ACHLA FORT, THE WESTERNMOST IN THE CHANDOR RANGE, about 32 km. (20 miles) north of Dindori, was described by Captain Briggs in 1818 as a large hill, little different from the other hill-forts in the, same range. The ascent is fairly easy till near the top where it is steep and craggy. The foundation of a wall runs round a part of the hill near the doorway but it was either never finished or has fallen. Captain Briggs tells us that there was no building nor a place to keep ammunition except a thatched guard-house. Achla was one of the seventeen fortified places which surrendered to Colonel McDowell on the fall of Trimbak in 1818.
Ahergaon in Niphad taluka, with 1,503 inhabitants in 1971 and lying 16 km. (ten miles) north of Niphad, is largely an agricultural village chiefly growing wheat and bajri. Well-irrigation is popular, there being nearly eighty such wells, and is augmented by a bandhara across the Netravanti rivulet. It is interesting as the place, where two years after his escape from the Thana jail, Peshva Bajirav’s favourite Trimbakji Dengle, alleged to have been involved in the murder of Gangadhar Shastri was re-captured in 1818. Captain Briggs, the political agent in Khandesh, acting on private information, sent a part of the irregular horse under Captain Swanston, and they moved with such speed and secrecy that the house in which Trimbakji was hiding was surrounded before any suspicion could be aroused. Upon this Trimbakji, who was lying on a cot, fled to the upper storey and hid himself under straw in a desperate attempt to evade capture. But he was soon discovered and surrendered without any further resistance. He was taken to Chandavad and subsequently sent as a prisoner to that famous fort Chunargad in Bengal. Two fairs, one on Margashirsha Vadya Saptami and the other in the bright half of Karttika, are held in honour of Vitthal and a Musalman Saint respectively. On each occasion nearly a thousand persons gather. The Vitthal shrine has some agricultural income. Ahergaon has a primary school teaching upto the seventh standard, a civil and a veterinary dispensaries and a multi�purpose co-operative society. The river and wells are the sources of drinking water.
Ahivant or the Serpent Fort, in the Chandor range, about 24.14 km. (fifteen miles) north of Dindori, was described by Captain Briggs in 1818 as “a large and shapeless hill, remarkably bleak and unhealthy”. It is accessible both from Khandesh and Gangathadi. The road from Khandesh is good and easy. The Gangathadi route is remarkably steep being entirely a water-course, almost impassable in the rains. A sort of rough but useless dam was built across the ravine to turn off the water. After passing the ravine the road turns off and is then assisted by steps. There were two small arches intended for doors and a little very ruinous wall near the arches. On the hill there is a ruined store-house built of stone and mortar. The water-supply in the fort is ample. There were then five militia-men or shibandis on the hill. The gates have all crumbled and the ruins of the store-house can still be seen.
Ambegaon, with 1,096 inhabitants in 1911, is largely an agricultural village in Dindori taluka lying about 20.92 km. (thirteen miles) west of Dindori. Its only claim, to importance lies in a richly-carved Hemadpanti temple of Mahadeva, which, however, lies in utter ruins to-day. It is 12.97 X 10.97 metres (40′ X 36′) with portion of the walls and roof having collapsed long before. The ruins can be seen scattered round the place. There is a primary school. Wells are the only source of drinking water.
Anandvalli, with 1,528 inhabitants in 1971, is a small village in Nasik taluka lying 4.82 km. (three miles) west of Nasik, close to a beautiful reach of the Godavari. Its agriculture has greatly benefi�ted due to the Gangapur dam, 12.87 km. (eight miles) north-west of Nasik. The village-lands abound in grape and vegetable gardens, Bajra, wheat and gram are the other principal crops grown. Its historical importance lies in the fact that Raghunathrav, better known as Raghoba Dada, had removed himself hither in October 1764 when Madhavrav insisted upon his right to command the large army that was got together to fight Haidar Ali. He remained here till after the siege of Dharvar, when the Peshva seeing that war would be successfully concluded invited Raghoba to take over the command which he did. He joined Madhavrav’s camp at Savnur on 27th January 1765. After his return from the next expedition against the Rana of Gohad, Raghu�nathrav, at the instigation of his wife Anandibai, determined to assert his claim to half of the Maratha sovereignty. Negotiations started and both Madhavrav and Raghunathrav meeting at Chandor proceeded by slow marches towards Anandvalli. The Peshva demanded complete surrender and compelled his uncle to climb down his pretensions. Raghunathrav had to agree to lead a retired life at Anandvalli under the Condition that the Peshva look over all his debts and arranged a suitable maintenance. But Raghunathrav had agreed under duress. He soon started scheming which ended in the battle of Dhodap in which Raghunathrav was captured and taken to Poona and confined in the Peshva’s palace. In 1793, Anandibai, the widow of Raghunathrav, was removed from Kopargaon to Anandvalli where she died the next year. Her sons Bajirav, afterwards the last Peshva, Chimnaji Appa and her adopted son Amritrav remained at Anandvalli until in 1795 on the prospect of hostilities with Nizam Ali they were removed to the hill-fort of Shivner in Junnar. Incidentally it may be noted that Shivner was the birth-place of Shivaji. The village has a primary school and a dispensary.
Anjaneri, a flat-topped mass of hill (4,295 feet= 1,309.11 metres) in Nasik taluka, is almost detached from its western neighbour Trimbak by the chief pass leading into west Igatpuri and falls eastward into the plain in a short and low chain of bare hills, The general direction of the hill is north and south, though there are spurs of considerable elevation on the other sides. The area covered by the main body of the hill is about three square miles (7.77 square kilometres) or a little more. It is four miles (6.43 km.) from Trimbak town and about fourteen miles (22.53 km.) from Nasik. The high road between these two places passes a short distance to the north of the hill. At the foot of Anjaneri, in the north-east, is a village which bears the same name. Its population in 1971 was 1,909 and there was a primary school teaching upto VII standard. The hill itself, or the fort as it is called in the neigh�bourhood, is surrounded by a precipitous scarp on three sides, but an the southern face there is a considerable slope by which cattle and even ponies can ascend to all but the highest parts. There are two main plateaus. One, the top of the fort, which is bare of trees and covered only with coarse grass and the roots and flowers of the wild arrowroot Curcuma caulina plant; the other, from which the chief spurs jut out, varies in breadth, and is covered on the north, east and west with vegetation. On the west there is a fair growth of bamboo, and an all the upper slopes the karvi or Strobilanthus grahaminus, which is a bush of great use over all the hilly west for thatching, grows plentifully. Throughout the woods there is a curious absence of birds, though of late years efforts have been made by residents to introduce some of the more common species of partridge and spur-fowl. A panther used to be usually reported in the villages near the eastern side of the hill, and one or two were shot there during 1860-70 but now there is not enough cover or other attraction on the fort itself to ensure the presence of large game. The top of the fort, where there is a decrepit small temple or shrine in honour of the presiding goddess Anjani Devi, is reached by a path on the north-east and another on the south-east. The lower plateau is bounded by a steep scarp which is traversed by, two main pathways, one on the north and the other on the west. Other tracks lead to this part of the hill, but they are seldom used. Along the base of the upper scarp, through the jambhul wood, a path leads completely round the hill, and for about a third of the way is under thick shade. This path is cleared every year and a few other tracks are made passable by a small subscription collected from the residents. The general way of getting up to the first plateau is from the village of Anjaneri. The path winds through the village, up a steep and bare slope for about half a mile, to a small ledge covered with mango and other trees. Above this ledge comes a second bare and grassy slope, surmounted by the lower scarp, a black wall of considerable height. This scarp is climbed through one of the larger clefts in the basalt invisible from below. This cleft is very narrow and almost perpendicular in parts. The sides are smooth, and the path, in its present condition, is an accumulation of loose stones, large and small. Up this the visitors could be carried with perfect safety in a light litter or swung chair. Remains near the top of the crevice show that when the fort was in its prime the whole of the darvaza or gate, as the cleft is called, was paved in broad steps with stone cut out of the adjacent basalt, but the constant passage of cattle has left hardly any of these steps untouched, and it is their remains that strew the pathway which now winds zigzagging from side to side of the cleft [About half way up the darvaza on the left side is a small cave temple with a well in it. Locally it is called the Monkey’s Cave and it is reached by scrambling up the bare wall of the scarp for about six feet. (Mr. H. F. Silcock, C. S.)].
The main attraction of the north-eastern side of the first plateau is a charming little pond, surrounded with jambhul trees on three sides and affording, owing to the lowness of its bank on the fourth, a grand view over the district spread out like a map below. From the south side the upper wall, which is here less precipitous than to the west, rises almost from the water. The water of the pond has a reputation for unwholesomeness, and hence a good well has been sunk near the houses. There are, in addition to this pond, two others on this plateau, besides a few springs. One of the ponds holds little water after the rains, but in the other, there remains enough for the few cattle that go to graze above the darvaza.
The elevation above the sea is about 4,300 feet (1,310.64 metres) on the upper scarp plateau, and about 3,700 feet (1,127.76 metres) at the pond. This height, the splendid views, the comparatively shaded walks, and the accessibility from Nasik, render the hill a resort for residents of the district during the months of April and May. The mists, from the collection on the hill of vapour-laden clouds that precede the monsoon, generally warn the sojourners to take flight by the end of the latter month. The conveyance of baggage up and down the hill used to form a favourite source of livelihood to the villagers of Anjaneri, who also reap the usual perquisites that accompany the camps of temporary residents at places of this sort.
Though called a fort, the hill does not, like Trimbak, bear signs of having been adopted by artificial means for defence. What is known of its history seems to indicate that from the first time it was visited for purposes of state, it was intended only as a health resort. Raghu�nathrav, otherwise known as Raghoba Dada, the father of the last Peshva, was exiled to Anandvalli, a small village on the Godavari, to the west of Nasik. From thence he visited Anjaneri in the hot season and built a sort of summer palace there. The remains of some out-�buildings below the pond, as well as the names of the two minor ponds, show that his court accompanied him to his retreat with their retinue and the state elephants. One ruin is the Failkhana or Jail and to the west of the hill is the Hattitalav or Elephants’ Pond, while to the east is the Brahman Pond. The remains of the palace have been incorporated in part into the steps of the approach and partly into the walls of one of the bungalows. Just before reaching the embank�ment of the chief pond, on the north, there is on the right of the path a small ruined square temple, so caned, of Dhyan, which is really merely the retreat in which Raghunathrav used to meditate .as the term shows. From a window in the west wall of this building a curious artificial breach in the scarp of the Trimbak fort is visible. This is said by some of the neighbours to have been cut by order of Raghoba, who thus saw through the cleft the setting of the sun on a day supposed to be propitious for such an observation. To the back of the largest bungalow, in the scarp, is a small cave temple, without any indication of its object or dedication. Just below it, on a more gentle slope, on amphitheatre has been scooped in steps in the side of the hill with a stump of a jambhul in the centre over�shadowed by living trees of the same sort, and here the missionaries of Sharanpur and Malegaon, who regularly visited during the summer, held the service of the Church of England in days gone by. The same missionary, who tried to re-stock the wood with birds, made an attempt to introduce fish into the pond, but though the marel he put in as small fry grew later to a very large size, they showed no signs of multiplying, and the same number, six, was seen basking on the surface, year after year. The experiment with the feathered tribe became more successful, and the melancholy monotone of the koel is no longer the only sound that breaks the silence of the wood.
Below Anjaneri are the remains of large and highly finished temples, which seem to have been in their present ruined state for several hundred years. They are said to date from the time of the Gavali or shepherd kings, but they belong to the time of the early Yadavas. In the centre piece of the door of all of them is a figure of the Jain Tirthankara in either a sitting or a standing posture, canopied by a hooded snake, and surrounded by rich foliage and highly finished cornices. One only has a large cross-legged image of a Tirthankara. Many other images have been thrown down and broken. Among other ruins there are figures of Ganesha and the linga, worshipped to the present day. One of the temples with Jain figures has a Sanskrit inscription, dated A.D. 1140 (Shaka 1063), recording the grant of the income of some shops to the Jain temple by a Vani minister of the Yadav ruler Seunadeva.
Ankai, generally known as Ankai-Tankai, the strongest hill-fort in the district, rises about 274.32 metres (900 feet) above the plain and 975.36 metres (3,200 feet) above the sea, and lies 9.65 km. (six miles) north of Yeola near the Manmad and Ahmadnagar road. The hill-top commands a wide view of Khandesh and the Godavari valley. In 1818 the hill was described as nearly square, a solid rack rising from another hill with sides gradually falling towards the low country. The rock was scarped on its four sides to a perpen�dicular fall of from 45.72 to 60.96 metres (150 to 200 feet), thus presenting on its four quarters inaccessible, smooth, and bluff faces. The top, which was about a mile (1.60 km.) round, was flat except on the eastern quarter where rose a small conical hill about 45.72 metres (150 feet) high. The point of this little cone was 274.32 metres (900 feet) above the level of the surrounding plain. The ascent to Ankai was very difficult, passing over a steep and craggy way, and through seven lines of strong fortifications. The lower gate was well built, and with its curtains and towers, presented an independent work by no means contemptible. Passing the lower gate, the farther ascent led through a number of difficult and intricate windings, and by flights of rock-cut steps with a low and small parapet to the left. After the last flight of steps the entrance was protected by a strong gateway and works, passing through which the ascent led, by a narrow winding stair, to the edge of the rock, which was protected by a similar gate and works on its top. About twenty-five men, standing on the top of this gateway and armed with nothing but stones, could keep back any number of assailants. As this was the only way to the top, so long as it was held, the garrison could set at defiance all efforts at approach. The latter flight of sixty or seventy steps was just broad enough to admit a single man at a time; and a large quantity of dry wood was kept on both gates ready if necessary to fire the gateways. Close inside of the last gateway was a curious domed building said to be a treasure chamber. On the summit were many rock-cut magazines and granaries, some of them from 6 to 15.24 metres (twenty to fifty feet) deep, approached by narrow and winding flights of steps with cisterns of pure water at the different turnings and chambers. On the surface of the rock were two large reservoirs, and at the western end were the remains of a large palace. Tankai which is about a mile north-east of Ankai was also fortified. On the east side there are still the remains of a well-built guard�house, commanding the approach from the plain which is here tolera�bly easy and was apparently the road by which supplies were brought for the Ankai garrison. Tankai seems to have been used as a storehouse for the main fort.
In 1635 Ankai-Tankai fort, with Alka-Palka, was captured by Shah Jahan’s general Khan Khanan. In 1665 Thevenot mentions Ankai as a stage between Surat and Aurangabad.
During the last Maratha war Lieutenant-Colonel McDowell’s detachment came to Ankai on the 5th of April 1818. On the previous day negotiations had been opened with the commandant whose master, a chief in the neighbourhood, had sent orders for surrender. On arriv�ing before the fort, as he found matters not fully settled, Lieutenant�-Colonel McDowell ordered a pair of six-pounders to the gate of the village or petta at the foot of the hill. This was instantly opened and a surrender effected, and a. party from the detachment climbed the lofty battlements of Ankai, and without striking a blow hoisted the British flag on the summit. The whole of the guns on the top had been loaded and the matches lighted; nor was it without the greatest difficulty and a handsome gratuity that the commandant pre�vailed on the garrison to retire without giving the British camp a volley. The garrison amounted to about 300 men with about forty guns. Considering the works and the amount of stores it was fortunate for the British that all were secured without bloodshed. The surrender of Ankai was of great importance to the English, as, if it had held out, even for a short time of the numerous other forts would probably have been encouraged to offer resistance. Within the fort were found forty pieces of ordnance with a large store of ammunition. There were about Rs. 12,000 in cash and Rs. 20,000 more were raised from prize sales. A party of forty native infantry under a European officer was left in the fort. Of the four Ankai, Tankai, Alka and Palka, all but Ankai were dismantled.
The Dhond-Manmad section of the Central Railway has a station at Ankai. A siding about 4.82 km. (three miles) long runs from the station to a quarry from which stone was obtained for the bridges and buildings on the Manmad end of the railway. The quarry is still worked [The account of the three Brahmanical caves is given in the General� Volume on Places.].
Aundah, on the south-west boundary of Sinnar taluka, about 16 km. (ten miles) south of Devlali, the nearest railway station, is a natural stronghold ending in a sharp cone with no traces of any built fort. The rock-cut steps that formerly led up this cone have since long been destroyed, and the summit to-day remains almost inaccessible. On the opposite hill some fine six-sided basalt pillars stand out from the hill side. A curious trap dyke also stretches in a series of low mounds for some kilometres from the foot of Aundah towards Kavnai. About 3.21 km. (two miles) south of Aundah, stands Pattah, a larger bluff lying within the Ahmadnagar boundaries. It has a fiat top, rising in one place to a low peak, below which there is a large chamber cut in rock serving as an ideal camping place in the hot weather. The two strong-holds with the joining ridge form a regular arc facing northwards. The arc includes the valuable forests of Bhandardara about 16 km. (ten miles) south-east of Belgaon Kurhe.
Both of these forts are said to have been built during the latter half of the fourteenth century, when the Bahamani dynasty (1347-1490) established its power over the Deccan. The two forts passed into the possession of the Ahmadnagar kings (1490-1636) on the disinte�gration of the Bahamani territories towards the close of the fifteenth century. In 1627 they fell into the hands of the Delhi Emperors and in 1671, during Aurangzeb’s reign, Moropant Pingle took them for Shivaji. Next year Mahabat Khan re-captured the forts, only to lose them in 1675 when Diler Khan, the Moghal general, was defeated by Moropant. From thence onwards till the British conquest in 1818, the Marathas never lost their grip on these strong-holds. Both Shivaji and the Peshvas used to maintain an irregular force of militia for their defence.
Bahula Fort, with a height of 965 metres (3,165 feet) and about ten miles (16 km.) south-west of Nasik, was described by Captain Briggs in 1818 as difficult of access, with only one road up the scarp of the rock by steep steps. These steps went to within twelve or fourteen feet (3.65 or 4.26 metres) perpendicular height of the gate, and these twelve feet (3.65 metres) were climbed by a ladder which was drawn up at pleasure into the fort. This contrivance rendered the gate almost as inaccessible as the rest of the hill. Captain Briggs considered it the simplest and strongest mode of protecting the entrance to the gates of such hill-forts. A frail wall ran round part of the fort. The top of the fort was very small and had a ruined arched building like a bomb-proof. There was plenty of water, and, at the foot of the scarp outside the fort, was a fine excavation in the rock which served as a granary. Presently the fort is in possession of the Indian Army where firing practices are conducted.
Bangaon Bk., with 881 inhabitants in 1971, is a village in Nandgaon taluka lying eight kilometres (five miles) south of Nandgaon. It has an antique Hemadpanti temple of Baneshvar, still in a good condition. There is a primary school.
Bhagur, on the banks of the Darna, is a municipal town in Nasik taluka with 9,536 inhabitants in 1971. It is the birth place of late Vir Savarkar, a notable freedom-fighter and a great revolu�tionary. The municipality here was established in 1925 and has an area of 31 square kilometres (twelve square miles) under its jurisdiction. A committee of twelve councillors headed by a president manages the administrative affairs. During 1964-65 the municipal income derived from various sources including grants but excluding extra-ordinary and debt heads totalled Rs. 1,16,815. Expenditure incurred on various heads stood at Rs. 89,199 during the same year, the major heads of expenditure being public health and administration. An ayurvedic dispensary, a maternity home and a library are conducted by the municipality. The town does not have any special drainage system. Darna river is the source of water. Primary education is enforced by the Zilla Parishad, the municipality paying 5 per cent of the annual letting value. A high school is run by the Nasik Education Society. Bhagur has a Devi temple and another of Lakshmi-Narayan. Tuesday is the weekly bazar day.
Bhaskargad Fort, about 12.87 km. (eight miles) south of Igatpuri, is described by Captain Briggs, who visited it in 1818, as easy of access, but with a long ascent to the foot of the scarp. The path to the fort lies through thick bamboo brushwood which hides all view of the fort to within 183 metres (200 yards). The path then continues nearly across the whole side of the hill by a narrow track under the scarp of the rock which is too over-hanging for stones hurled from the top to reach the track. But from here the ascent is by good broad steps cut out of deep road in the rock and rendered easy by its winding route. At the top is a good strong gate. There never were on the fort-top bombproofs for ammunition or provisions and these were always kept in thatched houses. The water-supply on the fort is ample and good.
Bhojapur, largely an agricultural village in Sinnar taluka with 2,026 persons as per the 1971 Census, lies about 16 km. (ten miles) south of Sinnar. It is composed of two hamlets, Sonevadi and Kasarvadi, situated at some distance from each other. The village has a temple of Khandoba cut in the rock in the hill-fort in whose honour a fair is held on Chaitra Shuddha Paurnima. About 2,000 persons assemble on the occasion. In olden days there was a considerable manufacture of glass bangles but later the trade declined due to the growing use of imported goods and ultimately disappeared altogether with the installation of large factories in glass products, and the increase in the cost of local goods consequent on the stoppage of free fuel from forest lands.
Chambhar Leni or the Chambhar Caves are cut in a hill 600 feet (182.88 metres) above the plain about five miles (8 km.) north of Nasik near the village of Mhasrul. The caves are Jain caves. In 1870 the Jain community of Nasik, comprising some wealthy Marvadi and Gujarati bankers and cloth-dealers, built a well near the caves at a cast of Rs. 750; .a flight of steps at a cost of Rs. 800; a cistern at the foot of the hill at a cost of Rs. 200; and a large rest-house in Mhasrul village at the foot of the hill. In 1942 was built a temple in honour of Parshvanath at the foot of the, hill adorned by the caves.
The caves are about 450 feet (137.16 metres) from the base of the hill and face south-west. The upper part of the ascent is by a stair of roughly dressed stone, containing 173 steps of varying heights and with side parapets. At the 163rd step a path leads to two rock-cut cisterns on the right, one with a broken top and the other with two square openings. Above the built stair sixteen steps cut in the scarp lead to the cave terrace. Beginning from the left or west there is, in a slight recess, a cistern with two openings broken into one. Next is a cave with a veranda with four columns, of which the left column and pilaster are square and unfinished and the others are eight-sided. On the rock over the cave is built a lotus-bud cupola like those on structural temples. In the left end of the veranda is a covered cell; in the back, at the left side, a door has been begun but not cut through the wall; next to it is a plain rectangular window. The central doorway which is plain with a raised sill, has at the sides a pair of saints or Tirthankaras doing duty as door-keepers. Gautama, on the left, is five feet two inches (1.574 metres) high and is attended by two female figures about 3� feet (1.066 metres) high. Over the door is a Jina seated cross-legged, about fourteen inches (0.355 metre) high, on a throne with three lions in front with a male fly-whisk bearer twenty-one inches (0.533 metre) high on each side. To the left of this is a fat figure seated on a kneeling elephant; and to the right is the goddess Ambika seated on some crouching animal, and holding a child on her knee. Parshvanath stands on the right of the door with a five-hooded snake canopying his head. On his right a female attendant, about three inches (0.076 metre) high, has a single cobra hood over her head; and to her right a man kneels on one knee. To the right of this is another window, and then a side door leading into a rough part of the cave which is walled from the rest. In the right end of the veranda is an unfinished cell with a bench, and over the door is a sculpture like that over the central door but somewhat larger. As the sculpture is in coarse spongy rock, it is rough, and seems to have been freshened at a comparatively late date. The interior is roughly hewn and not properly squared. At the left end is a group of figures in a slight recess. The group includes a cross-legged Tirthankara, ten inches (0.254 metre) high, on a throne which has the bull or sign-mark of Adinatha, in the centre. To the left of the throne is a squatting figure and then two five-inch (0.127 metre) standing male figures. The lower part of the other side is unfinished. Outside each of the Jina’s arms is another five-inch (0.127 metre) Jina similarly seated, and, over each of the three heads, is a painted canopy with a male figure three and a half inches (0.089 metre) high to the central canopy and a similar figure on each of the side ones. Round this group are twenty-one shallow recesses, an inch and a half square, each containing a seated Jina. Of these five are down each side, three on each side slope up towards one in the centre, one is under each of the lowest in the slopes, and one is over each shoulder of the larger figure. These, with the three main figures, complete the twenty-four Tirthankaras or Jina�s. A bench goes round three sides of the cave. On the back wall, above the bench, in the centre, is a three-feet (0.914 metre) Parshvanath seated on a throne with three lions below, his head canopied by a seven-hooded snake. Above is a small seated figure, and, on each side, is a standing figure two feet nine inches (0.838 metre) high with high cap and fly-whisk. On each side of these fly-whisk bearers is a large seated figure with high ornamental cap, necklace, and ear-rings. The left figure is a man on a kneeling elephant with foliage below; the right figure is Ambika, on a crouching lion or tiger, and at her knee is a reclining female figure. Beyond each of these is a seated male, three feet five inches (1.041 metres) high, like to the central figure and with similar fly�-whisk bearers, but also with a triple umbrella held over a seven-hooded snake by heavenly choristers or vidyadharas. The right group has Gautama standing under foliage and with no other canopy. To the extreme right is part of a standing male and other unfinished figures.
About ten yards (9.14 metres) to the right is a recess as if the beginning of a cave, and seven yards (6.40 metres) farther is the third excavation, with an open veranda. On the left wall is a figure two feet (0.609 metre) high, seated on an animal, with a canopy above and pilasters down each side of the compartment. On the right wall, in a similar recess, is Ambika on her tiger, with a child on her left knee, and a standing figure one foot (0.304 metre) high below her right knee and behind the tiger; figures also stand by the pilasters and appear in the canopy overhead. In the back of the veranda is an ornamental central doorway with raised sill having two griffins or lions’ heads in front; an ornamental pilaster is on each side, and over the lintel is a cornice with small standing males over each pilaster, and the centre of the door. To the left of the door is the cobra-hooded Parshvanatha, with two smaller attendants, and down each side of the panel is an ornamental pilaster on which small standing figures are carved, On the right side of the door is a much-defaced Gautama; with decayed seated attendants below on each side, and several small figures on the side pilasters, The hall is eight or nine square feet (0.743 or 0.836 square metre), On the left wall is a group, containing two ten-inch(0.254 metre) Jina�s, seated on a cushion with two lions below each. To the right and left are Ambika and Indra with attendants. To the left of each Jina is a standing male. The canopies and twenty-one very small seated Jina�s are nearly the same as before. By the sides of the central figures are three males in a row, with triple umbrellas over their heads, very rudely cut. The back wall has a built bench in front and three standing male figures, the central figure three feet five inches (1.041 metres), and the side figures three feet three inches (0.990 metre) high, with four ornamental pilasters between and at the sides of the compartments they occupy. At the base of each pilaster is a standing Jina. Overhead is scroll work and figures. The base of each pilaster contains a small standing male with his arms by his sides, and in the capital is a very small squatting Jina. Beyond the outer pilasters are other standing figures fifteen inches (0.381 metre) high. To the left of this group is another squatting figure fourteen inches (0.355 metre) high with clasped hands and a large back knot of hair. On each side of each of the three large male figures in the lower corners are very small kneeling female figures with large back knots of hair. On the right wall are two small seated Jina�s and to the right is a twelve-inch (0.394 metre) Ambika, seated on her bearers, with a child on her left knee, and the stem of a mango-tree behind and above her head. Some mangoes hang on each side and there is a small seated male above.
About ten feet (3.04 metres) to the right is the fourth cave, a recess fifteen feet (4.57 metres) wide and seven feet (2.13 metres) deep. In the centre is the upper part of an unfinished figure of a seated Parshva�natha seven feet (2.13 metres) from the top of the head to the waist, and with a man and hooded snake canopying the head, To the right the rock is undercut and on the level top of the projecting part three half lotuses are carved, The middle lotus is four feet and six inches (1.37 metres) in diameter and side ones half the size and five feet (1.52 metres) from centre to centre. A square socket for a flag staff is sunk in the centre of each lotus and raised foot-prints are sculptured on the flat centre of the middle lotus. A recess has been begun close to the right of the lotuses and over the top of the stair. The carving is poor�.
Chandor, more properly Chandavad, situated in 20�20′ north latitude and 74 � 16′ east longitude, lies at the foot of a range of hills known by the same name, from 182.88 to 304.80 metres (600 to 1,000 feet) above the plain and 1,219.20 to 1,371.60 metres (4,000 to 4,500 feet) above sea-level. In this range are situated some of the most prominent forts of Nasik district. The town is traversed by the Bombay-Agra road in its stretch, and is 64.37 km. (40 miles) north-east of Nasik and 22.53 km. (14 miles) north of Lasalgaon railway station. Good roads connect it with both the towns.
Occupying a sloping ground, the town was once surrounded by a mud-�wall whose remains can still be seen. The habitations are inter-spersed with gardens and fine trees, and look picturesque from the neigh�bouring heights. In 1800 Malharrav Holkar moved the mint from the fort to the town as a result of a quarrel between the fort comman�dant and the mint authorities. Remains of a quadrangular building (40′ X 30′) occupied by the mint, can still be seen in the fort.
Chandor, being the headquarters of a taluka, has the offices of Mamlatdar and the block development officer. There are also the offices of the forest ranger and the sub-divisional soil conservator. The town has post and telegraph facilities, a police station, three primary schools, one high school and a library receiving an annual grant of Rs. 500 from Government. Zilla Parishad maintains a dispen�sary with an attached maternity ward as also a veterinary dispensary. There is a sub-market-yard of the Lasalgaon market committee where large quantities of onion and gur are handled during the busy season. A weekly market is held on Mondays. The village panchayat has laid out a kachcha drainage system for the town.
Objects: South-west of the town immediately outside of the gateway is a rather fine Hemadpanti temple and well. Three quarters of a mile north-east of the town is a temple of Renukadevi, cut in the rocky side of the Rahud pass, about 100 feet (30.48 metres) above the town. Flights of built steps lead to the portico. The image is rock-cut and about five feet (1.52 metres) high. West of the Chandor fort, and east of the town, is a rock-cut temple in the form of a deep apse thirty feet (9.14 metres) wide by twenty-one feet (6.40 metres) deep. It has Jain sculptures, and is now dedicated to Kalika Devi. The town has also an antique mosque known as the Badshahi or emperor’s mosque which has a Persian inscription. On the full-moon of Pausha (January-February) a fair, attended by about 2,000 people, used to be held in honour of Khandoba. It has been discontinued since long.
Fort: Standing on the flat top of a naturally strong hill immediately above the town, Chandor fort (3.994 feet = 1,217.37 metres) was acces�sible from only one point which was fortified by a strong gateway. Since the blasting of this route by the Britishers, the fort has been rendered almost inaccessible. Its importance lay in the fact that it commanded the Chandor pass, an important opening between Khandesh and Nasik.
History: Its position on the high road from Berar to Nasik and the coast must have made Chandor a place of trade from very early times. About A. D. 801 Dridhaprahara, the founder of the Chandor Yadava dynasty (801-1073), is spoken of as restoring the glory of Chandor (Chandradityapura). In 1635 the Moghal army took Chandor fort along with Anjarai (Indrai), Manjna and Kanjna; but Chandor must after�wards have passed to the Marathas as in 1665 it was again taken by Aurangzeb. Between 1754 and 1756 Malharrav Holkar induced crafts�men to settle in it by gifts of land. The new suburb was called Somvar Peth and Chandor came to have a name for its brass-work. In 1804 it surrendered to the British Commander, Colonel Wallace, but was restored to Holkar until its final surrender to Sir Thomas Hislop in 1818. In the Maratha War of 1818, on the 10th of April, after the surrender of Ankai Tankai, Lieutenant-Colonel McDowell’s detach�ment encamped at Chandor. In 1820 Sir John Malcolm described Chandor as a town of considerable size, commanding one of the passes into Khandesh. In 1827 Chandor had 920 houses, twenty shops and several wells. The opening of the railway in 1861 affected the fortunes of the town for some time as the bulk of the traffic was diverted. How�ever, with the rising industrial and commercial progress, prosperity has returned to the town.
Chauler fort, 1,138 metres (3,733 feet) in height, lying 14.48 kill. (nine miles) south-west of Satana, was described in 1826 as a high hill-fort, difficult of access. It is surrounded by strong hilly and woody country. Of the four well-defended gates, two to the lower and two to the upper fort, only one remains in a fairly good condition. Both the forts are well-supplied with water. The interior buildings as also the defences of the fort are lying in ruins. Within 150 yards (137.16 metres) of the first entrance is a winding stair cut through the solid rock for about eighty to ninety yards (73.15 to 82.29 metres). It is completely commanded by the lower works. Though naturally strong, few of its defences are remaining.
Chikhalohol, with 3,891 inhabitants in 1971, lies in a valley about 3.21 km. (two miles) to the right of the Bombay-Agra road and 16 km. (ten miles) north-east of Malegaon, the taluka head�quarters. It has a travellers’ bungalow, a post office and a middle school. About half a kilometre to the south is a large pond mostly utilized for bathing and washing the cattle. The old Hemadpanti temple of Mahadeva referred to in the old Nasik Gazetteer no more exists. A weekly bazar is held on Tuesdays.
Devalane, with 1,081 inhabitants in 1971, is a small agricultural village in Baglan taluka lying about 16 km. (ten miles) north-east of Satana. At a little distance from the village is a well-carved Hemadpanti temple of Mahadeva, cast in the shape of a. regular barav. The temple consists of a porch, a domed hall measuring about 9.14 X 9.14 metres (30′ X 30′) and a, sanctuary containing a linga. The jambs and lintel of the sanctuary entrance are richly decorated and in each corner the temple has pillars, each of a height of about 2.42 metres (eight feet). Two extensions to the mandap, on the left and right, hold idols of Parvati and a deity past recognition respectively. A fair, attended by a thousand villagers, is held annually on Mahashivratra day. There is a primary school and a seva sahakari society. Two wells meet the water requirements of the villagers. The village lands are under well-irrigation.
Devlali, with 30,618 inhabitants in 1971, is a railway station on the Bombay-Nagpur section of the Central Railway and is an excellent health resort affording all modern amenities to the holiday-goers. During the hot season it is crowded by holiday-goers for whom holiday camps are provided. The situation is healthy, the water good, and the view of the distant ranges remarkably fine. Devlali is all the more important because of its being a permanent military station where a big artillery training centre has been set up. There are three primary schools and three high schools. It has a 55-bedded hospital with separate maternity ward and a separate ward for infec�tious diseases. The town has tap water supply. It has a cantonment board which looks after the administrative affairs. The land around produces excellent vegetables.
Dhodambe, with 2,998 inhabitants in 1971, is a small village in Chandor taluka lying 19.21 km. (twelve miles) west of Chandor and containing a curious old temple of Vateshvara Mahadeva with carved figures. It is entirely stone-built with three small nandi images in the front and a linga in the mandap. The sanctuary also contains another linga symbol with an image of hooded cobra coiled round it. Adjacent to this temple there is a small shrine in honour of Vishnu surmounted by a fine little dome or shikhar. On Margashirsha Shuddha Paurnima a fair, attended by over 5,000 persons, is held at the temple. It lasts for two days. The village has a primary and a secondary school. A library is conducted by the grampanchayat. The Zilla Parishad conducts a civil and a veterinary dispensaries. Wells are the only source of water-supply.
Dhodap Fort 1,445 metres (4,741 feet) high, about 24 km. (fifteen miles) north-west of Chandor, is the highest and most prominent hill in the Ajanta or Chandor range. It stands out from the rest, distinguished by its deeply-cleft level top and lofty tower-like peak at the eastern corner. It has also this peculiarity that its shape is the same whether viewed from the north or the south side, and it forms a conspicuous feature in the distant landscape both from Nasik and Sinnar on the one side, and from Kalvan and Satana on the other. It is approached by two paths, one from the south leading straight from the Chandor to the Machi, a little village below the defensible works of the fort, and the other from Otur, a large village on the north or Kalvan side, at the foot of one of the lower spurs of the system which culminates in Dhodap peak. The latter is the easier, but has the disadvantage of being considerably the longer. Leaving Otur to the west, the path winds up along gentle grassy slope covered with cactus and sparse brushwood. After a short distance the first scarp is reached, at the edge of which there is a considerable number of the commoner trees, jambhul (Eugenia jambolana), sadada (Terminalia arjuna) and wild mango (Mangifera indica). To the right of the path, at a distance of about half a mile, there are the ruins of a small collection of mud-�built houses which were deserted after a bad out-break of cholera some years ago. To the west of this hamlet, and a little nearer the second scarp, is a forest in which a well-known cattle-slaying tigress and several panthers were shot in days gone by. Continuing the path along the north slope of the hill, the bed of a small torrent is reached, across which there seems once to have been thrown a rough outwork, the first trace of fortifications. At the top of the scarp, which is ill-�defined towards the north and north-east, is a large level space of rocky ground covered with a thin coating of soil, the result of the disintegration of the trap above. Here a few patches of nagli are cultivated, and a pool or two to which the cattle of the Machi hamlet resort when grazing on this side of the hill. Following the path south�wards for about half a mile, the outer gate of the lower fortified portion is reached. Inside the wall is a fine pipal tree and one or two small wells, containing remarkably offensive water. From this point the upper scarp presents the appearance of a smooth wall of basalt, the south-eastern corner alone being somewhat jagged and broken. The path follows the line of the hill southwards under some very fair mango trees, with an undergrowth of corinda, and after about three quarters of a mile or rather more, the second gate of the outer line of defence is reached, of more solid construction than the first. Within this is the little village which is all that remains of the colony that sprang up round the fort when the latter was in its glory as a military depot. The road from the south meets the other just outside the gate, leaving to the east a few Bhil huts built on level pasture ground similar to that to the north. The village consists of a few houses of Ladsakka Vanis and Shimpis, who do a little business in loans and grain or cloth. The remainder of the population is chiefly of Pardeshi or Bengal origin, with a Brahman or two and a goldsmith. These Pardeshis are chiefly Ahirs, or Rajputs, though at Dhodap itself there are few of the last-named class, Just below Dhodap there is a small village. The Ahirs hold usually a fair amount of land, but do not, round Dhodap at least, show any signs of very careful husbandry. The Rajputs live on a little land. Most of the Pardeshis at Dhodap came originally from near Lucknow in order to obtain service as sentinels, store-keepers, and even soldiers in the fort establishment. Some of those who have not taken to agriculture and who look upon the profession of arms as the only one for which they are suited, are to be found attached to the households of money-lenders as guards or duns, and have also found employment in the forest guard establishment. A few large champa and banyan trees and a good deal of cactus seem to be the chief vegetable productions on the ledge which the village occupies.
Ascent: To ascend to the fort, the entrance to which is imperceptible from the village, a path is followed which zigzags up a steep slope to a bare wall of black rock cut into steps in two places. These being surmounted, a double gate is reached in a series of bastions and walls called the khandari or outworks. The actual fort is still at a considerable height above, and the way re-commences its tortuous course up a second slope, varied with projecting slabs of bare rock. At last the real entrance to the fort is attained. This is a completely hidden passage cut in the living rock with two towers in it, and concealed by an outer wall of solid rock and, in its upper portion, by passing through a tunnel. Two inscriptions in Persian characters are cut on the rock near the doorway. One has been defaced by weather, and the letters are very indistinct. The other is much clearer, and in addition to the Musalman creed records the name of the builder of the fort. On emerging from the passage, the first sight that presents itself is the peak, still towering perpendicularly at a height of three to four hundred feet (91.44 to 141.92 metres) above the gateway. To the right of the gateway facing east, is the sadar, or masonry apartment for the captain or killedar from the top of which a fine view of the Chandor range is obtained. Behind this is a pool of filthy water in a small quarry. To the south is a bastion on which was mounted a ten-pound gun, now lying on the ground, with its muzzle pointing over the plain it once commanded. Behind it is a high flag-staff. It belongs to the temple of Devi on a higher part of the fort. A fair is held in Navratra. Between the court and the foot of the peak lies a grassy slope after crossing which are found remains of chambers formerly used by the residents of the fort for various purposes. These are cut in the living rock of the highest part of the hills. First is the powder magazine, a spacious chamber every crack in which has been carefully built up, leaving only a single entrance. At the side of this is the small cave from which the powder guardian had to keep watch. Beyond, to the west, are the provision chambers, including a huge one for grain and a smaller one at the sides with two rock-hewn sarcophagi, one of which contained clarified butter, and the other molasses. Between these and the next cave, that of Devi, are a few small recesses, walled in with rough stone work, appar�ently modern, which now serve as rest-houses for mendicants and pilgrims. Immediately to the west of the Devi’s cave is a rock-cut reservoir said to be unfathomable, containing excellent water, probably filtering through cracks in the rock from above, as there is no appear�ance of any spring. It is a peculiarity of this south face of the rocky peak that the base of the scarp inclines outwards a little from the point where it springs from the grassy slope, a formation which has been taken advantage of in building up these chambers. On the north side of the peak the strip of grass-covered and slippery ground between the base and the vertical scarp is much narrower than on the south, and the cave chambers on the former side appear to have been for the gunners and soldiers. The path can be followed right round to the court again, and up the peak itself, though the climb is somewhat dangerous except to hard and naked feet. The summit which consists of a huge mass of rock nearly precipitous for half its height and then conical, rises about 400 feet (121.92 metres) above the level plateau on which the main portion of the fort was situated, and is all but inaccessible, At the very summit of the peak is a Musalman shrine said to have been miraculously built in connection with a tomb below, known by the name of Bel-pir, and adventurous Muhammedans make occasional excursions to visit it. Leaving the peak, the western side is perhaps the most extra�ordinary feature of the fort. A wall of basalt, thinly covered with soil and coarse grass, juts for some 300 to 400 yards (274.32 to 365.76 metres) from the base of the peak. Its top is fairly level, and its sides, some 200 to 300 feet (60.96 to 91.44 metres) high, appear to be sheer precipices presenting scarcely a crack or inequality. The wall is in no place more than perhaps thirty feet (9.14 metres) wide and is inacces�sible from every side except the fort. As the western abutment was less steep than the rest of the wall, it was apparently thought advisable to cut off communication from that quarter by making a breach in the wall about 100 feet (30.48 metres) deep and some ninety feet (27.43 metres) wide, from the sides of which the extreme thinness of the basaltic slab can be well seen. Perhaps, on the other hand, the indenture was no more than a freak of some of the Padshahas who resorted to the fort, who, finding so peculiar a natural feature, considered it a profitable task to show the power of man over it in this very unmistakable manner. This view is in some degree supported by the fact that at the very brink of the gap on the fort or eastern side, there is a small rectangular mosque, a building intended for worship, over the door of which is a stone carved with an Arabic text from the Qoran, To the left hand corner of the door, there is, curiously enough, a smaller stone with an inscrip�tion in what seem to be Devanagari characters. Wherever the precipice below the peak is a little less perpendicular than usual, or presents irregularities which might be taken advantage of by an escalading force, there are built walls with loopholes and bastions, which extend along a considerable portion of the east, north-east, and north sides of the fort. The height of the peak is 4,741 feet (1,445 metres) above the sea-level, while the caves and main portions of the fort are 4,317 feet (1,315.82 metres) high. There is a trigonometrical base-mark just at the starting point of the basaltic wall, from which observations were taken a few years ago connecting this hill with the fort of Ankai-Tankai to the south-east, Ramsej and Anjaneri to the south and south-west, and the huge mass of Sather (5,263 feet) to the north.
History: Dhodap may be Dhorapavanki mentioned as one of the forts in the possession of Burhan Nizam Shah (death 1553). The earliest known mention of Dhodap is the somewhat doubtful notice of a fort named Dharab which surrendered to the Moghal general Allah-vardi Khan in 1635. From the Musalmans it passed to the Peshva who made it the chief of the Nasik forts. In 1778, Raghunathrav, ever ambitious to wrest the Peshvaship for himself, made preparations to march against the Peshva with the connivance of the British and the Nizam and active help of Holkar, Damaji Gaikvad and Janoji Bhosle and camped in the vicinity of Dhodap. In order to forestall the junction of Bhosle’s troops with that of Raghunathrav’s, Madhavrav swiftly marched to Dhodap, hearing which Raghunathrav took shelter in the fort. He was besieged, captured and brought to Poona to be confined in the Peshva’s palace. Under the Peshvas two subhedars, Appaji Hari and Bajirav Appaji are said to have once held the fort with 1,600 men. At that time Ajabsing and Sujkum, two Kshatriyas in Holkar’s employ, attacked and took it, and plundered and burnt the village, which never afterwards recovered its prosperity. It seems to have passed back to the Peshva as it was the Peshva’s officers who, in 1818, ceded the fort without a struggle. In 1818, immediately after its cession, Dhodap was visited by Captain Briggs. He described it as a large hill of the same basaltic nature as others in the Chandor range, with very strong artificial fortifications. The town, which was tolerably large, stood some hundred feet (30.48 metres) up the hill and the bottom of the perpendicular rock where there was much tableland. A road into Khandesh ran under the town and fort wall. There was a very strong gate to the town, and a gate to the pass on each side leading up from Khandesh and Gangathadi. Besides those in the fort, there were several guns in the town and on other parts of the tableland, pointing to the plain below. The roads to the town and over the pass were rough and steep on both sides, but not difficult to horses. The only way to the fort was through the town. The fort had many rock-cut storehouses and a large water-supply. There were thirty-seven militiamen or sibandis in the fort, and of military stores 1,590 matchlock balls, two pieces of lead, and a large quantity of gunpowder.
Dindori, the headquarters of the taluka of the same name, with a population of 5,520 in 1971, lies about 24 km. (fifteen miles) north of Nasik, the district headquarters. It is situated on the Dhaman rivulet which serves as an additional source of drinking water besides wells. Somewhere between Vani and Dindori was fought one of the bloodiest battles, known as Vani-Dindori battle, in October 1670 between the Moghals and the Marathas. While Shivaji was returning laden with a� booty of 66 lakhs after the second sack of Surat he was attacked by Daud Khan, the Moghal general. Shivaji managed to send the booty through a secret pass and in the sangui�nary conflict that ensued three thousand Moghals were killed, four thousand of their horses captured, besides a number of officers and men who were allowed to go later. On the Maratha side the losses were light. The battle is important, for it rendered the mighty Moghal power impotent for over a month and ended in the transfer of his services by Siddi Hilal, the Moghal governor of Dindori, to Shivaji. On Chaitra Shuddha 12, a Rathayatra is held in honour of the temple of Rama. Along the Nasik-Kalvan road are situated, besides the revenue offices, those of the forest ranger and the police. Nearby is the panchayat samiti office with quarters for the staff. The village is served by a post and telegraph office, a veterinary dispensary and a civil hospital with an attached maternity ward. While the number of outdoor patients treated was 5,405 in 1964 those of indoor was 295. There are, besides the primary schools, a high school and a vasatigriha for adivasi children. Beyond the high school building is a mission in the vicinity of which is the taluka seed farm. Around the village there are some fine mango-groves. To the west of the village, not far away, is a hillock crowned by a temple of Vindhyavasini goddess where a larger fair is held in Navratra. Close-by is Ranatale whose waters have been tapped for irrigation. Sunday is the weekly bazar day.
