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Ahmednagar Fort

The Ahmednagar Fort is located in the heart of the city of Ahmednagar, Maharashtra. It was the headquarters of theAhmednagar Sultanate. In 1803 it was taken by the British in during the Second Anglo-Maratha War. Later it was used by theBritish Raj as a prison. Currently the fort is under the administration of the Armoured Corps of the Indian Army.

Major features
In 1803 the Ahmednagar Fort was round in appearance, with twenty-four bastions, one large gate, and three small sally ports. It had a glacis, no covered way; a ditch, revetted with stone on both sides, about 18 feet (5.5 m) wide, with 9 feet (2.7 m) water all round, which only reached within 6 or 7 feet (2.1 m) of the top of the scarp; long reeds grew in it all round. The bermwas only about one yard wide. The rampart was of black hewn stone; the parapet of brick in chunam, and both together appeared from the crest of the glacis to be only as high as the pole of a field-officer's tent. The bastions were all about 4½ feet higher; they were round. One of them mounted eight guns en barbet: it pointed to the eastward; all the rest had jingies, four in each. In 1803 two guns were visible in each bastion, and 200 were said to be ready in the fort to be mounted. A gunshot to the west of the fort was the Pettah of Ahmednagar. The main gate of the fort faced the pettah, and was defended by a small half-circular work, with one traverse and several little towers for men. There is was a wooden bridge over the ditch, which could be taken away in time of war, but it was not a drawbridge. It was reported that an iron trough as large as the bridge, could be placed upon it, or on the supporters of it, and fill with charcoal or other combustibles, to which could be ignited as an enemy approached.
A small river came from the northward, round the west side of the pettah, and passed to the southward of the fort. A nullahalso passed from the northward, between the fort and a town called Bhingar, about a gunshot to the eastward, and joined the river. A potential defensive weakness was a little hill or rising ground close to and east of Bhingar, from which shot from siege guns could reach the fort. Two nills or covered aqueducts came from the hills, a mile or more to the north, passed through and supplied the pettah and the town, and then went into the fort, either under or through the ditch, into which the waste water fell.There were no passages across the ditch from the sally ports, and no part of the aqueducts appeared above the ditch. The nullah mentioned above, had steep banks and passed within 60 yards of the fort; the aqueduct from Bhingar passed under it. There was no bridge or even a prominent crossing point at the nullah and hence no clearly defined route between the fort and the town of Bhingar.There were many small pagodas and mosques round the pettah and the fort, but none exactly between, or between the fort and Bhingar, or nearer to the fort than those towns.

History
The fort was built by Malik Shah Ahmed (after whom the city of Ahmednagar is named) in 1427 CE. He was the first sultan of theNizam Shahi dynasty and he built the fort to defend the city against invaders from neighbouring Idar. Initially it was made of mud but major fortification began in 1559 under Hussain Nizam Shah. It took four years and was finally finished in 1562. In 1596, Chand Bibi the queen regent successfully repulsed the Mughal invasion but when Akbar attacked again in 1600 the fort went to the Mughals.

Akola Fort

Akola fort (also called Asadgad or Asagad) along with the Narnala and Akot forts forms the major fortifications of the Akola district, Maharashtra, India.

History
Its earliest form of mud was made by one Akol Singh to protect the village. He saw a hare chasing a dog and considering this to be an auspicious sign, he built an earthen wall here to protect the village. Akola was heavily fortified in 1697 CE during the reign of Aurangzeb by Asad Khan, from whom the fort took its name (Asadgad). In 1803, Arthur Wellesley camped here before proceeding to win the Battle of Argaon in the Second Anglo-Maratha War. The fortress was dismantled by the British Raj in about 1870. It was reported in 1910 in a district gazetteer that the central part of the fort (the hawakhana) was used as a school.

Major features
Akola fort is notable in that it is bereft of any decorative embellishments.

There are several inscriptions on the fort. An inscription on the Dahi handa gate gives its date of construction as 1114 AH (1697 CE), 'during the reign of emperor Aurangzeb when Nawab Asad Khan was minister.' Another on the Fateh Buruj bastion has no exact date. It too mentions the same minister but a different emperor (Shah Alam). One on the Eidgahcontains texts and a statement that the building was finished by Khawja Abdul Latif in 1116 AH (1698 CE). On the Agarvesgate an inscription in Marathi reads that Govind Appaji in 1843 CE constructed the fort. The latter statement contradicts all the other inscriptions.

Shri Raj Rajeshwar Mandir
Akola’s oldest Shiva temple is Rajeshwar Mandir. The Shiv temple was built by Chola Empire king Raj Rajeswar.

