Forts in Malwan

Sindhudurg

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Sindhudurg(Marathi सिंधुदुर्ग) is a fortress which occupies an islet in the Arabian Sea, just off the coast of Maharashtra in western India. The fortress lies on the shore of Malvan town of Sindhudurg District in the Konkan region of Maharashtra, south of Mumbai.

History

Sindhudurg (Sindhu = sea, Durg = fort) was built by the great Maratha warrior King Shivaji in 1664. Shivaji selected the strategic rocky island location, 'Kurte' for the fort himself, to counter foreign forces, and to keep the nearby Siddis of Murud-Janjira in check. .

Structural details

Over 4000 mounds of iron were used in the casting and foundation stones were firmly laid down in lead. The construction was started on November 25, 1664. Built over a period of thirty years, the sea fort is spread over 48 acres (190,000 m2) with a two-mile (3 km) long rampart, and walls that are 30 feet (9.1 m) high and 12 feet (3.7 m) thick. The massive walls were designed to serve as a deterrent to approaching enemies and to the waves and tides of the Arabian Sea. The main entrance is concealed in such a way that no one can pinpoint it from outside.

At a time when Samudragaman (travelling by sea) was banned by scriptures, this construction on an island represents the revolutionary mindset of its builder.

Permanent Residents

Since the fort was abandoned, the number of permanent residents staying in the fort are on decline. However, since Dr. Sarang Kulkarni's discoveries lead to commence of Indian Sub-continents only well established Scuba diving industry. Though most of the residents have been moved out due to absence of employment opportunities. Today, more than 15 families stay in the fort, though with very little other employment opportunities but the underwater treasure around the fort discovered by Dr. Sarang kulkarni, today enable the local residents to earn more than $15 (Around Rs. 420). Today, Sindhudurg Fort is the popular destination amongst tourists from within India and abroad.there is a coral reaf in the outskirts of this island

How to reach Sindudurg

Sindudurg town lies in Sindudurg district to north of Goa. Sindudurg can be reached either by train or by bus from Bombay, Goa and Mangalore. The Konkan railway has a railway station at Sindudurg. Only few trains stop here. There are state government ( MSRTC ) buses running from Mumbai, Pune, Ratnagiri, Sangli and Panaji to Sindhudurg.

Nearest Railway Junctions

  • Miraj - 148 km
  • Pune - 165 km

All Express and Superfast trains stop at Miraj and Pune stations. You can take private cars, MSRTC buses from above two railway junctions and reach Sindhudurg.

Image gallery

About the families staying in the fort

Families staying at the fort are known as mavlas, who were the soldiers in the king's regien and they are known to be their ancestors. Basic occupations for them are farming, fishing and guiding tourists in the fort. Among the 15 families there are two Muslim families who are given the responsibility of playing the drum (nagara) in the evening at the time of prayers and that is since the king's regime and no one else can do that as Shivaji Maharaj never discriminated among religions. The houses the locals staying on the fort are very much the same since they were built and as a caution to the locals they cannot renovate the house exterior, but can do some interior, and also they cannot sell this house. There are no hospitals, no shops, no facilities, so life is difficult on the fort, and the only mode of transport is on water, which is again risky.

Attractions at the fort

(1)There are three sweet water reservoirs in the middle of the Arabian Sea where the fort is built, and even if the water in the nearby villages dries in summer, but these wells do not dry; there is always water in them.

(2)There is a coconut tree which has a branch, if you see a coconut tree it will never have a branch but this tree not only has a branch but also gives fruit. This tree was struck by lightning a couple of years ago.

(3)There is a passage which is hidden in a temple which looks like a water reservoir, this passage goes under the fort for 3 kilometers, and 12 kilometers beneath the sea, and from there 12 kilometers in a nearby village which was used as a rescue door if the enemy entered the fort; this way was for the women to move out.

(4)The entrance gate cannot be seen from anywhere, and unless you are not a regular visitor, and if you are not and you are trying to enter through a boat which is the only possible option apart from air, you would bang at the rocks around the fort which can't be seen to a naked eye, hence you have to be very familiar with the fort to enter.

(5) A handprint and a footprint of Shivaji Maharaj is also embedded in one place of the fort. There is Atmeshwar Mandir Famous Shivling and is beauitiful place for Adhyatmic Sadhana.

(6)There is a Temple of Shivaji Maharaj, built by his son Rajaram: The only temple of shivaji in the world

(7) daily pooja and maitainance is done by mainly two families-that were assigned this job since the fort was built, one is Shriram sakpal

See also

Sindhudurg (SNDD)
Next 'Small' station towards Mumbai:
Kankavli
Konkan Railway : Railway (India) Next 'Small' station from Mumbai:
Kudal
Distance from Mumbai(CST) = 0612 KM
Next 'Main' station towards Mumbai:
Ratnagiri
Konkan Railway : Railway (India) Next 'Main' station from Mumbai:
Kudal
  • List of forts in Maharashtra

External links

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Arrange By:
Sanket S
2 May 2013
If you wants to reach here , go as early as possible in the morning. So that you can protect yourself from Sun heat.
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2km from Malwan Exit Road, Chivla, Malvan, Maharashtra 416606, India

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