CHANDRAPUR FORT (Chandrapur – Maharashtra – India)


 Chandrapur Fort is located within the city limits of Chandrapur. The city gets its name from the fort, which was earlier called Chanda fort and was later renamed as Chandrapur fort. The word 'Chandra' means 'moon' and 'pur' means 'settlement'. The fort was built by the noble king Khandakya Ballal shah during the 13th century.

Chandrapur was ruled by various people before the 12th century after which the Adivasi (indigenous) people (also known as Gond rulers) in India took over the land. The Chandrapur fort is situated in the confluence of Irai and Jharpat rivers, it is no doubt a colossal structure which stretches along the length and breadth of Chandrapur city. The fort has huge walls with small openings at the top, there are four gates through which one can enter this fort they are Jatpura Gate in the north, Acalesvar Gate in the east, Binba Gate in the west and Pathanpura Gate in the south.

The Pathanpura gate is the main gate of the fort, it has beautiful bold arches with carvings on either side of the gate, there are few windows such as Vithoba khidki and Chor khidki. The whole structure reflects the rich Indian architecture, it also symbolises the inviolability of Chandrapur. The fort was occupied by the Marathas after the death of the Gond king. The Maratha's ruled for quite some time after which the fort was annexed by the British, during the pre-independence the fort was vandalised and the actual buildings that were constructed within the fort were taken down leaving the fort walls and gates. After the independence, no major refurbishment took place, which resulted in the exploitation of the fort by the people and was in a bad state. Looking at this wonderful historical structure deteriorating few people grouped together voluntarily helped cleaning the fort up to 6 km and pledged to clean the rest and restore this masterpiece.

As the fort is within the city, you can find many buildings being constructed adjacent the fort, some of the main roads also pass through it. The moment you step into the city you will find various sections of the fort like a jig-saw puzzle where some parts are lost permanently, and others are in desperate need of renovation. The fort can be visited throughout the year. A pair of binoculars would be great for sightseeing.

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