other forts such as Rajgad, Purandar and Torna.
Sinhagad was called ‘Kondana’ after the sage Kaundinya. The Kaundinyeshwar temple, the caves and the carvings indicate that this fort had probably been built two thousand years back. It was captured from the Koli tribal chieftain,Nag Naik, by Muhammad bin Tughlaq in 1328 AD.
Shahaji Bhosale, as the commander of Ibrahim Adil Shah I, was entrusted with the control of the Pune region. His son Shivaji, however, refused to accept the Adilshahi and initiated the task of setting up Swarajya. He gained control of Kondana in 1647 by convincing Siddi Amber, the Adilshahi Sardar who controlled the fort. Bapuji Mudgal Deshpande played key role in this activity. In 1649, it had to be handed over to Adil Shah for Shahaji Maharaj’s release. Shivaji Maharaj recaptured it back in 1656 again with the help of Bapuji Mudgal Deshpande,who convinced Fort commander by giving land in newly created Shivapur village and peacefully gained control of fort. This fort saw attacks by Mughals in 1662, 1663 and 1665. In 1664, Shahistekhan, the Mughal general, even tried to bribe people of fort to hand over the fort to him but he was unsuccessful. Through the Treaty of Purandar, it passed into the hands of the Mughal army chief Mirzaraje Jaysingh, in the year 1665. In 1670, Shivaji Maharaj re-conquered this fort and then it stayed under Maratha rule till 1689. After the death of Sambhaji, the Mughals regained control f the fort. The Marathas, headed by Sardar Balkawade, recaptured it in 1693. Chatrapati Rajaram took asylum on this fort during Mogul raid on Satara but Rajaram died on Sinhagad on the 3rd of March 1700 & in 1703 Aurangzeb conquered the fort. In 1706, it once again went into the hands of the Marathas. Pantaji Shivdev of Sangola, Visaji Chafar and the Pant Pratinidhis played key role in this battle. Then this fort remained with Marathas till 1818, when the British conquered it. British however took three months to capture this fort, which was longest it took them to win any fort in Maharashtra.

Bicycle ride to Sinhgad fort

Sinhgad fort is in vicinity of Pune city .  This is a huge advantage to Pune citizens. People go to Sinhgad for trekking , hiking , bird photography and having breakfast of Kanda-Baji & Pithala Bhakari .  There is a motorable road to the top of Sinhgad fort. This is a beautiful road for riding bikes & bicycles.

In the last week of April 2016 , I completed a bicycle ride to Sinhgad fort.  We created a video of the ride .

See Video blog of cycling below

Or click on YouTube link  https://youtu.be/Q9NMXIrXaAA

Let me know your feedback in comments below.

Sinhgad – Powada of Tanaji Malusare & Shivaji Maharaj

Sinhagad, Sinhgarh, or Sinhgad (Marathi: सिंहगड, The Lion’s Fort), is a fortress located roughly 30 kilometres southwest of the city of Pune, India. Previously called Kondhana (Marathi: कोंढाणा).

We frequently visit Sinhgad fort. This video was taken on fort near “Samadhi” of Tanaji Malusare. Local narrator Shahir Dimbale gave us information about importance of Kondhana Killa ( Sinhgad ) & sung a Powada of Tanaji Malusare & Shivaji Maharaj .

Narration is in Marathi Language.
Place : Sinhgad Fort , Maharashtra , District : Pune
Date : Saturday : 10 / Jul/2011