Galna Fort lies about fourteen miles (22.53 km.) north of Malegaon. It consists of a circular detached hill with a fairly flat top affording an area of twenty or thirty acres (8 to 12.14 hectares). The top is 2,316 feet (706 metres) above mean sea-level or about 800 feet (243.84 metres) above the plain. It is accessible only by a broad flight of steps, now in a ruined condition, cut into the northern face. These steps cross the hill from east to west, and then reversing the line climb again to the eastward, and pass under four gateways, Parkot, Lokhandi, Kotval Pir and Lakha. Of these, the Lokhandi gate is remarkably handsome and is lined with iron plates from which it takes its name. There is a small opening in one fold of this gate to admit a single man. The third and fourth gateways, at about two-thirds of the ascent from the town, are approached by covered ways and are furnished with strong iron-cased doors and surmounted by walls nearly twenty feet (6 metres) thick, where the gateways are situated. These walls are continued westward and eastward along the face of the hill till they unite in the highest battlements on the west and on the east ends of the hill, while a single wall encircles the plateau on the east, south and west sides.
The upper walls have bastions, which are semi-circles and must have commanded the approach in every direction on the south and west, while the face of the hill, being almost perpendicular for nearly one thousand feet (304.80 metres) below the wall, the lines are as straight as the outlines of the rock allow, and have been defended by large wall pieces, which were moved on iron pivots many of which are still seen on the round bastions at every eighty or hundred yards (73.15 to 91.44 metres) on the west and north faces.
The south side of the hill is a bare scarp for many feet from the wall, and, at about two-thirds of the length from the east, there is a bastion in which are arches of Saracenic form between the central two of which was a slab containing a Persian inscription dated A. D. 1569 (H.977). There was a second slab in a niche between the battle�ments, fronting the north and surmounting a row of cellars furnished with moderate-sized windows, and probably intended for residences. This slab contained, a Devnagari inscription dated A. D. 1580 (Saka 1502). Below the date were four lines in Persian to the effect that this bastion was built by one Muhammad Ali Khan and completed on the first of Rabi-ul-Akhir Hijri, or from the employment of the Arabic numerals it may be Sursan, 985, which will make the date fourteen years later or 1583.
This tower and bastion is close to the north-west corner of the fort, a part where the whole of the wall shows marks of repairs, which must have been recent as compared with the ruins of the original structure in the valley below. From this tower a narrow stone pavement, which connects the whole circle of the battlements by flights of steps, leads east towards the entrance gateways, to a second tower built so as to command the entire ascent, and immediately facing the third and fourth gateways at different elevations. From this second tower the side of the hill, whose slope makes the plateau on the top more conical towards the east than towards the west, admitted of two walls with batteries for swivel guns and pierced with loop�holes at every elevation. At the second tower there was a third tablet dated A. D. 1587 (H. 993), which ascribed its foundation to Muhammad Ali. Underneath the tower were many cells filled with bad powder and small balls of limestone or trap. The hill above this spot approaches within thirty yards (27.43 metres) of the wall, and between this tower and the mosque there are the idol of Galneshvara Mahadeva, five cisterns and a series of rock-cut caves. Beyond the caves is a handsome mosque, open to the east, upon a stone terrace, from which a few steps lead down to a square masonry cistern, beyond which again begins the descent to the plain. The mosque consists of one room about forty-eight feet long by twenty-five feet broad (14.63 X 7.62 metres), and has a handsomely-carved stone window opening on a balcony surmounted by an elegant cupola which unfolds a fine view. A stone staircase leads to the roof of the mosque which is surmounted by six small domes; close-by are the ruins of a palace called the Pleasure Palace or Rang Mahal. The view from Galna is magnificent. On the south, ranges of low hills, a most difficult country, fall behind each other to the bank of the Panjhra, fifteen to eighteen miles (24 to 28.97 km.) distant, and the green masses of trees, the white houses, and the long walls of the jail at Dhulia are distinctly visible in the declining sun. The distant northern horizon is bordered by the dim but -picturesque outlines of the Satpuda hills beyond the Tapi. To the east, the wide valley of the Tapi, crossed by the rapid but scanty streams which water Khandesh, forms a plain, which, but for the abrupt peak of Laling fort and the rough forms of the hills near it, continues unbroken till it vanishes in the mists which hang over the cotton fields of Berar. On the west, an impenetrable mass of mountains of every variety of shape and hue, stretches from the Tapi to the peaks of the Sahyadri range round Saptashring and Dhodap, from which the chain is continued in bleak outline of cone and tableland, until far in the south-east the dim figures of the Chandor range sink into the plains beyond Ajanta.
History: Galna was an important place at the end of the fifteenth century. It had for some time been held by a plundering Maratha chief when, about 1487, two brothers Malik Wuji and Malik Ashraf, the governors of Daulatabad, took it and held it for some time. They brought the country into excellent order. In their contest with Malik Ahmad Nizam Shah of Ahmadnagar, and the disturbances that followed the murder of Malik Wuji, the Musalmans seem to have been forced to, give up Galna, and it again passed to a Maratha chief who was reduced to order and made to pay tribute by Malik Ahmad Nizam Shah in 1506. On the death of Malik Ahmad Nizam Shah in 1510 the Galna chief once more threw off his allegiance and could not be made a tributary till 1530, when, with other Maratha chiefs, he was defeated and forced to pay tribute. Again he became indepen�dent, and in 1560 had once more to be brought under subjection. In 1634 Muhammad Khan, the Musalman commandant of Galna, intended to deliver the fort to Shahaji, who had possessed himself of Nasik, Trimbak, Sangamner and Junnar, as far as the country of the Konkan. But, after promises of imperial favour and of a great reward, Muhammad Khan delivered the fort to the representatives of the emperor. In the wars between the Marathas and Moghals at the close of the eighteenth century the fort changed hands more than once. It was attacked by Aurangzeb in 1704 and taken after a long siege in 1705. In 1750, under the name Kelna, Galna is mentioned as a Khandesh fort bounding Khandesh on the south. According to a statement prepared from Maratha records about 1800, Galna in the Khandesh-Burhanpur subha gave its name to a sircar of seven parganas and yielded a yearly revenue of about Rs. 2,10,000. In December 1804, after a slight resistance, Galna was taken from Holkar by Colonel Wallace. In March 1818 it was evacuated by the commandant and garrison and occupied by a company of Native Infantry. In 1862 it was found to be ruinous. Galna fort seems at one time to have been used as a sanatorium for Dhulia. There are the ruins of one or two houses on the top, and the tomb of a young. European officer, who is said to have committed suicide from grief at having killed an old woman while he was shooting bears. There are also seven Musalman tombs on the hill-top. Immediately below and to the north-east of the fort lies the village of Galna. It appears to have been of great size and importance and was protected by a double line of defences, traces of which remain. For a few years after 1818 a Mamlatdar held his office in Galna village.
Ghargad Fort, lying about 9.55 km. (six miles) east of Trimbak and 1,088.75 metres (3,572 feet) above sea-level, was visited by Captain Briggs in 1818. He has left a fair description of this fort too. From that description it can be said that the lower part of the fort is fairly easy of ascent. From the lower part the road runs for some distance under the hill-scarp which affords cover for an assailing force from stones. The road up the scarp is by traverse outside the rock which, though not high, is remarkably steep. The top of the fort is very small with ample water-supply. Captain Briggs notes houses for the garrison but no bomb-proofs, and two gates, one tolerable, the other old and much out of repair. Ghargad surrendered to the British immediately after the fall of Trimbak in 1818.
Ghoti Bk., with 8,122 inhabitants in 1971, is a village of commercial importance in Igatpuri taluka, lying eight kilometres (five miles) north of Igatpuri, the taluka headquarters. It is a railway station on the Bombay-Nagpur section of the Central Railway and has the additional advantage of being on the Bombay-�Agra trunk route. There is a large trade in paddy and other grains, paddy and wheat being the principal crops. There are six rice mills and a few oil mills too. The village has one high school, a balvadi and three primary schools of which one is Urdu. It has post and telegraph facilities, a primary health centre, a veterinary dispensary and a police station. Of the temples dedicated to various deities, that of Shani claims religious importance. Though quite antique it is in good repair. The dependence of the populace on well and river water would be done away with, with the installation of water-works under way. A largely-attended weekly bazar is held on Saturday.
Govardhan Gangapur, lying 9.65 km. (six miles) west of Nasik on the right bank of the Godavari,� are actually two independent settlements with in 1971, 766 and 1,291 inhabitants respectively. The settlement of Govardhan also known as Gordhan lies a little upstream and that of Gangapur a little below. Govardhan is an old place and is noticed twelve times in five inscriptions (3, 4, 5, 10, 12) of about the beginning of the Christian era in the Pandu Caves which are about ten miles (16 km.) to the south-east of the village. The inscriptions describe it as an ahara or the official head quarters of a district, as the seat of the Satavahana viceroy, and as having several guilds of weavers. Except the remains of one or more Brahmanical or Hemadpanti temples of about the eleventh or twelfth century, there is little of antiquarian interest in the village. The chief remains are two well-carved and two plain pillars in a lane running down to the river-bank at the entrance to a temple of Rama. A few yards to the north is an old flight of sixteen steps or ghat, about 100 yards (91.44 metres) long. At the west end of the ghat is a small stone temple of Mahadeva with a dome and a modern inscription over the eastern door. Both the ghat as well as the temple are much damaged. Age has withered the temple dome. There is none to look after the temple and hence neglect is sure to bring its ruin sooner or later. To the left of the temple, under a pipal tree, were five images, a four�handed Vishnu, Lakshmi-Narayana and Rama and Sita, and two others broken. The Rama-Sita group was well carved. Rama wore a quiver on his shoulder and carried a bow in one hand and arrows in the other. The pipal tree has fallen and of the images except three all were washed away in the river floods. The three that remain are disfigured beyond recognition. On a plinth behind the temple is a broken image of Vishnu. About eighty yards (73.15 metres) west, across a stream, is the small temple of Govardhaneshvara with the samadhi of one Bhagvat Maharaj in front of it. In its vicinity lie the broken pieces of what might have been a pillar. Those may be that of the pillar which once stood under an old pipal tree about 18.28 metres (20 yards) east of the Govardhaneshwara temple. Across the river from the flight of steps is Jalalpur village. On the Jalalpur side the river-bank is lined with steps and has a handsome stone temple of Vararishvara. In front of this temple is a nandi housed under a canopy and here is a large metal bell. Behind the nandi canopy is an antique but a well-built fountain lying in a defunct state. A permanent paid ministrant performs the daily puja and looks after the temple. In the middle of the river, between the Govardhan and Jalalpur steps, is a rock smeared with, red lead, and locally worshipped as Mhasoba, To the east, Govardhan passes into Gangapur, the only separation being a narrow lane, The only object of interest in Gangapur village is a mosque whose lower part is of old dressed stones. Ganga�pur is a large straggling village whereas Govardhan is a neat compact place with good houses and paved lanes.
Water-fall: About a quarter of a mile east of Govardhan-�Gangapur the Godavari passes over a wall of dark trap which from below rises about twenty feet (6.09 metres) from the bed of the river, Except in floods the water passes through a partly artificial cleft close to the right bank of the river. It rushes down in two falls each about eight feet (2.43 metres) high which, from the whiteness of the foam during the fair season, are locally known as Dudhasthali or the Place of Milk. About fifty yards (45.72 metres) below the falls a flight of twenty-three steps, some of which seem to be of great age, lead down to the river. Above the fall the river stretches in a long pool with a fine mango-grove on the north bank and the peaks of the Ramsej hills showing behind, On the left, flights of steps, most of them rock-cut, lead to two rest-houses, one of brick, the other of stone, Both are in the Muhammedan style each with five waving edged arches fronting the river. The steps and the rest-houses were built by Gopikabai, the mother of Madhavrav, the fourth Peshva (1761-1772). On the bank behind the rest-houses was the large mansion of Gopikabai. It is no more in existence. The lower part was of stone and the upper of brick. The inside was plain.
Earthen dam: About two miles (3.41 km.) up on the confluence of the Godavari and the Kashyapi is built the Gangapur earthen dam which would irrigate a total of 64,000 acres (25,899.90 hectares) of land in Nasik and Ahmadnagar districts. Thus the waters which were hitherto going in waste have been tapped to enrich the agriculture.
Burial mound: About five hundred yards (457.40 metres) south�east of the water-fall and about two hundred yards (182.88 metres) north-east of the Nasik-Govardhan road near the sixth mile-stone, in a large mango garden, is a smooth conical mound of earth twenty-�six feet (7.62 metres) high with a few bushes on its sides and an oldish tamarind tree on its top. The base which is not quite round is 624 feet (190.19 metres) in circumference. Pandit Bhagvanlal Indraji, who examined the mound in February, 1883, sunk a shaft about ten square feet (0.929 metres2) from top to bottom. For the first six feet (1.82 metres) there was deposit of black clay; the next five and a half feet (1.67 metres) were of black clay mixed with, lime or Kankar : the next six feet (2.13 metres) which reached to the bottom were of yellow-black clay mixed with black clay. At the bottom of the last seven feet (2.13 metres), on a four-inch layer of river sand, were arranged in a circle nine rough trap boulders varying in size from 1′ to 1’9″ (0.304 to 0.533 metre) high. Of the nine boulders eight were roughly in a circle, The ninth on the south diverged from the circle and on examination showed that in the south of the circle the boulders were unusually far apart. The diameter of the circle from without was about 4′ (1.219 metres) and from within 2’5″ (0.736 metre). In the middle of the boulders was small red clay pot containing burnt human bones, which on medical examination proved to be the banes of a child about seven years old. With the bones was a damaged bead of coral or some other stone. Over the red clay pot was a covering or screen of clay pierced with many holes. Round the middle pot clay broken pieces of seven or eight other clay pots joined together by a wet and sticky cement of soft black clay. This clay deposit rose about seven feet (2.13 metres) above the pots, and as it had shrunk in drying the pots were all broken and the pieces clung so tightly to the clay that it was not possible to free a single pot entire, Of the contents of these pots there was no trace. . They had probably held water, curds, milk and offerings which had disappeared in the course of time.
Someshvara’s Temple: About a quarter of a mile to the east of the mound, and about five and a half miles (8.84 km.) west of Nasik is a hollow, shaded by some babhul and one or two large mango and tamarind trees, is an old temple of Someshvara. Fairs attended by a large number of people from Nasik, Anandvalli and Govardhan, are held here on the Mondays of Shravana and Karttika months. The building is about fifteen paces long and eight broad, and includes a modern shed to the east, a central hall and a shrine. The outer roof of the shrine dome, which is seven feet by eight feet (2.13 x 2.43 metres), rises about four feet (1.21 metres) from the ground. At the base are four stone slabs each about seven feet (2.13 metres) long. Above the slabs the dome rises in three layers of rough blocks of stone with the corners knocked off, and on the top is a large central keystone. The old temple dome is surrounded by a ruined stone and mud wall about seventeen square feet (1.579 square metres), the south and west walls being twelve feet (3.65 metres) and the north wall about six feet (1.82 metres) high. Inside of this wall, about four feet (1.21 metres) on each side of the dome, are the remains of a� rounded cement and brick cover or sheath, which seems to have been built perhaps in Maratha times to shelter the old dome. All is ruined because, they say, the god likes the dome to be in the open air. In the enclosing wall are several carved stones older than Musalman times, which seem to have belonged to the original roof. The hollow or dell has filled several feet deep since the old temple was built. The temple is entered from the east. The hall, which is about sixteen square feet (1.486 square metres) has rough masonry walls and a flat timber roof supported on four wooden pillars carved in the Musalman cypress tree style, In the west wall of the hall a passage (7’6″x7’=2.28 x 2.13 metres) has on either side a niche in the wall, about 2’6″ square, standing out about six inches from the wall, with ornamental side pillars, The dome of the passage is of modern brick work. At the west end of the passage is the shrine door, part of the old temple with plain side posts and outer pilasters carved in alternate square and circular bands. The threshold of the door is about one foot high and is richly carved. The walls of the shrine, which are nine feet by eight feet (2.74 x 2.43 metres) have been repaired with mortar. The west wall contains an old niche and the north wall an old shelf. The dome is in the old cross-corner style. In the centre of the shrine is a handsome linga in a well-dressed case (4’2″ x 4’2″ x 2’6″ = 1.27 x 1.27 x 0.762 metres). The roof rises in three tiers to a plain keystone. In front of the passage is a small bull. Leaning against the back or west wall of the hall is a red Mahishasurmardini, with six hands, killing the demon Mahishasura. This probably belonged to the old temple, There is another old stone in the outer comer of the hall, part of a capital. In front of the temple to the east is a plinth probably of the Peshva’s time. In the vicinity is a small old group of Parvati and Mahadeva. About six yards (5.48 metres) further east is the old bull broken in two, with a garland of bells round both the front and the hind parts, The head is much broken, About thirty yards (27.43 metres) further east is an old Ganapati. A flight of old broken steps lead to the river and on the right a wall with niches at intervals stretches about thirty feet (9.14 metres). The steps have a frontage of about 100 feet (30.48 metres) on the river bank. They are well placed at the bend of the river and about eighty yards (73.15 metres) below a water-fall. Another fair on Shivaratra in Magha is celebrated. It is attended by a large number of people. The village has a primary school teaching up to the seventh standard and a branch post office.
Harish Fort, 6.43 km. (four miles) west of Trimbak and 1,120.44 metres (3,676 feet) above sea-level, was one of the forts in the possession of the Ahmadnagar Sultans. It was visited by Captain Briggs in 1818, who has left a fairly detailed description of the fort. It is tolerably easy of access till half way up, where several paths from the foot of the hill unite and where there is a reservoir and some wells, as also some houses for the garrison. The houses are no longer in existence. The real ascent to the scarp begins here and has been described by Captain Briggs as truly wonderful. He further states that words would not be able to give an idea of its dreadful steepness. It is perfectly straight for about 60.96 metres (200 feet) and can only be compared to a ladder up a wall 60.96 metres (200 feet) high. The steps are bad and broken at places and hence holes are cut in the rock to support the hands. At the top of the steps is a door, now partially dilapidated, and then a walk under a rock-cut gallery with no wall along the outer edge. After the gallery there is the second flight of stairs, worse than the first, and at the top of trap-door with only enough room to crawl through. Then there are two more gates. Captain Briggs adds that so difficult was the hill to climb that only five men could hold it against any adds. He noticed a well-built bomb-proof for powder. The grain and provisions were kept in a thatched house. In 1636 Harish with Trimbak, Tringalvadi and a few other Poona farts was given by Shahaji to the Moghal general Khan Zaman. Harish was one of the seventeen strong places that surrendered to the British on the fall of Trimbak in 1818. The fart is well supplied with water.
Hatgad Fort, near Mulher and almost on the edge of the Sahyadris, stands overlooking the Surgana taluka and the southern Dangs. It occupies a flat-topped hill which rises some 183 metres (600 feet) above the plain, and about 1,097.28 metres (3,600 feet) above sea-level. At its foot lies the village of Hatgad with a popula�tion of 890 as per the 1971 Census. The village has a primary school teaching upto fourth standard and a bee-keeping training centre where instruction is imparted in bee-keeping and honey-gathering. The course is spread aver a period of three and a half months and in each batch eighteen trainees are admitted. The villagers eke out their living by cultivating paddy, nagli, wheat and jowar.
The ascent to the fart is through a narrow passage cut in the rock, provided with steps; It was defended by four gates which have fallen into ruins to-day. Most of the passage is roofed. Below the natural scarp the hill-side is pleasantly and thickly wooded. The path climbs through the woods, and, after passing under one or two small ruined gateways, enters the rock and runs underground for a few yards. As the natural scarp is not very perfect a masonry wall has been run completely round the upper plateau. The wall is now in disrepair. The plateau, which is not very large, is covered with ruins of buildings and with reservoirs. Two of the reservoirs, called Jamna and Ganga, are very deep and spacious, and contain a good supply of excellent drinking water throughout the year. No historical mention of Hatgad has been traced. The only local story is that in the time of Rangrav Aundhekar, the last officer who held the fort for the Peshva, one Supkarna Bhil came with a large following and laid siege to the fort. The siege continued for some time and was not raised until a shot from the garrison destroyed one of the Bhil guns. The Bhils then burnt the village and withdrew. In 1818 Captain Briggs, who visited the fort, reports that it was not more than 400 feet (121.92 metres) above the plain. Like other Nasik forts it had a perpendicular scarp of rock all round, and its want of height was more than made up by the strength of its gateways and the works connected with them. It had a wall all round which, though not very thick, was sufficient to give the garrison over from everything but large guns. There were five gateways in a large tunnel which traversed the rock as it ascended by steep steps. There was one small built bomb-proof filled with mortar for repairs to the fort. In the middle was a round tower which appeared much like a work but was only a deposit for grain. The absence of any good bomb-proof was likely to give an invading force means of annoying the garrison, and these were aggravated by a hill about 1,200 yards (1,097.28 metres) off, from which a very raking and destructive fire might be brought to bear on the fort. The water-supply was ample, but the water was bad and guineaworm was common. There were no militia in the fort. In 1826, the Committee of inspection thought it advisable to station a small detachment of native soldiers in Hatgad.
Hill Forts, of which there are thirty-eight in the Nasik district, may be divided into two classes, those on the main range or on the eastern spurs of the Sahyadris, and those on the Chandor or Ajanta range in the centre of the district. There are twenty-three Sahyadri forts: beginning from the north, Salher (5,295), just beyond Nasik limits; Mulher (4,320), Galna (2,316), Kankrala (2,507) and Malegaon (1,481) in Malegaon; Chauler (3,722) in Satana; Hatgad (3,686) in Kalvan; Dhair (3,579) and Ramsej (3,273) in Dindori; Vaghera (3,517), Bahula (3,165), Ghargad (3,572), Anjaneri (4,295), Trimbak (4,248) and Harish (3,676) in Nasik; Bhaskargad, Tringalvadi (3,085) and Kavnai in Igatpuri; and Kulang-�Alang, Kalsubai (5,427), Bitangad (4,708), Aundha-Pattah (4,587) and Ad on the Nasik-Ahmadnagar frontier. There are fifteen forts on the Chandor range, beginning from the east, Manikpunj in Nandgaon; Kantra and Ankai-Tankai (3,182) in Yeola; and Chandor (3,994), Indrai (4,526), Rajdhair (4,409), Koledhair, Kachna, Dhodap (4,741), Kanhira, Ravlya-Javlya, Markinda (4,384), Ahivant or Ivatta (4,014), and Achla or Achalgad (4,068) on the borders of the Malegaon, Chandor, Kalvan and Dindori talukas. Saptashring or Chatarsingi (4,659), one of the leading hills in the Chandor range, is not fortified because it is sacred to the Saptashringi goddess. Of the Nasik hill forts Arch�deacon Gell wrote in 1860: All are natural and formed on one plan. Lower slopes ribbed with great horizontal bands of rock, about the same thickness and distance from each other; and upper slopes rising steeper and steeper to a summit, capped by a mass of rock scarped by nature, from forty to 400 feet (12.19 to 121.92 metres) high Along the crest of this scarp run walls, and at accessible points, where perhaps a spur leads up from the plain, are massive gates. Within the area of the hill-top, on a rolling table-land, are the ruined store� houses and dwellings of the garrison; and often, rising several hundred feet higher, is an inner hill-top called the Upper For t or Bale Killa, generally fortified with special care as the last resort of the beleaguered garrison. The natural history of these forts is every�where the same. All the hills are volcanic and to a great extent contain the same ingredients in every variety of combination, chiefly augite, porphyry, basalt, laterite, tuff and trap. A series of waves of lava, issuing from many centres, have poured over the land. In these succes�sive layers of molten matter all trace of organic structure has been destroyed. Some of them were deposited above, perhaps others under the water; some, giving off their gases rapidly, cooled into the loose stratum of trap; others cooling more slowly, and hardening as they cooled, turned into the more compact basalt; some crystallized into porphyry; others were built into rude columns; in others a large mixture of oxide of iron reddened the stratum into laterite. After these layers were poured forth, under the gentle but ceaseless violence of air and water, helped by heat and cold, a process of wearing set in and still goes on. Streams cut through the softer layers and under�mined the harder, cleaving their way, and bringing down great blocks of hardened basalt which, ground to powder and mixed with other materials, have become the black cotton soil of the eastern plains. Any specially hard section of a layer which withstood the wearing remained an isolated block, which needed little from man to become an impregnable fortress. Thus when skill in war made stockades and village walls an insufficient shelter these strange islands in a sea-like plain offered the leaders of the local tribes a safe retreat.
Regarding the forts of the Chandor or Ajanta range of hills, Lieu�tenant Lake wrote in 1820: ‘A series of basalt hills joined to each other by low narrow necks rise sharply from 600 to 1,100 feet (182.88 to 335.28 metres) from the plain, and end in level plateaus. In some cases on these level tops stand sheer bluff rocks 80 to 100 feet (24.38 to 30.48 metres) high. The belts of basalt in the sides and the blocks of rock on the top are often as beautifully and regularly scarped as if they had been smoothed by the chisel. Cisterns to hold water, flights of steps hewn in the solid rock, and a number of ingeniously intricate gateways, are often the only signs of artificial strengthening. Nothing but a determined garrison is necessary to make these positions impregnable. This strange line of almost inaccessible fortresses, stand like giant sentinels athwart the northern invader’s’ path, and tell him what he will have to meet as he penetrates south to the Deccan.
History: Of the origin of these forts there is no authentic history. Report ascribes the construction of most of them to Shivaji, but some existed before his time and were the work of the early Hindu rulers. During the Moghal ascendancy the Muhammedans became masters of the forts, and have left traces of their handiwork in Saracenic arches, inscriptions and tombs. One tomb bearing the name of a commandant stands on the small fort of Kachna to the east of Dhodap, and between it and the Bhumbari pass leading from Chandor to Satana. The system of fortification varied according to the nature of the hill and rock. When the summit was naturally scarped, as it is in many places, only means of access were required, and this was attained by cutting through the rock steps, sometimes straight, sometimes winding, sometimes tunnel-wise. The upper part would be defended by a, gateway possibly flanked by side bastions. When nature had not done enough to insure security from assault, the upper portions of the rock face would be cut and scarped, so as to make it unscaleable, and where a hill comprised more than one portion or where there might be a plateau which it was desirable to defend, lines of wall were added with gates and bastions at intervals, such as would be proof against the assault of undisciplined warriors. Many of the works show great power of design and in places attempts at ornamentation. They must have been most effective for the purposes for which they were constructed. It is probable that within the inner lines buildings of some sort were erected as a protection from the weather, but of these few remains are left, and in most cases all traces have vanished. The only monu�ments of the past that remain, intact in some cases, dilapidated in others, are rock cisterns for holding water. These, which are generally on the summits, would be fed by the abundant rains that fall on the hill-tops, and to this day afford an excellent supply of apparently good water. No doubt, also, there existed in former days granaries for storing grain. Firewood would probably be stacked in the open. Some of the forts were undoubtedly armed with artillery, and old guns remain on the Chauler fort in Baglana; the walls, too, were pierced or loop-holed for the use of matchlocks. The present ruinous state of these old forts is no doubt to a great extent due to the action of the British Government. Up to the close of the eighteenth century it is probable that most of them were intact and fit for occupation and defence. On the close of the long series of wars in 1818, most of those that fell into the hands of the British were dismantled. Their armaments were removed, and the walls where necessary were blown up. Since then the recurring storms of the rainy season have com�pleted the work of destruction, and year by year their disintegration goes on. It would be hopeless to attempt to restore them. But as relics of a past age and a system gone by, they will ever be interesting even to the most prosaic and careless of observers. Mulher and Salher stand first in point of height and size and extent of fortifications. Ankai- Tankai is perhaps the best preserved, while Dhodap and Chauler are interesting from the greater intricacy of the approaches and fortifications. In many cases the handiwork of man has disappeared. But all repay ascent if only for the crisp breeze that blows over their tops and the varied hill-views which they command.
Several of these Nasik hill-forts, especially the stronger ones, such as Salher and Mulher, Galna, Dhodap, and Trimbak, often figure as changing masters in Musalman and Maratha history. The only wholesale transfer was their partial reduction by the Moghals between 1632 and 1635, and their complete reduction by Colonel McDowell in 1818.���
Igatpuri, a municipal town of 17,415 inhabitants as per the 1971 Census, is the headquarters of the taluka of the same name lying 48.28 km. (30 miles) south-west of Nasik, the district headquarters. Igatpuri is actually the corrupted form of Vigatpuri and signifies city of difficulty, so thought of perhaps because of the hilly country and forested area around. It is an important station on the Bombay-Nagpur track of the Central Railway where the electric engines are replaced by steam or diesel engines for hauling the trains. However, recently the electrification has been extended as far as Bhusaval.
Municipality: The municipality here was established in 1868. The town-limits extend over an area of 11.36 square kilometres (4 square miles) which is also the area of municipal jurisdiction. An elected council of 16 members presided over by a president looks after the municipal affairs.
Finance: In 1964-65 the total municipal income derived from various sources amounted to Rs. 2,41,716. It comprised rates and taxes Rs. 1,36,597; revenue derived from municipal property and powers apart from taxation Rs. 50,176; grants and contributions Rs. 47,661 and miscellaneous Rs. 7,282. During the same year it incurred an expenditure of Rs. 1,94,575. The expenditure comprised general administration and collection charges Rs. 39,434; public safety Rs. 4,238; public health and convenience Rs. 1,10,735; public instruc�tion Rs. 25,419; contributions Rs. 35 and miscellaneous Rs. 17,714. A sum of Rs. 1,24,571 was also spent on the provision of water to the populace.
Health, sanitation and water-supply: The town has a primary health centre, a civil dispensary conducted by the municipality and a hospital named as Lady Hardinge Hospital maintained by the railways. There is also a leprosy eradication centre. It is conducted by the Zilla Parishad. The town has only ordinary gutters and the sullage is allowed to flow in the nalas flowing alongside the town. Wherever it is not possible to direct the waste water in the nalas, it is collected in cess pools and then removed. At present the people depend upon a few tube-wells and some taps installed at public places. These taps receive water from the railway reservoir for which the municipality has to make a certain payment to the railways. A water provision scheme estimated to cost Rs. 12,45,712 is under execution. It has received a 40 per cent grant from Government. With the completion of this scheme a major difficulty experienced by the people would be removed and a long-felt need satisfied.
Municipal Works: The municipality has provided one vegetable market with thirteen stalls one each for beef and mutton with eight and ten stalls respectively and a general market with seventeen stalls. There is also a market with thirteen stalls and a separate shed for selling dry and fresh fish. Two separate slaughter-houses for beef and mutton have been provided. A morgue belonging to the Buildings and Communications department is utilised by the municipal dispensary for carrying out post-mortems.����
Education: Primary education is compulsory in the town and is conducted by the Zilla Parishad. Towards this end the municipality contributes 5 per cent of the annual letting value which comes to about Rs. 18,000. There is only one high school receiving an annual grant of Rs. 1,300 from the town municipality. A convent school teaching upto the fourth standard is managed by a Mission. The town has two libraries, one of which is conducted by the municipality.
Cremation and Burial Places: Two cremation and two burial grounds are maintained by the municipality for Hindus. The Chris�tian Churches have their own cemeteries as also the Mohammedans their burial-grounds. The Parsees also have a fire temple and a tower of silence for the disposal of the dead.
The position of Igatpuri at the top of the Thal pass about 607 metres (1,992 feet) above sea-level and its cool and bracing climate makes it an excellent health resort during April and May. It was much improved by a reservoir built by the railways to supply water to Kasara and Igatpuri at the foot of the Thal pass and which now belongs to the Central Railway. This is the very reservoir from which a part of the Igatpuri town gets its water. The reservoir with beautiful surroundings is situ�ated at the foot of the Pardevi Khind about half a mile (0.804 km.) north-�east of Igatpuri. The railway employees have formed a boat club which owns one boat. Igatpuri has an English Church and a resident chaplain paid by� the society for propagating the Gospel. There is a Roman Catholic chapel, and a Methodist place of worship too. There are temples dedicated to Rama, Hanuman, Shitaladevi, Balaji, Mahadeva and Buddha. The railway has a large station with good waiting and refreshment rooms and a large locomotive shed and workshop employ�ing over a thousand workers, skilled and unskilled.
Apart from the Mamlatdar’s office, Igatpuri has the offices of the panchayat samiti, soil conservation, superintendent of cattle breed�ing, judicial magistrate’s court, etc. It has post and telegraph and telephone exchange facilities. There is also a police station. Igatpuri rice is well known all over the district. It is also the principal agricul�tural produce market. In the Agricultural Research Centre here, research is undertaken in paddy crops. There are some rice mills also. Pimpri which adjoins Igatpuri, on the south, has the tomb of Sadr-ud-din, a great Musalman saint of local repute. Three miles (4.82 km.) on, to the north is the Tringalvadi with some cave temples in the fort. Panthers and nilgais are occasionally seen in the forests of Igatpuri as also to the north of the Mahalungi hill that forms a notable land�mark above the railway reservoir.
In 1827 Captain Clunes noticed Igatpuri as being on this high road from Nasik to Bhivandi and having fifteen houses and some wells.
Indrai, also known as Indragiri fort, 4,526 feet (1,379.52 metres) above the sea and lying 6.43 km. (four miles) north�west of Chandor on the Roura pass, is a small tower which was dis�mantled by Captain Mackintosh in 1818. The approach to the fort is difficult. The only object of interest on the hill are some caves and sculptures. These caves have fallen into decay due to lack of care and are used by the shepherds. Cattle also resort to these caves during the rains. Below the foot of the steps leading to the rock is a Persian inscription. Time has rendered the inscription almost illegible. In the 1818 campaign, the burning of the neighbouring fort of Rajdhair so terrified the garrison that they abandoned the fort without a struggle.
Jaikheda, lying 24 km. (15 miles) north of Satana in Baglan taluka, was previously the headquarters of an old petty division. Its population in 1971 was 4,103. There is much garden land around, irrigated by a second class bandhara across Mosam river and 40 irriga�tion wells. Sugarcane is the principal crop. Some fine mango-groves are also seen around the village. Drinking water is drawn from the Mosam river and a few private wells. The village has a primary school, a high school, a police station, a post office and the grampanchayat which has laid a kachcha drainage system. There is, however, no dispensary and hence the people depend upon the one in the nearby village of Taharabad.
Jambutke, with a population of 1,002 in 1971, is a village in Dindori taluka lying 6.43 km. (four miles) west of it and having a plain Hemadpanti well 4.180 square metres (forty-five square feet). To-day the well is not only silted up but the construction also is lying amidst ruins. About 1.60 km. (one mile) south of the village a tank has been constructed by the Zilla Parishad. But for the ruins of this antique well the village is insignificant.
Kachna Fart, about 3.21 km. (two miles) west of Koledhair and 16 km. (ten miles) north-west of Chandor in the Chandor range, is described by Captain Briggs who visited it in 1818, as a large hill and much steeper than the neighbouring fort of Koledhair. The road to it lies from the north and from that road a bad pass to Gangathadi leads up to the fort. Captain Briggs noticed a wall of loose stones, with a small opening in the middle which could be filled in no time, as running across nearly the whole breadth of the pass and enabling a handful of men to, defend the pass. To-day, however, nothing except ruins remain to point out the existence of the wall. The fortifica�tions on the hill-top are also lying amidst ruins. There is, however, plenty of water and the rock-cut rooms which must have served as granaries are now frequented by cattle. When Captain Briggs visited the fort there were seven of the Peshva’s militia in the fort. Kachna was one of the seventeen strong places that surrendered to the British after the fall of Trimbak in 1818.
Kalsubai, the highest peak in the Deccan, 1,654 metres (5,427 feet) above the sea, is said to take its name from a Koli girl by name Kalsu. Kalsu, according to the legend, was fond of wander�ing in the forest. One day she came to Indore, a small village with only 702 inhabitants at the foot of the hill now known as Kalsubai, and took service with a Koli family on condition that she should not be asked to clean pots and sweep. Matters went smoothly till one day one of the family-members ordered Kalsu to clean some pots and clear away some litter. She did as she was told to, but immediately after that climbed the hill and stayed there till her death. The spot where she cleaned the pots is known as Thale Mel and that where she cleared away the litter as Kaldara. The hill is a natural stronghold about 16 km. (ten miles) south-east of Igatpuri, the nearest railway station. Its top is a cone with room only for a small shrine and a trigonometrical survey cairn. There is a large lower shoulder without remains of buildings and water cisterns which shows that the hill was never used as a fort.
The hill falls very abruptly on three sides. On the fourth, that is the south side, there are numerous pathways cut by grass-cutters and the visitors to the temple. There is also a road up the hill from Indore village, steep but practicable, the only difficult bit being near the top where it passes over a slippery wall of rock, where holes are cut to climb. On every Tuesday many people visit the temple to pay their respects and make offerings and on this day a priest from Indore climbs up to perform the necessary ceremonies. About one-third of the way on the north side which is singularly bare of trees, a fine spring of water flows from a well-built stone basin. The water is said to appear in Shukla tirtha, another large basin of cut stone with a gomukha or cows mouth, about one and a half kilometres (one mile) from the base of the hill. Though there is no regular fair held in honour of the goddess, all the passers-by visit the temple.��
Kalsubai is worshipped at two places, one half wav up and the other on the hill-top. Many Kolis consider the goddess as their house�hold deity and worship Her with the fervent belief that She favours those who make a vow to Her in cases of trouble and difficulty. The village of Bari in Ahmadnagar district was granted to that Koli family which gave employment to Kalsubai, because their breach of contract gained the hill a deity and the people a guardian.
In 1860 Archdeacon wrote the following account after his visit to Kalsubai: “During the night I mounted this king of the Deccan hills, the ascent of which was more than usually precipitous. At one place the only possible advance was through the branches of a sturdy little tree, which conveniently grew out of the cleft and formed a ticklish sort of a staircase to walk up in the middle of the night When we reached the foot of the knot of rocks, which form the highest bit of earth in the Deccan, so chill a night wind struck us that my guides declined the further ascent and assured me there was nothing whatever on the top, which we, being so under the rock, could not see. Scrambling up I found a little temple dedicated to Devi Kalsu on the bit of platform only a few yards in circumference, at a height of 5,427 feet (1,654.15 metres) above the sea-level. I knew the sunrise would give me fine prospect, and I was not disappointed. Below, to the northward, lay a ruck of hills, sinking into the wide Godavari plain, the great rocks of Trimbak, Anjani, and Harish at its source being distinctly observ�able. A shade ofgreen in the for plain showed where lay the city of Nasik over which lay the Dhair and Ramsej forts and their range of hills. Above and beyond, the great Chandor range stretched across the horizon, Achla, Ahivant, Saptashring, Markinda, Ravlya-Javlya, Doramb or Dhodap, Rajdhair and Indrai lifting their summit heads against the rooming sky. Beyond the hollow of Chandor, hidden by two projecting forts belonging to the line of the Kalsubai hills, were Alang and Kulang, and to the east and north-east, the giant heads of Bitangad, Pattah, Aundha and Ad. To the south the eye ranged over dense forests, rising amid which, along the line of the Sahyadris, were several more forts, the chief of them Harishchandragad; and beyond, to the south and west lay the Konkan, and resting on it the great fort of Mahuli. Further to the south, the Matheran range was dimly visible, like islands floating on a sea of wave-like hills.”
Kalvan, the taluka headquarters with 7,546 inhabitants in 1971 and lying 56.37 km. (35 miles) west of Malegaon, is an important centre of nagli, paddy and timber trade. A second class bandhara on the Markinda and as many as 25 irrigation wells help to raise good crops of sugarcane, wheat and onion, the last-named being another important item of export. The Shetkari Sangh, recently established here, has gone a long way in helping the agriculturists with seeds, manures, insecticides and even oil-engines to lift water for irrigation. Branches of the district central co-operative bank and the land, development bank have also substantially helped the agriculturists financially. In times to come Kalvan is bound to attain in commercial importance as it has good made roads connecting it with the major district centres, which in turn are connected with the outside commercial centres. There are post and telegraph facilities also. Till it was made the taluka headquarters Kalvan was an insignificant village infested with malaria-carrying mosquitoes. Now it has not only Mamlatdar’s office but also those of the panchayat samiti, agricultural supervisor, civil judge, range forest officer, sub-registrar and mans other minor ones. There is also a police station. In 1960 was established the cottage hospital with a capacity of forty beds. Its O. P. D. caters to the needs of the patients coming even from Baglan and Malegaon talukas. The efforts of the public health department have largely succeeded in eradicating the malaria fever. The town has also a veterinary dispensary. At Abhona, only 16 km. away, is a primary health centre. Kalvan has a high school and a primary school teaching upto the seventh standard. The wooded scenery west of Kalvan is very beautiful and Abhona is one of the most picturesque portions of the collectorate.
Kanhira Fort, 11.26 km. (seven miles) north-west of Dhodap, is in the Chandor range. In 1818 Captain Briggs described it as having scarcely anything that could be described as a well. Its only defence is its height and the steep ascent. The overhanging nature of the hill affords cover to an attacking force. The fort has a good supply of water from the reservoirs and there are a few rock�-cut stone-houses. Captain Briggs reports that there were seven of the Peshva�s militia in the fort. Kanhira was one of the seventeen strong places which surrendered to the British after the fall of Trimbak in 1818. About two kilometres away is the small hamlet of Kanhervadi
Kankrala Fort� lies 19.31 km. (12 miles) north-west of Malegaon. The fort is practically in ruins.
Kantra Fort lies about 6.41 km. (four miles) distant from Ankai. The hill on which it stands is lower than the others near it and is entirely commanded by one about a thousand yards (944.40 metres) distant. In 1818 Captain Briggs found the ascent to the for fairly easy, the entrance being by a bad gate about six feet (1.8 metres) wide. There was plenty of water and a small place cut out of the rock served as a store-house for grain and ammunition. Near the gateway but outside the fort was another rock-cut room useless as a military store-house on account of the fire that could be brought to bear upon it from below. It was probably one of the forts captured by Malik Ahmad Nizam Shah. To-day the gate lies amidst ruins and one finds hardly any supply of water except during the rains.
Kavanai, a small settlement at the foot of the fort of the same name in Igatpuri taluka lying 16 km. (10 miles) north of Igatpuri, is chiefly inhabited by the Marathas, Kolis and Thakurs, with a sprinkling of Gujarat Osval Vanis. The Gujarat Osval Vanis are originally from Viramgam to which they still pay occasional visits. In 1971 the total population was 1,450. The chief crops grown are wheat and paddy. There is a post office, a primary school and a subsidised medical practitioner.
Fort: The only object of interest is the historic fort of Kavanai which is said to have been built by the Moghals. It was ceded to the Peshva by the Nizam under the terms of the treaty concluded after the battle of Udgir (1760). When the Marathas were defeated at Trimbak in 1818. Kavanai like Tringalvadi and fifteen other neighbouring forts fell without resistance to the British. Captain Briggs who visited it after its surrender found two houses at the foot of the hill where the garrison lived. The ascent is easy till the scarp is reached. The scarp, though not high, is nearly perpendicular and is climbed by bad rock-cut steps. There is only one entrance gate which is fairly in a good condition. The top of the fort is small, but it has ample water-supply. There were good houses for the garrison of which now only fragments remain. The foot of the hill on the north is comparatively well clothed with trees, chiefly an inferior description of mangoes. At the foot of the hill is the seat of sage Kapila and Kapildhara tirtha. There is a ruined temple of Kamai Devi to whom offerings of coconuts, betelnuts and money are made on the Dasara day. On this day a large number of persons go to pay their respects to the goddess. A small pond close-by the temple holds water throughout the year. The inhabitants of the village depend upon well-�water.
Koledhair Fort on the Chandor range, about 6.43 km. (four miles) west of Rajdhair fort and 11.26 km. (seven miles) north-west of Chandor, was described by Captain Briggs, who visited it in 1818, as a poor stronghold, hardly deserving the name of a fort. It is large but easy of ascent. The wall and the door which Captain Briggs mentions in his report have fallen into decay. There are, however, good rock-cut granaries and store-houses. The water�-supply is deficient. When Captain Briggs visited the fort he found seven of the Peshva�s militia in the fort. Koledhair was one of the seventeen strong places that surrendered to the British after the fall of Trimbak in 1818.
Kothure, with 2,561 inhabitants in 1971, is a village in Niphad taluka 4.82 km. (three miles) south of Niphad, the latter of which is a railway station on the Bombay-Nagpur section of the central Railway. It has an antique temple of Malhareshvar Mahadeva and surrounding it are shrines of Ganapati, Devi, Vishnu and Surya. All the buildings are of stone and mortar and are enclosed by a stone wall. Within the wall there is a rest-house, also of stone, and from the wall to the water’s edge of the Godavari is a ghat or a flight of steps. The whole work is plain and except for a part of the enclosure and the ghat, which is in a ruined condition, is in good repair. Two inscriptions giving the dates of the building of the temple and the ghat as also the name of the builder have been traced. One of these is on the upper storey of the main temple and records the date of the building of the temple as A. D. 1717 by a Mukadam of Kothure. The second one is on the western comer of the ghat and gives the date as 1727 A. D. Kothure has a primary school teaching upto the seventh standard, a post office and a subsidised medical practitioner. There is tap water. Sugarcane, bajra, wheat and onion are the principal crops grown.
