SARASGAD FORT History

Sarasgad [It was one of the forts captured by Malik Ahmad in his Konkan Campaigns- Ahmadnagarehi Nizamshahi, Kunte p. 10.](Sudhagad Peta). To the east of Pali overlooking the town is the fort of Sarasgad. It is difficult to climb and must be impregnable not so much because of its height but for its very steep and difficult approach. The fort has a north-south expanse of the same length as that of the town.

The Way Up.

Two ways, one from the north and the other from the south lead to the top, but the former is easier than latter. From the. north it climbs up gently in a zig-zag fashion over a long spur of loose soil except at one or two places where it is separated by a flight of narrow rock-cut steps. About half the way up, commanding two scores of somewhat even and broad steps is an arched gate of the lower fort, built in dressed stones, and bearing two carved figures of lions on the top. The hill is fortified and at places joined by strong bastions at this level to make it safer from attack. The walls at the top of the fortifications are wide enough to allow movement of a body of persons. The arched doors and steps of seasoned stones indicate the existence of regular guard system roundabout the bastion.

Immediately above this to the left, is a clean cistern cut at the base of the scarp about 25 feet long and 20 broad. It holds water throughout the year. The cool and pleasant sip from the cistern refreshes a casual visitor to the scene. The ascent from this point becomes more steep and near the top it is so precipitous that one can only move in crawling position.

The top of the hill only few acres in extent and covered with thick growth of wild bushes, is devoid of construction of any significance. There is however a solitary roofless structure of the Saha-pir in whose honour an Urus is held once a year. To the west is a small silted pond at the edge of which are the remains of the temple of Siva.

The fort offers a panoramic view of the surrounding landscape. The township of Pali graces the landscape to the west and rice fields especially during and after rains add to the scenic beauty of the distant corners which the eye cannot transverse. Amidst all this picturesque gaiety stands the fort of Avcitgad whose bastions seem to the naked eye to reach the lofty skies.

The hilly ranges to the East and the South of the fort partially block the view of the area beyond but in no way they suffer in comparison to the still beauty of the western ground. The almost green foliage that covers the hill ranges and the long jutting spurs is something which must be seen to be believed be-cause of its unparalleled excellence that particularly reflects in the skies above.

The south end of the plateau where it is naturally bifurcated has a gap from the top to bottom of the scarp of about 100 feet. A small arched door in the side of this scarp served as the back door to the fort. Immediately near this is a guard room and few yards west a rectangular rock-cut water cistern. To the east, over-hanging the main scarp, is another cistern about 30 feet long and 20 broad. In one of the cavities nearby is a small Dargah.

From the back door through the walls of this gigantic scarp, is a descent with meticulously cut steps in solid rock. Every step is about 4′ in width and 2′ in height. The way down is extremely steep and difficult. Very few today venture the thrilling experience, dangerous and interesting as it may prove to be.

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