मुरूड-जंजिरा( Murud-Janjira )
Murud-Janjira (pron. ) is the local name of a famous fort and tourist spot situated on an island just off the coastal town of Murud, in the Raigad district of Maharashtra, India.
During its heyday, the island fort boasted 572 cannons.
Visitors can gain access to the Janjira fort from Rajapuri, a small village on the coast. After a short ride in a small boat, one can enter the fort through the main entrance. The fort is oval shaped instead of the usual oblong or square shape. The fort wall is about 40 feet high and has 19 rounded porches or arches, some of which still have cannons mounted on them, including the famous cannon Kalaal Baangadi. These cannons were greatly responsible for repelling oncoming enemies from the sea. Inside the fort walls are the ruins of a mosque, a palace and bath with water channelled from streams. There is evidence that royal ladies occupied quarters here. A deep well, still functional, provides fresh water despite the fort being surrounded by salt water.
On the shore is a luxurious cliff-top mansion, the Palace of the Nawab. Built by the former Nawab of Janjira, it commands a panoramic view of the Arabian sea and the Janjira sea fort.
According to another record,[vague] the Abyssinian Sidis established the Janjira and Jafarabad state in early 1100.
According to accounts written by the Portuguese Admiral Fernão Mendes Pinto, the Ottoman fleet that first arrived in Aceh prior to the Ottoman expedition to Aceh led by Kurtoğlu Hızır Reis included 200 Malabar sailors from Janjira to aid the region of Batak and Maritime Southeast Asia in 1539. Later, in 1621, the Siddis of Janjira became exceptionally powerful as an autonomous state to the point that the commander of Janjira, Siddi Ambar the Little, successfully defied his overlord Malik Ambar's attempt to replace him. Siddi Ambar the Little is accordingly considered the first Nawab of Janjira state.
The island fortress was under control of the Adil Shahi dynasty until the reign of Ibrahim II where the Janjira fort was lost to the Siddis.
Major historical figures from Murud-Janjira include men such as Sidi Hilal, Yahya Saleh and Sidi Yaqub. During the rule of Sultan Aurangzeb, Sidi Yaqut received a subsidy of 400,000 rupees. He also owned large ships which weighed 300–400 tons. According to records, these ships were unsuitable for fighting on the open sea against European warships, but their size allowed for transporting soldiers for amphibious operations.
Despite repeated attempts, the Portuguese, the British and the Marathas failed to subdue the Siddis, who were themselves allied with the Mughal Empire. For example, 10,000 soldiers from the Maratha Peshwa Moropant Trimbak Pingle were repulsed by the Janjira army in 1676. The Marathas, led by Shivaji, attempted to scale the 12-meter-high (39 ft) granite walls but failed in their attempts. Shivaji's son Sambhaji even attempted to tunnel his way into the fort and was very close to capturing the fort. His attempt was thwarted when a Mughal army attacked the Maratha capital city, forcing Sambhaji to withdraw his forces from the siege and return to the Maratha capital. He built another sea fort in 1676, known as Padmadurg or Kasa fort, to challenge Janjira. It is located northeast of Janjira. Padmadurg took 22 years to build and is constructed on 22 acres of land.
In the year 1736, the Siddis of Murud-Janjira set out in a battle with the forces of the Peshwa Baji Rao. On 19 April 1736, the Maratha warriors Nanaji Surve and Chimaji Appa attacked the gathering forces in the encampments of the Siddis near Rewas. When the confrontation ended, 1,500 Siddis, including their leader Siddi Sat, were killed. Peace was brokered in September 1736, but the Siddis were confined to only Janjira, Gowalkot, and Anjanwel, with their power greatly reduced. However, Janjira remained unconquered until it became part of Indian territory after independence from the British in 1947.
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