Written By Neha Pamnani (Grade 10)
Ancient forts are an immensely popular tourist attraction in today’s time. People are curious to know more about the tradition and history of our country which is reflected in the infrastructure and the stories relating to the forts.
One such fort is Murud Janjira Fort situated in Mumbai, Maharashtra. It is constructed in the middle of the sea. Despite its location in the middle of the water, there is a freshwater pond inside the Fort through which pure water is accessible for drinking purpose. The source of water in this pond remains uncertain and it is extraordinary for a freshwater pond to exist in the middle of the sea. It has quickly become a centre of attraction for the tourists nationwide. The pond at the centre of the fort is deep enough beneath the seafloor to provide sweet ground water not contaminated with the salinity of the sea. Hence the water is as good as the surface ground water.
The fort is also is famous for being the only fort along India’s western coast that remained undefeated by kings ruling the neighbouring territories. Surprisingly, not even Shivaji could acquire it. His son, Sambhaji, tried a very unique approach which was to dig an underwater tunnel to enter. But he too failed in his attempt.
The Janjira Fort was constructed by an Arab named Siddhi Jowar. On completion of the Fort a deep trench was dug around the site to protect the Fort from any threat. The coastal areas of the Fort are opened to weathering and erosion by the effects of the monsoon rains due to the absence of protective embankment by mountain ranges. As a result, the gap between the fort and the coast has considerably increased making it seem like the dort was constructed in the middle of the sea.
The Murud Janjira Fort remains an appealing and fascinating tourist attraction and an interesting way to know more about our history.
Featured Image Courtesy – Holidify