Kulang and Alang on the Ahmadnagar frontier about 16 km. (ten miles) south-east of Igatpuri station, are two miles (3.21 km.) distant from each other; Alang being almost entirely in the Ahmad�nagar district. Their tops are inaccessible, the old way of approach having been destroyed. The two blocks are separated by the smaller mass of Madangad which was also rendered inaccessible, probably in 1818, by the destruction of the rough staircase leading to it through a cleft in the almost perpendicular rock. Though Alang can be climbed, the path is not only difficult but dangerous at places. The crags in this range are perhaps the steepest and hardly afford foothold for any but the smallest brushwood. Under strict conservancy the ledges between the chief scarps show better growth. Badshaha Nama states that Khvaja Abul Hasan who was sent to reduce Nasik, Trimbak and Sangamner with 8,000 horse in 1629 had halted in the vicinity of Alang in the village of Dhaliya to pass the rainy season. To the east of Alang lies the steep pass know n as Navara-Navari or Husband and Wife, from two curious pillars of rock that jut up from the ridge divid�ing the Nasik and Ahmadnagar districts. The pass, though very difficult, is passable on foot. In the absence of records it has not been possible to determine as to who built these forts. In 1760 they were probably ceded by the Moghals to the Peshva along with many other Nasik forts. In 1818 they passed on to the British from the Peshva.
Lasalgaon, with a population of 6,855 persons in 1971, is a rapidly-growing town in Niphad taluka, situated 19.31 km. (12 miles) north-west of Niphad. It is an important station on the Bombay�-Nagpur line of the Central Railway and one of the chief centres of onion marketing in the district. Wheat and bajra are the other impor�tant crops grown. There is an agricultural produce market committee, a Kharedi-Vikri Sangh and branches of State Bank and the District Central Co-operative Bank. Besides the primary schools, there are three high schools, one of which is conducted by a Church mission where English is the medium of instruction. To one of these high schools, viz., the Mahavir Jain Vidyalaya, two play-grounds are attached. The village panchayat maintains a library and has built a bandhara for the provision of potable water. Medical needs of the inhabitants are met by a civil dispensary with a maternity home attached to it and some two private nursing homes. There is also a veterinary sub-centre. The town has postal and telephone facilities and a community hall. Of the places of worship the temple of Rama deserves a mention fair at this temple a fair attended by over 3,000 persons is held on Chaitra Shuddha Navami. Sunday is the weekly bazar day at which corn, cattle, goats, poultry and horses figure prominently.
Malegaon, situated in north latitude 20�32′ and east longitude 74�35′, lies on the Bombay-Agra road about 247.83 km. (154 miles) north-east of Bombay and 38.62 km. (24 miles) north�east of Manmad, an important railway junction on the Bombay�-Nagpur cord of the Central Railway. It stands on level ground on the left bank of the Mosam, which unites with the Girna down-town. About 29 km. (18 miles) east of the town on the borders of Malegaon and Nandgaon talukas a dam is being constructed at the confluence of the Panzan and the Girna. It is expected to irrigate about a lakh of acres in Jalgaon district. In 1971 Malegaon had a population of 191,847. The Muslims in Malegaon are chiefly engaged in the weaving industry and are known as momins. Nearly 30,000 powerlooms and 1,500 handlooms are worked here. The saris and other type of cloth manu�factured here are marketed all over the State including Bombay. Rope�-making, broom-making industries and preparation of mats and baskets from bamboo thrive well here. These industries have provided means of livelihood to many a family. Being situated favourably for transport and communications Malegaon has made and is expected to make rapid progress in the industrial field. Cotton, groundnut, wheat, bajra and onions are the major crops and during the season the agricultural produce market committee handles large quantities of these commo�dities. In this yard a weekly cattle market is also held. There are a few ginning and pressing factories and oil mills.
Malegaon consists of three distinct parts, viz., the older quarter or the city, the camp area or the cantonment included in the municipal limits since the abolition of the contingents stationed here, and the village of Sangameshvar lying across on the left bank of the Mosam and connected with the rest of the town by a causeway built across the river. Malegaon is the headquarters of Malegaon sub-division placed in charge of a sub-divisional officer, and besides the usual revenue offices including that of the Mamlatdar, it has a panchayat samiti, civil and judicial courts, deputy engineers for irrigation, and buildings and com�munications respectively, soil conservation officer, range forest and a hast of other offices. It is also the headquarters of sub-divisional police officer and has three police stations within the city-limits. Malegaon has post and telegraph facilities as also a telephone exchange. Weekly bazars are held on Fridays and Mondays in the city area and the camp area respectively. There ate many co-operative societies embracing different cottage industries, and branches of some of the important banks including that of the District Central Co-operative Bank. In the British days a wing of the infantry regiment was always posted in the cantonment.
Municipality: Malegaon borough municipality was established in 1863. Its jurisdiction extends over an area of 10.36 square kilometres (four square miles). A total of thirty-three councillors constitute the municipal committee. Its meetings are presided over by a president of the councillors’ choice and it is this body that directs the municipal affairs with the aid of the necessary ministerial staff.
Finance: In 1964-65 the municipal income from normal sources was Rs. 44,58,482. Income from extra-ordinary and debt heads and which has not been included in the above figure stood at Rs. 7,84,232. The normal sources of income comprised municipal rates and taxes contri�buting Rs. 31,93,473; revenue derived from municipal property and powers apart from taxation Rs. 1,86,857; grants and contributions for special and general purposes Rs. 8,88,385 and miscellaneous Rs. 1,89,767. Expenditure during the same year amounted to Rs. 38,69,543. The expenditure figure likewise excludes a sum of Rs. 13,31,003 incurred under extra-ordinary and debt heads. The expenditure heads were general administration and collection charges Rs. 3,66,652; public safety Rs. 2,11,162; public health and convenience Rs. 8,59,939 and miscellaneous Rs. 2,36,452.
Municipal Works: Municipal Works include it vegetable market and a causeway across the Mosam connecting Sangameshvar with the main part of the town. These works cost the municipality a total of Rs. 1,97,000. While the market was completed: in 1964, the causeway was built in 1953. Apart from the building housing the municipal offices, it has constructed ten school buildings at a considerable cost. A hundred-bed hospital is now under construction.
Health and sanitation: Since the establishment of the first dispen�sary in 1869 to cater to the medical needs of the populace, the munici�pality has considerably extended its activities in this sphere. Not only the old dispensary has been expanded but two new dispensaries have been added providing facilities for treatment to even T. B. patients. In times of epidemics besides inoculating and vaccinating campaigns, a temporary isolation hospital is also set up and all measures are taken to localise the outbreak on the advice of the public health officer of the Zilla Parishad. Propaganda is also launched to educate the people on the necessity of taking vaccinations and inoculations.
Drains consist of only stone-lined open gutters and the refuse is allowed to flow in the Mosam just below the town. Public Health Works Division, Poona, has been entrusted with the work of preparing a scheme for underground drainage. It would satisfy a long-felt need. Water�works installed on the Girna provide tap-water to the major part of the town. It has outgrown its capacity and hence the camp area feels acute scarcity of water during summer. The water-works needs to’ be expanded. It was built in 1956 at a cost of Rs. 21,00,000.
Education: Primary education is compulsory. There are nearly fifty-three primary and middle schools in Malegaon, some of which have Marathi as the medium of instruction and others, Urdu. In 1964-65 the municipality spent a sum of Rs. 7,69,181 on public instruction including grants to various other educational institutions and libraries. The institutions of higher education are either conducted by the Govern�ment or by private bodies. Thus there are nine high schools, an arts, science and commerce college conducted by Mahatma Gandhi Vidya Mandir, two primary training colleges, one technical and one agricul�tural school. Late Shri Bhausaheb Hire was a pioneer in this field in Malegaon and much of the credit for educational facilities in the town should go to him. The town has three libraries.
Cremation and burial places are maintained and used by the concerned communities. A modestly-equipped fire-brigade is maintained by the municipality. The town has twelve parks, five cinema theatres and a Score of local clubs.
To-day Malegaon ranks second amongst the towns in the district, the first being Nasik itself. In the beginning of the 19th century, it was one of the chief seats of Arab settlers, in Western India, who had a saying, �Hold Malegaon and you have Khandesh by the nose.’ On the capture of Malegaon fort in 1818 some of the Arabs were escorted to Surat and shipped to their native country. Others retired to Kathiavad, Kutch and Hyderabad in the Deccan. A trace of Arab blood remains in some families who dress like Marathas, but at home speak a mixture of Arabic and Marathi.
Fort: Malegaon fort is said to have been built in 1740 by Naro Shankar. It stands in the centre of a broad rich plain on the left bank of the Mosam, a little above its meeting with the Girna. The soil on the left bank of the river is black mould about a foot deep, resting on a white sandy rock, soft and easily worked near the surface, but increasing in hardness in proportion to its depth, The right bank is a shelving rock covered with loose sand. The Mosam runs under the west and round a great part of the north and south sides of the fort. When besieged in 1818 the fort was described as consisting of three distinct lines of works with a ditch in front of the middle line. The body of the place was an exact square of 120 yards (100.33 square metres), flanked by a round tower at each angle and one in the centre of each side. The middle line, which was a faussebraye or mound outside of a rampart, was also quadrangular, running parallel to and at a short distance from the inner work; but assuming an oblong shape from the distance between them being greater on the east than on the other sides. The outer line was irregular, running to the body of the fort on the west side only, and extending to some distance on the other side where it embraced a large space of ground. It was strengthened, throughout its whole extent, by round towers at irregular intervals. Towards the east, and also on part of the northern side of the fortress, there was an additional line of mud works, old and much decayed between the ditch of the middle line and the other line. It extended from the south�east angle of the ditch as far as the works of the gateway on the northern side with which it was connected. The middle live and faussebraye were of excellent stone masonry and so was the outer line on the south side and towards the river, but the parts which faced the town were of mud and somewhat decayed.
The height of the inner wall to the parapet was sixty feet (18.29 metres), the thickness of the parapet at top was six feet (1.82 metres), and the breadth of the terreplein or rampart top eleven feet (3.35 metres), making the total thickness of the rampart at top seventeen feet (5.18 metres). The breadth of the space between the body of the fort and the middle line, on part of the north and on the west and south sides, was about forty feet (12.91 metres), of which about ten were appropriated to stabling. The roof of these stables, which was ten feet (3.04 metres) high, formed the top or terreplein of the middle line, and was surmounted by a parapet of five feet (1.52 metres). Thus the middle line was fifteen feet (4.57 metres) high from within, but outside the scarp of the work was forty feet (12.19 metres) in extreme height, including the depth of the ditch, which for the greater part was cut out of the solid rock, immediately below the scarped face of the middle line, without an intervening level space or berm. The facing or revetment was five feet (1.52 metres) thick. The width of the ditch was twenty-five feet (7.62 metres); its depth varied, but was the greatest on the river front where it was twenty-five feet (7.62 metres), The space between the outer slope of the ditch or counter-scarp and the exterior line of works varied; it was least on the west, where it was only sixty feet (18.28 metres), and the greatest on the east, where it was 300 feet (91.44 metres) wide, The height of the outer line of works was fourteen or fifteen feet (4.26 to 4.57 metres), the thickness of the parapet being three feet (9.914 metre) and that of its ramparts varying from ten feet (3.04 metres) an the west and south sides to fourteen feet (4.26 metres) on the east side of the fort.
The gateways were nine in number, very intricate and containing excellent bomb-proofs, The outer ones were on the north, the inner ones on the eastern side, The fortress was much weakened on the east by the town which stretched to within close musket shot of the outer line of works, and contained a great many and lofty buildings, Besides the disadvantage of the town running so close to the works, the defences of the fort were impaired by the village of Sangameshvar on the left of the river, nearly apposite the outer gate of the fort, which communi�cated with the town, A thick grove of mango-trees, 400 yards (365.76 metres) deep, also ran along the left bank of the river opposite to the south-west angle.
After the reduction of the Peshva’s territory a considerable force was kept with its headquarters at Malegaon.
Malegaon has about a hundred temples, small and big, no one of which is noteworthy, about 43 mosques, two dargahs and a church. Besides the fort, which is falling rapidly into decay, there is nothing interesting for the tourist. After the fall of Trimbak an the 24th April 1818, Malegaon was besieged on 16th of May by the English and it fell op 29th May.
Manikpunj is a ruined uninhabited fort, 9.65 km. (six miles) south of Nandgaon and about 3.21 km, (two miles) north�west of the Kasarbari pass. Captain Briggs who visited the fort in 1818 describes it as a very low hill with an easy ascent. He noticed two miserable, looking gates and a bad wall running round the hill except for a space of about forty yards (36.47 metres), where the scarp was steep enough not to require fortifications, The wall as well as the gates are in ruins now. A large unfortified rock rose out of the middle of the fort, and filled the whole space, except a road of about fifteen paces all round between it and the wall. The water-supply was ample and continues to be so, in 1827 Clunes notes that Manikpunj fort was abandoned. In 1862 it was described as a natural stronghold provided with cisterns, Here is located the village of Manikpunj with 908 souls in 1971.
Manmad is a rapidly-expanding municipal town in Nandgaon taluka, lying 72.42 km, (forty-five miles) north-east of Nasik, In 1971 the municipality had an area of 20.42 square kilometres (7.5 square miles) under its control with 29,571 persons residing within its limits. The town once belonged to the Vinchurkar family. Manmad is one of the most important junctions on the Bombay-Nagpur section of the Central Railway, from where two lines branch off towards Hyderabad and Poona, respectively. It is also an important State transport centre, buses plying from here to Dhulia, Poona, Chandvad and many other important towns and cities. Due to these excellent means of transport and communications the town is rapidly developing and is bound to be one of the most developed towns in Nasik district in course of time. Apart from post and telegraph facilities there is the additional advantage of telephone exchange. Both the station as well as the State transport bus stand are provided with modern amenities for the passengers, such as refreshment rooms, waiting halls and book stalls. Both these agencies combined together provide a large section of the population with means of livelihood. The railways have even provided residential quarters for the staff. The educational institutions include, besides the primary schools, two high schools and a training college. There are a civil hospital with attached maternity ward and a veterinary dispensary. There is a police station and a sub-market yard of Nandgaon market committee. Cotton from Malegaon and a part of Khandesh takes rail here for Bombay and other places. Manmad has two bone�-grinding mills and a few ginning and pressing factories. A rest-house for the travelling Government employees is maintained by the Buildings and Communications department.
Markinda, a hill-fort in Kalvan, 4,384 feet (1,336.28 metres) above sea-level, stands opposite the sacred hill of Saptashring or Chatarsingi. Captain Briggs, who visited Markinda in 1818, described it as a small barren rock rising out of a flat hill. It faces the Ravlya-Javlya hill, and between the two, over a low neck of hill, runs the pass leading from. Kalvan to Khandesh. From this pass two roads strike in opposite directions, one to Markinda and the other to Ravlya-Javlya. The ascent to the fort is very difficult. At the top is a door and a wall both in ruins. The water-supply is ample, but the fort never had a place for storing guns except thatched houses. There is a peak on a tableland on the top, and to the south of it is a pond near an umbar tree called Kotitirtha. It is also known as Ramkunda. People come in large numbers to bathe here on no-moon Mondays or Somvati amavasyas. There is another pool or tirtha on the summit called Kamandalu or the waterpot, which is said to have been built by the Moghals. East of Kamandalu are two under�ground magazines or granaries. To the west of the magazines is a perennial reservoir with excellent water called Motitanki. The old name of the hill is Mayur Khandi or the Peacock’s Hill. The resem�blance of sound has given rise to a local story that the hill is called after the sage Markandeya who lived on it and persuaded Devi to punish Bhimasur and other demons who were attacking Brahman recluses. Under the name Mayur Khandi, Markinda appears as the place from where several grants were issued by the Rashtrakuta king Govinda III. If not a Rashtrakuta capital, it must have been an out-post or at least a place of occasional residence [Ind. Ant, VI 64; Dr. Burgess’ Bidar and Aurangabad, 32.]. Under the Peshvas a garrison was kept on the hill. The hill-slopes used to be cultivated in olden days.
Mulher Fort in Satana, on a hill about two miles (3.21 km.) south of the Mulher town and 2,000 feet (609.60 metres) above the plain, lies at the head of the Mosam valley about forty miles (64.37 km.) north-west of Malegaon. The hill is half detached from a range which rises westwards till it culminates in Sather about twelve miles (19.31 km.) further west, The hill has three fortified peaks near one another, Mulher in the middle, Mora to the east, and Hatgad to the west.
Mulher, the strongest of the three, and known as Bale Killa or the citadel, is about half a mile in extent. About half way up, after passing three gateways, comes a rolling plateau with the ruins of what must have been a considerable town. There are still some houses, a mosque and some cisterns and reservoirs. The whole plateau is beautifully wooded chiefly with mangoes and banyans. It is defended by a masonry wall which runs along the edge of the lower slope and at each end is carried to the foot of the upper scarp which is about 100 feet (30.48 metres) high. The upper scarp is approached through the usual succession of gateways. The further ascent is undefended until an angle is reached in the natural scarp above, and the crevice leading thence to the plateau above the scarp is defended by a succession of gateways now more or less ruined. The point of the plateau thus reached is nearly at the western end of the western-most of the two plateaus of which the hill-top is formed. There is a more prominent angle and crevice nearer the middle of the hill-top, but the top of this crevice has been closed by a solid masonry wall, which also forms a connection between the two portions of the plateau which are at this point separated by a dip of some fifty to a hundred feet (15.24 to 30.48 metres).
The east half of the plateau is slightly higher than the west half, and is defended at the point just mentioned by walls and gateways, which make the eastern part a citadel or inner place of defence. Near the third gate are three guns known as Fateh-i-lashkar, Ramprasad, and Shivprasad, each seven feet long. There was a fourth gun called Markandeya Toph which the British Government is said to have broken and sold. On the flat top inside the fort are the ruins of a large court-house, and a temple of Bhadangnath in good repair with a terrace in front bearing an inscription. Here and there on the slopes are about fifteen reservoirs, some underground, others open. All of them hold water throughout the year. There are two ammuni�tion magazines and a third with three compartments.
History: According to a local story, during the time of the Pan�davas, Mulher fort was held by two brothers, Mayuradhvaja and Tamradhvaja. The first historical reference is in the Tarikh-i-Firozshahi, which says that about 1340, the mountains of Mulher and Salher were held by a chief named Mandev. The next mention of Mulher is in the Ain-i-Akbari (1590) which notices Mulher and Salher as places of strength in Baglan. In 1609 the chief of Mulher and Salher furni�shed 3,000 men towards the force that was posted at Ramnagar in Dharampur to guard Surat from attack by Malik Ambar of Ahmad�nagar. In 1610 the English traveller Finch describes Mulher and Salher as fair cities where mahmudis were coined. They had two mighty castles, the roads to which allowed only two men or one elephant to pass. On the way were eighty small fortresses to guard the passages. On the top of the mountains there was good pasture with plenty of grain and numerous fountains and streams running into the plain. In 1637 Mulher was attacked by a Moghal army. Trenches were opened and the garrison was so hard pressed that the Baglana king Bharji (Baharji?) sent his mother and his agent with the keys of Mulher and of seven others of his farts. Salher was captured by Sayyid Abdul Wahab Khandeshi in February 1638 for Aurangzeb. It is via Salher that Shivaji proceeded and sacked Surat. Bhimsen Burhanpuri in his Tarikh-i-Dilkhusha tells us that on his return Shivaji completely sacked the market of Mulher. In 1663 the hill-forts of Mulher and Salher were in the hands of Shivaji. In 1665 Thevenot calls Mouler the chief town in Baglan. In 1672 Mulher and Salher were plundered by Shivaji. In 1675 it is shown as Mauler in Fryer’s map. In 1680 the commandant of Mulher made an unsuccessful attempt to seize Aurangzeb’s rebel son prince Akbar. In 1682 all attempts to take Salher by force having failed, the Mulher commandant Neknam Khan induced the Salher commandant to surrender the fort by promises and presents. In 1750 Tieffenthaler describes Salher and Mulher, one on the top and the other in the middle of a hill, as very strong eminences built with excellent skill, connected, by steps cut in the rock, with rivulets, lakes and houses in the middle of the hill. In the third Maratha War Mulher was surrendered to the British on the 15th of July 1818. An amnesty was granted to Ramchandra Janardan Fadnavis who held the fort for the Marathas. The surrender of Mulher ended the third Maratha War. In 1826 a Committee of Inspection described Mulher as a high rock of an irregular and rugged shape and of a large area, towering above and within the precincts of it lower fort. The approach to the lower defences was easy and practicable for loaded cattle; and it was tolerably defended by a line of works and gates, running along the north and east side. To the north were two gateways, the first protected by two large towers without a gate; the second without towers but with a gate in fair repair, only that the wicket was missing. The lower fort contained a village or petta, with many houses, most of them empty. It was well supplied with water from rock-cut cisterns, and appeared to have every requisite for a considerable settlement. The ascent to the upper fort was by narrow winding and precipitous pathway at every turn well com�manded from above. Within one or two hundred yards (91.44 or 182.88 metres) of the top began a line of parallel defences of eight well-built curtains at equal distances from each other which continued to the entrance by two strong gateways leading to the top. Inside the fort there were only two buildings, ruinous and uninhabited, but numerous sites showed that it must once have held a large popula�tion, situated as it was as a key-post between the fertile Khandesh and the port of Surat. There was a good water-supply in ponds and reservoirs, and there were some dry and secure store-rooms large enough to hold provisions and ammunition for a considerable garrison for a year, Nature had done so much for the strength of the upper fort that there had been no occasion to add artificial works. The Committee recommended some slight repairs to the gateway and that an officer with twenty-five militia or shibandis should be stationed on the hill. In 1862 the fort was described as in a strong natural position on a high hill very difficult of access.
Nagpur, in Nandgaon taluka, with 1,011 inhabitants in 1971, is a small agricultural village lying 4.82 km. (three miles) east of Manmad junction. The only notable feature of the village is a fine carved Hemadpanti temple of Shiva, thirty-four feet (10.36 metres) long by twenty-six feet (7.92 metres) broad. In recent years a two�-roomed dharmashala and a well have been constructed near this temple. The village has a primary school. The inhabitants draw upon the wells for water-supply.
Nampur, 24 km. (fifteen miles) north-east of Satana in Baglan, is situated on the Mosam and produces abundant crops of sugarcane, cotton, rice and groundnut. In fact it is an important market for cotton and corn and has ginning and oil-expelling mills. The weekly market held on Mondays is largely attended, The village has a post office, a dispensary, a primary school and a high school. There is a rest-house too. It is connected with the taluka headquarters by S. T. bus service. Nampur was a stronghold of the freedom-fighters in the 1930-1932 Civil Disobedience Movement that swept the entire country. On Magha Paurnima, a fair is held in honour of Mahalakshmi.
Nandgaon, the headquarters of the taluka of the same name, with in 1971 a population of 15,885, is a railway station on the Bombay-Bhusaval section of the Central Railway. It is a municipal town lying 96.56 km. (sixty miles) north-east of Nasik and is also connected by road to Ellora caves which are 70.81 km. (forty�-four miles) distant. From a small village in 1881, Nandgaon has grown into a fairly big town but inspite of the commercial activity and prosperity it has brought, the town has not been developed on system�atic lines. The roads, though of cement-concrete, are for the most part narrow flanked by rows of congested and ill-ventilated houses, with the exception of the one leading to the railway station. The railway station has comfortable waiting and refreshment rooms. Behind the railway station not far away, is a travellers’ bungalow. Here are also located the municipal civil dispensary and the veterinary dispensary of the Zilla Parishad.
Being the headquarters of a taluka the town has the offices of the Mamlatdar, the panchayat samiti, range forest officer and a score of other Government offices. Due to the Girna project, offices of the Executive Engineer, Girna project, and a special sub-divisional soil conservation office have been set up here. The town has civil and judicial courts, a police station, and post and telegraph. During the harvesting season the Nandgaon market-yard handles large quantities of grains and cereals. There are two saw mills, two ginning factories and a milk dairy. The town has also banking facilities, and co-operatives in various fields.
Municipality: Established in 1922, the Nandgaon municipality has an area of 40.76 square kilometres (19.6 square miles) under its jurisdiction. The committee composed of 19 councillors is headed by a president who is elected by the councillors from among themselves. With the assistance of the necessary staff, the committee carries on the municipal administration.
Finance: Municipal income in 1964-65 derived from municipal rates and taxes and other sources, but excluding extra-ordinary and debt heads, amounted to Rs. 3,63,990. Extra-ordinary and debt heads brought in an income of Rs. 1,10,475. Expenditure during the same year incurred due to general administration and collection, public health, safety, convenience and instruction but excluding extra-ordinary and debt heads stood at Rs. 3,28,644. Extra-ordinary and debt heads accounted for Rs. 1,34,040.
Health, sanitation and water-supply: The town has a public civil dispensary conducted by the municipality and a veterinary dispensary maintained by the Zilla Parishad. The charges for treat�ment are nominal in these dispensaries. There are also five private medical practitioners in the town. Drainage system consists of only open stone-lined gutters with cess-pools to collect the sullage. Scavengers are employed to remove it out of the town. For water-supply the inhabitants depend upon wells, private and municipal.
Education: Primary education is compulsory. It is placed in charge of the Zilla Parishad. The municipal contribution towards the enforce�ment of this amounts to 5 per cent of the rateable value which came to Rs. 15,724 in 1964-65. Besides six primary schools, the town has two privately conducted high schools and a training college. There are three libraries of which one is maintained by the railway employees. One of these libraries receives an annual municipal grant of Rs. 300.
Cremation and burial places are maintained and used by the communities concerned. Of late provision has been made for holding daily and weekly markets. Weekly bazar is held on Thursdays.
Objects: Nandgaon has five mosques of which the Jumma masjid is the largest and the most important. It is said to be nearly half�-a-century old. There are temples dedicated to Ekvira goddess and Parsh�vanatha. The Ekvira temple with a 1.52 x 1.52 metres (5′ X 5′) mandap and 3.65 X 3.65 metres (12′ X 12′) gabhara is reported to be nearly 200 years old. An eighteen-handed image of the goddess occupies a central position in the gabhara. There is a dipmal in the court-yard and a homakunda in the mandap. Ekvira is the village deity or the gramadaivata of Nandgaon. A fair is held in Her honour on Chaitra Shuddha 15. It is attended by a little over 2,500 persons. Located near the Malegaon Vesh, the Parshvanatha temple is a Jain place of worship. It is a double-storeyed building with a spacious sabhamandap richly ornamented with carved arches and other designs. Near the main entrance there are two elephant figures in a sitting posture. In Bha�drapada, celebrations are held on a lavish scale. There is a marble manastambha about 10.97 metres (36 feet) in height. The town has also a dargah known as Ammacha dargah.
Nandur Madhmeshvar, with in 1971 a population of 2,228, is an agriculturally important village in Niphad taluka, lying 9.65 km. (six miles) south of Niphad near the confluence of the Godavari and the Kadva. Near here a large bandhara has been built on the Godavari which has not only facilitated irrigation in Nasik district but also in the Ahmadnagar district. As the necessity arises waters from the Darna talav, prepared by constructing a solid bandhara across the Darna near Asvali station in Igatpuri taluka are released in the Nandur Madhmeshvar talav.The chief crops taken are wheat and bajra. Some land has also been brought under well-irrigation.
Standing on a small rocky islet is a temple of Madhyameshvara, from which the village derives its second name, said to be over 250 years old. It is a plain building of stone and mortar of 12.80 x 9.14 x 6.40 metres (42′ x 30′ x 21′) dimensions. There is a hall or sabhamandap with small arched entrances, and in front of it is a lamp-pillar or dipmal 1.524 metres in circumference (5 feet) and 2.743 metres in height (9 feet). The whole is surrounded by a ruined wall. The lamp-pillar bears an inscrip�tion dated 1738 recording the name of an ascetic. On Magha Vadya Chaturdashi a fair is held in honour of Madhyameshvara. It is attended by nearly 3,500 persons. Besides there are also temples dedicated to Siddheshvara, Mrigeshvara, Mahadeva, Ganapati etc. Some of these receive some aid from the Holkar�s. On the bank of the Godavari is a stone-tomb called Agar, about 1.021 square metres (4 square feet) and 0.609 metre (2 feet high). It is said to have been erected on the spot where an officer of the Holkar was buried. Nandur has a primary school and a medical practitioner. A weekly bazar is held on every Monday.
Nasik, in north latitude 20� and east longitude 73.51′, the headquarters of the Nasik district, has grown on the banks of the sacred Godavari and lies about eight kilometres (five miles) north-west of Nasik Road station on the Bombay-Bhusaval-Nagpur route of the Central Railway with which it is connected by a bridged cement road. This is one of the two bridges over the Nasardi river, the other being the one over which the Agra road passes. Buses ply in-between these two townships. Taxi and Tonga services are also available. In good old days trams first drawn by horses and then run on steam used to ply on this road and carried about 25 to 30 passengers. The stand was near where the municipal building stands and the charge per head was one anna. In 1971, the town had a population of 176,09l.
Description: From the railway station the road passes north-west with its sides flanked by inhabited colonies and residential quarters, various industrial units and their offices, including Government of India Security Press and the quarters of its staff. There is also an air-strip along this road. A few cultivated patches could also be seen here and there. About three miles (4.82 km.) to the west is a group of steep bare hills, the eastern end of the Anjaneri-Trimbak range. In a low scarp that runs along the north face of the pointed hill farthest to the east are the Pandu Caves, a group of old (B. C. 200/ A. D. 600) Buddhist caves, important for inscriptions. To the north of the station the ground rises slightly and the soil grows poorer. In the distance about ten miles (16 km.) to the north is the rough picturesque group of the Bhorgad-Ramsej hills with the sharp cone of the Chambhar cave hill closer at hand to the right and on a clear day behind the Chambhar cave hill the rugged broken line of the Chandor range stretching far to the east can also be seen. About a mile from Nasik, near the hollow of the Nasardi stream, which has been tapped for irrigation, the country grows richer. It is parcelled into hedged fields and gardens and adorned by groves and lines of well-grown mango�-trees. The road crosses the Nasardi a little below a rocky barrier which during the rainy season forms a pretty water-fall. On the right bank, a little above the water-fall stand the buildings of the old distillery which has been lying defunct since the introduction of prohibition. In these buildings is now housed the technical training institute of the MIG project of the Hindustan Aircraft Limited. The office as well as the trainees are accommodated in those buildings. To the north of the Nasardi the country continues rich and well-tilled. Close to Nasik to the north-west, the Godavari is hid by a long line of high ground with which four or five spurs to the east and south rises red with house�tops and crowned with lofty trees. Somewhere near the Devlali Naka the station road is joined by the Agra road which continues its course towards the south-east and after passing over the Kannamvar bridge on the Godavari runs towards Malegaon. Besides this bridge, the Godavari is bridged at three more places, one of them at the point where the Vaghadi unites with the Godavari, thus establishing easy communications between different parts of the town which has greatly expanded during the last three-four decades. The station road then passes west with the town on the right and Maharvada on the left to a fountain where formerly stood the ‘Vankadi’ or crooked also known as the satpayri or seven-stepped well.
The town of Nasik lies on both sides of the Godavari which has been tapped for irrigation about eight miles (12.87 km.) north-west of Nasik near the village of Gangapur at the point where the Kashyapi unites with the Godavari. It is known as the Gangapur project and irrigates nearly 25,900 hectares (64,000 acres) of land. The part of the river on which Nasik is built is in shape like an inverted S with a bend first towards the right and then to the left. In olden days Nasik was divided into ‘three main divisions. Old Nasik, the sacred settlement of Panchavati which was a place of no great size during those days on the left or east bank of the river; middle or Musalman Nasik, formerly called Gulshanabad or City of Roses, on the right bank and to the south of Panchavati; and modern or Maratha Nasik, also on the right bank lying north and west of Musalman Nasik and west of Panchavati. The most important of these divisions was considered to be middle Nasik across the river and south of Panchavati. Though to distinguish it from the western suburbs which were added by the Marathas it was known as Musalman Nasik, middle Nasik in fact was an old Hindu settlement. It is mentioned under the name of Nasik in inscription 87 on the Bharhut stupa in Madhya Pradesh of about 200 B. C. and in inscriptions 19 and 21 in the Pandu caves about eight kilometres (five miles) south of Nasik of nearly the same age. As Nasik has greatly expanded since then and is expanding with the march of progress, time and population, these divisions do not hold good to-day. To-day there are no Maratha and Musalman Nasiks. The modern city can be roughly divided into Panchavati lying across on the left bank of the river with Tapovan on the side of it, old Nasik on the right bank and south of Panchavati and new Nasik or modern Nasik also on the right bank extending westward and northward of old Nasik.
The Marathi proverb that Nasik was settled on nine hills supports the view that the origin of the name or at least the Brahmanic interpretation of the name was Nashika or nine-peaked. Except Chitraghanta in the north which is isolated or nearly isolated, the hills on which Nasik is built are spurs stretching from a central plateau rather than the line or group of separate hills.
Nasik town has within itself a net-work of roads and lanes which for the most part are narrow and winding. However, the new quarters have comparatively broader streets than the old ones. Its narrow winding streets and frequent hills make Nasik a different town to understand. Nasik habitations are now not confined to the old limits but stretch far beyond. Even in the old quarters many old houses have been demolished and new ones constructed in their places. Large and decent residential colonies like the Government employees’ quarters near the golf club bungalow along Trimbak road, and Gandhi Nagar with its suburb along Nasik-Poona road to give only two examples, have sprung up where there were only open spaces, indicating rapid expansion of the town. Old roads and lanes have been extended and widened wherever possible, new ones laid out and almost all turned into cement-concrete. Bridges and causeways, to establish intercourse between different sections of the city have been built across the Godavari and other streams like Vaghadi or Varuna, Aruna and Nagjhari draining the town. The extension of educational facilities and setting up of social and cultural institutions have served to educate the people to work in the direction of promoting national interests and instil in them a sense of duty to eradicate social evils by working for social uplift. Its trade, commerce and agriculture have greatly benefited due to the extension of banking and credit and insurance facilities, excellent means of transport and communications linking Nasik not only with the major towns and taluka headquarters within the district, but also with important commercial centres outside, and tapping of the rivers like Godavari and the Vaghadi for irrigation, setting up of an agriculture produce market committee and an industrial estate along Nasik-Trimbak road. The industrial complex will include in course of time all kinds of small-scale industries including engineering, agro and timber based, pharmaceutical and chemical, printing and publications and miscellaneous industries. Availability of enough electric power and water supply since the construction of the dam on the Godavari near Gangapur, excellent means of transport including an aerodrome about three miles from Nasik between Nasik and Trimbak has made Nasik an ideal place for industries and already many industrial plants have been set up. This has gone a long way in bringing prosperity to the town and giving a large segment of its population gainful employment. Lodging and boarding houses have come up, affording facilities to the travellers as also the pilgrims and even some new temples and memorials like Gandhi memorial on the Godavari banks and Gadge Maharaj dharmashala have been built. Thus old Nasik has been modernised to a large degree.
Though the site of the main bazar remains the same the Collector’s and allied offices have been housed along the diverted Agra road in spacious quarters further up where is the State Transport bus stand. On the opposite side of the road is the municipal garden named Shivaji udyan, one of the finest gardens in Nasik. The diversion of the Agra road has relieved traffic congestion in the heart of the town. Only a few remnants point to the existence of the fort while the Jumma mosque is rapidly falling into decay. Near the Trimbak gate, hardly any trace of which remains to-day, the municipality has constructed a grand vegetable market and named it as the “Mahatma Fule Market” after that great philanthrophist who devoted himself for the social advancement and uplift of the untouchables. As has been mentioned elsewhere a fountain stands in place of the crooked well and though a branch post office continues to function there, the head post office has been shifted on Trimbak road in new premises. In the same premises the telephone exchange is also housed. The town has three more post offices. Trimbak gate quarters as also the Navapura have been considerably improved. Except a small portion, the Peshva’s old palace has been demolished and a new building constructed on the site houses an educational institute named Pethe High School. The Sati gate and the platforms west of Sundar Narayan’s mandir were washed away in one of the Godavari floods and the place where once stood the Sati platforms is now utilised for holding daily grass market. Aditvar Peth along Vivekananda patha is no more inhabited exclusively by Brahmans and Kunbis but by people of almost all creeds and walks of life. The Peshva� s new palace called Sarkar vada survives only with one storey most of which is occupied by the general public library. A part of its ground floor facing the river-side is utilised to accommodate two police; stations. Renovated sometime in 1930 and from time to time thereafter, the Balaji temple is well maintained. Since the introduction of tap water in the city the water-carriers have taken to other occupations. The dam�ming of the river at Gangapur has helped to keep more or less a steady level of water in the Kunds and the stream below. A bridge known as Rama Setu has been built near the confluence of the Aruna and the Godavari. Panchavati has greatly extended and is strewn with more dharmashalas or rest-houses built by the wealthy for the pilgrims’ convenience, and some fine dwelling places. On the slope of the bluff near the second bend of the Godavari stand the Gadge Maharaj dharma�shala and a Sikh Gurudvara. In Balaji Thakur’s house, though re-built on modem lines, the exquisitely carved pillars have been judiciously employed in the new construction. As has been already noted, the Jumma mosque is fast falling into ruins and the diverted Agra road crosses the Nasardi over a bridge to enter the town and then passes over the Kannamvar bridge over the Godavari to leave the town and run towards Malegaon. The construction of the bridges on the various rivers has dispensed with the ferry boat service. However, the piers continue to exist. The cremation ground is provided with cement platforms, sheds, water and fuel depot. On the opposite side there is another for Panchavati part of the town. It is also similarly provided.
View: The best general view of the river crowded with bathers and city of Nasik can be had from the high bluff to the north of the old fort a little below the second bend of the river. Down the centre winds the broad Godavari, its banks lined and its rocky bed dotted with shrines, monuments and temples. During the rains a swift muddy current fills the bed from bank to bank, and in the fair season a clear stream winds among the pavements, temples and shrines. Along the west bank the high southern bluff of the Ganesh hill slopes northwards to the Sarasvati in an unbroken stretch of red-tiled roofs. Beyond the Sarasvati, hidden by trees and broken by spires and pinnacles, the roofs rise slightly to the high ground at the first bend of the river. In the centre of the low eastern bank, behind its fringe of river-side shrines and temples, lies the Panchavati part of the town, its large red roofs relieved by the white domes of Kapaleshvar and the black spire and gilded pinnacle of Rama temple. Between Naro Shankar’s and Kapaleshvar temples some fine modern buildings could be seen. East of Panchavati lies the Tapovan. To the south stretch rich gardens and sugarcane fields, fenced by trees and high hedgerows, and all round are groves of handsome tamarinds, nims, banyans and mangoes. Nestling among these groves could be seen vineyards. North of these groves a weeded plain stretches to a low tableland whose ends rise into sharp conical hills, in the east-most of which is carved a group of Jain temples known as the Chambhar caves. Behind this nearer range is an irregular group of higher and more rugged hills. Beginning from the right, the first of these hills is known as Joban Tekdi, the Breast Hill. The higher level-topped hill to the left is Rama’s Bedstead or Ramsej Killa where Rama used to rest. The hill with three knobs further to the left is the Monkey’s Tail or Makad Shepta, and to the left of it is Moni Mhatari or the Silent old Woman. Further to the left and close at hand is Suliya or the Cone, the west-most point of the plateau which ends eastwards in the Chambhar Hill. Behind Suliya, at about the same distance as Moni Mhatari, is Dhair or Bhorgad the Black Fort, with an excellent quarry from which the stone of Kala Rama’s temple is said to have been brought. To the left the last in the range is Radtondi or the Hill of Weeping because it is said of the roughness of the pass over it. In dear weather the rugged forms of the Chandor range may be seen stretching east behind the Chambhar hill. From near the bluff, through the Sonar Ali and Budhvar Peth wards, a road leads south-west to the Pirzada’s tomb or Dargah. From high ground near the tomb the greater part of the southern wards of the town may be seen. From the Dargah ward a path leads west to the old Coppersmiths’ quarters or Juni Tambat Ali, once a busy and prosperous part of the town.
Climate: Nasik enjoys a healthy and pleasant climate. It is characterised by dryness except in the south-west monsoon season. Even in May, though during the day the wind is hot, the nights are cool and refreshing. The prevailing wind is westerly. Observations taken show that for upwards of ten months the wind is from the west of north and south, and that during one month only it blows from north-east or south-east. The average yearly rainfall in the district is 1034.5 mm. (40.73″). Inspite of the healthy climate Nasik in the past had a high death-rate. It was chiefly because of impure water and insanitary conditions due to inadequate drainage system as also want of medical facilities. But progress and advances made in all these fields by the municipality as also the Government have served to keep the death-rate at a substantially low rate. Nasik used to be affected by epidemics like cholera, small-pox, diarrhoea but due to prompt medical care now being taken by the municipality these epidemics have been effec�tively checked. Realising that the sanitary condition of Nasik has a special importance because of its being one of the chief centres of pilgrimage, where if infectious diseases break out, they can affect large parts of the State, the drainage system has been considerably improved. Likewise water purification plant has been set up besides providing better medical facilities.
Hills: The proverb Nasik nova tekavar vasavile, Nasik was settled on nine hills, supports the view that the name Nasik is probably the Sanskrit navshikhar or the nine-peaked. The total of nine hills was probably chosen rather for its holiness than for its accuracy. Even if the number was at one time correct the filling of hollows by earth and ruins, and levelling of bluffs has made the limits of the hills difficult to trace. Their enumeration differs; the following seems on the whole the most generally received and the most correct account :�
Beginning with the east, the first hill is the Juni Gadhi or Old Fort [To-day the position does not remain the same as the fort is lying amidst� ruins.], an alluvial mound seventy or eighty feet (21.33 to 24.38 metres) high and 410 feet long by 320 feet (124.96 X 97.23 metres) broad, of which some fifteen to twenty feet (4.57 to 6.09 metres) on the top seem to be artificial. The north side, which overhangs the river, is steep and to the east, south and west deep gullies cut it off from the rest of the town. Except a ruined mosque no trace of its buildings remains. The second hill lies to the south-west of Old Fort. It is known as the New Fort or Navi Gadhi and was the site of the Musalman Court�house and of several large mansions. Except a fine banyan tree and an old cistern almost no trace of the old buildings remains. Deep hollows mark off the New Fort on the north, the east and the south. To the west the ground is on the same level as its flat top. The high ground ends southward in the Pathanpura quarter is a small hill called Konkani pura or East Konkani Hill. Further west it forms the Jogvada Tek or Jogis’ Hill which is now divided into two parts, Jogvada in the south and Dargah to the north, both of which accord�ing to local accounts, were included in the early Hindu Jogis’ hill. The high central land ends towards the west in Mhasrul Hill, perhaps in Musalman times the brocade or mashru weavers’ hill, now believed to be called after the god Mhasoba but the shrine is modern. The height to the east of the Mhasrul hill is Dingar Ali Hill, which passes eastwards into the high level of the west of the New Fort. Between Dingar Ali Hill and the New Fort the high central plateau ends northward, over the river in two hills: Mahalakshmi Hill also called Jumma mosque Hill or Sonar Ali Hill on the east, and Ganapati’s Hill on the west. The ninth hill is an isolated steep height on the river-bank closely covered with houses, a considerable distance to the north of Ganapati’s hill and between the Nav gate and the Delhi gate. As has been stated elsewhere the gates are no longer in existence. This is called Chitraghanta’s Hill after a shrine of the goddess Chitraghanta on the hill-top.
Natural drainage: The natural drainage of the town of Nasik is north and north-east to the Godavari; east and south-east to the Nagjhari, which winds round the town to the south and east and joins the Godavari, and west and north-west into the Sarasvati, which skirts the west and north-west of the town and falls into the Godavari near the Delhi gate. The Maratha suburb or pura, except a little in the north which drains into the Godavari, discharges its water east and south-east into the Sarasvati. A small area in the north of Panchavati drains into the Aruna and a considerable section in the south from both sides drains into the Vaghadi or Varuna. The rest slopes west to the Godavari. The four minor streams, the Nagjhari, Sarasvati, Aruna and Vaghadi, go dry during the fair weather and seldom have much water except during heavy rains. The Godavari which either directly or indirectly receives the whale of the town drainage passes through Nasik in a double curve or inverted from north-west to south-east. The first part of its course within town-limits is towards the east. Near the ford, between Jenappa’s steps an the right and the Dangar landing on the left, it takes a gradual bend to the south-east and flows south-east between Panchavati and Nasik about 800 yards (731.52 metres) as far as the Asara gate where it turns to the east (182.88 metres). At its widest the river-bed is about two hundred yards (182.88 metres) broad. Most of the bottom is trap rock but there are patches and hollows of coarse sand. The whole breadth of the river is not covered with water except in high floods. During much of the rains there is a broad margin at, the sides and patches of dry rock in the centre of the stream. Prior to the construction of the dam the river-bed used to go practically dry during the summer months except for the large paved pools which always contained ample water. Now the waters are controlled and dis�charged from time to time to maintain a steady flow. These pools are considered to be holy and it dip in them is believed to have purifying effects. All the year round pilgrims come to drink and to bathe in these pools and on the steps which line great part of the river-bed town’s people come to wash clothes and vessels and to draw water, and at the level sandy patches cattle come to drink. Except when there is a strong scour during the rains the river-water is much defiled in its passage through the city.
Houses: The 1971 Census returns show 32,165 households. Most of the houses have upper storeys and many of the old ones have stone foundations with brick or mud walls and tiled roofs. The modern houses inhabited by the well-to-do or the richer section of the population are of cement-concrete or burnt brick walls plastered with either cement or chunam and have mostly terraced roofs instead of tiled ones. Most of them again are two or three storeyed. In the poorer parts the roofs are generally covered with dark flat tiles, in houses of the better class the pot tiles are used. In Aditvar peth and some other portions are the houses of the Maratha gentry including the new and old Peshva’s palaces [It may be noted that Peshva�s old palace has been demolished. The new palace survives only with one storey and is used to house the general public library and two police stations.]. Most of these houses present a dead wall to the street and are built on revised stone�-plinths approached by steps. Inside they enclose a paved court-yard open to the sky and admitting light and air to all parts of the building. An open corridor usually runs around the quadrangle on the ground floor which is generally used as servants’ quarters, part of it being sometimes walled off as a stable. On the upper floor sleeping and living rooms open into the corridor which looks into the quadrangle.
