The History Of Bhangarh Fort :
The Bhangarh Fort is a 17th century fort built in the Rajasthan state of India. It was built by Raja Man Singh I for his younger son Madho Singh I.
There are three legends related to the history of the fort city, which is reported to be haunted, and no one is allowed to remain in the precincts of the fort at night, per a notice board put up by the Archaeological Survey of India at the entrance. One version of the legend is that a sadhu named Baba Balau Nath lived within the fort area. It was his injunction that any houses built in the precincts of the fort should not be taller than his house, and if the shadow of any such house fell on his house, it would result in destruction of the fort town.
In another version, N.K. Sinhai, the wizard who was adept in black magic, fell in love with Ratnavati, the princess of Bhangarh, who was very beautiful, and had suitors to marry her from many royal families of the country. One day the princess, at 18 years of age, went shopping with her friends and was buying Ittar (scent). The wizard saw this and replaced the scent with a love potion in order to ensnare the princess. He offered the potion to her so that she would take a liking to him and marry him. However, the princess saw through the wizard’s trickery, and when he offered her the bowl of potion, she threw it onto a big boulder nearby. As a result, the boulder started rolling down towards the wizard and crushed him. Before he died, he made a curse that Bhangarh would be destroyed soon and no one would be able to live within its precincts. Subsequently, Bhangarh Fort was invaded by the Mughals from the north and the city was surrounded and sacked; 10,000 people lived in the fort city at that time. All the people in the fort, including the princess, were killed. The present state of the fort is attributed to the curse of the wizard and people believe the ghosts in the fort are those of the princess and the wizard.
Entering through the main gate of the completely ruined fort city, one can find temples, palaces, and havelis. In addition, there are four more points of entry to the fort that is the Lahori Gate, the Ajmeri Gate, the Phulbari Gate, and the Delhi Gate. At the entrance of the main gate are many Hindu temples such as Hanuman Temple, Gopinath Temple, Someshwar Temple, Keshav Rai Temple, Mangla Devi Temple, Ganesh Temple, and Navin Temple. The Gopinath Temple is built above a 14 ft raised plinth, and yellow stones are used for the exquisite carvings of the temple. The residence of the priest, called the Purohitji Ki Haveli, is located in the precincts of the temple complex. Next in order is the Nachan Ki Haveli (dancer’s palace) and Jauhari Bazar (market place), followed by the Gopinath Temple. The Royal Palace is located at the extreme end of the fort’s limits.
The temples dedicated to Hanuman and Shiv Mahadev are built in the style of cenotaphs rather than temples. Jhiri marble has been used in their construction, but they are presently covered by white wash. The Muslim tomb found outside the gate of the fort is reported to be that of one of the sons of King Hari Singh.
More photos of Bhangarh Fort here.
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