Saturday, 31 January 2015

Long drive to Delhi - 42 : Chittorgarh, Rajasthan

Chittorgarh is located 112 Kms from Ajmer & approx 700 kms from Delhi. It is almost midway on Delhi - Bombay highway on NH 8. Golden Quadrilateral road network NH-76 & NH-79 intersect near Chittorgarh. Weather throughout the year is hot & rains are scanty. Best season to visit is Nov – Feb. Names of eminent people in history are associated with Chittorgarh: Rani Padmini, Meera Bai, Maharana Pratap, Rana Kumbha, Rana Hammir Singh & many others.

Meera Bai Temple

Folk lore mentions that Bhim started building the fort during Mahabharat. He was a disciple of sage here. Once out of impatience & anger he hit the ground hard & water sprang up to form a reservoir which is named Bhim-Lat.

The fort town is believed to have been constructed during 7th century AD & perhaps the name of fort is derived from Mauryan ruler Chitrangda Mori. It was capital of Mewar state established by Bappa Rawal for over eight hundred years. The fort was gifted to him in dowry!

Entry into the fort is through one mile long steep serpentine road through seven gates each having watch tower & iron spiked huge doors - Ram Pol (main gate), Laxman Pol, Jorla Pol, Ganesh Pol, Hanuman Pol, Bhairon Pol & Paidal Pol. Fort had 84 water bodies of which only 20 are functional now. Inside the forts there are 300 temples. The peripheral wall is said to be second longest to China Wall!

Victory Tower is 122 ft high & was built by Maharana Kumbha in 1440 to commemorate victory over Muslim rulers of Malwa & Gujrat. The tower stands on a 10 ft high base

Inside the Krishna Temple

Meera Temple

Krishna Temple
In 1303 Alla-u-ddin Khilji, Sutan of Dilli hearing about exceptional beauty of Rani Pamavati attacked the fort to capture her. Rana Rattan Singh & the men folk of the fort took to arms & fought to death. Rani Padmini along with all the ladies in fort committed jauhar. It was recaptured by Hamir Singh in 1326 & it rose again. 
In 1535 Bahdur Shah, Sultan of Gujrat besieged the court again & Rana Bikramjit Singh & entire men folk of fort donned saffron robes, took to arms to fight to death. Women folk led by Rani Karnavati committed jauhar.
In 1568 Akbar Udai Singh again captured the fort & mass jauhar was performed for the third time. Maharana Udai Singh II fled to Udaipur to re-establish his rule & founded Udaipur. Thus the stones of the fort are memorial to bravery, nationalism, courage & sacrifice of kings, soldiers, women & even children.
Kirti Tower is dedicated to Jain Tirthankar Rishabh

Inside the Brahma-Vishnu-Mahesh Temple

Two video recordings on BlackBerry are placed below.


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