A chief point of interest in a considerable number of the old houses in Nasik is their richly-carved wooden fronts. These carved fronts belong to two styles, the Hindu, locally known as Gujarat work and the Musalman, locally known as Delhi work. The Gujarat style is richer and more picturesque with massive square pillars with horizontal and vertical brackets deeply cut in double lotus-heads and chain festoons, and balcony fronts with panels carved in broad belts of flowing leaf and creeper tracery. The Delhi style is more minute and delicate. The pillars are rounded and slightly fluted in what is known as the surul or cypress pattern. Instead of by brackets the upper parts are supported on rounded arches with waving edges in the prayer-niche or the mimbar fashion; the carving in the balcony fronts is minuter but shallower, and the flower patterns are in stiff geometric squares and five comer figures oftener than in flowing scrolls. Some of the Hindu creeper panels have a marked likeness to traceries as old as the second century before Christ in the Pandu caves five miles (8 km.) to the south of the city. But the quaint double lotus-head and chain festoons are more modern. According to the local authorities many of them were carved as late as the famine of 1802. The Musalman style of wood-carving is said to have been introduced by Devrav Mahadev Hingne, a North Indian Brahman, who was family priest to Peshva Balaji Bajirav about A. D. 1750, but some of the Musalman carvings are probably as old as the Moghal governors (1620-1750). Hingne’s mansion or vada was supposed to be the most beautiful building in Nasik, the private court being carved in the Hindu and the public court in the Musalman style. According to local accounts the Musalman parts were carved by workmen whom Devrav Mahadev and Bapuji Mahadev Hingne brought with them from Delhi.
Besides a few carved house-fronts which are worthy of note in Sonar Ali and in old Tambat Ali there are six chief specimens of wood-carving in Nasik.
The Hingne’s mansion is no more in existence, a modern four-�storeyed building having replaced it. It is rumoured that some of the finest wood-work from this palace was lifted to England.
From Hingne’s mansion Bhadrakali lane leads east about fifty yards to Bhadrakali�s shrine, and from that about a hundred yards further to the Cross of Tiundha.
Returning to the Tiundha cross and passing south about 150 yards up the Dingar Ali road, on the right or west is Mahadev Thakur’s with a handsome balcony and brackets carved in the lotus, and chain and peacock style. From Mahadev Thakur’s with a winding lane to the east and south-east lead about 200 yards to Sripat Thakur in Budhvar Peth. This has a double balcony and pillars on the outer edge of the veranda supporting a wooden shade. The carving is in the Hindu or Gujarat style. It is much like that in the private or inner court of Hingne’s mansion except that there is a group of animals in the centre of each panel and that the under-face of the lower balcony is carved into squares and other geometric patterns. Besides these houses there are some good specimens of the Gujarat double lotus carvings in the Somvar Peth and Tambat Ali wards.
As mentioned earlier Nasik is served by a net-work of roads, lanes and by-lanes giving access to its different parts. The total length of the roads in the city is 74 kilometres (46 miles) of which 49.88 km. (31 miles) have been converted into cement-concrete and the remaining either asphalted, metalled or kachcha. The Agra road is the most important road that passes through the town. In the town itself the main road, now named as Deshpande road, is the only road of sufficient breadth. Others, though extended and broadened, remain narrow for the most part. Besides the Kannamvar bridge over which the Agra road leaves the town and runs towards Malegaon, a total of nine bridges and causeways have been constructed by the municipality over the rivers and streams to facilitate vehicular as well as the pedestrian traffic.
Gates: Though it was never a walled town several of the entrances to Nasik were adorned by gateways or entrance arches. It appears that these gates, not one of which remains today except Bhagur gate, were built during the days when Nasik came under Musalman rule. Though the gates have disappeared long since, many of the localities are still known by the gate names. Panchavati had one gate to the north-east and was called the Bhadak Gate, and is now in ruins. The present gate is said not to be older than the Peshva’s time. The OldTown or Kasba including Kazipura or the south division had eight gates: Darbar Gate in the east, Bhagur in the south-east, Kazipura in the south, Trimbak in the west, Delhi in the north-east, and Nav, Ashra, and Ketki in the east. The Darbar Gate was in the east near the east of Bombay-Agra road at the east end of the road that runs down the hollow between the Old and New Forts. Of the Darbar gate which was built by the Musalmans no trace remains. About 300 yards south-west of the site of the Darbar gate, in the extreme south�east of the city, is Bhagur Gate. It is plain square topped brick gate�way, much in ruins, but still standing. This is probably a Musalman gateway. It gets its name because it is on the road to Bhagur town close to which is the Devlali cantonment. About 200 yards to the west was the Kazipura Gate. It was plain and square topped. It was a Musalman gate and was said to have been built by Syed Muhammad Hasan, who came from Delhi about A. D. 1667 and founded the Kazipura quarter and established the Kazi Saheb’s family which is still one of the two leading Musalman families in Nasik. In the west of the town about 500 yards, north-west of the Kazipura Gate was the Trimbak Gate. It was repaired by Subhedar Dhondo Mahadev in about A. D. 1790. Despite repairs Trimbak gate did not last long and no trace of it remains today. According to the Musalmans there was an older gate on the same site which was called the Aurang Gate after a noble of the name of Aurangzeb who settled part of the city. On the bank of the river a few yards to the south of Balaji’s temple stood the Delhi Gate with a Persian inscription which indicated that it was built in 1681 (H. 1092) by Tudekhan Subha. About 175 yards south was the Nav or Boat Gate, and about seventy yards further was the Ashra Gate. It was called after the goddess of that name built by a Brahman named Yajneshvar Dikshit about 200 years ago. About 200 yards east was the Ketki Gate also close to the river.
In the Maratha suburb (Nasik) or Pura there were three gates, the Hatti or Elephant Gate in the west, the Malhar Gate in the north�west, and the Sati Gate in the north. The Hatti or Elephant Gate near Raja Bahadur’s mansion was a private gate built at the entrance to his elephant stables. About 100 yards north of the Elephant gate was the Malhar Gate. This was built in the time of Raghoba (A. D. 1773) when an effort was made to extend Nasik to Anandvalli, or Chaundhas as it was originally called, about three miles to the west. No trace of this gate is left. About 300 yards to the north-east was the Sati Gate, where, during Maratha rule, widows used to immolate themselves on the funeral pyres of their dead husbands. The gate was built, by Oka, a Subhedar of the Peshvas. The gate along with the Sati platforms were washed away in one of the floods of the Godavari. The place is now utilised for holding daily grass bazar.
Trade: Its position on the best route between the Nagpur and the coast must at all times of prosperity have made Nasik a place of importance. Till 1835 Nasik was without the convenience of a made�-road. Traffic was carried on pack-bullocks most of which belonged to Vanjari headmen of the villages round Nasik. Between 1840 and 1845 the Thai pass was made fit for carts; and besides on pack-�bullocks a considerable amount of goods began to pass Nasik in carts. About 1850, in the busy season, as many as 500 or 600 carts used to halt at Dangar Utara in Panchavati, their chief loading being cotton on its way from the Berar to Bombay. This continued until by the opening of the railway in 1861, the inland trade ceased to pass through Nasik. The Agra road passing through the town is the chief route connecting different and distant commercial towns and centres and remains busy all the year round. Nasik is one of the important commercial centres in the State and has a regulated market which was established in 1952. The important commodities traded are paddy, vegetables, onions and grapes. The latter of these commodities are not only marketed to Bombay, Poona, Vidarbha region, Khandesh via Manmad and many other markets in India but are exported in large quantities to countries like Ceylon and Burma, Egypt and Iran. To finance these commercial activities all the major commercial banks have established their branches here. There is also the Nasik District Central Co-operative Bank with branches at all the taluka head-quarters.
Since early times Nasik is known for its brass and copper vessels and it still maintains the reputation in this regard. In those days the Kasars used to manufacture the utensils by hand, but today though handmade utensils continue to be available, the major source of supply are large manufacturing units. These are marketed practically all over the country. Bidi turning has become one of the major industries of the district and in Nasik city alone there are not less than twelve large bidi factories employing about ten thousand workers, male and female. The town, besides oil, ginning and pressing, flour and rice mills, has also an ayurvedic rasayan shala.
Markets: Bi-weekly markets or bazars are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays, the attendance at the Wednesday bazar being larger than that held on Saturdays. Except during the rains when the bazars are held on the south bank of the Godavari, the markets are held on the stretch of sand to the south of the Rameshvara temple. These bazars last the whole day and close towards evening. No sheds have been provided and the dealers sit in rows in the sun or in small tent-like booths and sell grain, pulse, oilseed, cloth, blankets, shoes, spices, tobacco, salt, sweetmeats, fruits and vegetables; cattle, buffaloes, horses, sheep and goats, poultry, etc., are also brought for sale. Cattle bazar is held on the east bank of the river.
Apart from these bi-weekly bazars which are attended by a little over four thousand persons coming from many of the nearby talukas also, daily markets are held in several parts of the town. Most of these are held in the open where the municipality has provided pucca flooring. A market for vegetables is held daily in Panchavati area a little to the north of Naro Shankar’s temple. It is open from eight to eleven in the morning and is attended by nearly five hundred persons. The vegetables sold here are mostly grown in the neighbour�hood within a radius of about eight miles. Pahadis, Marathas and Malis are the chief sellers. This river-side market is held at this spot only during eight fair weather months. Two similar markets are held in Aditvar Peth and Bhadrakali respectively. Near the Trimbak gate a grand modern type vegetable market has been provided. It was constructed by the municipality in 1950 at a cost of Rs. 1,50,000 and serves as a wholesale market for vegetables. The municipality has also constructed two mutton markets in Vanbag and Gharpura areas respectively and one each for fish and beef in the Vanbag area. These are all modern constructions and have together cost the municipal exchequer Rs. 85,000.
Offices: Nasik being one of the most important towns in Maharashtra there are offices of practically each and every depart�ment of the Government besides that of the Collector who is the administrator of the district, and the subordinate revenue, officers. It is the headquarters of Divisional offices of the Buildings and Communica�tions, Irrigation, Forest, State Transport Corporation, Soil Conservation, Maharashtra State Electricity Board, etc. It has ten courts of joint civil judges, a civil surgeon, a superintendent of police, deputy registrar of co-operative societies and chief executive officer of Nasik Zilla Parishad and many more.������
Municipality: The municipality was established in May 1864 and raised to the status of a city municipality in 1874. To begin with, its office was accommodated in a portion of the old Peshva’s palace and later in rented quarters till 1937 in which year was built the spacious building with a clock-tower in which it is housed today. It was constructed at a cost of two lakhs of rupees. Fifty members compose the municipal council which is presided over by the president. He is elected by the councillors from among themselves. It is this council with the president as the head that is responsible for all municipal affairs. The administration is looked after by the Chief Officer who is responsible to the municipal council.����������
Finance: In 1964-65 the municipal income accrued from various sources including extra-ordinary and debt heads amounted to Rs. 57,44,741. The income sources were municipal rates and taxes contributing Rs. 29,07,486; revenue derived from municipal property and powers Rs. 4,17,274; grants Rs. 8,54,740; miscellaneous Rs. 7,96,050 and extra-ordinary and debt heads Rs. 7,69,191. As against this it incurred an expenditure of Rs. 52,25,678 during the same year. Expenditure items were general administration Rs. 5,43,636; public safety Rs. 2,13,453; public health and convenience Rs. 15,96,099; public works Rs. 45,244; public instruction Rs. 7,95,065; grants and contributions Rs. 1,500; interest on loans Rs. 1,47,922; miscellaneous Rs. 4,52,118; extra-ordinary and debt heads Rs. 8,86,603 and capital expenditure Rs. 5,44,038.
Municipal Works: Besides the markets, bridges and causeways and the main municipal office building which have already been mentioned, the municipality has so far constructed a number of buildings for schools, dispensaries, maternity homes, one open air theatre and a welfare centre at a total cost of Rs. 5,01,900. This expenditure is besides that incurred on laying out drains and improving them from time to time.
Medical aid: Much has been done and achieved in keeping down the incidence of epidemics in whose throes Nasik was perpetually found by improving the medical aid facilities and the drainage system. Besides the many private practitioners and hospitals run by other institutions, Nasik has two allopathic dispensaries, three ayurvedic dispensaries and two maternity homes conducted by the municipality. There are also three hospitals maintained by Government, of which the Civil Hospital is the biggest and has facilities to treat all kinds of patients [Socio-Economic Review and District Statistical Abstract of Nasik District, 1962-63 and 1963-64� (Bureau of Economics and Statistics publication), p. 20.]. There is also an isolation hospital. Steps are taken from time to time to immunise the people against epidemics like cholera, small-pox, etc., by means of vaccinations and inoculations. Suspected cases are immediately removed to the isolation hospital. Inspite of these measures Nasik had a mild attack of cholera in 1963 after an interval of nearly ten years. Charges for treatment in these dispensaries are nominal. The town has a veterinary hospital maintained by the Zilla Parishad.
Water-supply: In the early days the water-supply of Nasik was chiefly from the Godavari, though about 5,000 people used water of a large fountain hear the Trimbak gate. The Godavari water-supply was far from pure as it was then taken from the bed of the river at the Tas, the pool of Sundar-narayan, and even lower, where the water was soiled by bathing and washing clothes, religious offerings, burnt bones, town-sweepings, and house sullage. Mr. Hewlett, the then Sanitary Commissioner, had recommended that the Godavari should be abandoned because of its impure water. Dr. Leith in 1865 and Mr. Hewlett in 1881 agreed in recommending a scheme which would have brought water from the Nasardi to the south-west of the town, a purer source of supply than the Godavari as it ran through an uninhabited plain. This Nasardi scheme was estimated to cost about Rs. 1,30,000, an amount which the Nasik municipality could not raise then. There was also a strong feeling against using any water except from the Godavari.
The fountain near the Trimbak gate, which goes by the name of Dhondo Mahadev’s haud, was made by a Maratha subhedar or governor of that name eighty or ninety years ago. Dhondo also built a reservoir about 225 feet from the Nasardi river near the Trimbak road about a mile and a half west of Nasik. The reservoir was originally paved, but due to a long neglect it got choked with earth and grass. But even in that neglected state it was far more pure than the Godavari. An underground masonry water-channel led from the reservoir and brought the water to the fountain. Being a private property much of its water was used for watering fields before it reached the town. In 1878 the municipality offered to pay Rs. 30,000 for the aqueduct but the offer was turned down. Besides the supply from the Godavari and from the Nasardi fountain, there were 825 wells in the town, and fifty-three in Panchavati. The municipality had also dug quite a few wells but in some of them the water was found to be brackish. In order to over�come the difficulties of water-supply water-works were planned and piped water-supply was thus introduced in the town for the first time in 1912 and was augmented from time to time thereafter. Today Nasik city receives its entire water-supply from the Gangapur earthen dam and the Anandvalli weir. The water-works are installed four miles downstream of the Gangapur dam on the Godavari and pumped in the huge reservoirs built in the city. From these reservoirs a net-work of pipe-lines make water available to the public. As the old distributive system has out-lived its utility as well as capacity a new scheme envisag�ing an additional trunk line and an elevated reservoir with a capacity of 3,37,000 gallons in Budhvar Peth has been taken up. While the trunk line is estimated to cost Rs. 11,88,918, gross expenditure incurred on the reservoir till the middle of 1965 amounted to Rs. 5,10,392. With the completion of this scheme the hardships experienced by the people in getting adequate supply of water would be removed. Nasik munici�pality has also undertaken the work of improving the purification system. It is found that the existing infiltration works in the Godavari do not work satisfactorily during the monsoons and hence turbid water has to be supplied to the populace. To overcome this difficulty a surface purification plant has been planned and is expected to cost Rs. 37,36,623. Though in the immediate stage it will provide purified water only to 1,30,000 inhabitants it is equipped to supply purified water to a prospective population of two lakhs in the ultimate stage.
In olden days the municipality used to turn nightsoil into manure.
The drainage system continued to be in an unsatisfactory condition until 1935. In 1935 the then consulting public health engineer had suggested an elaborate drainage system to keep the town sufficiently clean and also to prevent the sullage from entering the kund near the Victoria bridge which was used by the people for drinking purposes. It, however, did not materialise until the outbreak of a serious cholera epidemic. The remarks of the Director of Public Health in 1935 roused the municipality to action and Nasik was provided with an elaborate intercepting drainage system which was extended and improved as the city expanded with the expanding population. A scheme has now been prepared to overhaul and streamline the entire drainage system. It is estimated to cost about 27 lakhs of rupees. Under the scheme all the sullage water from Nasik and Panchavati, side which is now emptied in the Godavari would be collec�ted in a sump well on the Panchavati side from where it will be pumped to a point sufficiently away from the inhabited locality to be used for farming. Work has commenced on this project and sewers have already been installed on both the banks of the river. The pumping house has also been constructed but the machinery� which is to be imported remains to be installed. This will be followed by the internal drainage system for which a plan has been drawn up by the Public Health Sub-Division, Nasik. Underground drainage has already been provided along the Agra road and is expected to cover most parts of the town within a few years’ time.
Education: Primary education is compulsory and is conducted by the Nasik borough municipality. On March 31, 1965 there were 17,472 pupils on the rolls of the primary schools with 416 teachers impart�ing instruction. There are nearly ten high schools in the town. All of them except one, a technical school conducted by Government, are privately managed. Nasik has also a police training college where most of the police personnel in Maharashtra is trained and a military school named Bhosle Military School. There are three colleges, viz., H. P. T. College, M. E. R. Institute and B. Y. K. Commerce College and two training colleges of which one is for women only. Nasik Sarvajanik Vachanalaya is perhaps the biggest public library in the town. A grant of Rs, 50,000 was made by the municipality toward the construction of its building in 1960-61.
Miscellaneous: Nasik municipality maintains a well-equipped fire brigade employing sixteen firemen and twelve drivers with a superin�tendent. An ambulance and a hearse are also attached to the fire brigade. Two cremation grounds are provided by the municipality on the banks of the Godavari, one on Panchavati side and the other on Nasik side. Besides, there are about fourteen burial grounds utilised by different sections of Muslims. For cultural and recreational activities the town municipality maintains an open air theatre, a welfare centre and five parks of which three are located on the Panchavati side. Of the two on Nasik side along Agra road the Shivaji udyan is perhaps the best and well-maintained park. Three of these gardens have corners for children and radio sets. Though the munici�pality itself does not maintain a gymnasium, it gives grants to various gymnasiums as also many other cultural centres privately conducted. Nasik municipality celebrated its centenary in January 1965 in com�memoration of which a Souvenir was published under the caption of� �Jivanganga “, giving a brief resume of its activities since inception. Nasik has a large number of social service institutions whose activities have been detailed under Chapter XVIII.
Temples: There are in all about 200 temples, big and small, ancient and modern, in Nasik, a number which has earned for it the name of the Benares of Western India. This large number is due to three causes, the holiness of the Godavari, the belief that Nasik and Panchavati were for years the scene of the exile of Rama, Sita and Laksh�mana and the wealth and political importance of Nasik as the second city of the Peshvas’ territories, The earliest mention of, a temple at Nasik is by the Jain writer Jinaprabhasuri who wrote about the fourteenth century. He notices Kuntivihar, a temple of Chandraprabhasvami, the eighth Tirthankara, No trace of this temple remains. The next notice of Nasik temples is, that in 1680 twenty-five temples at Nasik were destroyed by the Deccan viceroy of Aurangzeb (1,656-1705), Among these are said to have been temples of Sundar-narayana and Uma-maheshvara in the Aditvar Peril on the right bank of the Godavari, of Ramji and Kapaleshvara in Panchavati, and of Mahalakshmi in the Old Fort which the Musalmans changed into their Jama mosque. The only vestiges of early Hindu buildings are Mahalakshmi’s temple now the Jama mosque, and the door-post of the small temple of Nilkantheshvara near the Ashra gate, which is much like the door-post of Someshvara’s near Gangapur, six miles west of Nasik. Only a few vestiges of the fort are existing and the ravages of time have left the mosque beyond repairs, It was under the Peshva’s rule (1750-1818) that most of the large temples which now adorn Nasik were built. Most of them were the work of their Nasik governors or Raja Bahadurs and other sardars, of whom Naro Shankar, Oka, Chandrachud and Odhekar were the most prominently known. The wives and relation of many of the Peshvas, especially Gopikabai, the mother of the fourth Peshva Madhavrav (1761-1772), visited Nasik and several of the temples and shrines were built by them. One group of buildings is the gift of the Indore princess Ahilyabai Holkar (1765-1795) so famous for her zeal as a temple-builder. Since the fall of the Peshvas (1818) no large temple has been built at Nasik. The only building with any pretensions to architectural beauty that dates since the British rule is the Kapurthala fountain and rest-house near Balaji’s temple which was built in 1878.
Most of the Nasik temples are of stone and mortar. The best stone has been brought from the Ramshej-Bhorgad hills about six miles (9.65 km.) north of Nasik. Three temples have special architectural merit, Ramji’s in Panchavati, Naro Shankar’s or the Bell temple on the left bank of the river near the Rama Setu bridge and Sundar-narayan’s in Aditvar Peth, Of these the largest and simplest is Ramji’s and the most richly sculptured is, Naro Shankar�s Sundar-narayan�s comes between the two others both as regards size and ornament.
Sundar-narayan: Beginning in the north, in Aditvar Peth in New Nasik where the river takes its first bend to the south, on rising ground on the right or west bank about a hundred feet (30.48 metres) above the river-bed, is the temple of Sundar-narayan, It faces east and measures about eighty square feet (7.43 square metres) standing on a stone plinth about three feet (0.914 metre) high. On the east, north and south it is entered by flights of steps each with a richly carved and domed portico with front and side arches in the waving-edged style locally known as the mimbar or Musalman prayer-niche. To the west or shrine end the outside of the temple is rounded. Over the centre of the building is a large dome and behind the dome is a handsome spire. The whole is of beautifully dressed stone and is highly orna�mented, especially the main or eastern door which is richly carved with figures, chains, bells, and tracery. In 1848 the central dome was struck by lightning. It was restored in 1858, but some broken ornaments on the north and west show traces of the damage. In the shrine arc three black stone images, a three feet (0.914 metre) high Narayana in the middle flanked on the right and left by smaller images of Lakshmi and Vrinda, wife of the demon Jalandara. Though they are about 50 feet (15.24 metres) from the outer wall and are separated from it by three gates, the building is so arranged that at sunrise on the 20th and 21st of March the sun’s rays fall on Narayana’s feet. Viewed from the Kapaleshvara shrine which is 1,000 yards (914,44 metres) on the other bank of the river one can see the lamp burning inside this shrine. The temple charges are met and a large number of Brahmans are fed on Karttika Shuddha 14th (November-December) from an annual Government grant. From the east or main entrance a flight of sixty-eight dressed stone-steps leads to the river. Once a year on the Karttika (November-December) full-moon the steps and the temple are brilliantly lighted. Over the east doorway, a marble tablet, with a Devanagari inscription in seven lines of small letters states that the temple was built by Gangadhar Yashvant Chandrachud in 1756. The cost of the temple and flight of steps is said to have been about Rs. 10,00,000. On the spot where the temple stands there is said to have been an old Hindu temple which was destroyed by the Musalmans and the site turned into a kabarastan or burial ground. On the over�throw of the Musalman rule probably about 1750 Peshva Balaji is said to have destroyed the graveyard, cleared the ground of the bones, and sanctified the spot on which the present temple stands.
Badrika Sangama: On the river-bank a few yards north of the flight of steps which leads to Sundar-narayan’s temple, is a shrine of Ganapati, and to the south was a Bairagi’s monastery or math where now stands the office or the Gavkari, a Marathi daily, published from Nasik. Nearby is a pool called the Badrika Sangama into which, according to the local story. Hemadpant, the temple-building minister of Ramchandra, the Devagiri Yadav ruler (1271-1311), threw the philosopher’s stone which he had brought from Ceylon. Search was made, and one link of an iron chain with which the pool was dragged was turned to gold. The pool was drained dry, but the stone had disappeared.
Ojha’s Steps: In the bed of the river, close below the Sundar�-narayan stairs, the next flight of steps are known as Ojha’s steps. They were built in 1808 at a cost of about Rs. 2,000. On the high bank at the top of Ojha’s steps, on the north side, is a temple of Dattatreya and a monastery of Raghunath Bhatji who, about hundred and sixty years ago, was famous for his power of curing diseases and controlling the elements. This monastery is much in disrepair. To the south is a temple of Shiva which was built in 1820 by Balajipant Natu at a cost of Rs. 10,000. The front hall or sabhamandap, and rest-house close-by, according to an inscription on the east face of the outer wall, were built in 1845 (Shaka 1767) by Narayanrav Yamaji Potnis. The cost is estimated at Rs. 6,000. About fifteen yards (13.71 metres) to the south of this rest-house, at the foot of a pipal tree, is a four-armed Maruti, which, in the hope of getting children, women cons�tantly circumabulate and hundreds of lamps made of wheat-paste are burnt. In the neighbourhood are several monasteries or maths and ascetics’ tombs or samadhis.
Uma-maheshvar: About seventy yards (64 metres) south-east of Sundar-narayan’s is Uma-maheshvar’s temple. It faces east and is surrounded and hidden by a stone-wall with two small houses in front which are washed by the river when it is in flood. Within the wall, in front of the temple, is a large wooden outer hall with a hand�somely carved ceiling. In the shrine in the west, with a passage in front, are three black marble images about two feet (0.609 metre) high, Maheshvar or Shiva in the middle, Ganga on the right, and Uma or Parvati on the left. These are said to’ have been brought by the Marathas from the Karnatak in one of their expeditions. The temple was built in 1758 at a cost of about Rs. 2,00,000 by Trimbakrav Vishvanath Pethe, the uncle or Sadashivrav Bhau, the hero of Panipat. Close to the north of Uma-maheshvar’s temple are about twenty ascetics� tombs or samadhis. In Karttika. Tripuri Paurnima day is celebrated.
Nilkantheshvar: On the right bank of the river, about seventy yards (64 metres) south-east of Uma-maheshvar’s, stands Nilkantheshvar’s temple. It is built of beautifully dressed richly carved trap. It is fast falling into decay and unless prompt measures are taken to repair it, it may crumble before long. It faces east across the river and has a porch dome and spire of graceful outline. The object of worship is it very old linga said to date from the time of the mythic king Janaka, the father-in-law of Rama. An inscription in the front wall states that the present temple was built in 1747 (Shaka 1669) by Lakshmanshankar, brother of Naro Shankar Raja Bahadur of Malegaon, at a cost of about Rs. 10,000. In times of flood the rocks on which the temple stands are surrounded by water. In front of the temple a flight of steps leads to the water.
Panchratneshvar: About fifty yards (45.72 metres) south-west of Nilkantheshvar’s, and reached from it by a flight of forty-eight steps, is the Panchratneshvar temple, a brick and wood building which from out�side looks like a house. The linga in this temple is believed to date the time of Rama and to take its name from the filet that Rama offered it gold, diamonds, sapphires, rubies and pearls, a gift which is known as the five jewels or Panchratna. The linga has a silver mask with five heads which it wears on certain days, especially on the full-moon of Karttika (November). The temple was built by Yajneshvar Dikshit Patvardhan in 1758 at an estimated cost of Rs. 15,000. By keeping the original central gabhara intact the rest has been converted into cloisters which are let on hire to the pilgrims. The management is in the hands of the Dikshit family. In front of the temple is an ascetic’s monastery and outside of the monastery a small temple of Ganapati. About twenty feet (6 metres) south-east of Ganapati’s temple in a corner is a small broken image of Shitladevi, the small-pox goddess. When a child has small-pox its mother pours water over this image for fourteen days and on the fifteenth brings the child to the temple, weighs it against molasses or sweetmeats, and distributes them among the people. The image was broken about 175 years ago by one Rambhat Gharpure. His only son was sick with small-pox and though he did all in his power to please the goddess his son died. Enraged at his loss, Rambhat went up to the goddess and broke off her hands and feet. Though maimed, the people still trust in Shitladevi, and during small-pox epidemics so much water is poured over her that it flows in a stream down the stone-steps to the river. This belief is all the wane now and persists only amongst the more credulous and the illiterates.
Gora Rama: High above the river-bed, about ten yards (9.14 metres) east of Panchratneshvar’s, is an antique temple of Rama called Gora or White to distinguish it from the Black or Kala Rama across the river in Panchavati. The temple is reached by a flight of forty dressed stone-steps from the river-side. There is also a smaller door from the town-side on the south. In front of the temple is a large outer hall or sabhamandap about sixty square feet (5.57 square metres). It has room for about 2,000 people, the men sitting below and the women in the gallery. Every morning and evening holy books of Puranas are read almost always to a crowd of listeners. In this outer hall are four figures, about three feet (0.914 metre) high, of Ganapati, Maruti, Godavari, and Mahishasur-mardini or the buffalo-slaying goddess. On the left is a right-trunked Ganapati, and on the right an eight-armed Mahishasur-mardini with beautiful images of Shiva and Parvati. The image of Godavari to the north has lately been added. Facing the shrine and about fifty feet (15.24 metres) in front of it is a Maruti. In the shrine is a group of five white marble images two and a half feet (0.762 metre) high. The central image is of Rama, on either side are Lakshmana and Sita, and at their feet Bharata and Shatrughna. The temple was built in 1782 by Devrav Hingne, Jahagirdar of Chandori. A great yearly festival is held on Jyeshtha Shuddha 10th (June-July) in honour of the image of Godavari and is paid for and other temple charges are met from a grant by the Hingne family. On Chaitra Shuddha 10, a fair is held in honour of Rama also. The temple holds inam land in Chandori village of Niphad taluka. This family supplied the chief house-priests or upadhyayas to Bajirav, the second Peshva (1720-1740). They were afterwards raised to the rank of Sardars and for many years their fortunes were bound up with the Peshvas. For some time during the period of Savai Madhavrav, Govindrav Hingne was the Peshva�s ambassador at Delhi. The beautifully carved Hingne’s vada belongs to this family.
Murlidhar: On raised ground in the river-bed, about twenty yards (18.28 metres) south of Gora Rama’s is Murlidhar’s temple. In the shrine of this temple is a group of cleverly-cut white marble figures about three and a half feet (one metre) high. In the centre Murlidhar or Krishna the flute-bearer, stands on one foot with a flute in his hand, and by his side are two cows each with a calf. The image was brought from Chandori by the Hingne family. When dressed in woman’s robes as ardhanarishvar, the half-man half-woman deity, it is much admired. The temple was built in 1828 by one Dada Bava. Between this and Gora Rama’s temple were several sati platforms some of which were washed away in one of the floods of the Godavari. From the first of Shravana vadya (July-August), in the hall in front of the images, a nama-saptaha or recital of the god’s names goes on for seven days. During these seven days the god is dressed in different robes and there is an unceasing dashing of cymbals and singing of songs. One band of eight to thirty men plays and sings for three hours and then gives charge to another party. On the eleventh of the same fortnight a palanquin-procession or dindi starts about three in the afternoon and returns about nine at night Thousands of people visit the temple for darshan during these days. On the following day a feast is given to about 500 Brahmans and, cymbal-players. A public trust has been created and one Krishna Hari Damodar appointed as the Vahivatdar or manager.
Vriddheshvara: Close to Murlidhar’s is a temple to Shiva under the name of Vriddheshvara. It is a square stone building of no great beauty and contains a stone linga. It was built by the Durve family in 1763. Hardly any devotee dares worship this god as his worship is believed to bring bad fortune.
Tarakeshvar: Conspicuous by its red and white dome is Tarakeshvar’s temple about fifty yards (45.72 metres) south-east of Gora Rama’s, in the bed of the river, opposite to Naro Shankar’s or the Bell temple. It is a stone building with a portico and an inner shrine with a linga. In the veranda is a well-ornamented bull or nandi. The temple has no endowment and no special festival. Two small tablets built high up in the back wall of the veranda-state that it was built in 1780 (Shaka 1702) by Krishnadas Paranjpe.
Balaji: Balaji’s temple is a large and rich building about ten yards (9.14 metres) south-west of Tarakeshvar’s. The temple is regarded with peculiar holiness as being at the meeting of the Godavari and the small Sarasvati stream, which flows under the temple. The bed of the river in front of the temple is paved, and the ground floor fronting the river is faced with stone-arches. Thirty steps lead to the upper storey whose side walls and interior are more like a large dwelling-house than a temple. In front of the shrine is a court about fifty square feet (4.64 square metres), and to the west of the court, within an outer hall, is the shrine, an oblong building about forty feet by twenty (12.19 � 6.09 metres). The shape of the shrine is interesting as it resembles a nave with two aisles and a chancel or apse at the west end. Part of the walls of the outer hall are covered with rough but spirited paintings of scenes from the Ramayana, Mahabharata and the Puranas. The paintings are renewed every few years. In the shrine are three small copper images, Balaji the god of riches in the centre, Ramadevi on his right, and Lakshmi on his left. Balaji always wears a gold mask and jewellery worth about Rs. 50,000 and he has silver vessels worth about Rs. 3,000 more. The temple was built in 1771 at an estimated cost of about Rs. 1,00,000 by a Vir Vaishnav named Bappaji Bava Gosavi, son of Trimbak Bava or Timmaya Bava. The story is that Ganpatrav, the father of Timmaya, while travelling in the south found the image in the Tamraparni river in Tinnevelly, and taking it with him set it up in his house at Junnar in Poona district. In 1701, after Ganpatrav’s death, his son Timmaya was warned in a dream that within fifteen days Junnar would be burnt to ashes. Leaving Junnar he settled in Nasik and built a temple for the image in Somvar Peth. From this in 1758 it was taken to another temple, and after Timmaya’s death his son Bappaji in 1771 built the present temple. His father’s tomb is at the outer gate. Besides eleven Nasik villages granted by the Peshva and continued to the present yielding a large amount of revenue, Balaji’s temple has a yearly cash allowance and yearly grants from Shinde, Holkar, the Gaikvad, the Dharampur chief, and others. Many presents of food and other gifts are also made. There is a public trust the managing body of which looks after income and expenditure. It is from this income that the expense of the yearly car-festival between the 1st and 11th of Ashvin Shuddha (September-October) when the god is borne through the town in a small car drawn by two men, is met. A rich worshipper sometimes invites the god to dine at his house. The god goes with the chief ministrant in a palanquin, accompanied by all the members of the ministrant�s family, and they arrange to cook the dinner and eat it.
In Balaji’s temple the routine of daily worship begins with the Kakad-arati or the wick-lamp waving at six in the morning. The object of this ceremony is to awaken the god by well-omened songs or bhupalyas. A camphor-lamp is also waved before the image. About twenty-five persons attend. Service or puja is performed from nine to twelve and again from six to seven. After nine at night is performed the shej-arati, the object of which is to bring sleep to the god by songs and the waving of lamps. About twenty-five people generally attend. On the first night of the Nine Nights or Navaratra festival, during the first fortnight of Ashvin (October), Balaji’s wheel-weapon or sudarshana is laid in a car and drawn through the town. The route is from Balaji’s temple along the paved river-bed, past the Delhi gate, then through the Nav Darvaja to Tiundha, past Dhondo Mahadev’s mansion, along old Tambat Ali to near the inside of the Trimbak gate and then by a side lane past Hundivala’s vada and Kakirdya’s vada back to Balaji’s temple. During the circuit the people of the houses by which the car passes offer flowers, plantains, guavas, sweetmeats, cocoanuts, and money. The number in the procession is generally about 600 of whom five-sixths are usually money. Throughout this procession the temple ministrant has to walk backwards with folded hands and face towards the car. On each of the following nine days the image is seated on a carrier or vahan and borne round the outside of the temple. The carrier varies from day to day. On the first day it is a lion, on the second a horse, on the third an elephant, on the fourth the moon, on the fifth the sun, on the sixth the monkey-god Maruti, on the seventh an eagle, on the eighth a peacock, on the ninth a serpent, and on the tenth it is again seated in the car. On the night of the seventh day the god is married to Lakshmi. On the seventh and eighth days a feast is arranged for the Brahmans. Formerly the feast was held on the twelfth day on the pavement on the right bank of the river, the site of the Kapurthala tower. In 1839 an officer in the public works department passed between two rows of about 300 Brahmans who forming a mob, attacked his bungalow, broke the window, and destroyed the furniture. On the tenth day or Dasara, the images are placed in the car and the car is dragged round the hall sabhamandap. A large crowd of visitors come to worship the images in the evening. During these Navaratra holidays a large amount of money is collected. Some of these receipts are on account of kanagi, .a percentage on their profits which merchants and others lay by in the name of Balaji. On the eleventh day the chief images are taken in the car to the river Clod are bathed and worshipped. The ceremony on the river-bank lasts for about three hours. On this occasion two or three hundred musicians from the neighbouring villages attend and sing and play. Each of them gets a turban. Rama Navami and Gokul Ashtami are aha celebrated. Pravachana and kirtana are an every day affair. In 1842 some armed dacoits entered the temple and removed the idols along with whatever jewellery they could lay hands upon. However, the idols were traced at Ramsej and brought back to the temple in a palanquin procession.
Gondeshvar Krishneshvar: On the river-bank, about ten yards (9.14 metres) south of Balaji’s are the temples of Gondeshvar and Krishneshvar, which were built in 1776 by Dhondo Dattatraya Naygavkar at a cost of over Rs. 10,000. In the shrine of each is a white marble linga, both of which end in a five-headed bust of Mahadeva. Between the two temples is that of Vithoba containing stone idols of Vithoba and Rakhumai, each about one and a half feet (0.457 metre) high. These temples have no endowments and no special ceremonies.
Tilbhandeshvar: About fifty yards (45.72, metres) south-west of Gondeshvar’s and Krishneshvar’s and about 500 feet (152.40 metres) west of the river-bank, stands the temple of Tilbhandeshvar. It is a plain brick structure with a porch, an inner shrine, and a spiral top or dome. The linga is a plain stone pillar two feet (0.609 metre) high and five feet (1.52 metres) round. It is the largest linga in Nasik. It owes its name to a belief without foundation that every year it grows the length of a grain of sesamum or til. It was built in 1763, at a cost of about Rs. 25,000, by Trimbakrav Vishvanath Pethe, the untie of Sadashivrav Bhau, the hero of Panipat. It has a yearly Government grant part of which is spent in payments to priests who daily recite puranas and kirtans. It also receives an annual income of Rs. 205 from the lands of its propriety. In front of the temple is a stone bull or nandi. Close-by are several ascetics’ tombs or samadhis, and a group of temples to Devi, Vithoba, Narsimha and Vamana. On Mahashivaratra (January), and on each Monday in Shravan (July-August), at about three in the afternoon, a silver mask is laid in the palanquin and borne round Nasik. On the way it is bathed in the river on the left bank near the Tarakeshvar temple, worshipped, and brought back. About a hundred people attend the procession. On Shivaratra (January) and Vaikuntha chaturdashi (December-January) thousands of people visit the temple. On both of these days the god wears the silver mask and is dressed in rich clothes and adorned with flowers. On the night of Vaikuntha chaturdashi (December-January) the god is dressed as ardhanarishvara, half as Mahadev and half as Parvati. A public trust has been created and the trustees discharge the maintenance of the temple.
About twenty yards (18.28 metres) south-west of Tilbhandeshvar’s is Siddheshvar Mahadev’s temple, a plain brick building with a stone linga. It was built by one Kale in 1775 at an estimated cost of Rs. 1,000. It has no income and no worship.������
About ten yards (9.14 metres) south of Siddheshvar’s at the feet of the pipal tree inside the Delhi gate [Now there is no gate.], is a temple of Kashi Vishveshvara. This was built in 1798 by Khandubhat Daji Bhanavsi at an estimated cost of Rs. 1,500. The stone pavement round the tree was built in the same year by one Povar Patil. The temple contains a linga but has no income and no worship.
Murdeshvar: Two or three yards west of Kashi Vishveshvar’s, at the meeting of the Gayatri and the Godavari, once washed by the river but now at some distance from it, is the temple of Murdeshvar or Mrigayadhishvara. According to a local story Mahadeva rescued the live rivers Godavari, Gayatri, Sarasvati, Shraddha and Medha, who were pursued by their father Brahmadeva and so earned the name of Mrigayadhishvara or the god of the chase. The temple was built in 1170 by Jagjivanrav Povar whose brother built the temple of Kapaleshvar in Panchavati. The temple has no endowments and no special ceremonies. About 100 yards (91.44 metres) west of Murdeshvar’s in a lane on the Delhi gate road is a temple of Someshvar, a stone building with a domed top and a large linga.
Kapurthala monuments: In the river-bed, about fifty yards (45.72 metres) south of Balaji’s temple, are the Kapurthala monuments, which were built in memory of the chief of that state who died at Aden on his way to England in 1870. They include a shrine or samadhi, a fountain, and a rest-house with temple. The samadhi near the ferry is a plain stone structure with a marble inscription slab. It is moderate in size and of no particular interest. The fountain in the bed of the river, with an extensive stone pavement around it, is a handsome structure erected at a cost of Rs. 12,610. It is about thirty feet (9.14 metres) high and consists of a basalt basement with three steps, and over it a square superstructure with sides of white perforated marble. The whole is surmounted by a flat melon-shaped dome. On each side is carved a lion’s head. On the south face is the following inscription:�
“Erected in memory of His Highness Furzund Dilbund Rasukhoolat quad-Doulut-i-Englishia Raja-i-Rajgam Rajah Rundheer Singh Bahadur Ahloowallia, G. C. S. C Valee I Kapoorthalla Boundee Batonlee and Acouna. Born in March 1832, 15th Chef Sumbut 1888, and died at sea near Aden in April 1870, 22nd Chef Sumbut 1926 on his way to England, to which country he was proceeding to pay his respects to Her Most Gracious Majesty Queen Victoria, Sovereign of the United Kingdom of England Ireland and Scotland and Empress of India and the Colonies.”
On the north face are inscriptions in Sanskrit and Urdu to the same purport. The Kapurthala rest-house, which is about twenty yards (18.48 metres) west of the fountain, is about thirty feet (9.14 metres) above the river-bed and is reached by twenty-four steps. The rest-�house was built at a cost of Rs. 14,690. It is a cut-stone building with an open central court about thirty feet by twenty (9.14 � 6.09 metres). In the west or back wall a shrine with images of Rama, Lakshmana, Sita, Ganga and Godavari.
Between the Delhi and Nav gates, about seventy yards (64 metres) south-east of Murdeshvar’s, is the open altar-like shrine or Chabutra of Mukteshvar with a linga. It is entirely in the bed of the river, and during the rains is surrounded by water. Near the altar are two holy pools or tirthas called Medha and Koti. The altar-shrine stands on a cut-stone plinth at the top of a flight of three stone-steps. Yearly festivals are held on Akshayatritiya (May-June) and Mahashivaratra (January-February), the charges being met by the Dikshit family. The shrine and the flights of steps were built in 1782 by Ganpatrav Ramchandra Dikshit. Close-by, on the river-bank is a temple of Siddheshvar and one of the best rest-houses in Nasik, which were built in 1830 by a banker known as Chandorkar at a cost of Rs. 15,000. In the space in front of Chandorkar’s rest-house, and about twenty-five yards (22.86 metres) to the south along the bed of the river, about fifty tombs or samadhis, mark spots where Hindus have been buried or burnt. A little to the south of these tombs is a shrine of Maruti called the Rokda or Cash Maruti from his practice of attending to no vows that are not paid in advance.
Nilkantheshvar: About eighty yards (73.15 metres) south of Rokda Maruti’s shrine are the Satyanarayan temple and monastery, Nilkantheshvar’s shrine, and a small temple of Modkeshvar Ganapati, Satyanarayan’s shrine and monastery are in the same building which is of wood and has a small niche to Devi in the west or back wall, and a shrine of Satyanarayan in a corner of the south wall A door in the north corner of this building leads to a small temple, of Nilkantheshvar Mahadeva. It is a stone building with a shrine and porch. The shrine has what looks like an old door-post of about the twelfth or thirteenth century much like the door-post of the ruined Someshvar temple at Gangapur six miles (9.65 km.) west of Nasik. The shrine is about twelve square feet (1.114 square metres) and has a linga with a high case or salunkha. In the Porch facing the linga is a bull or nandi which appears to be antique. A door in the north-east corner of this temple leads to the shrine of Modkeshvar Ganapati, the object of worship being a large red figure of Ganapati in the centre of the building between two pillars.
Durgadevi: About 150 yards (137.16 metres) south-east of Satyanarayan’s monastery a winding road missing the Ashra gate leads to the shrine of Durgadevi, a small stone and mortar building about four feet (1.219 metres) wide and eight feet high (2.438 metres), having within its back or west wall an image of Durgadevi besmeared with red lead. About 190 yards (173.73 metres) south-east of Durgadevi’s shrine are the Varashimpi’s steps which were built by a tailor named Vara. Here also are steps which lead up to the ruined Ketki gate and four shrines or Chhatris erected in memory of cremated or buried Hindus, one of them in honour of the father of Mr. Raghoji Trimbakji Sanap.
Talkute: About 100 yards (91.44 metres) further south, is the Talkute temple, the last building on the right bank of the river. It is a small Mahadeva’s temple of stone with rich ornament and a grace�ful porch dome and spire. It was built in 1783 by a tailor named Sopanshet Talkute, at an estimated cost of Rs. 20,000. It contains a linga and in the porch is a bull or nandi. When in flood the river surrounds the temple. About a hundred yards (91.44 metres) south of this temple is one of the two Hindu cremation grounds.
Besides the temples described above, there are others of lesser importance. The Lakshmi-Narayan temple in Chandvadkar galli, though the recent construction, contains attractive crystal idols of Lakshmi and Narayan. It was built by one Annapurnabai, wife of one Vaman Dhakdev Chaughule Yeshvantrav Maharaj samadhi and mandir is yet another noteworthy temple on the bank of the river. It is built on the place where Yeshvantrav Maharaj alias Dev, a local saint, took samadhi in 1887. The temple and samadhi have been built by his followers and are after the style of the Pandharpur temple. The spacious yard around serves as a public meeting place. The whole has cost about Rs. 20,000. Behind Bhatji Maharaj’s monastery is a temple of Dattatraya with a one-faced idol of Dattatraya which is the only one of its kind in Nasik. Amongst the memorials the most outstanding is the Mahatma Gandhi Jyot, a tapering pillar-like structure of marble on top of a dharmashala. It is near the Ramakund on the right bank of the river where Gandhi’s ashes were immersed.
