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Location: Umaria District  Map

Constructed: no latter than 3 century BC

Bandhavgarh Fort

Bandhavgarh Fort







Bandhavgarh Fort is an ancient military fortification situated in Umaria District in India within grounds of the Bandhavgarh National Park. It was constructed no latter than 3 century BC.




There is no information as to when exactly the Bandhavgarh Fort was built. Some sources in ancient writings, such as the Narad-Panch Ratra and the Shiva Purana envisage occupation of the site for some 2000 years.

Local folklore suggests that the Bandhavgarh Fort was built by the rulers of the Gond kingdom who ruled Gondwana. The kings of Gond of the Pandro caste would be the initial builders of this fort and the descendants of the kings of Gond would still live near the fort. The Kings of Gond dug 12 talab ponds, only a few of which remain. The construction and architecture of the fort are similar to the other forts built by the Kings Gond.

Vanganga stream comes from the hill of Bandhavgarh Fort. In gondi, van means family name and ganga is freely translated as pure water.

Bandhavgarh Fort takes its name from the most prominent hill in the region, which legend says was entrusted by the god Rāma to his brother Lakshmana to oversee Lanka the fortress island of the legendary demon king Ravana. Hence the name Bandhavgarh (bandhav = brother, garh = strong).

At one time, the fort was the business center for traders traveling between Kosambi and Bharhut. During the Kalachuri dynasty he was called "Haihay Kshetra".

The Vakataka dynasty (2nd to 5th century AD) used this place, various carved inscriptions bear witness to this. They made the place habitable by leveling certain rocks. Some remains of the fort have been found on the hill of Bamania near Bandhavgarh and there are many sculptures and coins scattered in the neighboring villages, Bijhariya, Mala, which attest to the domination of this kingdom.

Several dynasties reigned, however, over the fort; In particular, the Mauryas from the second century BC. AD, Vakataka, Sengars - a Rajput clan - since the fifth century, then the Kalachuris of Tripuri in the tenth century.

During the reign of Karan Deo (1245 - 1260 according to the Vikram Samvat calendar), Bandhavgarh was the capital of the southern part of the Gahora kingdom.

The principality of Rewâ owes its origins to the foundation of a State in 1234 by Vyaghra Dev, a descendant of the Vâghelâ of Gujarat. He married the daughter of Raja de Pirhawan and conquered the territory between Kalpî and Chandalgarh. Karan Dev, son of Vyaghra Dev, married the daughter of the Raja of Ratanpur who brought as dowry Bandhogarh (now Bandhavgarh).

In the 13th century, the Baghela ruled Bandhavgarh until 1617, when Maharaja Vikramaditya Singh moved his capital to Rewâ.

The last inhabitants deserted the fort in 1935.




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