Folklore
While king Akolsingh was living in the Asadgad Fort, there is a famous story is associated with this payas temple. Every night his queen went to this temple to worship Lord Shiva at midnight. She had deep belief in Lord Shiva. Once king Akolsingh thought that his queen was going out at midnight for a wrong reason, so he followed her with a sword; the queen came to know that King Akolsingh was following her, thinking that she was walking at midnight not for worship but for something illicit. She felt gloomy and guilty and went straight to the Shiva temple and pleaded to the god that her husband the king was thinking wrong about her, and that it was insulting that he was having no faith in her loyalty and her character. So she pleaded "kindly get me into your Pind (ShivaLing)", and suddenly the Shiva ling broke in two parts and the queen jumped into that ling, and then it was closed. The king understood his mistake and could not forgive himself. Still the Shiva ling in this temple has a little crack which shows and proves the reality of ancient story. This temple is the base aastha of this Akola city. There are 2 bridges: the first one is the dagadi pool (stone bridge) and the other is lokhand pool (iron bridge). This iron bridge was built at the time of British.

Alang Fort

Alang Fort (also Alangad) is a fort in Nashik district, Maharashtra, India. It is one of the three forts, the others being Madangad and Kulang, in the Kalsubai range of the Western Ghats. They are the most difficult to reach forts in Nasik District. A dense forest cover make these treks difficult. These three forts are a little neglected due to very heavy rains in the area and a difficult confusing path to the forts

Fascinating Spots
The top of the fort is a huge plateau. On the fort, there are two caves, a small temple and 11 water cisterns. Remnants of buildings are spread over the fort. Kalasubai, Aundh Fort, Patta and Bitangad are to the east of the fort, Harihar, Trymbakgad and Anjaneri to its north and Harishchandragad, Aajobagad, Khutta (pinnacle), Ratangad and Katrabai to its south.

Ways ToReach

Igatpuri/Kasara-Ghoti-Pimpalnermor-Ambevadi
To reach Alang, go to Kasara or Igatpuri and then Ambevadi by the Igatpuri/Kasara-Ghoti-Pimpalnermor route. There is a bus service from Ghoti to Ambevadi.. Ambevadi is 32 km away from Ghoti. A bus is available at 6 a.m. from Ghoti to Ambevadi. We can easily see Alang, Madan and Kulang from there. From Ambevadi, a way goes to the ridge between Alang and Madan, which may take up to 3 hours. From the ridge, the fort visible on the left is Alang, while the one on the right is Madan.

From there, two ways go towards Alang.
a) One way descends from the ridge. Within 1 hour you can reach the plateau. Keeping Alang to your left, you will reach a cavern after about an hour's walk. From there, you can go higher by rock climbing. Then you will reach a flat patch. Keep left and proceed towards the pinnacle. After 10 to 15 minutes, you will come at a cave in the fort. Time required to reach here from Ambevadi is approximately 8 to 9 hours.b) Proceed from the ridge and after easy rock climbing, you will come near few steps. After ascending these steps, climb a broken pinnacle of 80 to 90 ft. Only trained climbers should go this way. This way, you can reach the fort after 6 hours.

Ghatghar via Ghoti-Bhandardara
Another way towards fort is from Ghatghar. Go at Ghatghar via Ghoti-Bhandardara. From there, in 2½ hours, one can come to the third cavern. Via Bhandardara from Udadvade : Other way towards fort is via Bhandardara from Udadvade gaon.

Accommodation Facility
Two caves on the fort can accommodate 30-40 people.

Food Facility
You have to carry with your own.

Drinking Water Facility

Ample water is available in reservoirs in all seasons Still, we have to carry sufficient water till we reach at the top.

Time To Reach
7–8 hours from Ambevadi

Balapur Fort

Balapur Fort is a Mughal fortress in fairly good condition situated in the town of Balapur in the Akola district of India. Construction on the fort was started by Mirza Azam Shah, the son of Emperor Aurangzeb and it was completed by Ismaeel Khan, the Nawab of Elichpur in 1757. The chhatri (umbrella-shaped pavilion); a canopy constructed by Mirza Raja Jaisingh, has an area of 25 square feet and a height of 33 feet. Its foundations were heavily damaged in a great flood called the 'dhvdya pur' which occurred more than 100 years ago, but after some years the damage was repaired at a cost of Rs 3,000 received from Jaipur.

History
The old Gazetteer states, "People are sufficiently educated to scrawl their names on all parts of the chhatri, and a stone in the middle has been coloured with the ubiquitous sacred red. The frivolous say that visitors to the chhatri must do three thing Firstly, they should note the char bot ki patthar, four-fingers stone, which has been set in near the top of a pillar on the soul. In 1616, Shah Nawaz Khan, the Subedar of Barar was camping at Balapur. the defeated Malik Ambar attacking him near Kirkee by way of Rohinkheda pass. But he could not hold for long and had to retreat to Balapur. Aurangzeb, after ascending the imperial throne at Delhi, appointed Raja Jaisingh as the Governor of the Dakkan. He constructed a very pretty chhatri, umbrella-shaped pavilion, 25 feet square and 33 feet in height at Balapur. Mirza Azam Shah, son of Aurangzeb, is said to have lived here and to have built a mud fort. It may be noted that as per the Treaty of Purandar, the Balapur pargana along with the Avandhe pargana was given in the name of Sambhaji as a Jageer and he was made a commandant of 5,000.