Vithoba: Including those in Panchavati, there are innumerably temples on the left bank and side of the river. Beginning with those farthest up the stream, the first beyond the Aruna, to the north-west of Kapaleshvar and about eighty yards (73.15 metres) north-west of the very holy Ramakund, is a temple of Vithoba locally held to be not less holy than Vithoba’s temple at Pandharpur. The buildings include an enclosed yard with a rest-house. In the right of the yard is the monastery of the Bairagi in charge; and in the left the temple, a brick and stone building, with a porch and an inner temple and spire. The image is supposed to be the same as the Pandharpur Vithoba. The story is that one Vishvanath or Devdatta, a blind or sick Brahman, for the accounts vary, was left by a band of Pandharpur pilgrims in Nasik. In his grief that he would not be able to see the god, he sat by the river mourning and refusing food. While he sat, Vithoba in the form of a Brahman tempted him to eat, but in vain. This devotion so pleased the god that he assumed his proper form, and in answer to Vishvanath’s prayer promised to remain in Nasik, The temple was built in 1755 by Tatya Kakirde at an estimated cost of about Rs. 5,000. In the shrine is the image of Vithoba, two and a half feet (0.762 metre) high with Radha on his right and Rukmini on his left. A large fair is held on Ashadha Shuddha 11th (June-�July), and on the second day many Brahmans are fed. The Bairagi’s monastery near the temple was built 135 years ago by Bairagis at a cost of Rs. 10,000. To the north and west are rest-houses which are usually full of Bairagis. In the monastery are many metal images, chiefly on Rama, Lakshmana and Sita. To the south, on a raised plat�form, is an image of five-faced or panchmukhi Maruti, built by Jagjivanrav Povar in 1763. In the open air a few yards east of the five-�faced Maruti is Baneshvar linga. The foundation of a temple was laid in 1780, but the building was never finished. According to the local story the god warned the builder that he did not wish to have any temple. Persons in bad circumstances or suffering from fever often cover the Linga with rice and whey, a dish called Dahibhat. Near it is a temple in honour of the Godavari with an image of the goddess Ganga. It was built in 1775 by Gopikabai, the mother of Madhavrav, the fourth Peshva. To the north of the Ramakund are several other temples and stone rest-houses which also were built by Gopikabai at a total cost of Rs. 7,000. One of these is a temple sacred to the five gods or panchayatana, Ganapati, Samba, Devi, Surya and Vishnu. To the south-west of Ramakund are eleven small temples called the Panchdeval. They remain under water during the rains.
Ajgarbava’s monastery: Near the Ramakund about 30 yards (27.43 metres) south-east of Vithoba’s temple, is Ajgarbava’s monastery, a small plain structure. It was built in 1788 by Amritrav Shivdev Vinchurkar at an estimated cost of Rs. 5,000 in memory of Ajgarbava, a Kanoja Brahman, a cavalry soldier who turned ascetic. He was called Ajgarbava or the Ajgar devotee, because like the serpent of that name he was indifferent to anything that happened.
Ahalyabai buildings: About seventy feet (21.33 metres) south�-east of Ramakund are the Ahalyabai buildings including temples to Rama and Mahadeva, and a rest-house. These are all solid structures which were built at an estimated cost of Rs. 25,000 in 1785 by the princess Ahalyabai Holkar, the famous temple-builder. Rama’s temple is a massive square building of brick and stone with an outside flight of steps. It contains images of Rama, Lakshmana and Sita, which are said to have been all found in the Ramakund. There are also images of Ahalyabai and Maruti. Special festival in honour of the images are held in the Chaitra navaratra (March-April) from the first to the ninth day of the bright half of the month. To the south of Rama’s temple is Mahadeva’s temple generally called the Gora nandi or Gora Mahadeva. It is a graceful building with porch, shrine and spire. The object of worship is a linga. To the east of the temple of White Mahadeva is a rest-house, with a row of arches along the east and west fronts.
Shiva Kampaleshvar: East of Ajgarbava’s monastery, about fifty feet (15.24 metres) above the river-bank at the top of a high flight of steps, about forty yards (36.57 metres) from the Ramakund and exactly opposite Sundar-narayan’s is the temple of Shiva Kampaleshvar or the skull-wearing Mahadeva. The present building stands on the site of an older temple which was destroyed by the Moghals. Its architecture is square and massive with little ornament. Its shrine is at the east end. Its notable white cement dome once distinguished it from the neighbouring temples. Due to neglect and want of proper care, rain and heat has turned the white dome black. The only object of worship is a linga which has no guardian bull. This is one of the most important temples in Nasik and is always visited by pilgrims. The interior was built by Kolis in 1738 at an estimated cost of Rs. 5,000 and the outer or western part at a cost of Rs. 10,000 in 1763 by Jagjivanrav Povar, a Maratha officer, whose descendants were later headmen of Nasik. The following tale explains the origin of the name God of the Skulls, and the absence of the attendant bull. In the course of a discussion as to which of them was the chief of the gods Brahma’s taunts so enraged Shiva that he cut off one of the Brahma’s heads. The skull stuck to Shiva’s back and as he was unable to get rid of his burden in heaven he fled to earth. Wandering in search of a place where he might wash away his guilt, he chanced to hear a white bull tell his mother that he would kill his master, a Brahman, and then go to the Godavari and wash away the sin. Shiva watched the bull slay his master, turn black with guilt, go to a pool in the Godavari, and come out as white as snow. The god followed the bull’s example and on taking a dip in the pool the skull dropped off. In reward for the bull’s advice Shiva is said to have excused him from doing duty in front of his temple. The flight of steps up the hill in front of this temple was built by Krishnaji Patil Povar, a relation of Jagjivanrav, at a cost of Rs. 15,000. The days sacred to the god are Mahashivaratra (January-February), Mondays in Shravana and Vaikuntha Chaturdashi (December-January). On Mahashivaratra, at about four in the afternoon, a silver mask of Mahadeva is laid in a palanquin, taken round Panchavati, and bathed in the Ramakund. On this day and on Vaikuntha Chaturdashi (December-January) thousands of people of Nasik visit the temple. On both of these days the god wears the silver mask and is adorned with rich clothes and flowers. On the night of Vaikuntha Chaturdashi (December-January) the god is dressed half as Mahadeva and half as Parvati. On every Monday in Shravana at three in the afternoon the silver mask is laid in a palanquin and taken round Panchavati when about a hundred people accompany the procession. On its return the mask is bathed in the Ramakund and worshipped. A public trust has been created and the temple receives cash allowance from the Government.
Pataleshvara: About fifty yards (45.72 metres) north of Kampaleshvara’s is a well-built stone temple of Pataleshvara, facing east. The temple, which is handsomely ornamented, is said to have been built by one Bhagvat a few years after Ramji’s temple. It was struck by lightning some years ago. Traces of the damage can still be seen in the north-east corner.
Indrakund: About 400 yards (365.76 metres) north of Pataleshvara’s, on the wooded banks of the Aruna stream, is a built pool called Indrakund where Indra is said to have bathed and been cured of the thousand ulcers with which he was afflicted under the curse of the sage Gautama whose wife he had violated. The pool holds water throughout the year.
About eighty yards (73.15 metres) south of Indrakund is Muthe’s Mandir, a temple of Rama, built in 1863 by Ganpatrav Muthe in memory of his father. To the west under a canopy is a Maruti looking east. The temple has floor of white marble and several square wooden pillars supporting a gallery. From the ceiling are hung many lamps. In the shrine which faces west, are images of Rama and Sita.
Krishna: About 150 yards (137.16 metres) north of Muthe’s Mandir is a large building known as Raste’s vada said to have been built about 1760 by a member of the Raste family. Opposite the vada is Gopikabai�s Krishna Mandir, a wooden building with a central hall and side aisles supported by plain pillars which uphold a gallery where women sit to hear kathas and puranas.
Sita Gumpha: About half a mile east of the Krishna Mandir, and about fifty yards (45.72 metres) north-east of the temple of Kala Rama, close to some very old and lofty banyan trees, which are believed to have sprung from the five banyans which gave its name to Panchvati, is the Sita Gumpha or Sita’s Cave. The cave is hid by a modem rest-house whose front is adorned with some well-carved wooden brackets in the double lotus and chain style. A large ante�room (30′ 9″ x 8′ 2″ x 8’=9.37 x 2.48 x 2.43 metres) leads into an inner room (l9′ x I2′ 4″ x 10’=5.79 x 3.75 x 3.04 metres) in whose back wall a door leads down seven steps to a valued chamber (5′ 8″ broad and 7′ high=1.72 and 2.13 metres). In the back of the chamber a door opens into a close dark shrine on a two-feet (0.609 metre) higher level with images of Rama, Lakshmana and Sita in a large niche in the back wall. A door (2′ 7″ x 1′ 8″=0.787 X 0.508 metre) in the left wall of the shrine leads one step down to a small ante-room (3′ x 2′ 6″ x 5′ 2″=0.914 X 0.762 X 1.574 metres) at the foot of the left wall of which an opening I’ 8″ (0.509 metre) high by I’ 3″ (0.381 metre) broad, only just large enough to crawl through, leads two steps down to a vaulted room (9′ 3″ x 5′ x 9′ 9″=2.81 X 1.52 X 2.97 metres). A door in the east wall of this room leads to a shrine of Mahadeva on a one foot (0.304 metre) higher level. The shrine is vaulted and contains a linga symbol. All these rooms and shrines are without any opening for air or light. Behind the Mahadeva shrine is said to be the entrance to an underground passage, now blocked, which led six miles (9.65 km.) north to Ramsej hill, where Rama used to sleep. It was in this cave that Rama used to hide Sita when he had to leave her, and it was from here that Sita was carried by Ravana disguised as a religious beggar. The shrine has no grant. The ministrant, who is a Kunbi Gosavi, lives on the dakshina given by the pilgrims and the charge levied on account of the lamp-carrier who guides the pilgrims through the cave. He is said to make a considerable income.
Karta Maruti: Above 900 yards (823 metres) east of Sita Gumpha, is the temple of Karla Maruti on high ground beyond the Vaghadi stream. It was built by Raghunath Bhat Karte in 1781. The image of Maruti is about nine feet (2.74 metres) high. In the neighbourhood are a temple of Mahalakshmi built by Khedkar at a cost of Rs. 2,000 to the west and an eight-sided temple of Murlidhar to the south without any image. The image which belonged to this temple as well as the image of Narhari were brought into the town when Narsingpura was deserted. Close-by, in Ganeshvadi is a temple with a red image of Ganapati, which was built in 1767 by the Kulkarni of Nasik at a cost of Rs. 5,000. A fair is held on Pausha Vadya 4.
There is a description of an earthen mound nearabout Sita gumpha appearing in the old Nasik District Gazetteer. Today there are no traces of this earthen mound as the area round about is full of houses recently constructed. However, a description of the same is reproduced below: �
Earthen mound: In the south side of a field, about a hundred yards (91.44 metres) south-east of Sita’s cave, is a smooth-flat-topped mound of earth about thirty feet (9.14 metres) high, ninety paces round, and twelve feet (3.65 metres) across at the top. The mound is much like the Gangapur mound and the whole of the surface is of earth. There is no legend connected with it. The popular, and probably the correct, belief is that the mound was made at the time of building Kala Rama’s temple, which is about eighty yards (73.15 metres) to the west of it. The earth is said to have formed a slope to the top of the walls up which the heavy stones used in building the temple were dragged. When the building was finished the earth was cleared away from the walls and piled into this mound. Large number of stone-chips scattered over the mound support the belief. At the same time these stone-chips may be only a surface deposit, and considering its likeness to the Gangapur and Malhar mounds to the west of the city this mound seems worth examining.
Kala Rama: About eighty yards (73.15 metres) west of the earthen mound is the temple of Kala Rama or Shri Rama, one of the finest temples in Western India. A seventeen-feet (5.18 metres) high wall of plain dressed stone surrounds a well-kept enclosure 245 feet (74.67 metres) long by 105 feet (32 metres) broad. It is entered through a gate in the middle of each of the four walls. Over the east gate is a drum chamber or nagarkhana, which, at a height of about thirty feet (9.14 metres) from the ground, commands a line general view of Nasik. Inside of the wall, all round the enclosure runs a line of cloisters of pointed Musalman arches. In front of the cloisters, on each side, is a row of trees, most of them ashoks, Jonesia asoka. In the centre of the north wall a staircase leads to a fiat roof twelve feet (3.65 metres) broad, twenty-one feet (6.40 metres) high, and about four feet (1.21 metres) below the level of the top of the parapet that runs along its outer edge. In the east of the enclosure is a detached outer hall or sabhamandap (75′ x 31′ x I2’= 22.86 x 9.44 x 3.65 metres) open all round, handsomely and plainly built of dressed stone. It is supported on four rows of square stone pillars, ten pillars in each row. The rows of pillars, which are about twelve feet (3.65 metres) high, form a central and two side passages, each pair of pillars in the same row being connected by a Musalman arch with waving edges. The hall stands on a plinth about a foot above the level of the court. The hall is used for kathas or Marathi sermons, and for purana or scripture reading. About two yards (1.82 metres) from the north-west corner of the hall are a shrine of Ganapati to the right and of Martanda to the left [These two small shrines are old. They were preserved under an agreement by Odhekar when he bought the ground on which the temple stands.] About four yards (3.65 metres) further west, on a star-shaped stone plinth about two and a half feet (0.762 metre) high, stands the temple, eighty-three feet (25.29 metres) from east to west by sixty feet (18.28 metres) from north to south. It has one main porch with a cupola roof to the east and small doves to the north and south. The central dome and the dome over the eastern cupola are in the grooved melon style. On the top of each is a water-pot with a stopper in its mouth. The spire, which is sixty-nine feet (21 metres) high and surmounted with a gift cone, is plain except that up its edges there runs a curious fringe of water-pots, whose outsides are protected by sheaths. The general plain�ness of the temple is relieved by horizontal bands of moulding. In each of the side walls and in the north and south faces of the tower are two empty niches, and at the east end of the spire is the figure of a lion. In the west wall are two niches in the tower and one in the spire. The whole is simple, elegant, and finely finished. The beautiful stone was brought from Dhair or Bhorgad fort near Ramsej, six miles (9.65 km.) north of Nasik. The temple is supposed to stand on the spot where Rama lived during his exile. It was built in 1782 by Sardar Rangrav Odhekar on the site of an old wooden temple to which belonged the shrines of Ganapati and Martanda, noticed above. The work is said to have lasted twelve years, 2,000 persons being employed daily. According to an inscription in the shrine the total cost was about Rs. 23,00,000. In the shrine in the west of the temple, on a beauti�fully carved platform, stand images of Rama, Lakshmana and Sita, of black stone about two feet (0.609 metre) high. The image of Rama has gold moustaches and golden gloves. Besides the images mentioned, there are many of metal and stone, chiefly of Martanda, Ganapati, Dattatraya and Maruti. The temple enjoys a yearly Government grant and the land income from the inam village of Shingve. The Odhekar family also gives Rs. 80 a month, and about Rs. 1,000 a year are realised from the daily presents.
The first part of the daily service consists of the kakad-arti or wick-�waving at about six in the morning, when about 100 persons attend. At about ten a service by the temple ministrant follows. It consists of bathing the images, dressing them with clothes, ornaments and flowers, burning incense and a clarified butter lamp, and offering food or naivedya. On this occasion no visitors attend. About nine at night is the shej-arti or the bed-waving, when twenty to fifty persons attend. The day specially sacred to the god is Ramanavami, a festival which lasts for thirteen days in Chaitra (March-April). The rites differ from those of ordinary days in nothing except that the robes and ornaments are richer and more beautiful. The attendance is considerably larger. On the eleventh of these thirteen days is the car or ratha fair, when people from the town and the villages round attend to the number of 50,000 to 60,000. At this time the temple is so crowded that both gates have to be used, the east for men and the north for women. Two cars presented by Gopikabai, the mother of Madhavrav, the fourth Peshva (1761-1772), are driven through the city. The cars are kept in repair by the Raste family and the temple ministrant respectively. They are similar in appearance except that one is larger than the other. The larger consists of a wooden platform 11′ x 8′ (3.35 x 2.43 metres) on solid wooden wheels. On the platform twelve wooden pillars support a canopy and at one end is a smaller canopy in which the images of the god are placed during the procession. The larger car conveys the image of Rama and about ten Brahmans. It is pulled by about 100 people with ropes. The smaller car called Vimana carries an image of Maruti and some Brahmans and is pulled by about fifty people. The cars start about three in the afternoon and are brought back to the temple about twelve at night. The route is from the temple by Karta Maruti, through Ganeshvadi and the fair-weather market by Rameshvar and Ramakund and Raste’s mansion back to the Kala Rama temple. In the soft sandy surface of the fair-weather market the cars are dragged backwards and forwards. The cars reach Ramakund about seven in the evening and stop there for three hours, when a complete service with fireworks is performed. During the whole time that the procession is moving the temple ministrant has to walk back�wards, his face towards the car and his hands folded.
The other special holidays are the eleventh day, Ekadashi, in each fortnight of every Hindu month, when in the evening the footprints or padukas of Rama are set in a palanquin and is carried round the temple inside the outer wall. Except in Ashadha and Karttika (July and November) when 200 to 300 people come, the attendance is not more than 100 or 150. This palanquin show also takes place on the Dasara, the tenth of the bright half of Ashvina (September-October) when the padukas are taken outside the town to cross the boundary. About 100 people attend and 1,000 to 2,000 persons visit the temple on Dasara day. On the Makara Sankranti (14th January) 4,000 to 10,000 persons, chiefly men, visit the temple. On the next day (15th January), almost all Hindu women visit the temple to offer turmeric or halad,saffron or kunku, and sugared sesamum to Rama’s wife Sita and give them to each other. Ramanavmi is also celebrated when about 60,000 devotees gather at the temple.������� .
Bhairav: To the north of Rama’s temple is a shrine of Bhairav which was built in 1793 by Kanphate Gosavis at an estimated cost of about Rs. 1,000. Close to the north of it is a monastery built by Kanphate Gosavis in 1773 and repaired in 1858 by an idol-seller. It has a linga of Mahadev and several ascetics tombs.
Shankaracharya Monastery: Leaving Kala Rama’s by the middle door in the south wall, a winding road leads south-west towards the river. After about fifty yards (45.72 metres), a large two-storeyed rest-house on the left gives entrance to an enclosure in the centre of which is a tomb of a Shankaracharya or Shaiv pontiff, and a temple of Shiva with wooden pillars on the north and some fine stone masonry in the south. At the back of the enclosure is a large three-storeyed monastery for Shaiv ascetics.
In the time of the second Peshva (1720-1740) Sachchidanand Shankaracharya is said to have come from Shringeri in Mysore and stayed in Nasik. He died in Nasik after choosing as his successor a disciple of the name of Brahmanand. Soon after his appointment Brahmanand sickened and died within a month. Both are buried in this enclosure. The tombs and temple are said to have been built by the Peshva Savai Madhavrav (A. D. 1774), the front rest-home by Nana Fadnis (1760-1800), and the monastery by Naro Shankar (1750). The total cost is estimated at Rs. 16,000. A fine bust of Shankaracharya has been installed on the tomb. Besides an allowance from the revenues of Pimpalner, the monastery has a yearly Government grant. About eighty yards (73.15 metres) further west a paved lane, lined with rest-houses and small shops, leads to the river-bank a little above Naro Shankar’s temple.
Rameshvar or Naro Shankar: Naro Shankar’s Temple, also called the temple of Rameshvar, is the richest and most highly sculptured building in Nasik. It stands on the left bank of the Godavari opposite to Balaji’s and Tarakeshvar’s temples and to the east of the Ramagaya pool in which Rama is said to have performed funeral services in memory of his father. The temple, though smaller than Kala Rama’s, the enclosure being 124′ X 83′ (37.79 X 25.29 metres), is more richly carved, and has some humorous and cleverly designed figures of ascetics. The temple stands in the middle of the enclosure. It includes a porch with the usual bull or nandi, an inner domed hall capable of holding about seventy-five persons, and the shrine facing west which contains the linga and is surmounted by a spire. The outer roof is elaborately carved, being a succession of pot-lids, arrayed in lines and adorned at intervals with grotesque and curious figures of men; monkeys, tigers and elephants. The west or main entrance porch has waving edged arches and many niches filled with cleverly cut figures. The top of the wall which encloses the temple is eleven feet (3.35 metres) broad. At each corner are semi-circular domes about ten feet (3.14 metres) in diameter, and there is a fifth dome in the middle of the west wall with a large bell, dated 1721 in European Arabic numbers. The bell which is six feet (1.828 metres) in circumference at the lip is probably Portuguese. It is said to have been brought either from Bassein or from Delhi; but Bassein is more likely. In the great flood of 1872 the water of the river rose to the level of the bell. The top of the wall near the bell commands a fine view of the right bank of the Godavari. A high wall runs along the river-bank, and over the wall rises a row of large three or four storeyed houses. From the high ground to the north the land slopes towards the central hollow of the Sarasvati. From the Sarasvati confused piles of gable ends rise up the slopes of Chitraghanta hill and behind it are the high lands of Mhasrul hill, Dingar Ali, and Ganesh hill stretching east to Sonar Ali, on the crest of the north scarp of which is Mr. Raghoji Sanap’s house and to the east the level top of the Old Fort. The temple was built in 1747 by Naro Shankar Raja Bahadur of Malegaon at an estimated cost of Rs. 18,00,000. The flight of steps leading from the water’s edge to the temple was also built by Naro Shankar in 1756 at a cost of Rs. 60,000. To the north of Naro Shankar’s temple is a shrine of the goddess Saptashringi. Further north and out in the river a memorial building, with an arched and pillared veranda to the west, was built in 1878 by the widow of the family-priest of the Maharaja of Kolhapur in memory of her husband.
Besides these temples and shrines, along both sides of the river facing the different bathing pools or kundas, are a number of small temples and shrines dedicated some to Mahadeva, some to Ganapati, some to Devi, and some to Maruti. These are all completely under water during floods. They seem never to be repaired and no one seems to look after them, except that the municipality cleans them when they get choked with mud.
Bhadrakali: This completes the temples and shrines on or near the banks of the Godavari. Besides these, the interior of Nasik has about twenty temples and shrines, most of them of Devi and one of Shani or the planet Saturn. The most important of these is Bhadrakali’s temple in Tiundha Peth originally known as Tiundha cross, a shrine without a dome or spire built by Ganpatrav Dikshit Patvardhan in 1790 at a cost of Rs. 30,000. It enjoys a yearly grant. It consists of an outer stone and brick wall with an entrance facing west. Inside this wall is a large open court-yard, with, on the south side, small garden, a well, and a building. The building is a well-�built two-storeyed house with a tiled roof, and consists of an outer hall or sabhamandap and a shrine. The hall which is about three feet (0.914 metre) higher than the court-yard is seventy feet by forty feet (21.33 X 12.19 metres), and has a gallery all-round for the use of women. At the east end of the hall facing west is the shrine containing nine images on a raised stone seat. The chief image is of copper less than a foot high. On either side of the central image are four stone images each about two and a half feet high (0.762 metre), and at the foot of each four small metal images each less than a foot high. The yearly festival is in October during the Navaratra or nine nights, of the bright half of Ashvina, when about fifty Brahmans sit during the day in the hall reading the saptashati or seven hundred verses in honour of Devi from the Markandeya Purana. Puranas are read in the afternoon or at night, and lectures with music or kirtans are delivered at night. Attached to the temple is a hall meant for marriage and such other auspicious ceremonies. There is also a Veda Shala where instruction in the four Vedas is given. This temple plays a leading part in the services which are occasionally practised during outbreaks of cholera. When the city is visited by cholera, verses from the saptashati to appease Devi and the planets are recited by a large number of Brahmans for ten or twelve days. Then in honour of Kali the Brahmans light a sacred fire and offer her the finest incense, butter, rice, oil, and flowers, wood of holy trees, and sacred grass. The rice is cooked and about eighty pounds are placed in a cart, turmeric, saffron and red powder are spread over it, and burning incense-stick and five torches are set in the rice, one in the middle and four at the comers. At each corner the stem of a plantain tree is fixed and to one of the plaintain trees a sheep is tied. A Mang woman who is supposed to be possessed by the cholera goddess, declares whence the cholera spirit came and how long it will stay. She is bathed in hot water and dressed in a green robe and blue bodice, her forehead is marked with vermilion, a cocoanut, a comb, a vermilion-box, five betel-nuts, five plantains, five guavas, five pieces of turmeric, and a pound of wheat are tied in her lap, and her face is veiled by the end of her robe. Four bullocks are yoked to the cart and in front of the cart the Mang woman, with folded hands, walks backwards, facing the cart, supported by two men. Lemons are waved round her head and cut and thrown away. In front of the woman walk a band of musicians and a crowd of men, women and children follow the cart cheering loudly. The cart is dragged out at the furthest point from that at which cholera first appeared, about two miles, to where four roads meet and is there emptied. Two or three days after a feast is given to Brahmans and milk or a mixture of milk, curds and clarified butter is poured round the city as an offering to the cholera spirit. Bhatias and other rich pilgrims if they feed as many as three or four thousand Brahmans sometimes hold the feast in Kala Rama’s temple, but when, as is usually the case, not more than 500 are fed the feast is held in Bhadrakali’s temple. The Navaratra festival ends on the last day of the full-moon of Ashvina (October). On the night of this day, which is known as the vigil full-moon or the Kojagiri Paurnima, a fair is held and attended by a large number of people. On the same night fairs are also held at Kapaleshvar, Panchratneshvar and Tilbhandeshvar.
Near Bhadrakali’s stands the temple of Saturn or Shani. It consists of a small shrine built into a wall and containing a rude stone image covered with red lead. The image is worshipped every Saturday and also whenever the planet Saturn enters a new sign of the Zodiac.
Renuka: The two Renuka Mandirs in new and old Tambat Ali belong to the Tambats. Each has a tiled roof without dome or spire. These temples contain no images but those of Renuka. The chief festivals are during the Navaratra or the first nine nights of the bright half of Ashvina (October) and on the full-moon of Karttika (November).
There is a Sarasvati Keshava mandir near Dingar Ali.
Jarimari: There are three small temples of Jarimari or the cholera goddess in three different places beyond town-limits. The ministrants who are Marathas make considerable gains, especially when cholera is prevalent, as members of all castes make the goddess presents of cooked rice and curds called dahibhat, a bodice or choli, cocoanut and money.
Mahadeva: There are two temples of Mahadeva. One near Jenappa’s steps was built by a Lingayat in 1828. The other near Gharpure’s steps was built by Rambhat Gharpure in 1776 with the help of the Peshvas.
Ganapati: There are two temples to Ganapati, a domed building inside the Nav Gate made by Hingne, the other in the mandir or dwelling house style about fifty feet east of the jail in Aditvar Peth, built by Bapaji Lathe and enjoying a yearly Government grant.
Khandoba: The temple of Khandoba on the Malhar Tekdi outside the Malhar gate was built in 1748 by Mahadaji Govind Kakirde at a cost of Rs. 5,000. It contains an image of Martanda on horse-back. Fairs are held on Champa-shashthi and Magh Paurnima (January-�February).
Svaminarayan: The Svaminarayan monastery is in the Somvar Peth and has the tomb of a saintly ascetic or Siddha-purusha.
The Shenvis’ monastery is just to the north of the spot where Collector’s office was situated previously.
Besides these temples and shrines Nasik, including Panchvati, has about thirty rest-houses, several of which, especially in Panchvati, have been built by Bombay Bhatias. A recent addition is the Gadg e Maharaj dharmashala near Rama Setu. There is one Sadavarta for the free distribution of cooked food. Daily 20 students are served with free food.
Bathing places: In the bed, of the Godavari, between Govardhan about six miles (9.65 km.) to the west and Tapovan about a mile and a half (two kilometres) to the south-east of Nasik, are various bathing-places called tirthas and sacred pools called kundas. Most of the bathing-places are named after some Puranic personage with whose history they are believed to be associated; all except three of the pools take their names from their builders. There are in all twenty-four tirthas of which eleven are between Govardhan and Nasik, ten between Sundar-narayan’s steps and Mukteshvar’s shrine, opposite the Delhi gate, and three below Mukteshvar’s shrine.
The eleven tirthas between Govardhan-Gangapur and Nasik are Govardhan, Pitri, Galav, Brahma, Rinmochana, Kanva or Kshudha, Papanashana, Vishvamitra, Shveta, Koti and Agni. The Govardhan tirtha is at the village of Govardhan. It is believed that the gift of one cow at this tirtha is equal to the gift of 1,000 cows in any other place, and that a visit to a Mahadeva temple in the neighbourhood secures as much merit as the gift of a mountain of gold anywhere else. The Pitri or spirits’ tirtha is to the south of Govardhan tirtha. A bath in this holy place and the offering of water to the spirits of the dead are supposed to secure them a place in heaven. Galav tirtha, called after a Puranic sage of that name, is believed to be as holy as the Pitri tirtha. Its water frees the bather from sin and secures him a seat, in Brahma’s abode, the home of pious spirits. Near the Galav tirtha, is the Brahma tirtha whose water ensures the bather being born a Brahman in the next life, and gives him the power of knowing God both by thought and by sight. Rinmochana tirtha, as its name implies, is the debt-releasing pool. The pilgrim who bathes here and makes gifts to Brahmans is freed from all debts on account of neglected offerings. The Kanva or Kshudha tirtha is near the Rinmochana tirtha. The following legend explains the names: There lived in the neighbour�hood a sage named Kanva. In his religious rambles he happened to come to the hermitage of Gautam Muni, a Jain saint. The sun was high, Kanva was hungry and tired, but he would not ask food from a Jain saint even though the saint had abundant food. Kanva toiled on to the Godavari, sat on its bank, and prayed to the river and to the goddess of food Annapurna. The deities were touched by the earnest�ness of his prayers and appearing in human form satisfied his hunger. They told him that whoever, at that place, would offer such prayers as his would never want for food. The next is the Papanshana or sin-�destroying tirtha. It is near the steps leading to the old temple of Someshvar about a mile east of Govardhan-Gangapur. The legend says that a bath in its water cured a leprosy which had been sent as a punish�ment for incest. This place is held in great veneration. Near the Papana�shana tirtha is the Vishvamitra tirtha. Here during a famine the sage Vishvamitra propitiated Indra and the gods by offering them the flesh of a dead dog, the only thing he could find to offer. The gods were pleased and at the sage’s desire freed the earth from the curse of famine. The next is the Shveta tirtha. It has great purifying power and is believed to free women from the evil spirit of barrenness. So great is the power of this tirtha that a man named Shveta, who lived near it and who died while in the act of worshipping a linga, was restored to life. The God of Death was himself killed for destroy�ing a man in the act of worship and was restored to life on condition that he would never again attack people while worshipping Shiva or Vishnu. Four miles (6.43 km.) east of Govardhan and about a mile west of Nasik is the Koti tirtha. Here is a flight of steps, and a temple of Kotishvar Mahadeva. The legend says that this is the scene of a fight between Shiva and a demon named Andhakasura in which Shiva was so hard pressed that the sweat poured down his brow and made a torrent which still flows into the Godavari at this place. This is regarded as making one koti or crore of the three and a half kotis of tirthas which are believed to take their rise from Shiva’s body. About has a mile west of Nasik, near the Malhar Mound, is the Agni tirtha. Near it is an ascetic’s monastery which was built about 230 years ago. The tirtha is believed to possess healing powers, and according to its legend, got its name because Agni, the god of fire, was cured of an illness by bathing in it.
Within Nasik limits, the first two tirthas are Badrikasangama, a little to the north-west of Sundar-narayan’s and Brahma tirtha in front of Sundar-narayan’s temple. At Badrikasangama a small stream falls into the Godavari. According to its legend, the supreme deity appeared here to one of his devotees in a bodily form and promised him that he would appear in the same form to anyone who bathed and prayed at this spot. Brahma tirtha is said to possess the power of sharpening and developing the intellect. According to its legend Brahma, the crea�tor, bathed here and refreshed his mind to enable him to complete without mistake the work of creation. Shiva and Vishnu also came to live near here, Shiva as Kapaleshvar in Panchvati on the left bank, and Vishnu as Sundar-narayan on the right bank. Between the Brahma tirtha and Rama’s Pool is the Shukla tirtha. Any pilgrim who bathes in it on Friday and rubs his body with white or Shukla sesamum is freed from sin. The next is the Asthivilaya or Bone-dissolving tirtha. This is the westmost part of Rama’s Pool, and into it are thrown all the bones of deceased relations which are brought by pilgrims to Nasik. Between Rama’s Pool and Naro Shankar’s temple, in front of which is the Ramagaya tirtha, are five tirthas. Aruna, Surra, Chakra, Ashvini and Dashashvamedha. Aruna tirtha is where the Aruna joins the Godavari near Rama’s Pool, and near it are the Surya, Chakra and Ashvini tirthas. The following legend explains the origin of these holy spots. Usha, the wife of the Sun, unable to bear her husband’s splendour, created a woman, exactly like herself, to fill her place. She gave her children into the charge of this woman and made her take an oath never to betray the secret to her husband, the Sun. Usha then went to the hermitage of the sage Kanva. In time the woman whom Usha had created bore three children to the Sun, and as she had her own children to look after, failed to take care of Usha’s children. They complained to their father and said they doubted if the woman really was their mother. The Sun, suspecting that he was deceived, went to Kanva’s hermitage in search of his wife. On seeing him Usha took the form of a mare ashvini and ran towards Janasthana, but Surya becoming a horse ran after and overtook her and in time a son was born who was named Ashvini-kumara or the mare’s son. The reconciliation of Surya and Usha was a day of great rejoicing. The Tapi and the Yamuna (believed to be the local Aruna and the Varuna or Vaghadi), daughters of the Sun, came to Janasthana to meet their parents. Brahma came to visit the Sun and offered him his five daughters, Medha, Shraddha, Savitri, Gayatri and Sarasvati. The river-bed between Rama’s Pool and the Sarasvati near Balaji’s temple is known by the name of Prayaga or the place of sacrifice. Brahma reduced the intense lustre of his son-in-law with his discus or chakra and this gave its name to the Chakra tirtha. Near the Chakra tirtha is the Ashvini or Mare’s tirtha. The holy spot known as the Dashashvamedha or Ten Horse Sacrifice lies between Rama’s Pool and Nilkan�theshvar’s temple. Its legend connects it with Sita’s father, king Janaka, who performed sacrifices here to gain a seat in heaven. He is believed to have established the linga of Nilkantheshvar. Next comes the Ramagaya tirtha in front of Naro Shankar’s temple. It is called Rama�gaya as Rama here performed his father’s obsequies. This completes the ten tirthas between Sundar-narayan and Mukteshvar.
Further down the river, on its left bank, is the Ahalya-sangam tirtha. Near it is a shrine of Mhasoba. About half a mile south-east of Nasik is the Kapila-sangam tirtha within the limits of Tapovan. Here, in a natural dam of trap rock which crosses the river, much like the natural dam at Govardhan, are two holes said to be the nostrils of Shurpanakha. She was a sister of Ravana, the enemy of Rama, who, wishing to marry Lakshmana, Rama’s brother, appeared before him in the form of a beautiful woman. Lakshmana, who did nothing without his brother’s advice, sent her for approval to Rama. The inspired Rama knew who she was and wrote on her back �Cut off this woman’s nose�. Lakshmana obeyed and the holes in the rock are considered to be Shurpanakha’s nostrils. About a hundred yards (91.44 metres) to the south of the nostrils, in the same belt of rock, which at this point forms the right bank of the river, are eleven plain rock-cut cells which are known as Lakshmana’s caves. About a mile further south is a second Papavinashana or Sin-cleansing tirtha, near which are tombs or samadhis ofascetics.
Holy Pools: The Kundas or Holy Pools in the bed of the Godavari are all between Sundar-narayan’s steps and Mukteshvar’s shrine. About fifty yards (45.72 metres) east of Sundar-narayan’s steps the water of the river passes through a narrow artificial gull ey called tas or the furrow. The gulley is 430′ long, 10′ broad and 10′ deep (131 x 3 x 3 metres), and was made by Gopikabai, the mother of Madhavrav, the fourth Peshva (1761-1772). About forty feet (12.19 metres) east of the tas is the first pool called Lakshmana’s Pool (68′ x 54′ = 20.72 x 16.45 metres). It is said to have been made by Sarsubhedar Mahadaji Govind Kakde in 1758. This pool is believed to contain a spring and its water is generally regarded as good and is said never to fail. In 1877-78 when the rest of the river was dry, Lakshmana’s Pool was full of water. From Lakshmana’s Pool a second gulley, called Dhanush or the Bow Pool, fifty feet (15.24 metres) long and five to seven feet (1.52 to 2.13 metres) broad, leads to. Rama’s Pool (83′ x 40′ = 25.29 x 12.19 metres). This is the holiest spot in Nasik, as it is believed to be the place where Rama used to bathe. It contains the bone-dissolving or Asthi�vilaya tirtha. It was built by Chitrarav, a landholder of Khatav in Satara, in 1696, and repaired by Gopikabai in 1782. Ten feet (3 metres) north of Rama’s Pool is Sita’s Pool (33′ x 30′ = 10 x 9.14 metres) which was built by Gopikabai. Twenty feet (6 metres) further south, in front of Ahalyabai’s temples, is Ahalyabai’s Pool (60′ x 42′ = 18.28 x 12.80 metres). It was built by the Indore princess Ahalyabai towards the dose of the eighteenth century (1766-1795). To the west of Ahalyabai’s Pool is Sharangpani’s Pool (39′ x 34′ = 11.88 x 10.36 metres)� which was built by a Deccan Brahman of that name in 1779. Twenty feet (6 metres) south of Ahalyabai’s Pool is Dutondya Maruti’s Pool about fifty square feet (4.64 square metres). Ten feet (3 metres) south of Sharangpani’s Pool is a long narrow pool called Panchdevalacha Pool and also known as the Sun’s or Surya Pool. It was probably built by Balaji Mahadev Oak (1758) who built the chief of the Panchdevale or Five Temples near it [Though called five temples, there are eleven.]. In this pool’ an inner pool has lately (1874) been built by the widow of Tatya Maharaj of Poona. Close to the south is a large nameless pool (2l6� x 90�= 65.83 x 27.43 metres). The next, close to the south and in front of Nilkantheshvar’s and Gora Rama’s temples, is Gora Rama’s or the Dashashvamedha Pool (256� x 132� = 78 x 40.23 metres). The part on the Nasik side was built in 1768 by Hingne and Raja Bahadur and the part on the Panchvati side by the last Peshva and Holkar, the Peshva’s portion being close to the side of the fair-weather market. Sixteen feet (4.87 metres) south of Gora Rama’s Pool, in front of Naro Shankar’s temple, is the Ramagaya Pool (110� x 90� = 33.52 x 27.43 metres). The part on the Nasik side was built by Krishnadas Paranjpe (1780) and the part on the Panchvati side by Naro Shankar’s brother Lakshmanshankar (1763). After this pool comes the main crossing of the Godavari which is sixteen feet broad between Tarake�shvar’s and Naro Shankar’s temples. Close to the south of the crossing is Sintode Mahadeva’s or the Peshva’s Pool (260� x 0� = 79.24 x 7.3 metres). In this pool meet the Varuna or Vaghadi, Sarasvati, Gayatri, Savitri and Shraddha streamlets. The pool was built by Bajirav I (1720�-1740) on the Nasik side, and by Kotulkar Gaydhani and a dancing girl named Chima on the Panchvati side. Twenty feet (6 metres) to the south is Khandoba’s Pool (79� x 88� = 24 x 26.52 metres) which was built by Trimbakrav Mama Pethe, the maternal uncle of Sadashivrav Bhau, the hero of Panipat. Next to the south is Oak’s Pool (122� x 44� = 37.18 x 13.41 metres) which was built by Krishnarav Gangadhar Oak (1795). This Pool is believed to be haunted by a Brahman spirit or Brahmarakshasa who drags people under water and drowns them. Further to the south is the Vaishampayana Pool which was built in 1870 by a pensioned Mamlatdar named Ganesh Narayan Vaishampayan and by the Mali community of Nasik. Last, in front of Mukteshvar’s shrine is the Mukteshvar Pool which was built in 1788 by Mom Vinayak Dikshit, a Mamlatdar under the Peshva, and enlarged by his son Nana Dikshit in 1828. This pool is considered specially holy.���������
Pilgrims: Several causes combine to make Nasik one of the five most holy places in India. The sacred Godavari, as it enters the city, takes a bend to the south which according to the Puranas, gives its water special holiness. Seven small streams join the Godavari at Nasik to which the holy names Aruna, Varuna, Sarasvati, Shraddha, Medha, Savitri and Gayatri have been given. There are two specially holy bathing places; the Brahma and the Asthivilaya or Bone-dissolving tirtha. Lastly and chiefly there is the belief that Rama, Sita and Lakshmana passed several years of their exile near Nasik.
The holiest spot in Nasik is Rama’s Pool or Ramakund, near the left bank of the river where it takes its first bend southwards through the town. Here it is joined by the Aruna and here also is the Bone�-dissolving Pool. In no part of the Godavari, not even at its sacred source, has its water more power to purify than it has in Rama’s Pool. As one’s father’s funeral rites are nowhere so effectively performed as at Gaya, 130 miles (209.21 km.) south-east of Benares, so the people of Upper India believe that a mother’s funeral rites are never so perfect as when performed after bathing in Rama’s Pool at Nasik. The waters of the Godavari at Rama’s Pool, and at its source in Trimbak, about eighteen miles (28.96 km.) south-west, are always sacred and cleaning. But in the Sinhastha year, once every twelfth year when the planet Jupiter enters the sign of the Lion, according to the local history, its waters have so special a purifying power that even the sacred rivers, the Ganga, the Narmada, the Yamuna, and the Sarasvati, come to wash in Godavari.
Every year from all parts of Western India, from Vidarbha. Andhra and the Madhya Pradesh, and especially in the great Sinhastha year from the farthest parts of India, pilgrims continually arrive at Nasik. They come all the year round but chiefly in March at the Ramanavami or car-festival time. Before the opening of the railway they used to travel in large bands under a Brahman guide, or in family parties in carts, or with the help of horses, ponies and bullocks. They always approached Nasik from the east or from the west and were careful to keep the rule against crossing the river until all pilgrim-rites were over. Now, except a few religious beggars all come by rail and road. Pilgrims’ parties coming in hired buses have become a regular feature in recent times due to good tar roads. Easy travelling has raised the number of pilgrims to about 20,000 in ordinary and 100,000 to 200,000 in Sinhastha years.
Pilgrims are of two main classes, laymen and devotees. The laymen are chiefly good-caste Hindus, Brahmans, Vanis, Rajputs, Vanjaris, craftsmen and husbandmen. A smaller number of Bhils, Mhars and others bathe in the river and feed the priest\. Among the lay pilgrims, men occasionally come alone, but, as a rule, all who can afford to bring their wives and children. From early times the pilgrim’s need of food and lodging and of having some one to officiate at the various religious ceremonies has supported a special class of priestly hosts and guides. These men are known as priests of the place or Kshetra upadhyas; they are sometimes also called Ramakundyas or priests of Rama’s Pool. All of them are Brahmans mostly of the Yajurvedi or Madhyandina sub-division and some of the families have held their posts of professional entertainers and guides for more than 300 years. Most of them are families of long standing who live in large ancestral houses in high comfort. Each family of guides has a certain number of families of different castes and from various parts of the country, to some member of which he or his forefathers have acted as guides. These families are called the guide’s patrons or yajmans. To guard against mistakes, and prevent any of their patrons leaving them in favour of a rival, each family of guides keeps a record of his patrons. This record, which, in some cases, lasts for over 300 years, is very detailed. It is kept in the form of a ledger, and contains letters signed by each patron giving his name and address, stating that on a certain date he visited Nasik as a pilgrim and went through the different rites; adding the names and addresses of his brothers, uncles, sons and other near relations; and enjoining his descendants or any member of the family who may visit Nasik, to employ the owner of the book as his priest. When another member of the family visits Nasik he states that he has seen the former’s letter and passes a fresh declaration, and a note is made of all family changes, births, marriages and deaths. Many of the longer established guides have entries relating to from 10,000 to 5,00,000 families of patrons, filling several volumes of manuscripts. The books are carefully indexed and the guides are well-versed in their contents. They need all their quickness and power of memory, as the pilgrims seldom know who their guides are, and the calling is too pleasant and too well paid not to draw keen competition. Though the system of yajmans or fixed priests continues even to the present day, this practice is going out of vogue as Nasik has a large number of lodges where the pilgrims can lodge and a large number of priests who are readily available to perform any type of ceremonies and oblations. The system of taking down the names and entering those in the ledgers, however, still continues. Pilgrims, on alighting at the railway station, at the toll house half-way to the town, or at the outskirts of the town, are met by guides or their agents well-dressed well-fed men with their books in their hands. The pilgrim, if he knows it, mentions his guide’s name; if he does not know it the guides offer their services. A pilgrim who is the first of his family to visit Nasik, accepts as a rule the offer of the first man who accosts him. But though he may not know it, the chances are that some member of his family has been at Nasik, and so long as he stays he is probably pestered by other guides, ask�ing his name, his family and his village, in hope that his family may be found enrolled among their patrons. Sometimes from an oversight or from a false entry, for false entries are not uncommon, a pilgrim finds his ancestors’ names in the books of more than one guide. In such cases the rule is to accept as priest the guide who has the oldest entry.
If they have relations or friends the pilgrims stay with them. If they have no friends they halt in rest-houses, or, as is more usual, in rooms provided by their guide, who gives them cooking pots, arranges for their grain, fuel and other supplies, and if they are rich engages a cook and a house servant. The lodging and boarding facili�ties in Nasik have deprived the priests of a considerable amount of their income, as in early days the pilgrims generally lodged and dined at the priests’ and paid them substantially for their services.
