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By: Rohan Talim

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Wednesday, 16-Jun-2004 00:00 Email | Share | | Bookmark
View From A Fort

View From A Fort
This photograph taken on 6th Dec. 2003 is a view of the sea from the Murud Janjira Fort in Maharashtra, India.

Murud is a village in Raigad district, south to Alibag. It is just 45 Kms. from Alibag. The place is full of coconut and betel nut trees and has a nice and prosperous sea shore. Like other villages in Konkan, Murud is also on the seashore and there are many businesses dependent on sea which are the natives lives like Fishing and tourism. Murud is not a big village but it has a huge palace of Nawab of Murud. That is the only attraction in the village.But Murud is famous for the fort of Janjira. The fort is build in the sea 2 Kms. inside of Murud. This is one of the vital sea-forts in Maharashtra. The fort is old one but still very strong. Though, today it is not in a proper condition, one can still imagine its hugeness and toughness. Some monuments inside and the walls of the fort are destroyed after so many years now. But the toughness of the fort can be still felt. There are in all 19 Buruj in the fort. Every buruj has huge guns on it especially 3 big guns 'Kalal Bangadi' , 'Chavari' and 'Landa Kasam' are very famous. There are 2 water tanks inside the fort and some tombs as well. The fort was built by Burhankhan - a minister of Nizmashah. Many times , Marathas tried to capture the fort, even Shivaji Maharaj, Sambhaji and Peshwas tried - but all those attempts failed. So this is one of the rare forts in Maharashtra which was not managed by Marathas .Padmadurg - a fort built by Shivaji Maharaj is to north -west of Janjira. Though not as big as Janjira, still Padmadurga is also a sea fort that can be visited and enjoyed. Truly, Murud Janjira and Padmadurg are the places to visit and enjoy the weekends or holidays.

Formerly the capital town of the Siddis of Janjira, Murud is today popular for its alluring beach, whispering casurina, coconut and betel palms and an ancient fort. On a hillock to the north is the shrine of Lord Dattatreya, the three heads representing Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwara.
Battered on all four sides by sea waves, its strong walls yet standing intact and 40 feet high even at full tide is the majestic island fortress of the Siddis -- Murud-Janjira. Never conquered by an enemy for over 350 years since its construction by the Ahmednagar rulers under the supervision of their regent Malik Ambar in the 15th century, Murud-Janjira is probably the only impregnable fort on the 720 km Maharashtra coastline.

Neither the Portuguese nor the British could subjugate the fort. And the Marathas, despite their repeated attempts failed to subjugate the Siddi power.
The palace of the Nawab and the Janjira Caves are also a must for the tourist. And just a few kilometres away are two undiscovered beaches: Nandgaon and Kashid. Nandgaon is famous for its Ganapati temple and the annual fair held in honour of ths elephant-headed god every February.


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