Tuesday, November 4, 2008
"गडांचा राजा आणि राजांचा गड" .
This means "THE KING of FORTS and the KING'S FORT".
To understand this Enlightenment/ illumination one must visit this fort.
Fort Type: Hill Fort
Fort Height: 4574 Ft ( from Sea-level)
Base Village: Pali, Gunjawane
Time to reach from Base Village: Usually it takes 3 hours to reach to the fort.
RAJGAD was the first capital of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Although there is not much evidance available about when Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj captured the fort, some of the historical references like Bakhar, Shivcharitra indicate that during 1646-1647, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj captured this fort along-with the Fort Torna.
The fort is situated so strategically that to come to this fort one has to cross at-least one river and/or a hill range.
Formerly Rajgad was known as MURUMBADEVACHA DONGAR. Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj started a heavy re-construction on this fort and renamed MURUMBADEVACHA DONGAR to RAJGAD!
The history of Murumbadev span across centuries, few evidences suggest that the this fort is 2000 years old. During the Bahamani rule, the fort was known as Murumbadev. In 1490, the founder of Nizamshahi of Ahmednager, Ahmed Bahiri captured many forts in western Maharashtra. During this time he captured the Murumbadev as well. The fort was captured by Adilshah and after that Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj captured it. All the fortifications that we see today are majorly done by Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
When Aurangazeb summoned Shahistekhan to attack Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Shahistekhan camped in Pune. He asked one of his Sardars to attack on Rajgad. His forces destroyed few villages near Rajgad but never attacked Rajgad. On 6th May 1663, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj raided the Shahistekhan's camp in Lal Mahal at Pune. In this raid, Shahistekhan lost 3 fingers of his hand and ran away from Pune. This was a huge defeat of Mughal army. Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj used his minimal available resources to the optimum level and achieved the highest possible rewards. He was the best user of the GUERRILLA tactics (गनिमी कावा).
I would like to say something here on the Guerrilla tactics adopted by Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
राजपूत आणि मराठा ह्या दोन्ही शक्ति मुग़ल सैन्याशी झगडल्या पण राजपूत लोक मारायला आणि मरायला महत्व देत आणि मराठ्यान्मधे मारून जीवंत परत येण्याला महत्व होते, म्हणून राजपूत पराभूत होवून मांडलिक बनले आणि मराठे मुघलांना पुरून उरले!! औरंगजेबाला मराठेशाही कधीही जिंकता आली नाही!!! यातच छत्रपति शिवाजी महाराजांचे सामर्थ्य आहे! राजा संपला म्हणुन राज्य नाही संपत!! राज्य ही एक चेतना आहे जी कधीही संपत नाही हेच छत्रपति शिवाजी महाराजांनी लोकांमधे रुजवले अणि मराठी साम्राज्य स्थापन झाले, विस्तारले!!!
After the "Purandar Treaty" Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj gave 23 forts to Aurangazeb, Rajgad remained with Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
This fort has witnessed the most famous incidents in Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's life.
1. Birth of Chatrapati Rajaram Maharaj. या ठिकाणी एक गोष्ट सांगतो, जेव्हा छत्रपति राजाराम महाराज जन्मले तेव्हा ते पालथे जन्मले, पूर्वी अशा गोष्टींना अपशकुन मानला जात असे जेव्हा छत्रपति शिवाजी महाराजांच्या कानावर ही गोष्ट गेली तेव्हा ते उद्गारले " हा दिल्ली पद्पात्शाही पालथी घालेल " या एका साध्या वाक्याने सगळा माहोल बदलून गेला अणि सगळीकड़े आनंद पसरला
2. सोनोपंत डबीर यांचे छत्रपति शिवाजी महाराज यांना सुनावलेले खड़े बोल
जेव्हा शाहजी राजे आदिलशाहकड़े बंदी होते त्यांच्या सुटकेसाठी आदिलशाहने सिंहगड किल्ला परत मागितला होता तेव्हा छत्रपति शिवाजी राजे आपल्या पित्यावर रुष्ट झाले होते अणि तेव्हा सोनोपंत डबीर यांनी त्यांचा रुसवा काढताना "पराक्रमी राजलाच पृथ्वी वश होते , राजे एक सिंहगड गेला म्हणुन तुम्ही पित्यावर रागावता, त्यापेक्षा एक गडाच्या बदल्यात आदिलशाहने शाहजी राजंसारख्या सिंहाला मुक्त केले आहे राजे... आता तुम्ही पृथ्वीवर राज्य करा" असे बोल सुनवले होते
3. After killing Afzalkhan on Fort Pratapgad, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj sent Afzalkhan's head to Rajgad. His head was buried on the door of the Balekilla ( बालेकिल्ला )
4. On this same fort, Tanaji Malusare sworn-in to win the fort Sinhagad for Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. For this he ignored the marriage ceremony of his son. When Tanaji won the fort Sinhagad, he died in the battle on Fort Sinhagad. Rajgad observed his dead body arriving in PALKHI (पालखी).
