Chittorgarh: A Photo Essay
The abundance of history in Rajasthan is overwhelming. There are stories of bravery and sacrifice in every part of the state. A two hour drive from Udaipur is one such place – Chittorgarh, a World Heritage Site. Only read about in history text books and wiki pages, the massiveness of the Fort leaves you in awe. Spread across approx 700 acres of land, it is the largest fort in India and also the most desired one by kingdoms.
Attacked thrice by different forces, the Fort is in a state of ruins. The ASI has been working consistently in preserving what is left of the original structure.
One of the oldest structures of the Fort, the Palace of Rana Kumbha is also the birth place of Maharana Udai Singh. The Palace is probably the worst damaged of all the structures of Chittorgarh.
The Fort complex is home to many Hindu as well as Jain temple. Prominent among them are Kalika Mata Temple, Shiv Temple, Tulja Bhavani Temple, Kumbha Swamini Temple, Mirabai Temple and Jain Temple dedicated to Adinath.
This nine storey tower was built by Rana Kumbha to commemorate his victory over Khilji. The Tower is intricately carved. Until recently, the ASI allowed visitors all the way to the topmost floor. Currently the entrance is locked till further notice.
This was the main fresh water reservoir in the Fort. It was also a bathing place of the Queen with a separate entrance. A carving in the shape of a cow’s mouth is still the source which feeds the reservoir with fresh water.
The Archaeological Survey of India team is in a continuous process to explore for hidden gems. A recent excavation presented the above photographed artefacts. They have been put on display near the Shiv Temple.
Considered as one of the most beautiful women, Rani Padmini was the wife of Maharana Rattan Singh. Her Palace is one of the first to be built with the concept of ‘Jal Mahal’. Of the three ‘Jauhar'(act of self-immolation) that were committed at Chittorgarh, Rani Padminis’ was the first and important one. Maharana Rattan Singh was killed by the hands of Allaudin and as the defeat was imminent, the Rani along with thousands of women committed the act.
*All pictures are clicked by me. On my camera.