विजयदुर्ग बंदर आंतरराष्ट्रीय बनणार
- First Published :29-June-2015 : 00:28:18
- अयोध्याप्रसाद गावकर- देवगड –आंतरराष्ट्रीय दर्जाचे बंदर होण्याची क्षमता असलेले विजयदुर्ग बंदर विकासापासून दूर राहिले आहे. मात्र, सावंतवाडी येथे मुख्यमंत्र्यांनी नुकतीच विजयदुर्ग बंदराच्या विकासाची घोषणा केल्यामुळे विजयदुर्ग बंदर आता आंतरराष्ट्रीय बंदर बनण्याची आशा पल्लवित झाली आहे. तसेच आनंदवाडी प्रकल्पालाही वाढीव निधी मंजूर होऊन हाही प्रकल्प काही महिन्यांत सुरू होणार आहे. यामुळे आता या दोन प्रकल्पांमुळे देवगडचे अर्थकारण बदलणार आहे.
निसर्गरम्य परिसर, स्वच्छ समुद्रकिनारे, ऐतिहासिक किल्ला व एक सुसज्ज बंदर म्हणून विजयदुर्ग बंदराचा उल्लेख केला जातो. केवळ ९० किलोमीटरच्या अंतरावर समुद्रात वसलेले आंग्रीया बेट ही पर्यटनस्थळे असूनही विजयदुर्ग अजूनही पर्यटनदृष्ट्या विकसित झाले नाही. लाखो पर्यटक दरवर्षी विजयदुर्गला येत असतात. मात्र, पायाभूत सुविधांचा अभाव असल्यामुळे पर्यटक खंत व्यक्त करतात.
सन २००८ मध्ये अष्टशताब्दी महोत्सवाने येथील पर्यटनाला चालना मिळाली. किल्ल्यावर झालेले तिसरे दुर्ग साहित्य संमेलन अशा विविध महोत्सवातून येथे पर्यटन राबविण्याचा प्रयत्न केला गेला. केवळ महोत्सव न करता न्याहारी निवास योजनांसारखे उपक्रम विजयदुर्गमध्ये राबवून येथील प्रत्येकाला उत्पन्नाचे साधन निर्माण व्हावे म्हणून प्रयत्न केले. अष्टशताब्दी महोत्सवावेळी देश, विदेशातून लाखो पर्यटकांनी विजयदुर्गला उपस्थिती दर्शविली होती.
नुकतेच मेमध्ये येथील एका स्थानिकाने विजयदुर्ग खाडीमध्ये पर्यटकांसाठी फेरीबोट सुरू केली आहे. फेरीबोटीला उत्स्फूर्त प्रतिसाद मिळून समुद्राचा पर्यटक आनंद घेत आहेत. विजयदुर्ग हे आंतरराष्ट्रीय बंदर होणार असल्याचे शासनकर्त्यांकडून सांगितले जाते. प्रत्यक्षात हे बंदर आंतरराष्ट्रीय बंदर म्हणून केव्हा नावारूपास येईल, असा प्रश्न विचारला जात होता. मात्र, आता मुख्यमंत्री देवेंद्र फडणवीस यांनी घोषणा केल्यानंतर विजयदुर्ग बंदराची विकासाची अंमलबजावणी, प्रतीक्षा, उत्कंठा शिगेला पोहोचली आहे.
कोकण किनारपट्टीवरील जुन्या काळापासून आंतरराष्ट्रीय बंदर म्हणून प्रसिद्ध असलेल्या विजयदुर्ग बंदराचा शासनाच्या उदासीनतेमुळे विकास झाला नाही. ऐतिहासिक वास्तू व तेथील असणारी भौगोलिक परिस्थिती यामुळे विजयदुर्ग बंदर हे पर्यटनदृष्ट्या व व्यापारी केंद्र म्हणून पूर्णपणे सुसज्ज आहे. जगातील अतिशय सुरक्षित बंदर असून आयात-निर्यातीसाठी या बंदराचा वापर सध्या असलेल्या परिस्थितीतही सहज करणे शक्य आहे.
