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To mesmerize is to conquer works agreeably for the Chittorgarh Fort.
An ounce of allurement towards the making of an unparallel Indian history calls for a visit to the fort.
Chittorgarh Fort symbolizes the victory of right over wrong. It reminds of the bravery, perverseness and sacrifice of the great Rajput rulers who chose to fight for self respect instead of bowing down to the command of enemies. It is believed that the fort got its foundation from by Bhim, a Pandav hero of mythological epic Mahabharata.
Chittorgarh was earlier known as Chitrakut, after a local Rajput chieftain named Chitrang. It remained the capital of the local Sisodia clan of Rajputs from the eighth to the 16th century.
Muslim rulers plundered the city three times in the medieval period. The first was by Ala-ud-din Khilji, the Sultan of Delhi in 1303. Khilji marched against the Rajputs to capture Padmini, the beautiful queen of Chittorgarh. Bhim Singh, the ruler of Chittorgarh gave a huge fight to the invasion. Women inside the fort including Padmini and children committed mass suicide or jauhar. They immolated themselves on a huge pyre to save their honor. The jauhar resulted in death of 13,000 women.
The third and final siege happened in 1568 at the hands of the great Mughal emperor Akbar. The Mughal emperor Jahangir returned Chittorgarh to its rulers in 1616.
The blood and heroism of Rajputs surrounds the enigma of the Fort
The fort launches itself on a 180-metre high hill and spreads over 700 acres. It is situated in the southern part of the state of Rajasthan and resides beside a high hill near the Gambheri River. It is 112 km from Udaipur and 182 km from Ajmer. The climate of Chittorgarh is arid. Summers are quite hot (April-June) and winters are cool (October-February). It experiences scant rainfall between June and August.
ART AT ITS GLORIOUS HIGH
The fort shelters many palaces in itself. The known of them are Rana Kumbha Palace, Fateh Prakash Palace, Padmini's Palace, etc. The hilltop fortress sings the song of Rajput chivalry. The entrance comprises of seven gates. The center of attraction is the two towers known as the 'Kirti Stambh' (Tower of Fame) and the 'Vijay Stambh' Tower of Victory. It also harbors several temples, reservoirs, and palaces originating between the 9th and 17th centuries AD. There is also a big complex of Jain temples within the fort.
The main gate leads to Rampol, the gate of Lord Rama. An accent towards the way between the second and third gate, escorts to the two Chattris cenotaphs built to honour Jaimull and Kulla (heroes of 1568 siege by Mughal emperor Akbar). The main gate of the fort itself is Surajpol, the Sun Gate.
The major sculptures to look forward to:
The tower is huge enough to be glimpsed from the town. It applauses victory and was built around 1440 AD by Maharana Kumbha to celebrate his triumph over Mohamed Khilji. There are 157 steps with circular stairs. It is believed that the tower took 10 years to be completed. The entire structure is covered with sculptures of Hindu deities and episodes from the two great Hindu epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. This extra ordinary beauty stands on a pedestal of 47 square feet and 10 feet high. It looks down from a height of 122 feet and is 30 feet wide at the base. The tower plays hide n seek with the evening lights giving it an enchanting look.
The story goes that a wealthy Jain merchant built the tower in 12th century AD. The Kirti Stambh is a seven-storied structure with a cramped stairway of 54 steps. It is 30 feet at the base and narrows down to 15 feet at the top. It has been a witness to life from approximately around the 12th century AD. It is dedicated to the first Jain tirthankara or spiritual teacher, Adinath, and has an impressive five-feet-high statue of the saint. It contains naked figures of Digambars
A very royal creation is the 'Gaumukh' which is a big water reservoir in the form of cow's mouth. The legends say that Rani Padmini and the other women performed jauhar here.
Rana Kumbha Palace is said to be the place where it is said the third jauhar of Chittorgarh happened in an underground cellar. As per the legend, Ala-ud-din Khilji, the Sultan of Delhi, was allowed to see the reflection of Queen Padmini in this palace.
Fateh Prakash Palace built in the 1920s is now a Government Museum and houses a collection of statues and weapons.
The place harbors a beautifully crafted Meera Mandir which is dedicated to Mira Bai., devotee of Lord Krishna,
The Kalika Mata Mandir is now dedicated to goddess Kali, but was originally dedicated to Surya, the sun-god.
Other structures worth visiting in and around the Chittorgarh fort are:
Palace of Queen Padmini
Neelkanth Mahadev Temple
Kumbha Shyam Temple
Number of years was invested in the making of this glorious structure, but we are privileged to admire and capture the beauty within few hours. So, let yourself be gripped in the power of love, romance, sacrifice and be infused with the underlying gallantry of its whole existence.