Gagron Fort alias Dodagarh
The majestic fort in Jhalawar district constructed without any foundation has stories of many Rajput clans who used it as their abode. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.
It was built by Raja Bijaldev ,a Doda-Parmar rajput in 1195. Bijaldev was probably a vassal of Subhatvarman alias king Sohada Parmar of Malwa.
The Gagron Fort stands as an exceptional example of a grand edifice being enclosed with the woods and water from all sides. It rests on a hill top where the rivers Kali Sindh and Ahu unite, thus being surrounded by waters on 3 sides.
It was home of Gagron Khichi Chauhans for many centuries before their gradual migrations into Champaner (Gujarat) and Khichhiwara (Madhya Pradesh). Both Hindu saint Peepaji Khichi and valiant ruler Acchaldas Khichi were born here. The shrine of Bhakti saint Peepaji Khichi lies just across the river before Fort.
The circular bastion-cum-viewing gallery
The view from the circular bastion. On the left is the river Kali Sindh and on the right, just out of the frame, flows the river Aho.
The Mukundara Mountain Range serves as a backdrop, while a neighboring valley to the fort is circumscribed by woodland that echoes with screeches of peacocks and also parrots. There are temple of Lord Shiva, Lord Ganesha and Siren Durga inside the fort. The riverine actions of both the rivers have cut through the vertically inclining rocks to meet each other. While the confluence is not very apparent, it would be a different story during the monsoons when the water levels would rise. The rivers would appear to flow as one looping around the Fort, and that’s when one can experience the Fort being surrounded by water on three sides
There has been a fair amount of debate as to whether Gagron is a hill fort or a water fort. Most people consider it to be a water fort due to it being surrounded by water on three sides. But according to this newspaper report, a 15th century stone inscription describes Gagron as a hill fort. Known as the Kumbhalgarh Prashasti, these inscriptions are at the Udaipur museum and refer to Gagron Fort as “Gangrat” that Rana Kumbha won during one of his military expeditions. It is also a witness to the Battle of Gagron (1519) where Rana Sanga defeated Mahmud Khilji of Malwa
The Fort also finds mention as “Kaakroon” in a Persian text called Tabaqat-I-Akbari.
It was also used as a chhauni or military outpost by Jhala Zalim Singh, Diwan of Kota, and the legendary statesman who served many of Rajasthan’s courts, who was greatly responsible to rid Rajasthan of the scourge of Pindaris. Zalim Singh used to camp at the Gagron Fort, Jhalawar is named after the Jhala rajputs.
(Made use of the Travel blog from here)