ही मळी या बंदरातून जपान, कॅनडा या देशांत निर्यात केली जाते. आज नामवंत कंपन्यांच्या बोटी चौगुले कंपनी, गोवा येथील साळगांवकर कंपनीच्या के्रन या बोटीच्या दुरुस्तीसाठी व पावसाळ्याच्या दिवशी सुरक्षिततेच्यादृष्टीनेदेखील या बंदराचा वापर मोठ्या प्रमाणात केला जात आहे.
आर्थिक सुबत्ता येणार
आनंदवाडी प्रकल्प हा देवगडमधील महत्त्वाचा प्रकल्प असून, हा प्रकल्प काही कारणांमुळे बंद पडला आहे. मात्र, २ जुलै रोजी होणाऱ्या अर्थमंत्र्यांच्या बैठकीमध्ये या प्रकल्पाला २९ कोटींवरून ९२ कोटींपर्यंत निधी मंजूर करून या प्रकल्पाचे काम पुनश्च सुरू होणार असल्याची माहिती माजी आमदार प्रमोद जठार यांनी दिल्याने आता विजयदुर्ग बंदर व आनंदवाडी प्रकल्पाच्या कामांना सुरुवात होणार आहे. यामुळे देवगड तालुक्याचे नाव हे आता अर्थकारणामध्ये रोवून याठिकाणी आर्थिक सुबत्ता निर्माण होणार आहे.
|Sindhudurg District, Maharashtra|
Bastions of Vijaydurg fort
|Built by||Bhoja II|
Vijaydurg (sometimes written as Viziadrug), the oldest fort on the Sindhudurg coast, was constructed during the regime of Raja Bhoja II of the Shilahar dynasty (construction period 1193-1205). The fort was earlier known as “Gheria”, as it is situated close to the village of “Girye“. Shivaji captured this fort from Adil Shah of Bijapur in 1653 and renamed it as “Vijay Durg” as the then Hindu solar year’s name was “Vijay” (Victory).
Earlier, the fort encompassed an area of 5 acres (1 acre = 4840 square yards or 4047 square metres) and was surrounded by sea on all four sides. Over the years the eastern trench was reclaimed and a road constructed thereon. Presently the area of fort is about 17 acres and is surrounded by the Arabian Sea on three sides. Shivaji extended the area of the fort by constructing three walls on the eastern side, each 36 metres high. He also constructed 20 bastions.
Vijaydurg Fort was called the “Eastern Gibraltar”, as it was virtually impregnable. Its locational advantages include the 40 km long Waghotan/Kharepatan creek. Large vessels cannot enter the shallow water of this creek. Also, Maratha warships could be anchored in this creek and yet remain invisible from the sea. It is a protected monument.
- 1 Location
- 2 Battle of Vijaydurg
- 3 Features of Architectural Interest
- 4 Other facts
- 5 Photographs
- 6 See also
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Fort Vijaydurg is located at the tip of the peninsular region of Vijaydurg in Devgad Taluka, of district Sindhudurg. It is one of the several coastal forts on the western coast of Maharashtra, India. It is surrounded by water on three sides and connected to land through a narrow road. The port adjacent to the fort is a natural port and is still used by local fishermen.
Battle of Vijaydurg
After the death of Kanhoji Angre, there were two short reigns by Sarfoji and Sambhaji. The two brothers Manaji and Tulaji started fighting for the Angre throne. Nanasaheb Peshwe had intervened in the disputes between Manaji and Tulaji. This created two spheres of influence, Manaji in the north at Kulaba and Tulaji in the south at Vijaydurg. Tulaji Angre was favored by Chhatrapati Shahu and was appointed as Sarkhel (Admiral) of the Maratha Navy. This was against the will of Nanasaheb Peshwa.
