Raigad Fort to be made global tourist hotspot

RAIGAD (MAHARASHTRA): Once considered impregnable, the hilltop Raigad Fort from where Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj laid the principles of 'Hindavi Swaraj', is poised for a major revamp to make it a global tourist hotspot, a best legit mentioned here on Tuesday.

The 350-year-old majestic fort, which stands on a hill of 820 metres, rises upto 1,356 metres above sea level, and is at the moment looked after through the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).

Nestled in the picturesque Sahyradri Range of the Western Ghats, the fort was as soon as obtainable best through hiking 1,737 steep steps for several hours, but for the reason that past few years a cable automobile -- the Raigad Ropeway -- has made the ascent to the fort a very easy 10-minute effort.

Overseeing the mega revamp challenge is Sambhajiraje Chhatrapati of the Kolhapur royal family and the 13th direct descendent of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who's now the Raigad Development Authority Chairman and a President-nominated Rajya Sabha Member.

"The RDA has sanctioned Rs 606.08 crore of which Rs 114 crore will be for the Raigad Fort redevelopment. Besides, another Rs 237 crore will be spent on major roadworks between Mahad on the Mumbai-Goa Highway to Raigad Fort which will be developed as a heritage highway," Chhatrapati mentioned.

Recently, Sambhajiraje Chhatrapati was appointed the Brand Ambassador of Forts through chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, and took the media on a special consult with to the fort on Monday.

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj was coronated as the King in this fort on June 6, 1674 from where he based the Maratha Empire, with Raigad as its capital.

Conservation Architect for Raigad Fort Varun S. Bhamre mentioned that any other Rs 100 crore is expected from the Centre, in accordance with the recommendations of the 15th Finance Commission, for the revamp of 10 forts in the country.

"There are at least 84 big and small natural bodies which were converted into tanks during Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's rule to provide drinking water for the residents here. We shall clean them up in a scientific manner to ensure that any artefacts there are retained without damage," Bhamre advised IANS.

Sambhajiraje Chhatrapati mentioned the highlights can be a heritage walk encompassing a 14 km and four-hour-long tour of the fort and more than 350 ancient sites inside it which want to be explored archaeologically.

"Our aim is that tourists should live here at least two or three nights to properly explore and appreciate its beauty and imposing character. Locals shall be trained as guides and NGOs would be encouraged to bring groups of heritage and fort lovers here," he mentioned.

There are plans to launch 'facade lighting fixtures' and a 'sound-and-light display' to attract tourists at evening.

Some 21 villages in the fort's vicinity, including Pachad and Raigadwadi on the base of the hill, shall be advanced in a big way. The locals shall be deployed in tourism-related activities below more than a few schemes to verify their participation for the self-sustainable and 'Model Fort' plans.

An quantity of Rs 50 crore has been set aside for the revamp of the Raigad Ropeway. Nature trails will be advanced as the fort and its environment are wealthy in biodiversity, mentioned Sambhajiraje Chhatrapati.

Raigad Fort is unfold throughout 1,300 acres on the hilltop, making it one of the biggest fort complexes in India, besides having a unique topography on a nearly vertical, stony, hill slope affording an impressive view of the encompassing hills and valleys.
Raigad Fort to be made global tourist hotspot Raigad Fort to be made global tourist hotspot Reviewed by kailash soni on February 12, 2019 Rating: 5
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