Friday, 25 June 2010

Forts of Konkan 44 : Kille Jeevdhan (Naneghat) किल्ले जीवधन (नाणेघाट)

Ghatghar, Tal. Junnar, Dist. Pune; off Vaishakhare, Tal. Murbad, Dist. Thane
Hill Fort (Altitude 1145 m)

Things to see:
There are two entrances to the fort. One is on the eastern end and another is on western end. The eastern entrance has one water cistern near to it. The arch of the entrance is partly collapsed. There is one store house. A sculpture of Gajalakshmi marks the entrance of the building. Some ash from the old fire during the war in 1818 can be found over here. There is one more water cistern near this place. There is one small temple of Jeevabai, the deity of the fort. The western entrance is actually main entrance of the fort and it is through a tunnel carved out of rock. One can have beautiful views of neighbouring hills Nimgiri, Hadsar on the east, Naneghat, Nanacha Angtha rock on the west. In the North one can see Kalsubai, Ratangad, Ghanachakkar, Ajoba, Harishchandragad, Bhairavgad and Dhakoba in the south. In the Northern plateu there is a big water tank. A pinnacle which is separated from the main hill by a col is famous with the rock climbers and is called as Vanarlingi.

The fort must have been used to keep watch on Naneghat and in use since ancient times. However first mentions of the Jeevdhan fort is found out in Nijam rule of Ahmednagar. In 1489, the fort was won from Bahamani Kingdom by the Malik Ahmed who was the founder of Nizamshahi of Ahmednagar. In 1633, Mughals ended this rule by killing Nijam Husain Shah. His son Murtaza who was a minor was imprisoned and kept on this fort. Shahaji Raje Bhonsle who was in the service of Nijam during that time freed him and put him on the throne. King Shivaji again won this fort from Mughals in the year 1672 but again went back to them. It was won by the Marathas again in 1702 but immediately lost to the Mughals. In 1757, by Peshava Nanasaheb's orders it was won from the Musalman sardar on the fort. It came in the hands of British during the final Anglo Maratha war on 3rd May 1818. There was huge storage of grains on the fort and it caught fire during the war. In 2007, a trekkers group from Pune YZ Trekkers cleared the path of Western Entrance and opened it.

The fort is in ruins.

Nearby attractions:
Naneghat at the base of the hill.

How to reach:
By your own vehicle:
Follow the route as given below to reach,
Kalyan MurbadVaishakhare (Climb Naneghat 3 hours walk)
Goa Mahad Panvel
Kolhapur Pune

By public transport:
Vaishakhare village is on the Kalyan- Ahmednagar State Highway and is at the base of Malshej Ghat. There are some direct ST buses from Mumbai and Pune which can drop one at the start Naneghat on the highway which is marked by a stone on the highway. One has to climb Naneghat and reach Ghatghar village (3 hours) and then climb Jeevdhan fort further up (1.5 hour). Some knowledge of rock climbing is must for climbing the fort from Western side.
From Junnar there are some ST buses as well as private Jeep service for Ghatghar. Junnar is connected with ST bus service with Mumbai and Pune.

Nearby Places for stay:
Camping in Ghatghar village or in Naneghat cave possible, Murbad, Junnar