Location
The Balapur fort is situated in Balapur, a large town located at the junction of the rivers Man and Bhains, in west-central India.The old Gazetteer mentions that the town contained a mosque of 1737 in Kasarkhera. It further states, 'The mosque in Kasarkhera is a fair specimen of later Mughal architecture, but the arches arc too squat to be graceful; a long and somewhat bombastic inscription, exceedingly well executed and well preserved, gives as the date of construction of the mosque the year 1737. The mosque is known as the Raozah Masjid, for it contains the tomb of a local saint Maolvi Masoom Shah.' The old Gazetteer also states, 'A fine haveli in the town was built by a local saint, Sayyad Amjad, and an inscription over the principal gateway, a good specimen of Mughal architecture, conveys the information that it was built in 1703.' Situated on an elevated ground between the two rivers, the fort has very high walls and bastions built of the best brickwork of its time. The fort has three gateways, one within the other. With Balapur hailed as an important military station during the times of the Mughals, the fort too was built keeping in mind the town's military responsibilities and position. Complex architecture used in the fort ensured its safety, as well as eased the discharge of missiles and other ammunition from within the fort, rendering it one of the most impenetrable forts in the county. During the rains, the Fort gets surrounded by floodwater except at one point. The temple of Bala Devi, from which the town has derived its name, lies just under the Fort, on the southern side.Still in a relatively good condition, the Balapur Fort is now used by the government for offices. A quiet spot, this fort held supreme importance during the time of the Mughals.

Bandra Fort

Castella de Aguada (Portuguese: Fort of the Waterpoint), also known as the Bandra Fort, is a fort located in Bandra, Mumbai. "Castella" is a misspelling for Portuguese "Castelo" (castle). Properly, it should be called Castelo da Aguada, although it seems its Portuguese builders actually called it Forte de Bandorá (or Bandra Fort). It is located at Land's End in Bandra. It was built by the Portuguese in 1640 as a watchtower overlooking Mahim Bay, the Arabian Sea and the southern island of Mahim.[1] The strategic value of the fort was enhanced in 1661 after the Portuguese ceded the seven islands of Bombay that lay to the immediate south of Bandra to the English. The name indicates its origin as a place where fresh water was available in the form of a fountain ("Aguada") for Portuguese ships cruising the coasts in the initial period of Portuguese presence. The fort lies over several levels, from sea level to an altitude of 24 metres (79 ft).

History
The Portuguese, who had established a base in the area in 1534 after defeating Bahadur Shah of Gujarat, built several sea forts along the western Indian coastline. Castella de Aguada was one such strategically located fort, overlooking the Mahim Bay to the south, the Arabian Sea to the west, the islands of Worli to the south and the town of Mahim to the south west. The fort also guarded the northern sea route into Mumbai Harbour. This sea route, a large estuary, was later reclaimed from the sea in the nineteenth century. During the Portuguese rule, it was armed with seven cannons and other smaller guns as defence. A freshwater spring in the vicinity supplied potable water to passing ships, thus lending the fort its name. After the decline of the Portuguese in the early 18th century, the Marathas became the largest threat to British possessions. Sensing an impending Portuguese defeat, the British partially demolished the fort as a precautionary measure. The demolition would obviate the possibility of the fort being captured by the Marathas, with the possibility of it being used as a forward military base to attack British Bombay. In 1739 the island was invaded by the Marathas; it was ruled by them until 1774 when the British gained possession of the area during the First Anglo-Maratha War. In 1830, the British donated large parts of Salsette Island, including Land's End (Click to view the Photosphere), to Byramjee Jeejeebhoy, a Parsi philanthropist. Jeejeeboy then established his residence on the hill where the fort is located, and the cape was renamed Byramjee Jeejeebhoy Point.

Conservation

In 2003, a conservation program was started by Bandra Band Stand Residents’ Trust to save the fort. It was spearheaded by a local Member of Parliament (MP), Shabana Azmi, who funded part of the effort from her allotted funds. The brick arch of one of the gateways on the verge of collapse, and the foundation masonry of the fort wall that was in danger of tidal erosion were repaired. The nearby Taj Land's End hotel is responsible for maintenance of the fort, having inherited it from the previous owners. The fort is owned by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI). Included in the fort makeover are the preservation of the natural rock formations, providing pathways, and the creation of an amphitheatre. The architect for the makeover was P.K. Das, who had earlier redesigned the Carter Road area.








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