The ceremonies begin on the day of the arrival, or later, should there be any reason for delay. They generally last for three days, though if necessary they can be crowded into one. They are of two kinds, memorial rites for the peace of the dead, and bathing and alms-giving topurify the pilgrim from his own sins. When three days are devoted to these ceremonies, the first is spent in bathing and fasting, the second in the performance of memorial rites, and the third in feeding Brahmans and visiting the chief holy places in the city. The first and third days’ observances are conducted by the guides or their agents, and all pilgrims share in them. The memorial rites are managed by different priests, and only the chief mourners, women for their husbands and men for their fathers, take part in them. The first ceremony called the river present or Gangabhet, is to make offerings as a present to the river at Rama’s Pool, or, if this is inconvenient, at some part of the river below Rama’s Pool. After the present to the river and before bathing, each pilgrim makes five offerings or arghyas, each offering consisting of a cocoanut, a betelnut, almonds, dates, fruit, and money or dakshina, varying accord�ing to his means. A wife, who comes with her husband, sits on his left with her right hand touching his right arm. She is not required to offer separate gifts. After making the offerings they bathe, and their wet clothes, and in rare cases their ornaments, are made over to the priest. If the father or mother is dead, or the husband in the case of a woman, the pilgrim, without changing the wet clothes, goes a few yards to one side, and if she is a woman has her head shaved, or if a man the whole of his face beginning with the upper lip, the head except the top-knot and the arm-pit. After paying the barber the pilgrim bathes a second time and offers one to 360 atone�ments or prayashchittas, each of one anna to Rs. 60. At the same time he also makes gifts nominally of cows or gopradana, but generally in cash, from one to ten gifts the total amount varying from ten annas to Rs. 100. This is followed by a gift to Brahmans called samasta dakshina, usually four annas to Rs. 5 but sometimes as much as Rs. 4,000. This is distributed among Brahmans; the guide, when the sum is large, generally keeping a considerable share to himself. Finally, if he has the means, the pilgrim offers a sum with a libation of water for feeding Brahmans, or building a flight of steps or a temple. He then goes to his lodging and fasts for the rest of the day.
Early next morning, before breaking his fast, the pilgrim, if a father, mother or husband is dead, performs a memorial ceremony or shraddha in their honour. The ceremony almost always takes place in the pilgrim’s lodging. Two to five Brahmans ate called to represent the dead and are fed. Rice-balls or pinds, according to the usual form, are offered to the dead, and in front of them a gift of five paise and upwards according to the pilgrim’s means is laid for the officiating priest. Besides this gift, presents of cash, clothes, pots and lamps are made to each of the Brahmans who are fed. After the ceremony a meal is taken.
For the third day there remain the worship of the river or Ganga and of Rama in the morning; the feeding of Brahmans at noon; and the visiting of temples in the afternoon.
Ganga worship: To worship Ganga or the Godavari the pilgrim has to go through a long process� which is shortened according to the time and means at his disposal. There are ‘two services or pujas, one prescribed for Brahman men called vedokta in which verses from the Vedas are recited; the other for Brahman women and for all pilgrims of other castes called puranokta in which texts from the Puranas are recited. Each of these two services has five forms, the first of five rites, the second of ten rites, the third of sixteen rites, the fourth of thirty�-eight rites, and the fifth of sixty-four rites. Any of these forms of service is performed according to the pilgrim’s means. The same is the case with Rama’s worship. It is usual for the pilgrim to wash the image with the panchamruta, milk, curds, butter, honey and sugar, and lastly with water. He then marks the brow of the image with sandal-powder, lays flowers on its head, and presents the ministrant with money.
In the ceremony of going round the town or pradakshina, which is optional and is not always done, there are two courses, one of six and the other of ten miles. Unlike the Panchkroshi round Allahabad, this rite includes no funeral or other ceremony. The chief places visited are Kala Rama’s temple, Sita’s cave, Kapaleshvar and Tapovan. No pilgrim should pass less than three nights in eastern Nasik or Panchvati.
This completes the ordinary details of a pilgrim’s ceremonies and expenses. In addition to these the rich occasionally ask learned Brahmans to recite hymns from the Vedas paying each 25 paise to Re. 1, or he calls a party of learned Brahmans and gives them presents. It was a practice of presenting a sum of money to every Brahman household in the town which is no more in vogue.
When all is over the pilgrim gives his priest a money gift according to his means with shawls and other clothes in special cases, and makes an entry in the priest’s book stating that he has acted as his guide. Under certain circumstances special arrangements are made to meet the expenses of the different ceremonies. Before beginning, a list of the different items is drawn out and the whole sum the pilgrim means to spend is put down and divided among the items. In the case of a poor pilgrim the priest sometimes takes over the whole amount the pilgrim means to pay and meets the cost of what�ever articles have to be brought. The amount usually spent varies from Rs. 10 to Rs. 100. For very poor pilgrims even one rupee is enough. It may be roughly estimated that an average pilgrim spends Rs. 10 to Rs. 75. As the influence of religion in its ritualistic form is fast waning in recent times only a few of those who visit Nasik, care to go through the observance of rituals described in detail above. Growing influence of modernism with its rationalism and a complete change in the social set-up also accounts for the same tendency. It is feared that the one-time stabilizing social influence of the priestly class will decline if it has not done already so.
Ascetics: The second class of Nasik pilgrims are professional devotees, A century and a quarter years ago, men of this class chiefly of the Gosavi sect used to cause very great trouble. Strong big men from north India used to come in armed bands of 3,000 to 5,000. They belonged to rival sects, the Nirbhanis and the Niranjanis, who used to fight, sometimes with fatal results, far the right of bathing first in the Kushavarta Pool at Trimbak. Of late years these devotees have ceased to come in great gangs and those who come are prevented from causing any mischief on account of the police bandobast. The last difficulty was in the 1872 Sinhastha, when a body of Nirmalis declared that they meant to walk naked from Nasik to Trimbak. They were warned that this would be considered an offence and gave up the idea.
Muslim remains: The Musalman remains at Nasik are the Old Fort, the Delhi gate, the Kazipura gate, the Jama mosque, the Pirzada’s tomb and twenty-two smaller mosques, fourteen of them built in Moghal times and eight of them modern. Excepting the site of the old fort and a few scattered fragments nothing remains. The Jama mosque is beyond repair while the tomb is in a fairly good condition. However, the description of these monuments as given in the old Nasik Gazetteer is as follows:-�
Old Fort: �In the extreme south-east of the town rising about eighty feet from the river-bank is a flat-topped bluff known as the Old Fort or Juni Gadhi (410� x 320�). Though now except for a small ruined mosque an the west crest, bare of buildings and without a sign of fortification, fifty years ago the hill was girt with a wall. The ground on the tap of the hill shows that it has a pretty thick layer formed of the ruins of old buildings. The mound is said to have been first fortified by the Musalmans. The exposed north scarp shows that it is alluvial throughout.
A Persian inscription on its east face shows that the Delhi gate was built by order of Tude Khan, governor of Nasik in H.1092 (A. D. 1681), during the reign of the Emperor Aurangzeb. The Kazipura gate was built by Kazi Syed Muhammad Hassan in H. 1078 (A. D. 1667) or fourteen years before the Delhi gate.
Jama mosque: On the top of the hill to the west of the Old Fort is the Jama Masjid or Public Mosque (95� x 56�). It is reached through a small walled enclosure with a few trees and tombs. The mosque is of stone. The front is plain except for two stone brackets near the centre and small stone pillars at the ends. Inside, the pillars are plain short and massive about, three feet nine inches square below and five feet nine inches high to the point from which the roof rises in Musal�man arches. The building bears clear traces of Hindu origin. According to the local belief it was a temple of the goddess Mahala�kshmi. The brackets in front have the carved double lotus-head ornament and the festoons of chains and smaller lotus flowers, so general in Nasik wood carving, and the end pillars, which tire about five feet eight inches high according to the common pattern, are square at the base, then eight-sided, and then round. In the north wall in the back of one of six-arched brick niches or resting places is an old Hindu gateway with a prettily carved lintel and side posts and on either side of the gateway a Hindu image. Near the east gate is a slightly broken cow’s mouth.
Dargha: In the Dargha sub-division of Jogvada, in a large enclosure is the tomb of Syed Sadak Shah Husain Kadari Sirmast of Medina who came to Nasik about the middle of the sixteenth century. The tomb is in the centre of a large enclosure and is surrounded by a low inner wall which marks off a space about eighteen paces square. The outside of the tomb is brightly painted and has an upper storey of wood with a deep cave. In the centre of the building, which is about twenty-two feet square and eight feet high, is the tomb covered by a brocaded cloth with a second cloth or canopy stretched about five feet over it with the ostrich shells at the corners. The walls are painted with flowers and peacock fans. Incense is always kept burning. A fair is held on the fifth of the dark half of phalgun (March-April) which is said to be attended by about 2,000 people. Outside, near the gate of the Dargha enclosure, is a tomb which was built in memory of the nephew of Syed Sadak Shah.”
Of the smaller mosques fourteen are old and eight new. Most of the old mosques are ruined and six of them enjoy Government grants. Besides the mosques there is a chandni or travellers’ rest-house which was built in 1736 and was repaired in 1882. Some new mosques have been built since, but none is noteworthy.
Peshvas’ Palaces: The Peshvas’ new and old palaces were the other objects of interest in Nasik. The Peshvas’ new palace stands at the head of the main bazar road which for sometime was used as the Collector’s office. The Collector’s office has now been shifted along Agra road. It survives only with one storey which is occupied by the public library and a part of the ground floor occupied by’ two police stations. It is also known as Pulavarcha Vada or the Palace on the Bridge. The palace stands on a handsome plinth ten feet high, with a broad band of polished basalt; brought from Bhorgad hill near Ramsej. It was never finished and the east front has been disfigured by the addition of a heavy eave supported by long square wooden pillars resting on an unsightly brick wall.
The old palace, also known as Court-house, was an old Maratha mansion built by a Brahman called Rairikar. It afterwards fell into the Peshva�s hands and came to be known as the Peshva�s Old Palace. It was a very extensive building, and accommodated the high school ‘and the Mamlatdar’s office, as well as the court. The judge’s court was a fine room, a central square of about eighteen feet, with four massive pillars on each side with arches between, supporting a gallery with fronts of richly carved wood. Now in place of the old vada a grand high school building has been erected. The judge’s court as also Mamlatdar’s office have been housed in spacious quarters along the Agra road.
Raja Bahadur’s mansion: On the Khadkali road in the west of the town is Naro Shankar Raja Bahadur’s mansion said to be about two hundred and thirty-five years old and probably the largest build�ing in Nasik belonging to antiquity. The street face, on the east side of the Matabarpura road, is a plain brick wall three storeys high with in the lowest storeys small irregular windows and at the corners of the upper storey richly carved wooden balconies and deep plain eaves overhanging the whole. In the centre a plain flat gateway leads along a lane and through a door on the right-hand wall into a large court surrounded by plain two-storeyed buildings now used as quarters for the police. To the right a door leads into an inner court surrounded by two-storeyed buildings. The lower storey, which is open to the court, has a row of plain massive teak pillars and in the upper storey are lighter pillars and ornamental wooden arches. Across the road is a second mansion with a rectangular court, thirty feet by sixty-six feet (9.14 x 18.28 metres), surrounded by two-storeyed buildings the lower storey open and with a row of heavy plain pillars with slightly carved capitals and brackets. This mansion is unfinished and out of repair. Down the centre of the courtyard, with the object of establishing a vegetable market, the municipality built a plinth and covered it by a peaked matting roof. The scheme proved a failure and the building was abandoned. To the north of the mansion and about 150 yards (137.16 metres) south of the Malhar gate is the Hatti or Elephant gate built by Naro Shankar about 1750.
History: According to Hindu accounts, in the first cycle or Krita Yuga. Nasik was called Padmanagara or the Lotus City; in the second cycle or Treta Yuga, it was called Trikantaka or the Three-peaked; in the third cycle or Dvapara Yuga it was called Janasthana or the peoples’ habitation; and in the fourth or present cycle, the Kali Yuga, it is called Nasik or Navshikha apparently the Nine-�peaked [The derivation of the name �Nasika” from Sanskrit ” Navashikhara” is Philologically impossible. (V. V, Mirashi).]. Of Padmanagara and Trikantaka,� the Nasik of the first two cycles, no tradition remains. Janasthana, the Nasik of the third cycle, is said to be the Janasthana on the Godavari, the scene of Rama’s exile described in the Ramayana as a forest country, peopled by sages, rich in fruit and flower trees, full of wild beast, and birds In the midst of Dandaka inhabited by tribes of Rakshasas. It is not likely that Rama’s Janasthana was further east near the mouth of the Godavari, as supposed by some. Whether on a basis of fact or of fancy local interest has associated with Rama many places in and near Nasik: Tiundha, Panchvati, Sita’s Cave, Ramsej Hill, Tapovan, Shurpanakha’s Nostrils, Lakshmana’s Caves, Rama’s Panchratneshvar and Janaka’s Nilkantheshvar.
The earliest historical reference to Nasik is about B. C. 200 in an inscription on the Bharhut stupa in the Central Provinces, about 100 miles (160.93 metres) north-east of Jabalpur. The inscription is on one of the pillars of the rail, and records ‘the gift of Gorakshita of Nashika, the wife of Vasuka’. About B. C. 125-100 Nasik is mentioned in the two earliest inscriptions Nos. XVIII and XIX of the Pandu Caves five miles (eight kilometres) to the south of Nasik. One of them records the making of a cave by a Minister of Religion of Nasik� the other records the gift of a carved cave-front by the guild of grain-�dealers of Nasik. These inscriptions show that about B. C. 125-100 Nasik was of sufficient political importance to be the seat of an officer styled the Minister of Religion, perhaps for the whole of the Deccan, and was a place of sufficient trade and standing to have merchant guilds. The other Pandu Cave inscriptions which reach to about the fifth or sixth century after Christ, do not notice Nasik. In its stead they ten times mention Govardhana, six miles (9.65 km.) west of Nasik, twice as the political head of a district and thrice as a place with guilds of weavers and grain-dealers. Though the local authorities may have moved their head-quarters to Govardhana. Nasik either as a trade or religious center, remained a place of note, as it is mentioned as Nasica by the Egyptian geographer Ptolemy about A. D. 150. About A. D. 500 the celebrated astronomer Varahamihira mentions Nasik as one of the countries included in India or Jambudvipa [(There are some other early references to, Nasik or places situated in the district in inscriptions. Nasik was probably the capital of Pulakeshin II in the first half of the seventh century A. D. when he extended his kingdom to the Narmada. Hiuen Tsang seems to have met him at Nasik. A copper-plate grant of this Pulakeshin, dated Shaka 552 (A. D. 630), has been found at Lohaner (Baglana taluka). It records his grant of the village Goviyanaka (modern Gavhan) to a Brahmana of Lohanagara (modern Lohner). Pulakeshin’s son Dharashraya-Jayasimha was ruling at Nasik. His plates dated in the Kalachuri year 436 (A.D. 685) record the grant of the Dhondhaka (modern Dhondgaon near Trimbak) in the Nasika vishaya (district). The Vani plates of the Rashtakuta king Govinda III, dated in the Shaka� year 730 (A. D. 808), record the grant of Vatanagara (modern Vadner) in the Nashika-desha. Nasik was thus the headquarters of a district even in ancient times.) (Y. V. Mirashi)]. About the eleventh or twelfth century Jainism seems to have been strong at Nasik, as to this time belong the Chambhar Caves, three miles (4.82 km.) to the north of Nasik, and the Jain additions to Nos. X and XI of the Pandu Caves. In the beginning of the fourteenth century the Jain priest and writer, Jinaprabhasuri, devotes to Nasik a chapter of his book on the tirthas of India. He notices its old names Padmanagara and Janasthana, and that it was the residence of Rama, Sita and Lakshmana, and the place where Shurpanakha’s nose was cut off. In his time there was at Nasik, a temple of Chandrapabhasvami, the eighth Jain Tirthankara, which was called Kuntivihar, after Kunti, the mother of the Pandu princes.
Early in the fourteenth century, Nasik came under the power of the Delhi viceroy at Daulatabad, and afterwards (1350) of the Bahamani kings, From the Bahamani kings, early in the sixteenth century, it passed to the Ahmadnagar dynasty, and was wrested from them by the Moghals about a hundred years later. By one of its Musalman rulers the name of Nasik was changed’ to Gulshanabad, the City of Roses, and it was made the head-quarters of a division, Musalman Nasik was limited to the nine hills or teks to the south of the Sarasvati stream. The north-east hill, now known as the Old Fort or Navi Gadhi, was fortified, and the New Fort or Navi Gadhi was made the site of the governor’s residence or darbar. The Delhi, Kazipura, and Aurang (now Trimbak) gates and the Jama mosque, built from the stones of a Hindu temple, also belong to the Musalman period. In 1682, Prince Akbar, the rebel son of Aurangzeb, took refuge in Nasik, hut being closely pursued passed on to the Konkan. In 1684 the Marathas plundered round Nasik, but fled on the approach of the Moghal general Khan Jahan. They seem shortly after to have gained some power in Nasik as the masonry work of the Ramakund was completed in 1696. In 1705 the Musalman governor of Nasik is noticed as being unable to punish a Marathi officer of his, who maintained a band of robbers and openly trafficked in plunder. According to local records the country round Nasik passed to the Peshva in 1751-52 (Fasli 1161) when the name of Gulshanabad ceased and the old name of Nasik was revived. In 1740 (H. 1153), according to Musalman accounts, the Nizam held Mulher and a fort near Nasik. At the same time the Maratha right to levy a fourth and a tenth of the revenue was admitted and they probably had an officer styled Kamavisdar in Nasik to look after their interests. In 1747 their influence in Nasik was strong enough to enable them to complete the temple of Nilkantheshvar and to begin the temple of Rameshvar, two of the handsomest buildings in Nasik. Shortly after this, either on the death of Cin Kilic Khan the first Nizam in 1748, or after their victories over the second Nizam Salabat Jang in 1752 and 1758, the Marathas made Nasik one of their chief cities; they settled the new quarter called Navapura to the north of the Sarasvati, and enriched it with mansions and temples. It rose to special importance during the reign of the fourth Peshva Madhavrav (1761-1772). Many of the temples, pools, steps, and mansions at Nasik and at Gangapur, six miles (9.65 km.) west of Nasik, were built at this time by Gopikabai, the mother of Madhavrav Peshva� by Trimbakrav Pethe the uncle of the Peshva, and by successive viceroys. About this time Nasik was the favourite resort of Raghunathrav or Raghoba, the uncle of Madhavrav, and his wife Anandibai, who changed the name of the village of Chavdas, three miles (4.82 km.) west of Nasik, to Anandvalli, and built a mansion there. Anandibai’s ambition is said to have been to make the town spread westwards till Nasik and Anandvalli formed one city. About 1790 Nasik or Gulshanabad appears in Maratha records as the headquarters of a sub-division in the district of Sangamner with a yearly revenue of about Rs. 1,67,760. In 1803, Nasik was sacked by Amritrav, the adopted son of Raghunathrav Peshva. During the third Maratha war, after reducing the hill-forts of Ankai Tankai and Rajdhair, Colonel McDowell�s detachment came to Nasik on the 19th of April 1818. On reaching Nasik it was found that the armed population had retired to Trimbak and that the place had quietly surrendered to the Civil Commissioner, Captain Briggs. Jewels belonging to the Peshva, said to be worth Rs. 76,00,000 and silver articles valued at Rs. 12,000 were found in Nasik. An officer of Colonel McDowell’s detachment describes Nasik as a pleasing spot, a considerable town with two palaces, several beautiful temples on the river-bank, some handsome and spacious buildings, and a rich neighbourhood of gardens and vine�yards. The principal inhabitants were Brahmans. In 1843 a riot was caused over the slaughter of a cow by some Europeans.
Early in the 20th century Nasik, with the rest of India, began to seethe with discontent under the British domination. It figured promi�nently on the political horizon of India because it was the chief centre of revolutionary’ activities led by the late Vinayakrav Savarkar who came to be called as Vir Savarkar for his daring plots and attempted escape from the steamer while being transported from London as a political prisoner. Mitra Mela (Congregation of Friends) was a secret society consisting of Savarkar, Darekar, Bhat, Mahabal and a few others who took a vow to end the British rule in India by all possible means, violent or otherwise. The activities were suddenly interrupted on account of the unplanned murder of Mr. Jackson, the then Collector of Nasik, in December 1909, when he had gone to witness a dramatic performance. People were fired by the flame of patriotism by the poetical compositions of late Mr. Darekar, one of whose couplets ran thus: “O Rama! when will thou be pleased to satisfy our burning desire for freedom? ” The poet came under British persecution which he faced bravely and at last breathed his last in 1926 in utter poverty when the freedom was not anywhere in sight. Before that Savarkar had been imprisoned and the disappearance of these two leaders virtually broke the back of the secret society. However, the political fervour and desire for independence had been so instilled in the heart of the people that Nasik participated in every movement en masse. Thus Nasik played a heroic role in the struggle for independence along with the rest of India.
Neighbourhood: Among the objects of interest in the neighbour�hood of Nasik are, the Dasara Patangan or Dasara Pavement, close to the east of the Station road, about half a mile to the south-east of the city; Tapovan, Shurpanakha’s Nostrils, and Lakshmana’s Caves, about a mile east of Panchvati; the Jain Chambhar Caves, about three miles to the north of Nasik; the old settlement of Govardhan now called Govardhan-Gangapur, six miles (9.65 km.) to the west, with an old burial-mound, a fine waterfall, and a few pillars and images of about the eleventh or twelfth century; and the Pandu Lena or Buddhist Caves in a hill on the Bombay-Agra road, five miles (8 km.) to the south.
About half a mile to the south-east of the city, close to the east of the Station road, is a row of four or five small standing stones. These stones have been set by Nasik Kunbis in honour of their ancestors. On some, which are laid flat, feet are carved; others which stand up like headstones, have their faces carved with rude human figures and with a sun and moon. The heroes or virs, pronounced virs, who live in these stones were once worshipped on every Dasara (September-�October). A body of Kunbis and other castes, headed by the headman of the town, used to go with a long pole called Kanhoba’s Kathi, with streamers of red yellow and white cloth and a young buffalo. The buffalo was killed by the headman by a stroke of his sword, and the procession then proceeded to the row of stones, and the spirit of the heroes entered the body of one of their descendants. The possessed man was scourged with a hemp rope and the spirit left his body and passed then into the body of the scourger. The people then danced round and sang.��
Tapovan: Tapovan or the Forest of Austerities is in a direct line about a mile (1.60 km.) east of Panchvati. It has a famous shrine and image of Rama who is believed to have lived on fruits collected by Lakshmana from this forest. Rama cleared this place of the Rakshasas who were putting obstacles in the performance of the yajnyas by the sages and seers. There is a fine temple of Lakshmana built by one Virbai Manji in 1817 at a cost of about Rs. 4,000. Nearby there is the confluence of the Godavari-and the Kapila and hence is known as Kapila Sangama tirtha. There are also shrines of Gopal Krishna and Lakshmi Narayana. The chief interests are its magnificent banyan and tamarind trees which are believed to be as old as the hermitages of the seers or rishis who lived here and performed austerities. To the south-east of Tapovan the river-bed is crossed by a band of rock with a narrow central channel through which, except in times of high flood, the whole water of the river passes. Two holes in thick rocky passages are said to be the petrified nostrils of the giantess Shurpanakha’s nose, which was cut off by Lakshmana. Across the river the wall or dyke of rocks forms the right bank for about three hundred yards (274.32 metres). The rock faces east, a bare steep scarp twelve to thirty feet (3.65 to 9.14 metres) high. This east front has been carved into a line of eleven small plain cells called Lakshmana’s� Bogde.
These are all rough plain cells with doorways and small benches but without anything to show their age or the religion of the men who made them.
Nasik Road, about 8 km. (five miles) south-west of Nasik, is a busy railway station on the Bombay-Bhusaval-Nagpur route of the Central Railway. All the trains running on this track take a halt here. In 1971 its population was 55,436. Nasik Road-Devlali, apart from Devlali Cantonment, has a combined municipality. It is a fast developing town, industrially as well as commercially. Its advan�tageous situation has made it an ideal place for the location of indus�tries, and already various plants and factories have come up manufac�turing a variety of tools and machinery, spare parts, chemicals, medicines, etc. Due to the MIG aircraft project at Ozar, which is not far away, the Hindustan Aeronautics have set up their office here as also a technical training centre imparting training to the employees in the factory. Here is also located the India Security Press printing stamps and. currency notes. Along jail road a one rupee note press has recently been set up. All these industries have not only contributed to the growing prosperity of the town but provided a large segment of its population with the means of livelihood. Many of these industrial concerns including the India Security Press have provided residential quarters for a large number of their staff. Nasik Road is also a centre of wholesale grain, onion and timber trade as also grapes, for which Nasik is so justly well-known. There are quite a few wholesale dealers and commission agents in these commodities. Oil companies maintain huge oil depots here.
Municipality: Established in 1952, the Nasik Road-Devlali muni�cipality has an area of 20.72 square kilometres (eight square miles) under its jurisdiction. The municipal committee. composed of twenty councillors, is headed by a president who is elected by the councillors from among themselves. With the assistance of the necessary staff the administrative affairs are directed by this committee.
Finance: Income during 1964-65 due to various heads but exclud�ing extra-ordinary and debt heads amounted to Rs. 8,22,406. Extra�ordinary and debt heads brought in Rs. 5,33,962 to the municipal exchequer. The sources of income comprised municipal rates and taxes contributing Rs. 5,96,825; realisation under special acts Rs. 2,261; revenue derived from municipal property and powers apart from taxation Rs. 1,07,375; grants and contributions Rs. 93,924 and miscellaneous Rs. 22,021. An expenditure of Rs. 11,16,583 was incurred during the same year on normal heads. The expenditure incurred on extra-ordinary and debt heads stood at Rs. 3,24,062 during 1964-65. The normal heads of expenditure were general administration Rs. 1,16,119; public health and conservancy Rs. 8,34,861; public instruction Rs. 74,596; and miscellaneous Rs. 99,007.
Municipal Works: Two major vegetable markets have been built and named as Yashvant Mandai and Javahar Mandai. While the former was built at a cost of Rs. 1,25,000, the latter has cost Rs. 2,75,000. Besides, daily markets are held at Sinnar Phata and Gorevadi. On every Monday a weekly bazar is held at Devlaligaon. Apart from culverts built on roads, it has provided for Harijan quarters and a cattle-shed costing Rs. 50,000.���
Health, sanitation and water-supply: The town is served with adequate medical aid facilities. The municipality conducts a dispensary, a maternity home and a surgical home, equipped with up-to-date equip�ment, where honorary surgeons of known repute perform all types of operations. A dispensary is also maintained by the India Security Press. Though the town has no veterinary dispensary, arrangement for bi-�weekly visit of the veterinary surgeon of the camp area has been made by the municipality towards which end it pays Rs. 500 annually. As the place enjoys a healthy climate no epidemics have been reported in recent years.�
Drainage system consists of well-built surface drains. The sullage and waste-water is let into the Gosavi Ohol which meets the Valdevi river down-stream.
The town receives tap-water from Chehadi water-works on the Darna maintained by the. Public Health Department, Nasik Division, Nasik. Water is pumped in the filtration galleries located in the distillery premises from where it is distributed for consumption after purifica�tion. The municipality is required to pay a charge of Rs. 1.15 per thousand gallons. It was previously meant exclusively for the India Security Press.
�Education: Primary education is compulsory, its enforcement rest�ing with the Zilla Parishad. The municipal contribution is calculated at 5 per cent of the annual letting value which on an average approximates to Rs. 55,000 per annum. The high schools numbering’ about seven are all managed by various private institutions including missions. There is also a college for higher education named as R. N. Chandak Arts and Bytco Commerce College, and Nasik Road Science College. Towards the acquisition of land for the college premises the municipality made a grant of Rs. 30,001. Apart from privately-conducted public library, there is a municipal public library in Yeshwant Mandai where all daily newspapers and numerous magazines are made available for the general public. Only the lending section charges a nominal fee.
Fire-fighting equipment consists of only one fire-fighter with other necessary accessories. In times of emergencies, however, the fire-brigades of Nasik municipality and military camp are pressed into service.
On the Valdevi banks two cremation grounds with sheds have been maintained by the municipality. Cremation and burial grounds are also maintained by the various other communities. Of the recreational places could be mentioned the Durga Udyan wherein are a temple dedicated to Durga Devi and a statue of Shivaji. It is a municipal garden. The town has a temple dedicated to Shankara. The well-known Pandu Lena caves are only eight kilometres away. The town is electri�fied and has post and telegraph facilities, telephone exchange and a police station. There is regular bus service between Nasik Road and Nasik.
Naydongri, a village in Nandgaon taluka lying 19.31 km. (twelve miles) north-east of Nandgaon, is a railway station on the Bombay-Bhusaval section of the Central Railway. A large weekly market at which agricultural produce, especially bajra, figures pro�minently is held on Mondays. The village has a high school, a primary school and a post office. Medical aid is rendered by a primary health centre and a maternity home. Naydongri had a population of 4,161 in 1971.�����
Nimbait, lying 16 km. (ten miles) north-west of Nand�gaon, with 3,720 inhabitants in 1971, is an agricultural village in Malegaon taluka chiefly producing bajra, wheat, groundnut and onions. Large tracts of land have been brought under well-irrigation. It was formerly the headquarters of a petty division. We have it on the authority of the old Nasik District Gazetteer that there was an old mud-fort in the village. Today nothing remains to indicate its existence. The curious effigy of the horse on which Prophet Muhammad is said to have ridden to heaven and referred to in the old Nasik District Gazetteer is also not to be seen today. The village has a middle school and a post office. Drinking water is obtained from the wells.
Niphad, with a population of 9,274 as per the 1971 Census, is the headquarters of the taluka of the same name lying 32.18 km. (20 miles) north-east of Nasik, the district headquarters. It is a railway station on the Bombay-Nagpur section of the Central Railway and principally produces onion, grapes, vegetables, wheat, bajra, jovar and sugarcane, there being a sugar factory worked on co-operative basis. Tur and gram are also grown successfully. There are well over a hundred irrigation wells and a bandhara across Vadali river, which though not located in Niphad proper helps its agriculture. The medical needs of the populace are met by a civil dispensary with attached maternity ward and family planning center, as also a few private medical practitioners. There are also a veterinary dispensary and a leprosy eradication centre which has been doing good work in this direction. It is the birth-place of late Shri Govind Mahadev Ranade and has two high schools, one primary school and an Urdu school. Besides the usual revenue and police offices, the town has a post and telegraph office, panchayat samiti, civil court etc. There is also a rest-house. It has the advantage of the branches of the State Bank and the land mortgage bank. The agricultural produce is marketed through the sub-market yard recently established here. Though the people continue to depend on well-water, they will soon have tap-water when the water works scheme, already approved by the Government, is implemented. Weekly bazar is held on Thursdays. There are quite a few insignificant temples dedicated to various deities. On Magha Shuddha Paurnima a fair attended by over 2,000 persons is held in honour of Khanderav. There is also a dargah and some mosques, not one of which is mentionable. A similar fair is also held in honour of Khandoba in Chandori village of Niphad taluka.
Pandu Lena Caves:
Pandu Lena: About [Originally contributed by Pandit Bhagvanlal Indraji. Mr. Bhagvanlal’s facsimiles of the inscriptions in these caves are given in Dr. Burgess’ Arch, Sur. of Western India. IV Plates LI-LV.] five miles (eight kilo�metres) to the south of Nasik the Trimbak-Anjaneri range ends in three isolated hills six to eleven hundred feet (182.88 to 335.28 metres) above the plain. The highest and most to the east, 1,061 feet (323.39 metres) above Nasik and 3,004 feet (915.61 metres) above the sea, has the special interest of having a group of old Buddhist caves (B. C. 250 –A. D. 600) carved in the low scarp that runs across its north face about half�way up. The three hills are bare, steep and pointed. The cave hill, besides being the highest, has the most sharply cut and shapely outlines. From Nasik or from Govardhan six miles (9.65 km.) up the Godavari, its form is so perfect a pyramid as to suggest that its pyramid or triple fire-tongue shape was the origin of the name Trirashmi (Pk. Tiranhu) or Triple Sunbeam, by which it is known in seven of the cave inscriptions (2, 3, 5, 10, 15, 18, 19). The caves are reached from Nasik by the excellent Bombay-Agra road starting from the travellers’ bungalow in the south-west corner of the town. About five miles (8 km.) from Nasik, and about 100 yards (91.44 metres) to the right of the road, stands a group of cattle-keepers’ sheds with one or two old tamarind trees and a ruined Musalman tomb, A few yards to the east of the tomb are several rock-cut cisterns. These originally had small square mouths, but a large section of the surface roof has fallen in and several of the cisterns now form one open pool. About 200 yards (182.88 metres) east, across smooth easy ground, is the foot of the Pandu Hill. Up its steep northern face, over stones and rocks, a rough path, partly stepped, has been cut which winds about 300 feet (91.44 metres) .to the level of the cave Scarp, At the top of the ascent, in front of the caves, a broad smooth terrace stretches round the north-west corner of the hill and continues for several hundred yards eastwards along the northern face. In the north-west face of the hill the scarp has been blasted by powder, perhaps while making the Agra road (1820-25) to which large blocks of rock could be easily rolled. In the extreme west are chisel-marks and a few small open rock-cut cisterns, much like the nana-podhis or bathing cisterns of the Kanheri Cave inscriptions. Until the corner of the north face has been turned there are no traces of caves.
View: The caves face north and north-east. The broad terrace, which runs in front of them, commands a beautiful and extensive view. A broad plain stretches west, north and east, rising in the west into confused groups and lines of low broken hills. Northwards it stretches about ten miles (16 km.) to the picturesque rugged Bhorgad-Ramsej hills, which fall eastwards into a level table-land broken by the sharp cone in whose steep southern face are carved the group of Jaina temples (A. D. 1100) which are known as the Chambhar Caves. Beyond the sharp cone of the Chambhar hill, in the distance, stretching roughly cast and west, the long line of the Chandor range rises into lofty and rocky peaks, pinnacles, and castellated tops. In the distant north-east the hills sink into the plain, and again rise in a group of rugged peaks. To the east the plain swells into level uplands. In front of the cave near the hill-foot the plain is bare, seamed with water-courses, hedgeless, and with few trees. Further north along the line of the Nasardi stream and towards the hardly noticeable hollow of the Godavari, are patches of rich garden lands and groves and long lines of mango-trees. Further north partly hidden by the hollow of the Godavari deep green mango tops mark the site of Gangapur, and close to the west of it, of Govardhan, an old settlement which is mentioned in inscription 3 of about the first century after Christ in cave Ill, as the ahara or headquarters of a district and which seems to give their name to the Govardhans, one of the earliest tribes of local Brahmans. To the north-east a long stretch of richly-wooded country begins with the village of Sharanpur and passes into the broad woods and garden-lands of Nasik whose nine hills covered with red-roofed houses show among the trees in the evening sun. The railway station stands out from the bare eastern plain and from hear the eastmost cave may be seen the buildings and barracks of Devlali.
The Caves, which are in one row with a levelled space or terrace in front, stretch east and west. Their northern frontage saves them from the sun and. the south-west rains, and as the rock is a close grained seamless trap, much of the rich carved work and many long and most valuable inscriptions have passed fresh and unharmed through 1,500 to 2,000 years.
Cave I: The caves are numbered from west to east. Cave I is a large unfinished excavation, including a veranda, and a hall. The veranda is 38� 3˝ broad, 6� 5˝ deep and 12� 8˝ high. The front was intended to have four pillars and two pilasters, but the work went no further than marking out plain four-sided blocks of rock, one of which, that to the extreme right, has disappeared. At each end of the veranda is the beginning of a cell. A middle and two side-doors, separated by square windows, lead from the veranda into the hall. The left door and window and the right past of the main door have been blasted with powder. The hall has been turned into a rain-water reservoir by hewing out the floor several feet below its original level. The change was probably made because of leakage through some crack or slit in the ceiling. The only point of interest in this cave is an unfinished but unusually well-carved rail in a frieze in the outer face of the veranda. In this’ frieze besides the central rail which is covered with animals and Buddhist symbols, are two bands of sculpture, an upper band with festoons of flowers and animals, and a lower band of animals in panels formed by the leaves of a creeper. The best executed animals in the rail are a bull biting his hind-leg, a tiger devouring a man, a running elephant, a deer scratching his mouth with his hind-�foot, a galloping bull, and prowling tiger. These groups are difficult to make out as they are small and much weather-worn.
Cave II: Cave II, about twenty-two feet east of cave I, is an old (B. C. 10) dwelling cave which about A. D. 400-500, seems to have been turned into a Mahayana or late Buddhist shrine. Marks in the ceiling show that it originally consisted of a veranda and two plain cells in its back wall. The Mahayana or image-worshipping Buddhists broke the back wall of the veranda, knocked down the partition between the two cells, and turned the whole into a hall. In the back wall of the hall they cut two recesses and adorned them with rock-�cut images. The right recess is 6΄6˝ broad, 2΄ 2˝ deep and 6΄ high, In its back wall is a central Buddha, 3΄ 4˝ high, in the teaching or dharmachakra attitude seated an a lion-throne, his feet resting on a lotus flower. From the stalk of the plant two flowers rise on either side of Buddha, and on each flower stands a Bodhisattva, with matted hair. The Bodhisattva to the right of Buddha holds a fly-whisk in his right hand and a blown lotus with stalk in his left hand. He is probably Padmapani Lokeshvara. The left Bodhisattva holds a fly-whisk in his right hand and a thunderbolt or vajra in his left hand. He is probably Vajrapani Lokeshvara. Above the Bodhisattva are floating figures with bag-wigs, probably the demi�gods called vidyadharas or heavenly choristers. The vidyadhara to the right holds flowers in his hands and that to the left a garland. By the side of the left Bodhisattva three small images of Buddha are seated one over the other. The uppermost is seated cross-legged on a lotus, a position known as the padmasana or lotus seat.
In the side walls of the recess are two standing Buddhas, 3΄3˝ high. Each has his right hand hanging with the palm open in the blessing or vara attitude, and the left hand holds the end of the Shoulder-cloth. In the floor of this recess a modern linga and a bull or nandi have been carved and flying Hanuman has been traced.
The left recess, which is 7� broad, 3‘ 6“ deep and 6‘ 5“ high, has in the back wall a central teaching Buddha, 4‘ 10“ high, seated on a lion throne, his feet resting on a double lotus. The face is surrounded by an aureole. The throne-back or pithika is ornamented with water-fowls earning out of alligators’ mouth. Above the alligators float two Nagarajas. On either side of Buddha is a standing figure of a Lokeshvara, 5‘ 5“ high. The figure to the visitor’s left wears a crown, ear-rings, a necklace, and his hair hangs down his neck. In his left hand he holds a thunderbolt or vajra and in his right hand a fly-whisk. The figure has matted hair worn like a crown or jatamukuta and in the hair over the centre of the forehead is a teaching Buddha. His right hand holds a fly-whisk and his left hand a lotus-bud with stalk. He wears no ornaments. In the left wall of the recess a central Buddha, 4‘ 9“ high, sits on a lion-throne, his feet resting on a lotus. From the stalk of this lotus branch two side lotus flowers on each of which stands a Lokesh�vara 4‘ 2“ high. Both have matted hair. The right figure has a fly-whisk in his right hand and a lotus with stalk in his left. The left figure rests his left hand on his thigh and holds a fly-whisk in his right. Above both are floating figures. probably Gandharvas, bearing garlands.
To the left of this group on the inner face of the front wall, is a standing Buddha, 4‘ 10“ high, the face surrounded by an aureole. His right hand is held in front with the palm open. The left grasps one end of the shoulder-cloth.
In the right end wail of the veranda is a Buddha seated cross-legged with an open right hand held in front; his left hand is broken. To the right is a fly-whisk bearer whose companion on the left has disappeared. Above the central figure is an unfinished group of a seated teaching Buddha with side Bodhisattvas.
To the right or west of this cave is an unfinished excavation. To the left is a cistern partly filled with earth but still holding good� water.� Near this is another two-mouthed cistern and behind it an open modem pond partly filled with boulders.��������������
Inscription 1: On what remains of the back wall of the veranda of cave II close to the ceiling is Inscription 1. All but the first line was broken off when the original cave was turned into a late or image-worshipping shrine.
Cave Ill: Cave III, just beyond the filled-up cistern, is a large beautifully sculptured dwelling-cave made by the mother of the great Gautamiputra (B.C. 15). The front is borne by six large figures whose massive heads and shoulders appear close to the ground. These are the demi-gods called Yakshas or Guhyakas bearing the cave from heaven to earth, which as the large inscription in the back wall of the veranda states, is equal to the best of heavenly chariots in its great perfection. It is in three parts, a hall, eighteen cells, and a veranda. The hall is 45‘broad and 10‘ 6“ high. In the back wall (If the hall are six cells, and there are seven in the right wall and five in the left, making eighteen in all. In front of the cells is a bench 1‘ 8“ broad and 1‘ 2“ high. Between the third and fourth cells in the back wall is a relic-shrine or chaitya in half-relief. It begins with a moulding 4“ high ornamented with a tracery of lotus petals. Above the moulding is a plinth 2‘ 8“ high and, 4‘ in diameter. At the top of the plinth is a band of rail 8“ high, ornamented with eight-petalled flowers between well-carved bars now hidden by red lead. Above is the dome 2‘ high and 3‘ 6“ in diameter. Over the dome is a shaft 1‘ 5“ broad, with a band of rail 8“ high. The shaft supports a four-plated tee 1‘ high the uppermost plate 1‘ 5“ broad. Over this plate are five small pyramidal ornaments or kangras. Above are three double umbrellas, one in the middle and two at the sides, the side ones supported on lotus flowers which branch off from the base of the central umbrella staff. To the left of the relic-shrine is a bowing female figure 3‘ 5“ with a pair of anklets on each foot, a cloth tied round her waist, and ornaments in her ears. To the right is a similar female figure 3‘ 2” high with single anklets. She has a waist-cloth and ear ornaments like the left figure, She rests her left hand on her waist and with her right hand waves a fly-whisk towards the relic-shrine. Above these female figures, to the left of the dome is a lion and to the right a wheel. These three, the relic-shrine in the middle representing Buddha, and the wheel and lion on either side representing religion and the Buddhist congregation: constitute the Triratna or Three Gems, the chief objects of Buddhist worship. Above the lion and the wheel two demi-gods or Gandharvas float towards the relic-shrine. The right Gandharva holds a basket of flowers in his left band and throws flowers at the relic-shrine from his right hand. The. Gandharva to the left holds a garland.
The cells are all plain, about 6‘ 6“ square and 6‘ 6“ high, with doorways about 2‘ 6“ broad and as high as the ceilings. Except a cell in the wall, which has a sleeping recess in its right side, all have benched recesses along their back walls. All have holes about two inches square for the monk’s pole or valagni and grooves in the doorways for a wooden frame-work. The holes in the edge of the outer bench and on the floor are modern for tying cattle in the rainy season. The round holes in the floor are for husking grain.� .
The hall has a large main doorway 5‘ 10“ broad and 9‘ 10“ high in the middle and a side door to the right 3‘ 7“ broad and 7‘ 8“ high. On either side of the main doorway is a window, the right window 6‘ 5“ broad and 3‘ 6“ high, and the left window 6‘ broad and 3‘ 6“ high. Both the doorways have grooves for a wooden frame�work. The main doorway is beautifully decorated with an ornamental gateway or torana of nineteen panels, each about a foot square, seven of them over the doorway and six on the face of each door-post. Of the seven panels over the doorway, the middle panel has a relic-�shrine in half relief with umbrella, and two male figures standing on either side of it. On each side of this central panel are three panels. On the first of those to the left is the pipal or Bodhi tree. In the corresponding panel to the right is the Buddhist wheel on a shaft. In the second panel to the left a standing Buddhist monk salutes with his hands joined on his breast. In the corresponding panel to the right is a male figure with a monk-like shoulder cloth but a turban instead of a monk’s bald head. In the third panel on either side is a male figure with a turban with hands folded on the breast.����������� .
In the lowest of the six panels on each side of the door is an ugly dwarf-like male figure. The upper five panels on each side appear to tell two stories, each of which seems to begin from the lowest panel. In the lowest panel on the left stand a man and a woman, the man holding the woman’s left hand in his. In the second panel the same man and woman stand with their arms round each other’s necks. In the third panel is a woman dressed like a nun, but that she is not a nun appears from her anklets and her coiled hair: near her is a man entreating or coaxing her. In the fourth panel the man Of the third panel carries off a woman, dressed like the woman in the second panel, who clings to the nun-like figure with her arm round her neck. The fifth panel shows that the woman who was being carried off has been rescued by the man in the second panel, The story seems to be of a married pair who were living affectionately with one another (the first panel showing their marriage and the second their affection), when a nun acting as go-between, persuades the wife to visit an ascetic in the forest. He tries to carry her off by force, and while she struggles her husband rescues her and takes her home.
In the lowest of the five right-hand panels a woman with a jaunty head-dress leans her left hand on a tree and feeds a swan with her right. In the second panel a man winds his left arm round the same woman’s neck and raises his right hand to her face imploring her to speak; below, a boy holds her foot and she rests her left hand on his head. The third panel shows the same man and woman with their arms round each other’s necks, and the small boy sitting look�ing on with folded arms. In the fourth panel the woman sits under a tree with her arms thrown round the boy’s neck; the man drags her by the hand but she does not look at him. In the fifth panel the man carries off the woman by force. The story seems to be of man married to a gay wife who loved a servant. She elopes with the servant to a forest where her husband finds her, and failing to persuade her to come, carries her home by force. The first panel shows three marks of the woman’s coquetry, her jaunty head-dress, her vain attitude leaning against a tree, and her feeding a swan. In the second panel her hand is laid on the servant’s head to show that she loves him. The servant’s arms are folded in the third panel to show that he conceals the intrigue with his mistress. The tree in the next panel shows that the scene is in a forest to which the lady has eloped with the servant. In the next her love for the servant is shown by her throwing her arm round his neck, and in the last her downcast hand and averted face show how unwilling she is to go home with her husband.