Tulaji was brave and a much more skillful seaman than Manaji. This had gained hus the favor of Chhatrapati Shahu. In a brief span, he had surpassed the record of his predecessors in the number of English ships captured: Charlotte of Madras, William of Bombay,Svern of Bengal and, Darby, Restoration, Pilot, Augusta and Dadabhoi of Surat. He had also captured Anjanvel form the Siddis of Janjira. Another reason for the Peshwa to go against Tulaji was that, Tulaji refused to admit the Peshwa as his superior, maintaining that both were equal servants of the Chhatrapati. He refused to pay revenue contribution and even annoyed the Peshwa by raiding his territory. Nanasaheb could do nothing as long as Shahu was alive, but after his death in 1749, Peshwa was free to wreck his vengeance on Tulaji.
Death of Chhatrapati and Rise of Peshwa
After the death of Chhatrapati Shahu, Peshwa was the next most influential ruler among the ones with huge armies and numerous land forts under his command or at his disposal under ownership of his vassals. Against all advice, forgetting the interests of the Maratha nation, showing little political foresight or wisdom, Nanasaheb sought assistance of the English at Bombay to put down an end to Tulaji’s reign. A treaty was signed according to which a ground force under command of the Peshwa and a naval force under command of the Company would attack and destroy Tulaji. Among other articles, the treaty provided that Fort Vijaydurg, when captured, would be given to the Peshwa.
Fall of Suvarnadurg
In 1755, Commodore James of Bombay attacked the fort Suvarnadurg while the Peshwa’s army started capturing land and other coastal forts of Angre. This isolated Suvarnadurg from landward. Commodore James first bombarded the fort from the west. 800 shots and shells were expended at a range of 100 yards, but the walls did not collapse. He then entered the channel between the fort and the coast and fired on the eastern face as well as the main gate. Both gave way. Some of the garrison tried to escape from the fort by a tunnel running into the sea, but were discovered and killed. Considerable damage had been caused inside the fort by the bombardment and the garrison, finding no hope of relief or reinforcements, surrendered. Commodore James returned to Bombay for the monsoons.
Attack on Vijaydurg
After the fall of Suvarnadurg and all other forts of the Angre, Vijaydurg was the only fort left under the command of Tulaji. In 1756, a large force under Admiral Watson converged on Vijaydurg. Watson had arrived at Bombay from eastern waters and had with him Colonel Clive with 500 marines. The English ships took station with Watson flying his flag on the Protector. Two bomb vessels were in the extreme east. The Maratha ships were anchored at the mouth of the creek, close to the fort. They all were bunched up, almost hull to hull. Amongst these was the Company’s ship Restoration, which caught fire. The fire spread rapidly till the entire Angre fleet was destroyed, The bombardment of the fort had caused considerable damage inside the fort and magazine had been blown up.
Fall of Vijaydurg
Tulaji, meanwhile had left the fort and gone to the Peshwa’s camp seeking a negotiation but was promptly arrested and sent to one of the inland forts as a prisoner. The garrison was asked to surrender and in the absence of any response Clive landed his marines on 11 February 1756, entered and captured the fort. A huge amount of booty was captured. 250 pieces of cannons, stores and ammunition, 100,000 Rupees and 30,000 in valuable items fell into English hands. Vijaydurg was not handed over immediately to the Peshwa as per the terms of the treaty. It was eventually given up but only after the Company obtained Bankot in exchange.
End of Maratha Naval Supremacy
The battle of Vijaydurg marks the end of the Maratha Navy as a potent force. The Maratha Admiral Dhulap captured some ships later. The Sawants of Wadi, the Chhatrapati of Kolhapur and the Gaikwads of Baroda, all had a few ships. But the command of the seas, for all practical purposes had passed to the Company permanently. they achieved this in 1756 only because of the alliance with the Peshwa.
Features of Architectural Interest
- According to unconfirmed reports, there is a 200m long, undersea/underland tunnel from the fort to the palatial Dhulap house in the village. Supposedly, the roof of the tunnel has been pinched to protect it from landslides and it is also well ventilated. Now the tunnel is partially blocked. If the presence of the tunnel can be confirmed, and the tunnel cleared, it could serve as a tourist attraction of historical and architectural interest.
- Recent oceanographic evidence supports the existence of an undersea wall, constructed out at sea at a depth of 8–10 m depth undersea. Made of laterite, the wall is estimated to be 122 mtrs long, 3 mtrs high & 7 mtrs broad. Attacking ships often met a watery grave after colliding against this wall.When the Siddi of Janjira was going to attack Vijaydurg, he got a message from Portuguese telling him that They had lost 2 of their ships while they were nearing the fort.
