Rajasthan Battlefields: Marking Rajputana Bravery, Grandeur & Valor
Battlefields and war scenes of the cinema, the vista of chaos, actually drive me crazy. The winner will be the one who controls that chaos, both his own and the enemies. My next trip, luckily, took me to a marvellous journey to India’s finest forts & battlefields. It was Rajasthan tourism. Though I had explored this desert land earlier, but it was worth visiting again & again.
This land of royals has a rich past and magnificent heritage. While going through the Rajasthan travel guide, I came to know that great personalities ruled various regions of Rajasthan and left marks of bravery, grandeur and valor. During my trip to the cities like Jaipur, Jaisalmer, Udaipur, Jodhpur or Bikaner – I’d explored the classical monuments like City Palace (Jaipur & Udaipur), Chittaurgarh Fort, Jaisalmer Fort, Taragarh Fort, Junagarh Fort, Mehrangarh Fort, Amber Fort, Jaigarh Fort, Hawa Mahal and Sheesh Mahal. Therefore, I decided to go for the conventional battlefields this time.
I started from Bharatpur, where the Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary adjoins Deeg & Dholpur – the core elements of the Jat history of Rajasthan. Later I drove to Karauli, en route visiting Khanwa, where the Battle of Khanau was fought in the year 1527. This was the place where Babur defeated a formidable army raised by Rana Sanga of Mewar & established his rule over north India.
My next halt was Ranthambore where I first visited the Ranthambore Fort. After the defeat of the Chauhan King Prithviraj III by Muhammad Gauri in 1192, it was led by Govinda Raja, grandson of Prithviraj. Later after many battles & rulers, it came under the reign of Mughal Emperor Akbar in the year 1559. Later I headed towards Udaipur, en route visiting Chittorgarh. A guide there told me that after the Mughal Emperor Akbar captured Chittorgarh in 1568, the capital was moved west to Udaipur, in the foothills of the Aravalli Range. Chittor Fort is a live example of the battles between the Ranas of Chittor & Alauddin Khilji, Sultan Bahadur Shah of Gujarat & Emperor Akbar.
Next I visited the Victory Tower, built in 1440 AD by Maharana Kumbha to commemorate his victory over Mohamed Khilji. This 9-storyed tower is adorned by sculptures of Hindu deities and is the piece-de-resistance of Chittorgarh. After that, I continued to Udaipur, which was founded in 1568 by Maharana Udai Singh after his final unsuccessful attempt to defend the Mewar capital, Chittorgarh. Apart from the scenic & architectural beauty, it doesn’t have much to boast of. So I headed towards Kumbalgarh, the fort of Rana Kumbha that is surrounded by greenery & wildlife and is also within a short driving distance from the famous 15th century Ranakpur Jain Temples.
En route we also visited Haldighati (Gogunda) – the most famous battlefield of Rajputana where the most famous battle was fought in the year 1576 between Rana Pratap & the Imperial Forces of Emperor Akbar.
According to Rajasthan tour itinerary, Jaipur was next on my list. But I was running short of time, so I made a quick list of all the places to see in Rajasthan on my next trip. This short trip was quite exciting as well as informative. I never knew that addicted could be so pleasurable. I surrendered my soul!