सिंहगड जिंकुन आला आहे म्हणुन आपला तान्या पालखी मधून येतो आहे असे वाटुन राजे तानाजी मालुसरे यांना सामोरे गेले अणि पहातात तो काय आपल्या लाडक्या तान्याचे अचेतन शरीर!!! नियतीने केलेला हा घाव पाहून राजे अणि राजमाता जिजाऊ आई-साहेब यांना रडू आवरले नव्हते
5. This fort also witnessed the punishment of the traitor Khandoji Khopde।
After 1670, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj shifted his capital to Raigad ( रायगड )
After his death, Aurangazeb came personally to destroy the Maratha Kingdom. In 1689, he captured Chatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj alive and tortured him to a brutal death. In 1703, Aurangazeb personally attacked Rajgad and after hard fought battle for 2 months he captured the fort. As it was a trend, whatever Aurangazeb used to win, the maratha's used to attack it and re-captures it. Rajgad was again captured by Gunaji Sawant and Pantaji Shivdev on 27th May 1707. Later on Chatrapati Shahu Maharaj controlled the fort by providing regular funds to look after the fort. During the Peshwa control, due to very unstable financial conditions, the salaries of the staff working on this fort were halted and then it started the downfall of Fort Rajgad which was the First Maratha Capital.
Today the fortification of the fort is in better condition than any other structures on the fort. In recent times many attempts are going on to preserve the fort.
1. Chor darwajas located at different places on the fort.
2. Padmawati Temple
3. Maharani Saibai Samadhi
4. Remains of the Palace
6. Daru kothar
9. Suvela Machi
10. Sanjivani Machi
12. Padmawati Machi
13. Pali Darwaja
14. Gunjavani Darwaja
How to reach?
All references are given by considering PUNE as the base location.
1. By State Transport (ST)
There are buses available to Wajeghar /Velhe/ Pabe from Swargate. Please enquire about the time-table.
2. By own vehicle
If you are planning to visit the fort by your vehicle, you need to take the PUNE-Satara road towards Satara. You will come across the NASRAPUR PHATA (a diversion towards village Nasrapur). Sign-boards are present on the entire route. Follow the sign-boards to reach to Gunjawane Village via Sakhar village. Park your vehicle here and order the food (if you wish). Here on small replica of the Fort Rajgad is build. Referring to this replica, you can plan the places that you wish to see on the fort. The replica will give you the exact understanding of the fort and this will simplify your visit. Thanks to the person who has created this replica.
Food and Drinking Water
Food, one has to make arrangements for himself/ herself. Usually people from Gunjawani village deliver food on the fort, but you need to order it in advance. In advance means before you start the climb.
I am not sure about the arrangements from the Pali village. One can enquire about it if one plans to climb the fort from Pali Village.
Drinking water is available all the year. The drinking water is available near the Padmavati temple on Padmavati machi. But make sure that before you reach the fort, you have enough water for the climb.
There are many places on Padmavati Machi where one can stay.
Padmavati temple can accommodate at-least 25 people.
There are guest houses present in-front of the Padmavati temple, wherein the trekkers can take rest.