The two stories illustrate the chaste and the unchaste wife. The chaste wife, inspite of persuasion and force, remains true to her husband and is rescued by him. The unchaste wife, though married to an affection�ate husband, elopes with a menial and has to be dragged from him by force.
On either side of the doorway two male figures, 6‘ 2“ high, stand with bunches of lotus flowers in their hands. They wear waist-cloths or dhotars and a second cloth is tied round the waist and its ends left hanging. The left figure wears two plain bracelets. Both wear turbans tied in a high central and two side bosses. The right figure has a single bracelet graven with a waving pattern an armlet wound nearly twice round like a snake, and large ear-rings. These are probably Yakshas, guarding the door of Buddha’s shrine.
The veranda is 7‘ 10“ deep, 46‘ 8“ broad and 13‘ 4“ high; its floor is about 2� inches lower than the hall floor, and its ceiling 2‘ 10“ higher than the hall ceiling. On the left wall is a bench 7‘ 10“ long, 1‘ 10“ board and 1‘ 8“ high. In the right wall is a cell 9‘ deep, 6‘ 9” broad and 6‘ 11“high, with a grooved doorway 2� 6“ broad and 6‘ 11“ high. Along its back wall is a bench 2‘ 5“ broad and 2‘ 5“ high. Near the left end of the back wall of the veranda is another cell 6‘ 10“ deep, 6‘ 7“ broad and 6‘ 3“ high, with a grooved doorway 2‘ 5“ broad and 6‘ 3“ high. Along its left wall is a recess for sleeping. Caves of this kind as a rule have cells in the ends of the veranda facing each other. In this case the cell was cut in the back wall of the veranda, apparently because a cell in the left end of the veranda would have broken into cave IV, which, therefore, seems to be the older excavation. In the front wall of the veranda is a bench 2‘ 1“ broad and 1‘ 10“ high. This bench has a back whose right-hand or western portion is much broken. From the bench rise two pilasters and six pillars. The two right-hand pillars are broken, and of them nothing but the capital remains. The pillars are of the Satakarni type, eight-sided shafts with inverted pot capitals. On the pot various peculiar leaf patterns are engraved, and on a slab over the pot is the myrobalan pattern or amalaka, with, on each of its four comers, figures standing in various attitudes. Of these figures some are children; some are animals with tiger’s faces, ears like a hare, and wings; and some, on whose backs are riders, are animals with tiger’s faces and antelope-like horns. These figures are on the four middle pillars. The central pair of pillars have human figures and the outer pair animal figures. Over the myrobalan or amalaka are six square plates, each larger than the one below it. On the highest plate rests a belt of rock dressed like a beam of timber, and on the beam rests the ceiling. Over the capital, on either side of the beam-like band of rock, both within and outside of the veranda, are pairs, of animals seated back to back. Beginning with the inside faces of the capitals and taking the pillars in order from west to east, the first pillar has two elephants with drivers; the second has two goat-like animals each with a rider; the third has two elephants, the left elephant holding two bells in its trunk and being driven by a woman; the fourth has two elephants each with a driver and the left elephant has his trunk wound round a woman; the fifth has two imaginary animals with bird-like faces, long ears, and beast-like bodies, each with a driver. The sixth pillar has two elephants, each with a driver and a rider. The left elephant holds in his trunk a lotus flower and stalk.
Outside, beginning from the (visitor’s) left or east and going west or right, on the first pillar; are two tigers, each with a driver; on the second two animals with bodies like tigers, faces like birds, and long hare-like ears, each with a driver; on the third two elephants, the left one with a driver and the right one with a rider and driver; on the fourth two lions, each with a rider; on the fifth two elephants each with a driver and a rider, the right-hand group unfinished. Each of these elephants holds in his trunk a bunch of lotus flowers and buds. The animals on this pillar are unusually well carved. The sixth pillar has two bulls, one of them with a driver. The faces of the bulls are well carved but the bodies are unfinished. The pilasters are plain and four-sided, with in the middle of the outer face, a lotus and below and above it a half lotus of the style found on rail pillars of the Satakarni type. The right pilaster has lilies by the side of the lotus; on the left pilaster the lily work is unfinished. Between the two central pillars five steps lead down to the front� court.
From above the great beam of rock that passes between the outer and inner faces of the animal capitals the ceiling projects about two feet and supports a frieze about three feet broad. The ceiling at intervals of about nine inches is lined with bands dressed like rafters whose ends stand out about two inches in front of the face of the ceiling beam. Above the ceiling beam, with its projecting rafter ends, the frieze rises about three feet. It consists of a rail of three horizontal bars together about two feet broad, between two six-inch belts of tracery. The faces of the upright and horizontal bars of the rail are carved into lotus flowers, the flowers on the upright bars standing out about two inches further than those on the faces of the horizontal bars. The upper belt of tracery, which is about six inches broad, consists of a row of festoons divided at about every nine inches by hanging tassel-like lotus seed� vessels or lily-heads, and within the curve of each festoon a half lotus flower. The under-belt of tracery is also about six inches broad. It con�sists of a long creeper scroll with nine-inch panels carved in leaves or animals. Beginning from the right or west end of the scroll, in the first panel a child drags the creeper from the mouth of a crocodile; in the next panel an elephant tosses his trunk; in the third panel is one large leaf; in the fourth a tiger and tigress, the tigress with her head close to the ground; in the fifth two leaves; in the sixth two wild bulls; in the seventh two leaves; in the eighth two leaves; in the ninth two wild buffaloes; in the tenth two elephants at play; in the eleventh two lions with their heads close to the ground; in the twelfth two fanciful animals; in the thirteenth two animals, one much defaced on the right, apparently charging, and to the left a deer scratching his face with his hind foot; in the fourteenth two prowling tigers; in the fifteenth two leaves; in the sixteenth something defaced on the right, perhaps a tree, and on the left a wild hog; in the seven�teenth a lion and lioness; in the eighteenth on the right two defaced animals fronted on the left by a rhinoceros; in the nineteenth two leaves; in the twentieth three lions; in the twenty-first an animal with a human face, erect horse-like ears, and a tiger’s body; in the twenty-second a cow facing east; in the twenty-third three horses, the middle horse much worn; in the twenty-fourth a pair of prowling tigers; in the twenty-fifth three sitting deer; in the twenty-sixth two leaves; in the twenty-seventh a pair of sitting elephants; in the twenty-eighth a sitting bull and in the twenty-ninth two leaves. The north or outer face of the veranda bench is carved into a rail tracery about two feet broad with a six-inch band of festoons above it divided by hanging lily�-heads or lotus-seed-vessels nine inches apart; and below the rail a belt of tracery about six inches broad with leaves and perhaps animals but the carving is too worn to be identified. Below is a beam with the ends of rafters standing out and under it are the six massive beams which are borne on the shoulders of the six Gandharvas.
In front of the veranda is a court 43′ 8″ broad and 14′ deep, over which the rock roof projects 9′. On the face of the right wall are two recesses, the inner one unfinished. The intention seems to have been to have one room with a central pillar in front, but the design was not carried out. Above the recesses, between two belts of tracery, is a rail pattern, and in front of the rail and tracery are three female figures, one over the central pillar and one at each end. By the side of the inner woman is a tree towards which she stretches her right hand; her left hand is on her waist. The middle woman rests her left hand on her waist, and in her right which is held aver her shoulder, holds same small article. The third woman, who is much defaced, wears an ascetic’s dress, and seems to have a shaven head. Below is a belt of three horizontal rails with an upper band of festoons and a lower belt of animal figures. Below the under belt of animals is a beam-like band with rafter ends projecting. The beam was borne on the heads of three birds. The two outer birds are gone. The inner one has two pro�minent temples, large eyes and a huge parrot-like beak. Below is a ruined recess� which, may have been a cistern. Part of its front was carved in the rail tracery. In the left wall of the court is a cistern in a recess. It is half full with earth, and in the dry season holds no water.
Inscriptions 2 and 3: On the back wall of the veranda to the left of the doorway under the ceiling and above the left window are Inscriptions 2 and 3. Being one below another, they look like one inscription. Inscrip�tion two is in eleven long lines of large and distinct letters. Except two holes for a hold-fast made in the last two lines, and a crack in the rock which runs from top to bottom, the inscription is well preserved.
Cave IV: Close to Cave III, on a slightly lower level, is Cave IV. It was originally a dining hall or sattra, but the cracks in the veranda ceiling suggest that it became water-logged and was turned into a large cistern or reservoir by hewing out the rock several feet below the level of the original floor.
Enough of its upper part remains to show that it was in two sections Ii veranda and all inner hall about twenty feet square and nine feet high. The line of a bench of rock that ran along the side and back walls can be traced. The left side of the hall is irregularly cut or is unfinished. The entrance into the hall was by a doorway in the middle of the back wall of the veranda, and on either side of the doorway was a window with strong lattice work. The veranda is 19′ 7″ broad, 5′ 2″ deep and 5′ 10″ high. Water seems to make its way through the ceiling during the rains. At the ends of the veranda are recesses which appear to be the beginnings of unfinished cells. In front of the veranda were two pillars and two pilasters of the Satakarni type. Except the right or west pilaster only the capitals remain. In the front face of each capital are two elephants seated back to back. In the right pilaster, the right elephant has a driver and the left elephant has a driver and two riders, a woman of rank with a man-servant behind her. The woman has her hair rolled in a large knot on the back of her head, and sits facing the visitor coquettishly arranging her hair with her right hand and holding a handled mirror in her left hand. Her servant has a beard and a monkey-like face, the head and ears being hid by a cap. In his right hand he holds what looks like a goblet. On the next pillar the right elephant has a driver and a rider and the left elephant a male driver and two female riders, facing the visitor, both of the riders wearing their hair in large rolls. The left has both her hands folded over her head as if making a rever�ence or namaskara; the right rider leans forward on the elephant rest�ing her brow on her right hand. On the second pillar the right elephant has a driver and two women-riders. The right woman has her hair in a round roll and is without ornaments. The left woman has a tasselled head-dress and anklets, and her right hand is stretched out helping a third woman to mount the elephant. The left elephant has a driver and a rider. The capital of the left pilaster is much damaged. The right elephant has a driver and the left elephant a driver and two women-�riders. The style of dress seems to show that the left woman is the mistress and the right woman the maid.
The ceiling projects about one foot beyond the capitals of the pillars. It rests on rock-cut imitations of wooden rafters, the ends of the rafters projecting and being alternately plain and carved into women’s faces. Some holes in the front of the rock show that in some cases where the rock gave way stones were dressed and fitted into the holes to look like the ends of rafters. Above the rafters is a band in the rail pattern about a foot broad, and above the rail the rough rock, which is much broken projects three or three and a half feet.
To the left of Cave IV is a large excavation which appears to be comparatively modern as the chisel-marks are different from the early chisel-marks. Much of the rock above the original excavation has been blasted with gunpowder. A small tunnel of water trickled down the rock at the back of this excavation arid was carried along a channel to the sides and led by a groove or crevice to caves IV and V� which are now used as cisterns.
Cave V: Cave V is close beyond this excavation. It was originally a dwelling cave or layana with two cells, but is now a large cistern with good water. The rock has been hewn about twelve feet below the level of the original floor and a space has been hollowed in front. A crack in the ceiling of the veranda which lets in water is probably the reason why the cave was turned into a cistern. The change seems to be modem judging from the chisel-marks and from the carving of a rude Hanu�man in the back wall of the right-hand cell. The position of this figure shows that it was cut while the floor of the cell was at its original level. The chisel-marks in the lower part are modem. The original floor was almost as high as the floor of Cave IV or about six feet above the level of the terrace. It was in two parts, a veranda, and two cells in the back wall of the veranda. The cells appear to have been plain about six feet square and about six feet high. Each cell had plain grooved doorways as high as the ceiling, and each has holes for a peg and for the monk’s pole or valagni [The valagni was used for hanging the monk’s clothes or his begging bowl On.]. There is no trace of a bench. The veranda was about 10‘ broad and 4‘ deep with in front of it two eight-sided pillars and two pilasters. Both the pillars and the right pilaster have disappeared. Only parts of the left pilaster and pillar remain. A band of rock dressed like a beam of wood rests on the tops of the pillars and pilasters, and over this beam a stone cave projects about one foot. Over the cave the rock is carved as if into rafter ends, and above the rafter ends is a band of moulding and over the moulding a belt about a foot broad carved in the rail pattern. The rock-roof which is now much broken, projects about two feet in front of the rail.
Cave VI: Cave VI is close beyond Cave V. Between them was a cell which, as its partition wall is broken, now appears to be part of Cave VI. Cave VI is a four-celled dwelling cave, whose floor, like the floor of Cave V, has been hollowed out and turned into a large cistern. Marks in the right cell seem to show that gunpowder was used in blasting the rock. The cave is now filled with earth and stones.
The veranda was about 15‘ broad, 5‘ deep, and 6‘ 6” high, and there were three cells in its back wall and one in its right end wall, making the whole a four-celled dwelling or, as is mentioned in inscrip�tion 6, a chaugabhbha layana. In the walls of all of the cells are holes for pegs. Along the veranda front are two plain eight-sided pillars and two four-sided pilasters. Along the tops of these pillars the rock is dressed like a wooden beam with at intervals of about three feet the projecting ends of four cross beams which support an upper frieze. Each of the beam-ends is carved into a Buddhist trident with an umbrella over the middle tooth. The frieze above rests on rafters whose ends stand out an inch or two from the face. Above are a small and a larger band of rounded moulding, and above the mould�ing a belt of rail about a foot broad. Above the rail the rock overhangs about three feet.
Inscription 6: In the back wall of the veranda, between the door�ways of the middle and left cells, is a deep-cut and well-preserved inscription 6.
Cave VII: Cave VII, which is close beyond Cave VI, has like it been turned into a cistern which is now filled with earth. It was origi�nally a dwelling cave of one cell (about 7‘ X 6‘ X 6‘ 6“) with an open front. The cell had a grooved doorway and a benched recess in its right wall. In what remains of the left side wall of the open front there seems to have been a relic-shrine or chaitya. In the back wall of the open front to the left of the doorway is an inscription 7 originally in five lines but now almost� defaced.
Cave VIII: Cave VIII, close beyond Cave VII, is a small dwelling cave or layana, consisting of a veranda and an inner cell. The cell is 7′ 9″ square and 7′ high. In the right wall is a benched recess 7′ 2″ long, 2′ 5″ broad and 2′ above the ground. In the back and front walls are holes for pegs and for the monk’s pole. There is a grooved doorway 2′ 4″ wide and 6′ 10″ high. The veranda is 12′ 5″ broad and 3′ 9″ deep. Originally along the veranda front were two eight-sided plain pillars and two four-sided pilasters; but except their tops, the left pilaster and both the pillars are gone. On the east face of the right pilaster is’ the well known double crescent ornament. As is mentioned above, the right half of the veranda floor has been broken; and the parti�tion wall that divided the veranda from Cave VII has been blasted away with powder. To the left of the veranda is a cistern. In the back wall of the veranda on either side of the doorway is an inscription.
Inscription 9: Inscription 9, to the left of the doorway, small but well-preserved, is in two lines of clear though small and somewhat shallow letters.
Cave IX: Cave IX, which is close beyond Cave VIII and almost opposite the end of the path down the hill, is a small dwelling cave in two parts, a veranda and three cells. Two of the cells are in the back wall of the veranda and one is on the left end wall. The cell in the left end wall of the veranda is 6‘ 5“ deep, 6‘ 7“ broad, and 6‘ 3“ high, with a grooved doorway 2‘ 5“ wide and 6‘ 3“ high. In its back wall is a benched recess (2‘ 1“ X 2‘ 8“) and in its right wall are holes for pegs. The left cell in the back wall of the veranda is 5‘ 10” deep, 6‘ 4” broad and 6‘ 1“ high, with a grooved doorway 2‘ 5“ broad and 5‘ 11“ high. In its back wall is benched recess (2‘ 2“ x 2‘ 2“) with boles for pegs. The right cell in the back wall of the veranda is 8‘ 7“ deep, 8‘ 8“ broad and 6‘ 8“ high with a grooved doorway 2‘ 9“ wide and 6‘ 6“ high. In its right wall is a benched recess (2‘ 5“ X 2‘ 2“). A doorway 2‘ 4“ wide and 6‘ 2“ high in the back wall leads to an inner cell 6‘ 10“ deep, 7‘ 4“ broad and 6‘ 7“ high. In its back wall is a benched recess (2‘ 8“ x 2‘ 9“). In the seat are holes, probably modem, for fitting a wooden frame-work. Rope-rings and grain-husking holes in the cells show that the cave has been used for tying cattle. The veranda is 4‘ 5“ deep, 19‘ 4“ broad and 7‘ 1“ high. In its front are two pillars and two pilasters. The pillars are eight-sided shafts without bases and with inverted pot capitals of the Satakarni type. The pilasters are four-sided and have the double� crescent ornament. On the front faces of the capitals of the pillars and pilasters are animals which, except the tigers, are well carved. On the right pilaster is a single tiger with his right fore-leg folded across his left fore-leg. On the right pillar are two elephants seated back to back with riders; the right elephant holds a woman by his trunk. The left pillar has two well-carved bulls, the right bull with his head close to the ground and the left bull biting his hind foot. On the left pilaster is an antelope in the act of rising.
Five broken steps lead from the veranda down to the front court which is 8‘ long and 14‘ 10” broad. Its floor is rough and its right side wall is broken. The left side� wall, which is entire is 8‘ long. In the right of the court is a cistern full of earth. It is surprising that so well finished a cave should have no inscription. Below, and partly under the front court is a large cistern. Above the cistern, on a slightly lower level than Cave IV, is a cell too small, and plain to deserve a separate number. Its left side wall has been left uneven so as not to cut into the corner of one of the cells in Cave X. This part has been broken, and there is now a large opening into Cave X.
Cave X: Cave X, close beyond this cell, is a large dwelling cave, alike in plan but plainer than Cave III. What ornament there is, especially the animal pillar capitals, is as good as, if not better than, the carving in Cave III. Cave X is in three parts, a hall, sixteen cells, and a veranda. The hall is 45‘ 6“ deep, 40‘ broad in front, and 44‘ 6“ broad at the back. The height is 9‘ 9“. There are six cells in the back wall of the hall, and five in each side wall. In a recess in the middle of the back wall between the doorways of the third and fourth cells, there was, as in Cave III, a relic-shrine or chaitya in halt relief with a dancing woman on each side. Probably about the eleventh or twelfth century, this relic-shrine was turned into a large figure of Bhairava. The figure is 6‘ high and 2‘ 3“ across the chest. It holds a dagger or chharo in the right hand and a mace in the left and, wears a large garland or mala, which falls from the shoulders over the arms to within three inches of the ankles. The head ornament is lost; it was probably a hood or a top-knot of curled hair. On either side of Bhairava the dancing women which belonged to the relic-shrine, are still kept as attendants [The image of Bhairava is probably of the same age as the Jain images, in Cave XI. The Jains worship Bhairava as the protector or agent of the Jain church or community not as, the terrible god of the Shaivas or Shaktas. The Jains do not offer him flesh or blood sacrifices, but fruit and Sweetmeats.]. Over Bhairava the Buddhist tee capital, three umbrellas and two flags may still be seen. On either side of the tee is a hold probably for pegs to support curtains or to hang flower garlands or ornaments over the relic-shrine.�
The cells have no continued bench in front of them as in Cave III and their floor is on a level with the hall floor. They vary in depth from 7‘ to 10‘, in breadth from 7‘ to 9‘ and in height from 7‘ to 8‘; they have grooved doorways about 2‘ 3“ broad. Each has a bench along its back wall 2‘ broad and 3‘ high and in some the pegs to support the monk’s pole or valagni remain.
The hall has one main door, 6‘ 1“ broad and 9‘ 5“ high and on either side of it a smaller doorway, each about 2� 9“ wide and 7‘ 6“ high. Between the main door and each side door is a window, the right window 5‘ 2“ broad and 3‘ 11“ high, and the left window 4‘ 11“ broad and 4‘ 2“high. All the three doors and windows have grooves for wooden frames.
The veranda is 37‘ 4” broad, 9‘ 4“ deep and 11‘ 9” high; its floor is on a level with the hall floor and its ceiling is 2‘ higher than the hall ceiling. In each end wall of the veranda is a cell, the left cell 9′ deep, 7‘ 5“ broad and 7‘ high, with a grooved door 2‘ 9“ wide and 7‘ high, and a bench along the back wall 2‘ 5“ broad and 2‘ 6“ high. The right cell is 7‘ 6“ deep, 8‘ 7“ broad and 7‘ high, with a grooved doorway 2‘ 10” wide and 7‘ high and along the right wall a benched recess, the bench 2‘ 6“ high, and 2‘ 3“ broad. In front of the veranda are four pillars and two attached pillars or three quarter pilasters, all bf the Satakarni type. On the veranda floor rest four plates, each smaller than the one below it. On the top plate is a round moulding and on the moulding a large water-pot about 1‘ 6“ high and 9‘ 6” round. From the mouth of the water-pot rises an eight-sided shaft ending in an inverted pot capital. On the bottom of the inverted pot rests a square box with open sides and faces carved in the rail pattern. Inside of the box is a rounded moulding carved in the myrobalan or amalaka style. Above top plate, separated by a beam of rock, are two groups of animal capitals, some of the animals real, others fanciful. Inside the veranda on the right pilaster are two animals seated back to back; the right animal a tiger looking back, the left a fanciful animal with curious branching horns. The first pillar has two fanciful animals sitting back to back, each with a tiger’s body, the beak of a bird, and uplifted ears. The second pillar has two tigers back to back. The third has two sphinxes. The fourth has a horned goat on the right and a hornless goat on the left. The left pilaster has two tigers, the left tiger looking forward and the right tiger resting its face on its crossed forelegs; the position is natural and the carving good. Outside the veranda on the front face of the capitals returning from left to right, the left pilaster has a single lion with a rider. The first pillar has two bulls back to back with a rider on each; the second pillar has two elephants back to back with a rider and a driver on each; the third pillar also has two elephants back to back, each with a driver and rider; the fourth pillar has two lions back to back, each with a rider; and the right pilaster has two elephants each with a driver and rider.
In the veranda are four inscriptions (10, 11, 12, 13), well preserved.
Inscription 14: There are two weather-worn inscriptions (14 and 15) in the court. Of Inscription 14 which is on the right wall of the court the weather has worn away the beginning of each line, the injury increasing from the top downwards. After the first eleven lines there is an empty space with room for two or three lines and then about four lines of writing.
Inscription 15: Inscription 15 is on the left wall of the court. The first seven lines are entire but uneven, as the space is taken up by the trunk of one of the elephants in the capital of the left pilaster. The letters are not deep cut; and time and weather have worn away the right side of the inscription.
Cave XI: Cave XI, close beyond Cave X, but on a higher level, is a small dwelling cave or layana, consisting of a veranda, a small hall, a cell, and a half cell. The hall is 11‘ 8“ broad, 6‘ 10“ deep and 6‘ 8“ high, with a grooved door 2‘ 7“ wide and 6‘ 8“ high. In its back wall to the left is a half cell� 7‘ 3“ deep, 5‘ 7“ broad, and as high as the hall. Along its back and left walls is a continued bench 2‘ 3“ high and 2‘ 2“ broad. In the hall to right of the back wall is a small recess which in later times has been broken and a hole made through to the first cell in the right wall of the hall of Cave X.
That this is only a recess, not a cell, as it would have been had not the cell in Cave X, interfered, shows that this cave is later than Cave X. There may have been a small bench in the recess, but as the lower part is broken no trace of the bench remains. In the part of the back wall between the recess and the half cell is blue figure of a Jaina saint or Tirthankar, of about the eleventh century. It seems to be Rishabhadeva, the first Tirthankar, as his hair falls on his shoulders, a peculiarity of that saint. The figure is in the cross-legged or padmasana mudra and2‘ 3“ high. Below his seat are two tigers look�ing forward, and between the tigers is the Dharmachakra. Near the left leg of the image is something like a small child, probably the son of the person who paid for the carving of the image. The throne-back of the image has on each side the usual alligators or makaras, and round the face is an aureole. On either side of the face a human figure floats through the air bearing a garland, and outside of each figure is a small fly-whisk bearer. Above the aureole are three umbrellas each smaller than the one below it, denoting the sover�eignty over the three worlds, trailokyadhipatya. At the extreme top are two floating figures with fly-whisks. In the right wall, to the left is an image of the Jaina goddess Ambika and to the right an image of the Jaina demi-god Vira Manibhadra. Ambika sits cross-legged on a lion under a mango-tree in which are a cleverly carved monkey and some birds. In her lap is an infant and to the right of the infant is a boy with a fly-whisk. Ambika has her hair in a large roll drawn to the left side of her head; she wears ear-rings and it necklace. What she carried in her right hand is broken; it must have been the mango branch with fruit which is prescribed in Jaina books. To the right of the image is a standing figure of a bearded man with an umbrella in his right hand and a conch shell in his left, probably a worshipper. The entire image of Ambika with her lion is 2‘ 9“ high. Manibhadra is a male figure sitting on an elephant, his toes drawn under him, and his hands resting on his knees. He held something in his hands, but it is too broken to be made out. This group is 3‘ 5“ high includ�ing the elephant. He wears a four-storeyed conical crown and a sacred thread. In the left wall of the hall is a cell 6‘ 2“ broad, 6‘ 5“ deep and 6‘ 8“ high, with a door 2‘ 5“ broad and 6‘ 8“ high. Its floor and ceiling are on the same level as the hall. The veranda is 10‘ 4“ broad and 3‘ 11“ deep. Its floor was originally on a level with the hall floor, but it is now much broken. Its ceiling is about two inches higher than the hall ceiling. To the left of the veranda, is a benched recess. In front, above the veranda, is a band of rail about a foot broad supported on a double line of moulding and a beam-like band with outstanding rafter ends. At present part of the floor of the veranda, part of its side walls and of the seat, are broken; and there is no access to the cave except through the hole mentioned above which must have been made in later times to communicate with the first cell in the east wall of the hall of Cave X.
In the back wall of the veranda, to the right of the doorway and close under the ceiling, is Inscription 16 in two lines.
Cave XII: Cave XII is close beyond Cave XI but on a lower level, being partly below its veranda floor. It is a small dwelling cave or layana consisting of a veranda and a cell. Of the veranda no trace is left. The front wall of the cell is also broken and the cell is partly filled with earth and is useless as a residence. The cell is 11‘ 10“ broad, 7‘ 11“ deep and about 8‘ high. There are holes for the monk’s pole or valagni and along the right wall is a benched recess.
In the back wall of the veranda, to the left of the broken doorway, is Inscription 17 in five entire and a sixth part line. The letters at the right end of the lines, though not difficult to make out, are weather-worn.
Cave XIII: Caves XIII and XIV are close to one another, just beyond Cave XII. As their partition wall and veranda ceiling are broken they seem to be one cave, but their structure shows that they were originally two separate dwelling caves.
Cave XIII: Cave XIII is in three parts, a veranda, a middle room, and cells. The veranda was 12‘ 8” broad, 4‘ deep and 7‘ 2“ high. It is now ruined, but its height, breadth and depth can be known from its floor and a well-preserved part in the right comer. The middle room is 11‘ 8“broad and 7‘ 7“ deep, and 6′ 10″ high, with along the right wall a benched recess 2‘ 8” high, 7‘ 2“ long and 2‘ 5“ broad. In the back wall of the middle room are two cells, the right cell 6‘ 9“ high, 7‘ 3“ deep and 6‘ 9“ broad, with a grooved door 2‘ 4“ wide and 6‘ 9“ high. The left cell which is 7‘ 1“ deep, 6‘ 10“ broad and 7‘ high, has along the back a benched recess 2‘ broad and 2‘ 3“ high. Its door is 2‘ 3“ broad and 6‘ 10“ high.
Cave XIV: Cave XIV is close to Cave XIII but 1‘ 6“ higher. Its entire right wall which was originally the partition between Caves XIII and XIV and most of its ceiling are broken. It consists of two parts, a veranda, and cells in its back wall. The veranda is 14‘ 11“ broad, 5‘ 11“ deep and 6‘ 7“ high. In front of the veranda appear to have been two pilasters of which only the left with the usual double crescent ornament remains. Outside of the veranda the front face of the floor is carved in the rail pattern. Most of the veranda ceiling is broken. In the back wall of the veranda are three cells, the right cell 6′ broad, 9‘ 2“ deep and 6‘ 9“ high, the partition between it and Cave XIII being broken. There is a bench in a recess 2‘ 6“ broad and 2‘ 2“ high. Its door, which was originally grooved, is broken. The middle cell is 5‘ 3“ broad, 9‘ deep and 6‘ 10“ high, with a grooved doorway 2‘ broad and 6‘ 10“ high, and along the back wall a benched recess 2‘ 6” broad and 2‘ 5“ high. The left cell is 6‘ 8” broad, 9‘ 2“ deep and 6‘ 9” high, with a grooved doorway 2‘ 2“ wide and 6‘ 7“ high, and along the back wall is a benched recess 2‘6“ broad and 2‘ high. Probably both these dwelling caves had inscriptions on the broken front.
Close beyond Cave XIV is a cistern in a recess containing good water. In the left wall of the recess is a woman’s face with large round ear-rings. It is probably a late work representing Shitala, the small-pox goddess, who is generally shown simply by a head.
About ninety feet to the left of’ the cistern is an empty space where cutting was begun but given up on account of a fissure in the rock.
Cave XV: Cave XV, close beyond the vacant space is a shrine-�like cell, made about the sixth century by Buddhists of the Mahayana sect. The carving of Buddha, Bodhisattva and Nagaraja is like that of the sixth century images in the Ajanta and Kanheri caves. The cell is 6‘ 9“broad, 6‘ 9“ deep and 7‘ 8“ high. The front wall is gone, but the round holes in the ceiling and the square holes in the floor cut for the wooden frame-work of the door remain and are different from those in other Nasik-caves. In the back wan a five feet high Buddha sits on a. lion-throne or Simhasana his feet resting on a lotus. About a foot below the lotus is a wheel or dharma�chakra, and on either side of the wheel a deer. The back or pithika of the throne have the usual crocodile-mouths supported on tigers. Above, on either side, is a bowing Nagaraja. Buddha’s face is surrounded by an aureole, his right leg is broken, and his hands are broken off at the wrist. The wheel and the deer suggest that he was sitting in the teaching position or dharmachakra mudra. On either side of Buddha’s lion-throne is a Bodhisattva 5‘ 2“ high, only the legs of the right figure remain. The left Bodhisattva has matted hair. His left hand rests on Buddha’s throne and his right hand holds a lotus stalk or nala. Above each Bodhisattva is an image of Buddha 1‘ 6“ high, sitting on a lotus in the teaching position or dharmachakra mudra.
On the left wall is a Buddha seated cross-legged in the teaching position or dharmachakra mudra over a lotus. The image is 3‘ 8“ high and 3‘ 3“ across the knees. The stalk of the lotus on which Buddha sits is supported by two Nagarajas. The Nagaraja’s head-dress is a five-hooded cobra over a crown; the hair hanging behind in curls in the Sassanian style. From either side of the stem a branch shoots forth about two feet broad with buds and leaves. Behind Buddha is a pillow and round the face is an aureole. To the right and left of the central image are six images of Buddha, three on each side, 1‘ 7“ high sitting cross-legged on lotus-seats one above the other. Of these the two lower images on the left are broken.
On the right wall there seems to have been an image of Buddha like that on the back wall. All that remains is part of the back of his throne with crocodiles, traces of the feet of the two Bodhisattvas, and two Buddhas over the Bodhisattvas. There seem also to have been standing Buddhas on each side of the doorway; only traces of their feet are left. To the right of Cave XV are two exca�vations� which look like recesses. The work seems to have been stopped because of the badness of the rock
Cave XVI: Cave XVI is about twenty feet above Cave XV of some rock-cut steps which originally led to it, from near the front of Cave XV, almost no trace is left. The only way of access to Cave XVI is by an iron staircase of nineteen steps which was set up about 1880 by a Lohana merchant of Bombay. Cave XVI is, an old cell turned into a Mahayana shrine. It seems originally to have consisted of an outer veranda, an inner veranda, and a cell, and about the sixth century the three sides of the cell seem to have been deepened and images cut of a Mahayana Buddha. But this is doubtful and probably Caves XV and XVI were both cut anew. The cell was originally 5‘ 3“ broad and 6‘ 3“ deep; it is now 11‘ broad, 10‘ 4“ deep and 7‘ 2“ high, with a doorway 2‘ 5“ broad and 6‘ 2“ high. On the back wall is an image of Buddha, 5‘high and 2‘ across the shoulders. He sits on a lion-throne or simhasana in the teaching position, his feet resting on a lotus. On either side of the back of the throne are tigers, over them are crocodiles swallowing water-fowls, and above is a bowing Nagaraja. Buddha’s face is surrounded by an aureole. On his left is a standing Bodhisattva 4′ 10″ high with matted hair in the centre of which is a relic-shrine. In his right hand he holds a fly�whisk and in his left a lotus with a stalk, thus resembling the figure of Lokeshvara Padmapani or Bodhisattva Padmapani. On Buddha’s right is a figure of a Bodhisattva dressed in the same way and of about the same size. In his right hand he holds a fly-whisk, and in his left a purse or a jug. Over each Bodhisattva is a teaching Buddha 1‘ 6“ high seated cross-legged on a lotus. On the left wall is a larger (6‘ 2“ high and 3‘ broad) Buddha sitting in the same position on a lion-throne. He has fly-whisk bearers 5‘ 6“ high, and above them are Buddhas, the same as those on the back wall. The fly-whisk bearer to the left of Buddha has matted hair with a relic-shrine in the centre; the one to the right wears a crown. Both hold fly-whisks in their right hands and rest their left hands on their hips. The crowned fly-whisk bearer is probably Indra or Lokeshvara Vajradhara; the figure with matted hair has not been identified. To the right is a similar sitting Buddha of the same size with a similarly ornamented throne back or pithika. Of his fly-whisk bearers Vajrapani Lokeshvara or perhaps Indra on the right has a crown on his head, fly-whisk in his right hand, and a sword in his left hand; Padmapani on the left has matted hair, a fly-whisk in his right hand, and a lotus stalk with leaves and a bud in his left hand.
Cave XVII: About forty feet beyond and sixteen feet higher than Cave XV is Cave XVII. The space between Caves XV and XVII was left empty because the rock was seamy and unfit for working. At some later time the rock seems to have been blasted with gunpowder and reservoirs made which are now filled with earth and stones.
Its inscription seems to show that Cave XVII was intended to, be a dwelling-cave with a shrine attached. The shrine-room or chaitya-griha is mentioned in the inscription but it was never completed, and has, been turned into a cell with a bench 3′ 9″ broad and 2′ high. This cell is 8′ deep and 7′ broad and 7′ 8″ high, with a doorway 3′ 9″ broad and 7′ high. In front of the door a piece of rock, in form like an altar, has been left unworked probably to make ornamental steps. In later times a shalunkha or linga-case has been cut in the rock and a linga inserted. In front of the cell is a passage 22′ broad, 4′ deep and 11′ 4″ high. In the back wall of the passage to the right of the cell door, in a shallow recess a four feet high Buddha stands on a lotus in the gift position or vara mudra. This is a sixth century addition of about the same time as the images in other caves. In front of the passage are two pillars and two pilasters with animal capitals on the front and back. On the pillars between the groups of animals runs a beam-like band of rock and on the beam rests the roof. The pillars and pilasters are plain and four-sided. It was probably intended to make round shafts with pot-shaped bases, but they are rough and unfinished. At the top of the pillar is a capital of five plates each larger than the one below. Over the topmost plate, on either side of the beam, carved animals sit back to back with riders and drivers. The dress of the riders and drivers is curious and is, valuable as evidence of the style of dress which was in use before the time of Nahapana. On the inner face of both pilasters a man rides a fanciful animal with the beak of a bird, the body of a tiger, and uplifted ears. On the inner face of both pillars are two elephants back to back, each with a driver and rider. On the outer face of the pilasters is a single elephant with a driver and two riders, a man and a boy. On the outer face of the right pillar, the driver of the right hand elephant wears a high turban and holds a good or dhoka with a handle, not a hook; the rider is a boy. The driver of the left elephant is a woman with a curious head-dress. The riders are a man and a boy, the man with a curious head-dress. In his right hand he holds a pat such as is used in worship.
On the outer face of the left pillar two elephants sit back to back. The right elephant is driven by a man and ridden by a woman and a girl. The woman’s dress is much like that now worn by Vanjari women with a; central and two side bosses of hair. The left elephant is driven and ridden by men.
In front of these pillars is a hall 22′ 9″ broad, 32′ deep and 11′ 4″ high. Its floor is on, a level with the floor of the inner passage and the ceiling is of the same height as the porch ceiling. In its right wall are four cells the one in the extreme (visitor’s) left unfinished. The floors of the second and third cells are on a level with the hall floor but the floor of the right or fourth cell is about 1′ 6″ higher, and is entered by a step. The left and the third cells have no bench the second and fourth have benches along the back wall. At each end of the left wall of the hall is a small cell and between the cells a large narrow benched recess 18′ 6″ long, 2� broad and 2′ 6″ high. The right cell is unfinished; the left cell is very small and in making it much care had to be taken lest it should break into Cave XVIII the great chapel or chaitya cave. A modem hole shows the thinness of the partition of rock.
The hall has a large main door 4′ 10″ broad and 10′ high and on its left a small door 2′ 8″ broad and 8′ 4″ high. On either side of the main door is a window the right one 3′ 8″ broad, 3′ 5″ high, and the left one 3′ broad and 3′ 8″ high. Over the small door and window in the back wall of the veranda is Inscription 18 in three and a quarter lines. The letters are large, deep and well-preserved.
The veranda is 6′ 2″ deep, 31′ broad and 12′ 2″ high. In front of the veranda are two pillars and two attached three-quarter pillars. On entering, to the west of the right three-quarter pillar is a little rough piece of wall which seems to have been intended for a fourth pillar but left unfinished. In the right or west end of the veranda is an unfinished cell. Between the pillars five steps lead down to the front court but these steps are not, as is usual, in front of the main door but, between the main door and the small door, opposite the left window. Some mistake seems to have been made in the construction of the cave. The pillars and pilasters are of the Satakarni style with large water-pot bases eight sided shafts and inverted water-pot capitals with rail boxes, a pile of five plates, and animal capitals, Closely like the pillars in Cave X. On the inner face of the capital of the east pilaster are two animals back to back with the mouths of birds, the bodies of tiger and erect ears; each is ridden by a woman. On the inner face of the first pillar capital are two elephants back to back each driven by a man and ridden by a woman. On the second pillar are two lions back to back, a woman riding the right one and a man riding the left one. The head-dress of both is curious, a braided knot of hair or ambodo with five plates in front. On the inner face of the left pilaster are two elephants the right elephant with bath a rider and a driver, and the left one with only a rider. On the front faces of bath pillars and pilasters two elephants sit back to back. On the left or east pilaster the left elephant is driven by a man and ridden by a boy and the right elephant is driven by a woman and ridden by a man and a boy. On the first pillar the left elephant is driven by a man and ridden by a bay, and the right elephant is driven by a man and ridden by two women. The first woman’s head-dress is a curious circular disc, the second’s head-dress has three bunches or jhumkhas like a Vanjari woman’s. The second woman stretches her left hand to help a third woman to mount. On the second pillar the left elephant is driven by a man and ridden by two women, the foremost of whom raises her folded hands over her head in salutation. The right elephant is driven by a man and ridden by a man and a boy. On the left pilaster the left elephant is driven by one man and ridden by two others, and the right elephant has one driver and one rider.
A frieze about two feet broad stands out about two feet from the animal capitals. It is supported by a belt of rock carved at intervals of foot in imitation of wooden rafters whose ends, which were alternately plain and carved in woman’s faces, stand about two inches beyond the base of the frieze. Above the base of the frieze is a plain rounded moulding and above the moulding a rail with four horizontal bars together about fifteen inches broad. Above the frieze overhangs a much-broken eave of rock.
In front of the veranda is the court whose floor is 2′ 4″ below the veranda. It was originally 28′ 3″ broad and 14′ long, but now nearly half of it is broken. To the left of the court is a broken cistern with one step leading to it. In the hall are several rope rings and rice�-husking holes showing that the cave has been used for stabling horses and as a granary.
Cave XVIII: Cave XVIII is close beyond Cave XVII, but six feet lower. It is the chapel or. chaitya cave, the centre of the whole group. It is 39′ 6″ deep and near the doorway 21′ 6″ broad. The roof is vaulted and the inner end rounded. It is surrounded by a row of pillars which cut off an aisle about four feet broad Twenty-six feet from the doorway is the relic-shrine or daghoba 12′ high, of which 5′ 4″ is the height of the plinth, 3′ the height of the dome, and 2′ 10″ of the plates and the tee. The circumference of the plinth is 16′ 8″. Above the plinth is a belt of rail tracery 9″ broad, and over the rail, separated by a terrace 4′ broad is a rather oval semi-circular dome 3′ high and 14′ 7″ in circumference. Over the dome is a shaft 10″ high and 1′ 3″ broad with two bands in the rail. The top of the shaft broadens about four inches on the east and west sides and supports on outstanding framework, the bottom of which is carved into four rafters whose ends stand out from the face. This framework supports four plates each about three inches broad and each larger than the plate below. Over the top of the fourth plate is a fifth plate about six inches broad whose face is carved in the rail pattern. In the middle of this plate is a round hole for the umbrella stem, and at the comers are four small -round holes for flags.
Down each side of the chapel is a row of five pillars, leaving a central space 8′ 9″ broad and side aisles with a breadth of 3′ 6″. Behind the relic-shrine is a semi-circular apse with a row of five pillars separated from the wall by a passage 3′ 6″ broad. The five pillars in front of the relic-shrine an either side are plain eight-sided shafts with water-pot bases in the Satakarni style; the five behind the relic-shrine are plain eight-sided shafts without bases. The pillars on the left side have no capitals; those on the right have rough square blacks as if left to be carved into capitals. Along the tops of the pillars which are 13′ 8″ high, runs a band of rock dressed like a beam of timber 6″ deep. Above the beam the wall rises straight for 4′ 4″ and then curves in a dame 4′ 6″ deep. At the top of the perpendicular part of the wall, as at Karle and Bhaja in Poona, are grooves for holding wooden ribs. Three feet from the doorway are two plain flat columns from the top of which the roof slopes towards the door. Above the door and stretching about six feet an either side is a cut in the wall about six inches deep and six inches broad and there are corresponding marks in the two first pillars as if same staging or gallery had been raised inside of the door.
Inscription 19: Engraved in four vertical lines, on the fifth and sixth pillars of the right-hand row is Inscription 19. Though not very deep cut, the letters are large and well-preserved. The four lines on the two pillars, when read together, make up the text of the inscription.
Inscription 20: The doorway is 4′ broad and 7′ 4″ high. Over the doorway a Buddhist horse-shoe arch stands out about two feet from the face of the cave and is supported an eleven ribs. Under the arch is Inscription 20 in one line. The letters which are well cut and distinct, are older than the letters of Inscription 19.
Under the arch, as in the cells near the Bhut Ling cave, in the south or Manmoda group at Junnar, are figures of horses, elephants, bulls and tigers in the spaces between the bars of an irregularly �flowing rail. In the middle is the favourite Buddhist pentagonal symbol over the trident enclosing a lotus flower. Between the teeth of the trident are two tigers rampant, and in the middle of the pentagonal symbol is a minute standing human figure. Below the bottom bar of the rail is a semi-circle whose front is carved in a lattice tracery of six-leaved flowers. The left door post or shakha is richly carved in an elaborate tracery of peacocks, human figures and flowers, in a pattern which occurs an the front of the arch of the Queen’s cave at Udayagiri in Orissa. To the left of the post a standing Yaksha holds a lotus in his right hand, and the end of his waist-band in his left. Close to his left hand begins the rail pattern of the stairs which lead to cave XIX. Most of the carving on the right door post is destroyed.
Inscription 21: On the plain rounded moulding to the right about six feet above the Yaksha is Inscription 21. The letters closely resemble those of Inscription 19. The beginning is worn away.
On either side of the horse-shoe arch, is a band of plain rounded moulding, an the left half of which inscription 20 is cut. Above the moulding is a beam with outstanding rafter-like ends, alternately plain and carved into women’s heads. Above the beam is a band of rail about a foot broad with three horizontal rails. Above the rail is a terrace about six feet broad, and above the terrace, over the small horse-shoe arch below, is a large horse-shoe arch 8′ 10″ high, 10′ 5″ broad and 4′ 2″ deep, supported on eleven rock-cut rafters through which light passes into the cave. In the back of the main arch is an inner arch, 8′ high, 8′ ‘5″ broad and 5″ deep. The inner arch is grooved, the grooves being probably intended to hold a wooden framework. On either side of the large horse-shoe arch near the foot is a massive rail, and above the rail is a narrow outstanding belt supported on rafter ends. Above this belt on each side are two pillars and pilasters in Satakarni style with reversed bell-shaped rather than pot-shaped animal capitals. On the capital of the left pilaster are two, bulls seated back to back; the left pillar has two horses similarly seated and the third pillar has two elephants. On the third pillar to the west of the arch are two bulls, one of them broken, on the fourth pillar are two tigers, and on the west pilaster are two animals whose heads are broken. Between each pair of pillars below is a relic-shrine in half relief, shaped much like the relic-shrine in the chapel. Over each relic-shrine is a band of rail, and over the rail are small horse-shoe arches. Round the relic-�shrine and the small arches is beautifully executed lattice work of various designs. On each side of the main arch between it and the nearest pillar and on a level with the animal capital is an erect cobra with expanded hood. Over the main arch rise three bands of moulding each standing out further than the band below it. These bands are plain except that out of the middle band project the ends of rock-cut rafters. Over the third band is a small rail. Above on each side of the peak of the great arch, are two smaller arches, and between each pair of arches are broken figures of men and women. Above are two small bands of rail tracery and in the upper band four minute arches. In the side walls of the recess in front of the chapel face which are almost� entirely broken away are broken arches and other traces of ornament.
