17th February 1670 Chhatrapati Raje Shivaji Maharaj Captured Fort Kondhana(Sinhagad) At Tanaji Malusare Death

Sinhagad is famous fort at Pune

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There are many forts in Maharashtra, which tell us stories of the noble king Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and his brave warriors. Here is the story of how the fort of kondhana came to be known as ‘Sinhagad’ or the ‘Lion Fort’. The strong fort of kondhana was in the hands of the Moghuls. Shivaji Maharaj wanted to win it back. Once, Tanaji Malusare went to invite him for his son’s wedding. Tanaji Malusare was strong and brave as a lion.


When he came to know that Shivaji Maharaj was planning to go on a campaign to capture the fort of kondhana. he said. Maharaj, my son’s wedding can wait. First allow me to go and capture the fort of kondhana for you. Soon after that Tanaji his brother Suryaji, uncle Shelarmama and a few select soldiers went on the campaign to win back Kondhana. The fort was situated on top of a hill. There were only two entrances to it. Both the gates were heavily guarded by soldiers.

It was very difficult to enter the fort, let alone win it. But Tanaji drew up a bold and clever plan. Nobody had ever tried to enter the fort through such a dangerous route. So that side was not guarded at all. Tanaji and his soldiers knew the hills and mountains very well. At night, Slowly and carefully, they climbed the steep slope using a rope and entered the fort. Suryaji and some of the soldiers had taken another route and were waiting near one entrance. Soon after Tanaji and his soldiers entered the fort, the battle began.

The officer in charges of the fort was called udaybhan. He too was a brave soldier. He was well equipped with weapons and guards. He began to fight Tanaji with all his might. Udhaybhan’s garrison and Tanaji’s warrior both tried their best to defeat the other side. Udaybhan and Tanaji soon came face to face and began to fight each other with their swords. It was a long and fierce battle. Suddenly, Tanaji’s shieid broke due to a blow. But he was not afraid. He tied his waistband around his hand and continued to fight.

Tanaji Malusare

Tanaji and Udaybhan were both fatllly wounded. They laid down their lives in the battle. Meanwhile some of Tanajis soldiers reached the entrance where Suryaji was waiting and threw open the gates to him. Now suryaji joined the battle and added a new force to it. When Tanaji felll, the soldiers began to panic. When Suryaji saw this he shouted at them, “Dont act like cowards. I have cut the ropes that helped you climb the fort. Now you cannot go back the same way. The only way for you now is to fight and win the fort. Think of the brave Tanaji who fought for our victory. “The soldiers were inspired by Suryaji’s word and attacked the enemy forces once again. They fought till they won the fort.

The news of the victory reached Shivaji Maharaj. But he was very sorry to hear of Tanaji’s death. “We have won the fort but lost the lion.” he said. and from that time Kondhana was called ‘Sinhagad’ in memory of the lion-hearted warrior- Tanaji Malusare.

Ref. BM English Speaking

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Tanaji Malusare

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Bust of Tanaji Malusare atSinhagad fort

|तानाजी मालुसरे

also known as Simha ("lion"), was a Maratha warrior and military leader in the army of Shivaji, founder of the Maratha Empire in 17th century India. Tanaji was one of Shivaji's closest friends hailing from the Malusare clan; the two had known each other since childhood.[citation needed] 

Tanaji is famously known for the Battle of Sinhagad in 1670. At Shivaji’s request, he pledged to recapture the fortress of Kondana near Pune. According to many accounts, he received the summons while at his son’s wedding, and immediately left the festivities.He said,”aadhi lagin kondhanyacha”. Tanaji and his troops scaled the fort with the help of domesticated monitor lizards (ghorpad in Marathi), to whom they tied ropes and sent crawling up to the top of the ramparts. (The ghorpad, or the Common Indian Monitor,grows up to 1.8m in length, and its natural habitat is rocky terrain, which it scales by gripping crevices with its strong claws: it is also hunted in villages as food.). Tanaji’s pet ghorpad tried twice to scale the ramparts but failed. finally Tanaji told the ghorpad that if it failed once more, he would kill and eat it. The ghorpad successfully climbed the ramparts. Tanaji and his men than climbed the fort in pitch darkness. He and his men recaptured the fort from Udaybhan Rathod, fortkeeper of Jai Singh I.

A fierce combat took place between Tanaji and Udaybhan. Udaybhan managed to rid Tanaji of his shield, but Tanaji fought on by tying a cloth over one of his hands and using it to ward off Uday Bhan’s sword attacks. Despite a lengthy fight, Tanaji was killed in battle, and Shivaji renamed the fort from Kondana to Sinhagad in his honor. Per legend, Shivaji’s words after hearing about the demise of Tanaji were Gad ala pan Sinha gela(“although the fort was captured a lion was lost”).


Tanaji continues to be a popular figure in Maratha culture. A povada (ballad) is written after him, and there is a Marathi novel Gad ala pan sinh gela of his life, as well as a film.[citation needed]

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