Fort Height: 4560 Ft (from sea level)
Base Village: Narayanpur
Time to reach from base village: 45 mins to 1 hour
As Lord Indra occupies an undisputed position among gods and goddess, same is the status of Purandar among other forts. Its mythological name is "Indraneel Parvat". As per Hindu mythology, when Lord Hanuman attempted to carry Dronagiri mountain range, a portion of it slipped off his hands and fell down to form "Indraneel Parvat".
The fort, being quite a huge one was a good place for defence. It had the capacity to house many soldier-troops, foods grains and ammunition which proved sufficient for long durations during wartime. Nonetheless, the fort hosts strong fortified places from which a watchful eye can be kept
over surrounding areas.
The history of this glorious fort dates back to the Bahamani Regime. Chandrasampat Deshpande of Bedar is the man who conqured this fort. The fort was reconstructed by Chandrakant Deshpande and was completed with great zeal by one of his family associates Mahadaji Nilkanth. Later, around
1489, the fort went to Nizamshah. Nizamshah's brave sardar Malik Mohammed captured this fort. Further, it went into Adilshah in 1550.
When Adilshah was angry by the activities of Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, he ordered Fattekhan to attack Maharaj. He at the same time ordered his soldiers to attack Shahaji Raje and Shivaji Raja's elder borther Sambhaji Raje. Swarajya was very small at that time and the army was also very less in numbers. At this time, Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj decided to try and convience Niloji who was then in-charge of Purandar fort. Maharaj knew that there is some restlessness on the fort on who will be the successor to Niloji. Maharaj sensed this opportunity and asked Niloji to take him inside the fort to battle with Fattekhan. Niloji was on good terms with Dadoji Kondadev. And felt sad to know that Dadoji is no more! So agreed to help Maharaj and allowed him and his army to enter the fort.Looking at such humble approach of Maharaj with some soft corner for Dadoji Kondadev, Niloji readily accepted this and invited Shivaji and his followers to occupy one of the 'machis' of the fort and thus acknowledged the gratitude. Out of three brothers, Shankarji stayed with Maharaj.
With this fort as base, the Marathas entered into battle with Fattekhan. Maharaj won the battle but suffered a heavy loss. Baji Pasalkar, a brave warrior was killed in the battle. Baji Pasalkar was like a father-image to Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Later in 1655, Maharaj nominated Netaji Palkar as
the "Sarnaubat" of the fort.In Vaishakh Shuddha 12, shake 1579 (16 May 1657), Purandar saw birth of Chatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj.
In year 1665, Mirza Raja Jaisingh attacked this fort alongwith Dilerkhan. At this time Murarbaji Deshpande was incharge of this fort. To manage a break-through and destroy the enemy who had surrounded the fort, Murarbaji decided to launch an all-out attack on the enemy. He selected 700
best soldiers out of total 2000 infantry available on the fort. Murarbaji fought a brave battle, but ultimately was killed by Dilerkhan. Dilerkhan was stunned by the brave fight displayed by Murarbaji. After his death, Vajragad, an fort adjcent to Purandar was captured by Mughals and that resulted into fall of Purandar as well. Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj decided to enter into treaty with Mughals and agreed to surrender 23 forts to Mughals. The treaty was made on 11 June 1665.
Here is the
list of all forts that Maharaj surrendered to Mughals.:
2) Rudramala (Vajragad),
3) Kondana (Sinhagad),
22) Khirdurga (Sagargad)
In year 1670, Aurangazeb broke the treaty and Nilopant Muzumdar on 8th March 1670, Nilopanth Muzumdar established control over the fort. After death of Chatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj, Aurangazeb conquered the fort and renamed it as 'Ajamgad'. Shankarji Narayan argued with Mughals and took
control of the fort. Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj handed over the reigns of the fort to Peshwas.
In year 1775, Sawai Madhaorao was born on this fort.In year 1818, Britishers took control of this fort as Maratha Empire was went down!
This is Lord Mahadev's temple built in 'Hemadic' style of architecture. The temple houses approx. 1.25 to 1.5 feet high statue of Lord 'Indra'.
This door, facing north, is still in a good condition. As the road turns near the Darwaja, we can see a temple of Goddess Laxmi. A leftward route from the bifurcation ahead leads us to the other end of the Citadel. The same road leads us to some water cisterns. The rightward road from the
bifurcation leads to yet another door (Darwaja). Two statues of lions guard either sides of this Darwaja.