- 1.5 km from the fort up the Waghotan Creek, exist the remains of a naval dock carved from rock. This is where Maratha warships were built and repaired. The ships built here were of the 400-500 tonnage capacity. This 109*70 mt dock faces the north side and is an achievement of Maratha naval architecture. Most of the smaller ships were docked near this small inner port.
- On the other hill in front of fort a wall was built to deceive the enemy. When the enemy attacked the wall, he had already wasted his ammunition and before he could understand, he would be attacked by Marathas from the rear side.
- Sir J Norman Lankier, a British scientist was observing a solar eclipse from this fort on 18 August 1868. It was during his observation that the Helium Gas was discovered on Sun in the form of a yellow flame! He named this as Helios which was later named as Helium. Vijaydurg can be credited as the place from where, Helium was discovered and observed on sun.
- The fort has many monuments, now in ruins which show the characteristics of Maratha architecture. The food storage and court are such classic examples.
- This fort also has a Khalbatkhana, where important meetings were held. There are only 3 forts that had a Khalbatkhana. They are Rajgad, Raigad andVijaydurg.
- This article is about the city. For the fort, see Vijaydurg fort and For the port, see Vijaydurg Port
From Vijaydurg, Goa is a 200 km drive South along the National Highway 17. The beach facing the Arabian Sea has a historic fort ( 800 years old) from which the town/seaport derives its name. The region offers a very panoramic view of the creek and the fort. A number of virgin beaches abound near Vijaydurg. There is a historic temple, a church and mosque in the village of Vijaydurg.
Nearby places of interest
- Vijaydurg Fort: Maratha Admiral Kanhoji Angre‘s Naval Base and Dry Dock. In 1698, Angre located his first base at the Maratha fort of Vijaydurg (‘Victory Fort’) (formerly Gheriah) located about 425 km from Mumbai. The fort which was originally built by Raja (King)Bhoj in 1208, is located on the coast, and has an entrance hollowed out in it to accommodate entry of a vessel from the sea.
- Shri Dev Rameshwar Temple located 1.5 km from Vijaydurg City. This temple is located on the outskirts of Rameshwar Wadi (Rameshwar City).
- Sambhaji Angre Samadhi: A 300 year old tomb of Admiral Sambhaji Angre, son of Kanhoji Angre in located just outside the walls of Shri Dev Rameshwar Temple, Rameshwar.
- Konkan Krishi Vidyapith’s Mango Research Institute, Rameshwar: A research branch of Konkan’s most prominent agricultural research institute is located 1 km from Vijaydurg village. Hybrid varieties of Alphonso such as Ratna and Sindhu have been developed here.
- Rameshwar Port: A small dock located just beyond the Mango Research Institute, on the banks of Waghotan River. It is a historic dock used by the Maratha Admirals for building ships and docking their smaller ships.
Wildlife including the hyena, red fox, barking deer, sea otter, dolphin, porpoise, whale. A wide variety of fish including king mackerel, (surmai), ladyfish, pomfret, stingray, hammerhead shark, puffer fish, mullet, great white shark, carp, eel, black salmon (rawas),swordfish and the seemingly rare sailfish are routinely spotted here. Shellfish like lobster, clams, mussels, oyster, crayfish and many types of crab are abundant. Commonly occurring birds abound like the barn owl, kingfisher, kite, cormorant, stork, egret, red-whiskered bulbul and cuckoo. Endangered species include the great Indian hornbill, vulture, langur (black faced monkey), giant squirrel, crane and tern.
Since the mouth of the estuary opens into the Arabian Sea, the water is clean due to inter-tidal flushing. Vijaydurg also has a Port Trust, Sea & Land Customs Outposts, Shore-guard and a large State Transport Depot. Up until 1983, Vijaydurg was a port of call for the Konkan Steamer service, which ran two ships: Konkan Sevak and Konkan Shakti, which were later sent to supply the IPKF (Indian Peace Keeping Forces) in Sri Lanka.
Shri Dev Rameshwar Temple
Shri Dev Rameshwar Temple is located in village Rameshwar Wadi in Devgad taluka of Sindhudurg District, Maharashtra, India. This temple is dedicated to the Hindu deity Lord Shiva. It is a historic temple built in 16th century. Its chief interest is the approach about 250 yards long, cut through rock fifty feet deep. The idol, a four-armed figure seated on a bull, is of solid silver said to weigh a hundred kilograms and is in good condition at present.
The architectural patterns of the temple building shows that it has been expanded at least three times from its establishment until now. In the early 18th century, Sarkhel Kanhoji Angre built a quadrangular inner shrine made up of finely hewn stones, also called as the Gabhara around the original place of Lord Shiva‘s pindi. This is the main room of the temple which contains a shivling or pindi at its centre. Later, in the mid 18th century, Sardar Sambhaji Angre and Sankhoji Angre built a Mandap in front of the gabhara. This mandap consisted of four huge wooden pillars bearing beautiful carvings all over them. They also built a Pradakshina Marg around the gabhara. The entire area was enclosed with walls to form a small temple consisting of the gabhara, the mandap and pradakshina Marg. The entire temple building covers an area of 4,025 sq ft. Stone tiles were placed in the area outside the main temple building covering an area of about 15,000 sq ft. It was in this era that the temple was provided with two new gates on the western and southern side.
In 1763, Shrimant Madhavrao Peshwe appointed Anandrao Dhulap as the chief of the Maratha Navy. Anandrao was also appointed as the governor of Vijaydurg Fort. In 1775, Madhavrao Peshwe appointed Gangadhar Bhanu as the Subhedar of Vijaydurg region. In 1780, Subhedar Gangadhar Bhanu built a huge Sabha Mandap with 20 carved wooden pillars. Early 18th century showed lots of changes and developments in the structures, architectures and the surrounding area of the temple. The most notable change was made by Sardar Anandrao Dhulap. He built two additional gates on the northern and eastern side of the temple. The eastern gate was built by making a way or Ghati by cutting a small hill adjoining the temple on the eastern side. He also built the main entrance or the Mukhya Pravesh Dwar for the temple. A huge bell hangs on the eastern gate which has year 1791 engraved on it. This bell was the one that was brought from the Portuguese Ship which was captured by the Maratha Navy. The main wooden mast of this ship has been installed in front of the Main entrance of the temple at the beginning of the Temple Ghati.
A fair is held for six days in the month of Magha every year which is attended by about 5,000 people from nearby villages and towns. The fair starts 5 days before the day of worship. On the Mahashivratri day, devotees observe fast and stay awake all night. Mahashivratri marks the night when Lord Shiva performed the ‘Tandava‘. It is also believed that on this day Lord Shiva was married to Parvati Ma. On this day Shiva devotees observe fast and offer fruits, flowers and Bael leaves on Shiva Linga.
The walls of the temple show drawings depicting incidences from Ramayana and Mahabharata. These drawings were drawn by artists appointed by Sardar Sambhaji Angre. These drawings are unique in the sense that although they depict stories from the ancient vedic culture, the characters’ clothes, weapons, ornaments and other equipments and instruments are similar to those found in the 18th century.
The management of the temple at present rests with trustees five in number, appointed by the Civil Court in 1914. The temple and its welfare is looked after by Shri Dev Rameshwar Devasthan Vishwasta Mandal and Rameshwar Vikas Mandal, Mumbai. This Devasthan holds inam land and also a cash allowance of Rs. 334 per year from Government. The trustees have repaired the temple from time to time since 1914. The temple at present is in good condition and is being renovated.
The official temple website is shridevrameshwar.org. This site is managed by Green Earth Enterprise under the guidance of the temple management. The site provides important links to blogs, encyclopaedic articles, images and more contact information regarding the temple. It also hosts a number of places of interest in the surrounding region. The list of members which form the 3 different committees of the temple management is also provided. Over a period of few years there have been lots of donations for the development and refurbishment of the temple. The list of these donors is also available on the official website of the temple.
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