This temple is of Lord Kedareshwar. During Mahashivratri thousands of pilgrims visit this temple. 'Deepastambha', can be seen in front of the temple. This temple is a topmost part of the fort. We can see the forts like Rajgad, Torna, Sinhagad, Raireshwar, Rohida, Malhargad and Karhe-Plateau from here. At the rear end of this temple there is a fortified place called as 'Koknya'
The only door to Purandar Machi,enroute from Narayanpur as we approach Purandar fort. The door is still in good condition. As we enter through the door, we can see the provisions for the guards to hide and attack enemy. These are called as the Gatehouses - Paharekaryandiya Devdya. As we
proceeds further, the khandakada immediately catches our attention.
Once you enter through the door, the road branches, one straight ahead whereas the other towards the rear end of fort. As we move on, we come across the vintage military camps and a few bungalows. The same road leads to the foothills of the citadel, where we can see the temple of
Also, the statue of Murarbaji in his fighting stance gives us the feel of his courageous nature and it takes us back to those glorious days.
As we enter and proceed along this Delhi-Darwaja, we see a huge rock extending eastwards. This is nothing but 'Khandakada'. At its end lies a bastion. After visiting this place, it is advisable to return to the Darwaja for our further journey towards the right end uphill. We get to see here the
remnants of few structures like 'food-grain storage rooms' as also of a castle. A few water reservoirs are also located here. As we go ahead, we come across Kedar Darwaja. Although, it may not be in a good condition today, however, its historical value and importance can't be overlooked.
This temple is located towards the rear end of Purandareshwar temple. Constructed during the start of 'Peshva' dynasty, built by Balaji Vishwanath. This was a private temple of Peshwas. Moving further ahead we come across the remains of an ancient two storied bungalow called as 'Wada'. It was in the same 'Wada' that Sawai Madhavrao was born. Behind it is a well, which is in a good condition even today. Moving further ahead, the road bifurcates, one that leads to the foothills of citadel whereas the other towards 'Bhairav Khind'. As we move towards the road leading the
citadel, after a walk of 15 minutes, we come across 'Dilli Darwaja'.
It can be seen if we walk just a little ahead of the great Murarbaji Deshpande statue.
Purandar MachiComing back up to Delhi Darwaja, one can take a straight route, which leads to 'Purandar Machi'. We get to see many dilapidated remains along this route.
Murarbaji Deshpande's Statue
The statue of Murarbaji Deshpande was established in 1970 to the right after we go through Bini Darwaja.
There is bastion called SHENDRYA build in alignment with the fortification which is North-west to citadel & behind the Padmavati Lake.
Enroute to Purandar Machi, is the 'Bhairavkhinda'. A statue of the Great Maratha, 'Shivaji Maharaj' can be seen here. On the right hand side we see
the 'Rajale lake' which also the source of water supply for Purandar Machi.
Ways To Reach
1. From Pune Satara Road via Katraj Ghat
You can visit this fort by taking Pune Satara road. Take a left turn at KETKAVLE. Again take the road going towards the left side where the right side road will take you to the Balaji Temple. This road will take you to Narayanpur. At Narayanpur, you visit the Shri Gurudev Datta Temple and the Mahadeo temple. This Mahadeo temple was built in Yadava's dynasty.Keep going ahead of Narayanpur, you will find a road going towards your right. Take this road and this road will take you directly to the foothills of the fort.
2. From Dive Ghat
You can visit this fort by taking the Dive Ghat route as well. After crossing the Dive Ghat, you will come in the SASWAD village. After crossing the ST Stand in Saswad, you will find a road going towards your right hand side. This road will take you to Narayanpur. Before Narayanpur, you will find a signboard indicating road towards Purandar. This road is at your left hand side. This is the same road decsribed above.
S.T. bus to Saswad from Pune takes us to the foothills of Purandar fort. Pune-Narayanpur bus is also available to reach up to the base village, Narayanpur.
S.T. bus to Bhor from Saswad will drop you at the bus-stop of 'Purandar Ghat matha' in Narayanpur village. A road on the left side along the two houses situated on mountain ahead leads to Bini Darwaja which can be reached approximately in 45 minutes.
Food and Drinking Water
You have to make your own arrangement for food also you can find RAJA's (a person whose name is Raja) canteen where you can get the food.
Drinking water is available in the canteen and also suggested that you carry ample water with you.
With permission from the military officers, you can stay in the military camps, bunglows located on the fort.