Cave XIX: Cave XIX is close beyond Cave XVIII, and below the court of the Cave XX. It is so filled with earth and the space in front is so blocked with stones that it can be only entered sitting. It is a dwelling-cave for monks and is the oldest in the group. It is in three parts, a veranda, a hall, and six cells. The hall is 14′ broad, 14′ deep and about 8′ high. In its back wall and in each of its side walls are two cells, or six cells in all. Over the doorway of each cell is a horse-�shoe arch and between each pair of arches is a band of rail tracery one foot broad, carved in the ordinary style except in the space between the side-cells where it is waving. The cells are about 6′ 4″ broad and 7′ 2″ deep; all of them are partly filled with earth. The benches, if there are benches, are hid under the earth. Holes for the monk’s pole or valagni remain. The doorways of the cells are grooved, 2′ wide, and about 6′ high. The walls of the hall and cells are well-�chiselled and the whale work is accurate and highly finished. The gate�way of the hall is three feet broad and on either side of it is a window with stone lattice work.
Inscription 22: On the upper sill of the right window is inscription 22 in two lines. The letters in this, which is the oldest of Nasik inscriptions, are well cut, and except a slit in the first letters of both lines the whole is well-preserved.
The veranda is 16′ broad and 4′ 2″ deep, and its ceiling is about 7″ lower than the hall ceiling. In front of the veranda, are two pilasters and two pillars eight-sided in the middle of the shaft and square in the upper part, in the style found at Girnar in Kathiavad and at Udayagiri in Orissa. Along the tops of the pillars runs a belt of rock dressed like a beam of timber, and over the beam the roof stood out, but is now broken, this cave, the oldest and one of the most interesting in the group, is being rapidly destroyed by water and earth. Steps have been taken to channelise the water outside but yet some water finds its way into the cave.
Cave XX: Cave XX is to the left of Cave XVIII on a fifteen feet higher level, and approached from Cave XVIII bra staircase of nineteen broken steps. As noted above, the railing for this staircase is cut in the front wall of Cave XVIII, beginning from the left of the doorway. This cave seems to have been mare than once altered. It was originally like the third cave, a large dwelling for monks, with a central hall, 45′ deep and 41′ broad, six cells in the right and in the left side walls and probably as many in the back wall, with a bench all round in front of the cells. The inscription in the back wall of the veranda recording the excavation says that this cave was begun by an ascetic named Bopaki, that it long remained unfinished and that it was com�pleted by Vasu, the wife of a general named Bhavagopa, and given for the use of monk in the seventh year of Gotamiputra Yajnashri Satakarni. The usual practice in excavating caves was to complete the work so far as it went. If this practice was followed in the present case Bopaki must have finished the veranda and the doorway and done some cutting inside, while Bhavagopa’s wife must have done the cells and the hall. Bhavagopa’s wife does not seem to have finished the work. The bench along the left wall is still rough and probably the fifth and sixth cells in that wall were left unfinished, as the work in them seems to be later. About four centuries after Bhavagopa’s wife completed most of the cave, the back wall seems to have been broken down and the cave cut deeper into the hill. The line between the original ceiling and the ceiling of the addition shows that the addition is 46′ long, of which 15′ 6″ is in the present hall and the rest has been used as a Mahayana shrine. In the addition two cells were cut in the right wall and the fifth and sixth cells in the right wall, left incomplete by Bhavagopa’s wife, were improved. This appears from the style of their doorways which is slightly different from the style of the doorways of the other old cells. In the back wall a shrine was made a little to the right of the middle, with two cells one en its left and one all its right. It is in two parts, a garbhagara or inner shrine and a porch or tibari. The shrine is 14′ bread, 14′ deep and 12′ 4″ high. In the back wall of the shrine is a colossal Buddha, 10′ high and 4′ across the shoulders, seated on a lion-throne in the teaching position, his feet resting on a small altar or dais [It may be noted here that the Buddha image is no more worshipped though some visitors do after flowers. There is also no Gurav now to look after the shrine.].� On either side of the image the back of the throne is ornamented with the usual sculpture of elephants, above them imaginary horned lions or Shardulas with riders, and above them crocodiles swallowing water�fowl, and above the crocodiles a Nagaraja. Buddha’s face is surrounded by an aureole. In the side walls, an Buddha’s left and right is a fly�whisk bearer 8′ 8″ high. The left fly-whisk bearer has matted hair with a relic-shrine an the middle of the forehead. In his left hand he holds a lotus stalk and in his right hand a fly-whisk. The right fly�whisk bearer has a crown on his head, his left hand rests on his waist-band, and his right hand holds the fly-whisk. They are bath Bodhisattvas. Above each a Vidyadhara and his wife fly towards Buddha. The door of the shrine which is grooved and plain, is 4′ 3″ broad and 8′ 6″ high. The porch in front of the floor has a floor about two feet lower than the shrine-door. The porch is 19′ 10″ broad, 10′ 6″ deep and 12′ 5″ high. In its back wall on each side of the doorway is the figure of a Bodhisattva 9′ 5″ high. Both have matted hair and stand in the safety position or abhayamudra with a rosary in the fight hand. The left Bodhisattva holds a lotus stalk in his left hand of which the top and the lower part are broken; the right Bodhisattva holds in his left hand a lotus stalk with a bud. To the right of the left Bodhisattva a crowned male figure. 5′ 7″ high, holds a lotus flower and leaf in his right hand and rests his left hand on his waist-band. The nose of this figure has been broken and a new nose fastened on and a moustache and a short beard added, all of some hard sticky material. To the right of the right Bodhisattva is a female figure five feet high. Her nose, eyes and brow have been broken and repaired with the same sticky material as the male figure. She has a curious lofty head-dress like that worn by some sixth century figures. In her right ear is a large round ear-ring and in both her hands she holds a garland. A robe falls from the waist to the feet. The male and female figures are probably of Mamma who made this shrine and her husband, or they may be Mamma’s mother and father. All these figures appear to have been formerly smeared with oil and as they have a second coating of smoke their ornaments are greatly dimmed. In the right and left walls of the porch are two cells, one in each wall, probably for the use of the worshipping priest or for keeping materials used in the worship.
In front of the porch are two pillars and two pilasters. The ornament of the pilasters and pillars is the same as that of several Ajanta pillars of the fifth or sixth century. The pillars are about three feet square below and in the square faces circles are carved holding croco�dile or elephant mouths with leafy tails and lotus flowers, and round the circles rows of lotus flowers with leaves. Above the square section is a rounded shaft about two feet high with two circular belts of leaves and lotus flowers, and above is a third belt of hanging rosaries divided by half lotuses and water-pots with leaves. Above these circular belts is a rounded myrobalan capital with rich leaf-like ornaments at the comers, and a lotus flower in the middle of each face. Above the lotus is a plain plate on which a beam rests which stands out in a bracket about a foot deep. The brackets support a large plain beam. In front of the porch the floor is raised about two inches high in a square of 9′ 7″. This is part of the original floor, which was deepened a little all round when the shrine was made. This altar is not exactly in front of the shrine, but is as nearly as possible at the same distance from the two side walls. It seems unconnected with the shrine, and corresponds to the place assigned to the wooden stools or bajaths in Jaina temples in Girnar and Shatrunjaya on which small images are placed for visitors to worship on great days when it is not possible for all to worship the image in the shrine.
The hall has eight cells in the side walls though one of them, the second in the right wall, is not a cell but an excavation with no front. The bench along the right wall has bench dressed and finished, while half of the left wall bench has been dressed but the other half towards the door is unfinished.���������� �
Except the sixth and seventh cells, counting from the shrine in the left wall the cells have no benches. In front of the fifth, sixth and seventh cells in the right wall a line of four different sized circles or chakras are cut in the floor. They were probably used to grind grain on at a later date but are not modern as they are higher than the rest of the floor. Their original use was perhaps connected with the arti or waving of lights round the image of Buddha. At present the Nepalese Buddhist light-waving ceremonies consist of three parts. The officiating priest first strikes the bell; he then pours water from an earthen pot in four circles which may not be crossed. After the four rings of water have been poured the priest lifts on his left shoulder a heavy wooden pole and grasping the lower end with his right hand strikes the pole with a second smaller staff. The sound is called gambhira ghosha or the solemn sound, and is regarded as very holy. These four circles may represent the four rings of water.
The entrance into the hall is by a large grooved doorway, 5′ 7″ broad and 9′ high, with a small doorway to the left 3′ 5″ broad and 7′ 8″ high, and one grooved window on either side of the main door�way, 4′ 3″ broad and 3′ 2″ high.
Inscription 23: Over the doorway of, the last cell from the shrine in the left wall is Inscription 3 in two small lines in well-�cut letters of the fifth or sixth century. It is in Sanskrit and is the most modern of the Nasik cave inscriptions. It records the construction of a dwelling cave. As it is on the doorway of a cell it might be supposed to refer to the cell.
The veranda is 34‘ 3” broad, 7‘ 9“ deep and 10‘ high with a cell in its left end wall. Along the front of the veranda are four pillars and two attached three quarter pillars. These pillars are plain in the Satakarni pot-capital style. A band of rock dressed like a beam of timbers rests on the top of the pillars, and over the beam the rock-roof overhangs about three feet. Between the second and third pillars, facing the main door, three steps lead down to a court 30‘ 10“ broad and 7‘ 9“ deep, and 1‘ 10“ lower than the veranda floor. Along the veranda face below the pillars is a belt of upright bars about eight inches high. A doorway in the left wall of the court which is now broken led to Cave XXI.
Inscription 24: In the back wall of the veranda to the left of the main doorway, above the left side door and the left window, is Inscrip�tion 24. It is blackened by smoke and is not easily seen, but the letters are well-cut and easily read.
This cave was occupied by a Vairagi who walled of the right comer of the veranda as a cell for himself and raised in the hall a clay altar for his god. He was murdered in January 1883 by a Koli for his money.
Fair: In honour of the colossal Buddha which is locally worshipped as Dharmaraja, a large fair, attended by about 600 persons from Nasik and the surrounding villages, is held on the third Monday in Shravana (July-August) when boys dressed in girls’ clothes dance to a drum accompaniment and men beat sticks and blow shells. Booths and stalls are set up at the foot of the hill.�
Cave XXI: Cave XXI close beyond Cave XX is entered by a broken door in the right wall of the court of Cave XX. It is a rough hall 23‘ 10“ deep and 10‘ high. In front for 6‘ 7“ the breadth of the hall is 17‘ 10“; then there is a comer and beyond the comer the breadth is 21‘ 2“. The ceiling of the hall is rough and uneven and in the back part of the cave the roof is about a foot lower than near the front. In front are two pillars and two pilasters. The pillars are eight-sided in the middle and square below and above. In front is a court 9‘ deep and 17‘ 7“ broad, with a large and deep cistern, to the right, holding water. This hall does not appear to be a dwelling cave as it has no cells or benches; nor has it a bench all round as in dining-halls or bhojana-mandapas. It is probably a sattra, that is, either a cooking place or a place for distributing grain. The large cistern in front seems to be for the convenience of the kitchen. At XXI the broad terrace ends and the rest of the path is rough and in places difficult.
Cave XXII: About thirty-four feet beyond cave XXI and on a slightly higher level, reached by rough rock-cut steps is cave XXII a cell with an open veranda in front. Its side walls are undressed and the back wall is unfinished. Peg holes in the walls and in the grooved door seem to show that it was used as a dwelling. The cell is 9‘ 8“ deep and 5‘ 4“ broad, and the doorway 2‘ broad. The height cannot be ascertained as the cell is partly filled with clay. The veranda is 5‘ 7“ broad and 3‘ deep.���
Beyond cave XXII there seem to have been two or three excavations, the first of which looks like a cell much filled with earth. The others cannot be seen as they are covered with stones which have fallen from above. They must be small cells of no special interest as the rock is unfit for caves of any size.
Cave XXIII: About twenty-five yards beyond cave XXII, and almost on the same level, is cave XXIII. Marks in the ceiling show that there were originally five or six small dwelling caves with cisterns in front. The first probably was a dwelling cave with one cell and veranda; the second probably consisted of a middle room with a cell and a half cell; the third consisted of a veranda and two cells and the fourth, of a veranda, two cells, and a half cell. The four parti�tions of these dwelling-caves have been broken down and the whole made into a large irregular hall, but the marks of the old dwelling� caves can still be seen in the ceiling. Three Mahayana sixth century shrines have been made in the back wall of the hall, and images have been carved in recesses in the wall. Except in the first shrine this Mahayana work is better than the work in caves II. XV and XVI. Proceeding from right to left the first is a shrine in two parts, an inner shrine or garbhagara, and a porch or tibari. The shrine is 10‘ broad, 7‘ 8“ deep and 8‘ 3“ high. In the back wall is an image of Buddha sitting on a lion-seat with the usually ornamental back. The image is 7‘ 4“ high from head to foot and 3‘ across the shoulders. The face is surrounded by an aureole. On each side a Vidyadhara and Vidyadhari bringing materials of worship fly towards Buddha. To the right and left of Buddha are two fly-whisk bearers each 6‘ 5“ high; the right hand fly-whisk bearer has his hair coiled in the matted coronet or jatamugata style and in the hair has a teaching Buddha. He has a fly-whisk in his right hand and a lotus bud with a stalk in his left. The left fly-whisk bearer has broken off from the rock and lies on the ground. He wears a crown, ear-rings, a necklace, and finger rings. He bears a fly-whisk in his right hand and a thunderbolt in his left which rests on his waist-band. In each of the side walls is a Buddha sitting cross-legged over a lotus. They are 5′ high and 4′ across from knee to knee. The feet of the right image are broken. In either side of each image are three small Buddhas one over the other, 1‘ 7“ high, sitting on lotuses. The middle image is in the padmasana posi�tion and the side images are cross-legged in the teaching position. The doorway of the shrine is 2‘ 10“ broad and 6‘ 3“ high. The side posts of the doorway are carved in a twisted pattern with flowers between the turns and by the side of the posts are carved petals. At the foot of each post is a figure of a Nagaraja of which the right figure is broken.
The porch is 12‘ broad, 4‘ deep and 8‘ 4“ high. In the back wall on either side of the doorway, is a standing figure 7‘ high. The left figure holds a rosary in the left hand in the blessing position and in the right hand a lotus bud. He wears his hair in the matted coronet or jatamugata style and in the middle of the forehead is a small teach�ing Buddha. This is probably a figure of Padmapani Lokeshvara. Below on the visitor’s left is a female figure 3‘ 6“ high with her hair in the matted coronet or jatamugata style. Her right hand is blessing and in her left hand is a half-blown lotus with stalk. She is the Mahayana goddess Arya Tara. To the right of the doorway the large standing figure wears a crown, large ear-rings, a three-stringed necklace of large jewels, a waist ornament or kandora of four bands and a cloth round the waist. On a knot of this cloth on his left side rests his left hand and the right hand is raised above the elbow and holds what looks like a flower. He wears bracelets and armlets. Below to the right of this figure is a small broken figure. In each of the end walls of the porch or tibari is a Buddha in the blessing position 7‘ 4“ high. Below to the left of the left wall figure, is a small Buddha also blessing. Between the end wall Buddhas and the figures on either side of the doorway are two pairs of small blessing Buddhas, one pair on each side, standing on lotuses. In front of the porch are two pillars and two pilasters, four-sided below with round capitals of what look like pots with bands cut on their faces, a very late style. Above the pillars, under the ceiling are five small cross-legged figures of Buddha and on either size of each is a Bodhisattva as fly-whisk bearer. Unlike the five Dhyani Buddhas of Nepal these figures are not all 4t different positions. The middle and the end figures are in the teaching attitude, while the second and the fourth are in the padmasana mudra. Out�side of the porch in each of the side walls was a standing Buddha 4′ high in a recess, and over each three, small sitting Buddhas. The right standing figure has disappeared. The chief image in this shrine is worshipped and ornamented with silver. He is believed to be Bhishma the teacher of the Kurus and is supposed to be teaching the row of small Buddhas on the inner face of the veranda.
As is shown by marks in the roof, the second shrine has been made from an old dwelling-cave which consisted of a veranda, middle room, a cell, and a half cell. The middle room had on the right a bench which still remains. All other traces of the room have disappeared. Of the cell, the front wall and part of the left wall are broken. The rest of the cell has been deepened into a shrine: The shrine is 7‘ 8“ broad, 6‘ 6” deep and 7‘ high. In the back wall is a teaching Buddha 5‘ high and 2‘ 3“ across the shoulders, seated on a lion-throne with ornamental back. On either side of the Buddha is a fly-whisk bearer, 4‘ 9“ high, his hair in the matted coronet style and an aureole round his face. The bearer to the right of Buddha has a relic-shrine, entwined in his coronet of hair. In his left hand he holds a fly-whisk and in his right a lotus stalk. The left figure has an image of Buddha in his coronet of hair, a fly-whisk in his right hand, and a blown lotus stalk in his left. Above each a heavenly chorister flies towards Buddha with a garland. In the right wall is a seated teaching Buddha 4‘ 2“ high and 1‘ 9“ across the shoulders. On either side was a fly-whisk bearing Bodhisattva smaller than those on the back wall of which the right figure alone remains. Above it a small Bodhisattva about 1‘ 4“ high sits on a throne with an ornamental back and rests his feet on an altar. He bows to Buddha with both hands. His cloth is tied in a knot on his left shoulder, his hair rise in matted circles, and his face is surrounded with an aureole. About the Bodhisattva to the left of Buddha, is a seated figure of nearly the same size, the only differ�ence being that he has a top-knot on the head like Buddha. He wears ear-rings and bracelets and has an aureole. Below the feet of Buddha are two deer and between the deer is the Buddhist wheel or dharma�chakra. By the side of each deer in recess is a male and female figure, probably the husband and wife who paid for the carving of the sculp�ture. On the left wall are three rows with two seated Buddhas in each row about twenty inches high, the head surrounded with an aureole.
The half cell of the same dwelling cave had along the left wall what looks like an attached three-quarter relic-shrine of which the broken base is alone left. The back wall of the recess has been deepened and ornamented by a teaching Buddha seated on the usual throne, his feet resting on a lotus. It is 3‘ 2” high and 1‘ 4” across the shoulders. On either side a curly-haired angel in a Sassanian cap flies towards him with flowers. About three feet to the left of the main image, in niche 2‘ 4” broad and 3‘ 2” high, is a teaching Buddha, 2‘ 8” high and 11” across the shoulders seated on a couch. His face is surrounded by an aureole. About five feet to the left, in a smaller recess in the back of the second cell, is a standing Buddha, 2‘ 7” high, well propor�tioned and skillfully carved, with an umbrella over his head.
About ten feet to the left of this second recess is the third shrine 7‘ 2” broad, 7‘ 6” deep and 7‘ 4” high. In the back wall is a teaching Buddha, five feet high seated on the usual rich backed throne. He is worshipped as Karna. On either side a figure 5‘ 2” high holds a fly�whisk in the right hand. The figure to the right of Buddha has his hair rising in matted circles which enclose an image of Buddha. The left figure has a crown and curls hanging down his back. In the left hand of the right figure is a lotus flower with stalk and the left figure rests his hand on his waist and holds a thunderbolt. The left figure has no ornaments; the right figure wears ear-rings, a necklace and bracelets. Above each a flying angel carries garlands to Buddha.
In the right wall is a figure 5‘ 10” high standing on a lotus. He wears a high crown, ear-rings, necklace, armlets and bracelets. The right hand, which seems to have been in the gift or vara position, is broken below the wrist. He rests his left hand on his waist-band. The entire image is surrounded by an aureole. On either side of him four figures each 1‘ 2” high sit cross-legged, on lotuses one over the other. The lowest on each side is broken. The images to the visitor’s left of the central figure are, at the top a Bodhisattva with an aureole round the face wearing a crown, large ear-rings and a necklace. He rests his right hand on his right knee and holds a fruit apparently the Citrus medica or bijorum. In his left hand is a roll probably a palm-leaf manuscript. The third from below is the figure of a god�dess; with a long crown, a large ear-ring in the right ear, a necklace and bracelets. She holds in both hands a roll like that held by the last figure, the only difference being that her right hand is raised above the elbow. The next figure is also a goddess with large ear-rings in both ears. She holds a bijorum in her right hand and a manuscript in her left. To the visitor’s right, the chief figure is that of a Bodhisattva holding the same things as the topmost left figure, the only difference being that his hand is raised above the left elbow; the third from below like the corresponding left figure, has ear-rings in both ears and holds a citron and a manuscript. The second from below is a goddess like the upper one, the only difference being that her right hand is raised above the elbow, while both hands of the upper figure rest on her knee.
The left wall has a similar large central standing Bodhisattva 5‘ 2” high, entirely surrounded by an aureole. His right hand holding a rosary is raised above the elbow in the abhaya mudra; the left hand holds the stalk of a large lotus bud. He wears his hair in a matted coronet with a Buddha wound in the hair, and three braids hanging over his shoulder on his breast. He has no ornaments. On either side of him four small figures one over the other correspond to the figures on the right wall. The lowest on each side is broken. To the visitor’s left the topmost is a goddess sitting cross-legged wearing a crown, ear-rings and necklace. Her right hand rests on her knee and holds a round fruit like a bijorum; her left hand holds a lotus bud with stalk. The third from below is a second goddess without any orna�ment. Her hair is piled in matted circles, her right leg is raised and her left leg crossed in front. She rests the elbow of her right hand on her right knee. While the hand is raised in the blessing position and holds a rosary, her left hand rests on her left knee and holds a half-�blown lotus. The next is a similar-sized figure of another goddess. She sits cross-legged and wears her hair in matted coils; she has no ornaments. In her right hand, resting on her knee, is a bijorum and in her left hand, also resting on her knee, is a lotus bud with a stalk.
The images to the visitor’s left of the chief figure are, at the top, a sitting Bodhisattva, with the right knee raised and the left leg crossed in front. He wears his hair in matted circles and has no ornaments. His right hand holds a bijorum and rests on his right knee; the left hand rests on the left knee and holds a lotus by the stalk. The next figure is a goddess whose hair is drawn up in matted coils. She has no ornaments and sits cross-legged. Her right hand which is raised above the elbow, probably held a bijorum and her left hand holds a lotus by the stalk. The second from the below is the figure of a goddess in a similar position, except that she holds a lotus stalk in her left hand and a lotus bud in her right. These goddesses are different forms of Tara Devi.
The shrine door is 2‘ 7” wide and 5‘ 7“ high. In the right wall, to one leaving the doorway is an image of Buddha 3‘ high, sitting on the usual rich-backed lion-throne with an aureole round his face. Above on either side is a flying angel with bouquets of flowers.
Next, in a recess with three arches, under a large central arch, a teaching Buddha, 2‘ 3” high, seated on a plain backed lion-throne, rests his feet on a lotus. His head is surrounded by an aureole. Above on either side, an angel flies to him with garlands. On either -side is a fly-whisk bearer. The one to the (visitor’s) left of Buddha has a three-tasselled crown, long curly hair flowing over his neck, and bracelets and armlets. His right hand holds a fly-whisk and his left rests on his waist. The bearer to the left of Buddha has his hair in a matted coronet and has no ornament. He holds a lotus bud with stalk in his left hand and a fly-whisk in his right. This group is well carved, and is the best proportioned of all the Nasik Mahayana or later sculptures.
Next in the left wall of the hall is a group of five figures. In the middle is a teaching Buddha seated on a backless throne with an aureole round his face, and his feet resting on a lotus. On either side is a Bodhisattva, his hair in matted coils in which a relic-shrine is enwound. Each holds a fly-whisk in his right hand. The left Bodhisattva holds a narrow-necked jug or chambu in his left hand, and the right figure a lotus bud with stalk in his left hand. By the side of each Bodhisattva is a standing Buddha, the left figure larger than the right.
Next to the left is a small teaching Buddha seated on a backless throne. Next is a group of three figures, teaching Buddha seated in the middle with a fly-whisk bearer on either side. Next is a figure of Buddha 3‘ long lying on his right side on a bed or gad, his head resting on a cushion. This is not like the figure of the dead Buddha at Ajanta and elsewhere, and seems to be a sleeping Buddha.
Close to the left of this large irregular hall was a dwelling-cave consisting of a cell and a veranda. The cell had a bench round the three sides which has been cut away. The back wall of the cell has been broken, the cell lengthened within and the whole, except the old veranda, made into a shrine. In the middle of the back wall is a large teaching Buddha, 6‘ 2” high by 2‘ 11” seated on a rich-backed throne. On each side of him, instead of fly-whisk bearers, are two standing Bodhisattvas whose lower parts have been broken. Each has the hair coiled in matted circles, but wears no ornaments. In the matted hair of the Bodhisattva on the left of Buddha is a. relic-shrine, and in the hair of the right Bodhisattva a small Buddha. The left figure held something, perhaps a flower, in his right hand which is broken. The right figure holds a rosary in his right and a lotus bud with stalk in his left hand. Next to the Bodhisattvas on each side is a standing Buddha, slightly larger than the Bodhisattvas. In the right, and left walls are two Buddha and Bodhisattva groups, similar to those on the back wall, the only difference being that the Bodhisattvas hold a fly-whisk in their right hands. Further in front, on the right side, are three small sitting Buddhas in the teaching attitude.
Close beyond is a ruined cell-shrine probably originally a dwelling�-cave of one cell. In the back wall is a teaching Buddha seated on the usual rich-backed throne with an aureole round his head and a fly-whisk bearing Bodhisattva on each side. The lower parts of all three are broken. Above each Bodhisattva is a small Buddha seated on a lotus. In the right wall is a Buddha the lower part of which has been broken off. Above on either side, is a small image of Buddha sitting in a lotus. The left wall is broken. Near the top of the left wall of the old cell is a small group of a seated teaching Buddha in the centre, and a fly-whisk bearing Bodhisattva on each side. The right wall of the old cell is broken but portion of two figures remain. In the left wall of the old veranda near the roof is a small group of a teaching Buddha sitting on a sofa with his feet resting on a lotus. On either side a fly-whisk bearer stands On a lotus. At the extreme outer end of this group is a small kneeling figure probably of the man who paid for the carving of the group.
Further on is a broken excavation which consisted of a cell and a veranda. For twenty-eight yards further the rock is not suited for excavation and seems to have been blasted. Next is the beginning of a dwelling-cave, which as the rock is bad, has come to look like a natural cavern. But inscription 24 in its front wall shows that it was once a cave.
Close beyond the last broken cave is something which looks like another excavation.
Cave XXIV: Cave XXIV, about forty yards further to the left, was an old dwelling-cave in two parts, a veranda with two cells in its back wall. In the left end of the veranda was a half cell which probably had a seat. The right cell was, larger than the left one. In the front of the veranda a band of rock dressed like a beam of timber seems to have rested on wooden pillars. From this beam the ends of four cross beams protect. On the face of the left most cross beam is a curiously carved trident, with rampant tigers instead of prongs. The face of the second is broken, on the face of the third are two tigers each with a rider sitting back to back; the fourth has a trident like the first. The beam ends support a belt of rock on the bottom of which about six inches apart rafters stand out about two inches. Above this a frieze about two feet broad consists of a central rail about a foot broad and two side belts of tracery. The lower belt is a row of much worn animals galloping towards the left, each with a boy behind it. Among the animals are tigers, sheep, elephants, bulls, camels, pigs and deer. The rail which is about a foot broad has three horizontal bands, the faces of the uprights being carved apparently with lotus flowers. The upper belt of tracery is a scroll of half lotuses about four inches broad divided by lily heads or lotus seed vessels. On the side wall in the left or east comer is a horse with the face of a woman, who is embraced by a man who rides the horse. Corresponding to this figure on the right end is a tiger, and a little to the right is a broken animal. At the right end of the beam is an owl, and in front of it a small mouse. In what remains of the back wall of the veranda, in the space between the doors of the two cells, is Inscription 26. It is well preserved and the letters are large, distinct and well cut.
The two cisterns mentioned in Inscription 26 must be to the right of the cave. One of the cisterns has still an inscription on the back of a recess. The letters are large, clearly cut and distinct and resemble the letters of Inscription 26.
The floor of the cave has been hewn out, and with the two cisterns, made into a large and deep reservoir. The original shape can still be traced from the upper part.
These details show that there are twenty-four separate caves, all of which except number XVIII, the chapel-cave, are layanas or dwellings. Of the whole numbers III, VIII, IX, X, XI, XII, XIII, XIV, XVII, XVIII, XIX and XXII are in their original form unchanged except by weather and to a very small extent by later workmen. Caves VIII, XII, XIII and XIV have suffered from weather, X and XI have been altered not in their general plan, but by additions made by Jainas about the eleventh century.
Cave I, though left unfinished, shows that it was made on the same plan as Caves III and X as a large dwelling for monks. Numbers II, XX and XXIII are old caves, which have been altered and deepened and furnished with images. Their original form, which can still be traced, shows that they were ordinary dwelling-caves. Numbers V, VI. VII and XXIV are also old dwelling-caves which in recent times have been hewn into large cisterns. Numbers IV and XXI are neither chapels nor dwellings, but either dining halls or kitchens. There are other caves on the same plan, some with a bench round the hall, others simple halls, and of these cave XXXXVIII at Junnar is shown by an inscription to be a dining hall or sattra. Numbers XV and XVI are shrines. Thus, except these last two which are later, the original caves were of three kinds, a chaitya or chapel-cave, layanas or dwelling-caves and sattras or dining-caves. Almost every cave had a cistern or two to supply it with water. These old cisterns had small mouths so that they could be covered, and spread inside into a large quadrangular hollow. The chief of the old cisterns are near caves II, III, VIII, IX, XIV and XXI, the broken cistern of cave XVII and several broken cisterns in front of cave XXIII. The cistern to the west of cave X, though now broken, was probably originally in the old style. These three classes of caves and those cisterns appear to be the only original excavations on the hill.
The caves, when first finished, do not seem to have contained images. The later image-worshippers, perhaps because other suitable sites were not available, instead of cutting fresh caves, changed the old caves to suit the new worship. The images are chiefly of Gautama Buddha, the Bodhisattvas, Vairapani and Padmapani, and the Buddhist goddess Tara; all in the style of the northern Buddhists. Similar images are found, in some of the Kanheri, Ajanta, Karle, and Ellora caves. In several of the Kanheri and Ellora caves, with images of this class the Buddhist formula Ye dharma hetu etc. has been engraved. Though this formula nowhere occurs in the Nasik inscriptions, the similarity of the images shows that the later Buddhists of Nasik belonged to the same sect as the later Buddhists of Ajanta, Ellora and Kanheri. And as the formula like the images does not belong to southern Buddhists and is common among northern Buddhists, there seems little doubt that these changes mark the introduction of the form of northern Buddhism which is generally known as the Mahayana or Great Vehicle. Inscription 23 shows that this change was introduced about the close of the fifth or during the sixth century after Christ.
Peint, with 5,740 inhabitants as per the 1971 Census, was the capital of the ex-Feint State which lapsed to the British on the death of the late Begam in 1878. Soon after the conquest of Baglan by the Moghals during Shah Jahan’s reign, a rebellious member of the Povar or Dalvi family of Feint was sent to Delhi and sentenced to death. While awaiting his execution he cured the emperor’s daughter of asthma and on embracing Islam received Feint in grant. Samsher Bahadar, Peshva Bajirav’s (I) son from Mastani, was married to a girl of this family which thus came to be related to the Peshvas. Lakshdhir, a late descendant of this family, was a worthless ruler and his state would have been annexed, but for the service he rendered to the British against Trimbakji Dengle in 1816-17. It is now the headquarters of the Peint mahal and lies 48.28 km. (thirty miles) north-west of Nasik, on a tolerably lofty plateau in the midst of a very broken and woody country. The town itself is nearly on a level with the top of the Sahyadris and hence enjoys a fine climate. Apart from the usual revenue and police offices, the town has the offices of the forest ranger, prant-cum-project officer and a branch of the district central co-oper�ative bank. There are primary schools, a high school, post and tele�graph facilities, a primary health centre and a veterinary dispensary. A travellers’ bungalow is prettily situated on the edge of a woody ravine and is in charge of the forest department. Thursday is the bazar day. Though there is a large tank, the inhabitants depend upon wells as the tank-water is not potable.
Pimpalgaon Basvant, with 12,289 inhabi�tants according to the census of 1971, is largely an agricultural village in Niphad taluka situated 16 km. (ten miles) to the north-west of Niphad. The Bombay-Agra road passes by the village in its stretch. It is one of the most important grape and vegetable growing centres in the district, there being extensive vine orchards. The other important crops raised are wheat, bajra and onion. A fruit canning factory canning grapes, mangoes and papayas as also manufacturing fruit juices is profitably worked here by the Bagaitdar Sangh, Pimpalgaon. Land irrigation is carried out by means of nearly 150 irrigation wells, two second class bandharas and by tapping the waters of the Parashari stream. The civil dispensary of the village which was started in 1879 has since been greatly expanded, a maternity ward has been added and is conducted by the Zilla Parishad. A leprosy prevention centre equipped with the most modern accessories has been recently esta�blished here. The village has post and telegraph facilities, a high school and a primary school. The panchayat office has been housed in a modern three-storeyed building and is perhaps the biggest office building for a panchayat in the Maharashtra State. There are a court, soil conservation office, a seed farm, a rest-house, two community halls and a cinema house also. There is an ancient temple of Basveshvar on the banks of the Parashari and hence the second name Basvant. Weekly bazar is held on Sundays and is largely attended.
Pimpri Sadruddin is a small village of 1,333 inhabitants as per the 1971 Census in Igatpuri taluka lying two miles (3.21 km.) south-east of Igatpuri. The village has a dargah of Pir Sadruddin, a Muslim avaliya in whose honour an annual fair or urus is held on the fourth of the dark half of Bhadrapad (September-�October). The fair is attended by about 15,000 persons. Rice is the chief agricultural produce and is sent to other places. There is a primary school. River and wells are the sources of water-supply.�
Pisol Fort, in Baglan, is situated about 6.43 km. north of Jayakhede, a small village in Baglan taluka and 3.21 km. (two miles) west of the Pisol pass which leads into Khandesh. Carts, with difficulty, can use the Pisol pass. The fort is moderately on a high range of hills running east and west. It is easy of ascent and of large area, and on the south-east is separated from the range by a deep rock-�cut chasm. At the foot of the hill and spreading some way up its lower slopes, defended by a wall of rough stones, is the small village of Vadi Pisol, whose ruins show that at one time it was a place of some size. The main ascent to the fort lies through this village. A steep path leads to an angle in the natural scarp. It then passes through a succession of ordinary gateways constructed in the crevice as the angle reaches the plateau on the top. The hill is well supplied with water and of the numerous reservoirs at all points of the ascent only two hold water now. Within the first gateway a path leads to a small opening to the right, now blocked with earth and stones, along the base of the natural scarp to pasture lands on the hills beyond, where the cattle of the fort used to graze. At the mouths of two of the reservoirs, are figures of Mahadeva’s bull (nandi), and inside are lingas which are bidden except when the water-level is low. The figures of bulls as well as lingas now lie in decayed condition. The water of the two reservoirs, which are separated by a partition of not more than a foot and a half thick, stands at noticeably different levels. The natural scarp is imperfect, and nearly all round, the top has been strengthened by a masonry wall. Here and there at weak points, there were special defences and provision for military pasts. This wall and defences are now in ruins. To the east, the ridge on which the fort stands, stretches for a considerable distance with only a small drop. This is the weak paint of the hill and hence the drop outside the wall has been deepened by an artificial cut about thirty feet deep and twenty feet across. At the back of the hill is an outlying spur with tremendous precipices an all sides and more so on the north-west. Criminals tied hand and foot, used to be hurled down from where the scarp is steepest, at a point known as the Robber’s Leap or Chor Kada.
Of the buildings nothing remains except an old and decrepit mosque on the south edge of the precipice which is visible from a distance below, and the other the ruins of a large pleasure palace or Rang Mahal. The old gateways are still standing, and nothing else. The Lokhandigate, now at Galna, is said to have belonged to this build�ing and to have been removed when the fart fell into disrepair.
Ramsej or Rama’s Bedstead, in Dindori, about 11.26 km. (seven miles) south of Dindori, and about 11.26 km. (seven miles) north of Nasik, is about 997.61 metres (3,273 feet) above sea level. In 1818 Captain Briggs described Ramsej� “as neither so large nor so high as most of the Nasik hills, but not so small as Hatgad. The scarp was neither very steep nor very high and if undefended the ascent was not difficult. There were two gateways, one within the other, large but not so formidable as those of Hatgad. There was less uncovered ground on the way up to the gates than in any other Nasik forts. The works connected with the gates were able to give a good flanking fire at a short distance from them. There was a way dawn by a trap-door kept covered with dirt and rubbish, called the secret road or chor rasta affording passage for one at a time. All round the fort ran a wall tolerably in some places but mostly indifferent. Within the fort were two or three bomb-proof ammunition chambers built of stone. The water-supply was ample. Today, however, the gates are lying amidst ruins, as also the ammunition chambers. Near where the first gateway stood is a small shrine dedicated to Rama. At the base of the fort is a small village known after the fort.
Captain Briggs had stationed two companies of militia in the fort, one on the top of the hill, the other in the village below. This large party was left at Ramsej so that the garrison might always spare ninety or a hundred men to march after Bhils and other marauders. In the fort besides about a ton of grain and a small quantity of salt there were eight guns, nine small cannons called jamburas, twenty-one jingals, thirty copper pots, forty-one brass pots, 256 pounds of gun-powder, forty pounds of brimstone, forty-five pounds of lead, and 240 pounds of hemp. There were also elephant trappings, tents, carpets, and ironware, which once had been Shivaji’s.
The only reference to Ramsej which has been traced is the notice that, in 1682, Aurangzeb detached Shah-bud-din Khan to reduce the Nasik and Khandesh forts. At Ramsej Shah-bud-din raised a platform of wood able to hold 500 men, and so high that the men at the top completely commanded the inside of the fort. However, the commandant of the fort was a veteran Maratha officer and hence all the Moghal efforts to effect the capture were put to naught by his alertness. During the siege Sambhaji’s army arrived to relieve the garrison and on their arrival Khan Jahan advanced from Nasik to help Shah-bud-din. After two unsuccessful assaults the Moghals had to raise the siege, and the great wooden platform which was filled with combustibles, set on fire, and destroyed. The fort, however, passed in Moghal possession in 1687. After the death of Aurangzeb in 1707 the Moghal possessions in the Deccan gradually passed on to the Marathas. During the Maratha war of 1818 Ramsej was one of the seventeen strongholds which surrendered to the English on the fall of Trimbak.
About 3.21 km. (two miles) north-west of Ramsej is Dhair or Bhorgad fort, 1,090.87 metres (3,557 feet) above sea-level. It has an excellent quarry from which the stones of Kala Rama’s temple, the Kapurthala fountain, and the highly polished black band round the Peshva’s new palace in Nasik are said to have been brought.
Captain Briggs, who visited the fort in 1818, did not find it steep until at the foot of the rock where it became so difficult that it could be climbed only on all fours like a ladder. There was one fairly good gate with ruined bastions. The walls were ruined, and the hill-top was remarkably steep with no place for grain or ammunition. The water �supply was ample.
Ratangad Fort, also called the Nhavi Killa or Barber’s fort, stands about 9.60 km. (six miles) east of Mulher. About half way up the hill is the chief entrance and inside the fort are the ruins of what must have once been a stately court-house. On the hill sides are about eight rock-cut reservoirs and an the plateau a temple of Mahadeva and a Musalman tomb. The fort is in dis�repair, though naturally strong from the height and steepness of the hill.
Ravalgaon, with 11,780 inhabitants in 1971, lies 19.31 km. (about 12 miles) north-west of Malegaon in Malegaon taluka with which it is connected by a good road. It was an insignificant village until 1933 when late Shri Walchand Hirachand purchased acres of barren land, turned it into fine cultivable land and established a sugar factory. Today it ranks amongst the largest sugar factories in Maharashtra and also produces toffees and a number of other by�products. Around the factory has grown a model township with amenities of a dispensary and a hospital. There is a primary school and a high school, a rest-house and post and telegraph facilities. Except the sugar factory there is little else worthy of notice. How�ever, a group of four small temples standing in a row on a broad stone platform may be passingly noted. The temples from left to right are those of Shani, Rama, Mahadeva and Pimpaldeva. These are of symmetrical designs but unequal in size, the middle two being a little larger than the flanking ones. In front of this group there is a small Hanuman shrine, similarly modelled. Sunday is the weekly bazar day.
At Dabhadi also there is a sugar factory conducted on co-operative basis. It was promoted by late Bhausaheb Hire and the colony which has grown around it is named after him. Dabhadi also has a primary health center, a primary school, a high school and post office.
Ravlya-Javlya are two peaks in the Chandor range to the east of Markinda which jut out, Ravlya on the west and Javlya on the east of a hill about fifteen miles (24 km.) north-east of Dindori. Midway between the peaks is a reservoir divided into two and called the Ganga and Jamna pools.
On the way to Javlya is a gate defended by two towers, and in front of the gate is an image of Ganapati. The gate and the towers are in ruins. The hill was used as a fort during Moghal times and there are the foundations of several buildings. Some parts of the hill are at present under tillage.
In 1818, Captain Briggs, who visited them soon after their surrender to the British, describes Ravlya and Javlya as two small forts standing on a large hill, which is known as Ravlya-Javlya. There are two paths to the hill, one leading from Khandesh, the other leading from either Gangathadi or Khandesh, as it strikes off from a pass between the hill and the neighbouring fort of Markinda. The hill is very large, eight or nine hundred feet (243.84 or 274.32 metres) above the plain, and with a long and easy ascent. The top is a tableland, about a mile and a half long and 700 to 1,400 yards (640 to 1,320 metres) broad. From this plateau rose two curious peaks about 1,000 yards (914.40 metres) from each other. They were of solid rock three or four hundred feet (91.44 or 121.92 metres) high and with almost perpendicular sides. Between the two peaks is a small village whose people live by tilling the plateau. The two forts could be reached only by climbing from rock to rock. The greater part of the top of Javlya is enclosed by a wall with one gate. Ravlya has no gate and a law wall most of which is ruined. Places are cut on the tops of both the forts for granaries and reservoirs. Captain Briggs found two of the Peshva’s old militia in each of the forts. By July of the next year (1819) the defences of the two forts were destroyed by Captain Mackintosh. The reservoirs were filled and the steps leading to the top of Javlya were defaced making the ascent almost impracticable.
Saptashring or the seven-homed, but wrongly called chattar singh or the four-peaked, rising 1,215.20 metres (4,659 feet) above the sea-level, is one of the highest points in the Chandor range, It rises about the centre of the range on the borders of Dindori and Kalvan talukas, 24.14 km. (fifteen miles) north of Dindori. It is a bare rock of no considerable thickness, but about half a mile in length, somewhat curved, highest at the ends and depressed in the centre, like a wall with towers at either ends. At every turn the appearance of the rock changes. The highest point rises to a little over 275 metres (900 feet) above the plateau, and the rock is perpendicular an all sides but one, where it has crumbled away and grass has grown in the crevices. The rock has more peaks than one, but it seems to have no claim to the title seven-peaked. The hill can be climbed from three sides; by a good but steep bridle road from the north; by a very steep sixty-step path or satha-payryancha marg on the east, formerly the only road used by the pilgrims, but now totally abandoned; and on the south by a steep foot-path for part of the way which ends in a flight of nearly three hundred and fifty steps carved in the face of the rock. The first and the last are the paths now commonly used by the pilgrims and the visitors. In the steps figures of Rama, Hanuman, Radha and Krishna, and in one or two places a tortoise are carved at intervals. These steps were made nearly 200 years ago by three brothers Konher, Rudraji and Krishnaji of Nasik. This is revealed by the five inscriptions, one in Sanskrit and four in Marathi, carved at intervals along the ascent on or near the steps. Besides giving the names of the three, brothers and their father Girmaji Naik, the inscrip�tions record that their surname was Rayrav and that the work was begun on the first of the bright half of Jyeshtha (May-June) in Shaka 1690 (A. D. 1768), Sarvadhari Samvatsar, and finished on Friday the first of the bright half of Chaitra (April) Shaka 1691 (A. D. 1769), Virodhi Samvatsar. At the foot of the steps the three brothers built a temple of Devi and a rest-house and at the top a temple of Ganapati and a tank called Ramatirtha. These steps lead to the plateau where the settlement of Saptashring, with 504 souls in 1971, has sprung up. The old ruined dharmashala here was converted by one Svami Prakashanand Sarasvati into a fine resting place for the pilgrims. Recently a school building with a vasatigriha has been constructed. The boarders are given a free meal in the afternoon. There are two drum chambers or nagarkhanas and three rest-houses for the use of pilgrims. The place is well-supplied with water from springs built with masonry sides and with steps leading to the water, and called Kali kund, Surya kund and Dattatraya kund. Besides these, there are five small reservoirs called Sarasvati kund, Lakshmi kund, Tambul Tirth, Ambalaya Tirth and Shitala Tirth. Some of these are used for drinking, others for bathing, and yet some others for both the purposes. Nearby there is also a tank dedicated to Shiva and hence called Shivalaya Tirth. It is a small stone-built reservoir about 30.44 square metres (40 square yards) and not more than 1.22 metres (4 feet) deep, where thousands of pilgrims bathe and wash their clothes. The tirth is invested with great sanctity and is said to have been built by Umabai Dabhade, wife of Khanderav Dabhade Talegaonkar, one of the Poona chiefs, whose family were formerly hereditary, generals of the Maratha army. This tirth has on one of its sides a Hemadpanti temple of Siddheshvar Mahadeva mostly in ruins but with the dome still standing with some rather elaborate stone-carving. Under the dome is housed the linga and outside, in front of it, a carved bull. Not far from this place is a precipice known as the shit kada which overhangs the valley about 365.76 metres (1,200 feet); from this precipice human sacrifices are said to have been hurled during ancient times.
Near the above-noted rest-house is the samadhi of Dharmadev, a chief of the ex-Dharampur State near Surat, who died here while on a visit to his guru, a Bengal ascetic named Gaudasvami. The samadhi is like the ordinary domed temples of Mahadev and contains a linga. Though well-built and has some neat carvings, the whole is much out of repair. Close-by is a well and the samadhi of Gaudasvami.
From the plateau of the Saptashring settlement a flight of nearly 472 well-built steps leads to the shrine of Saptashringa-nivasini Devi. These steps were built by Umabai, whose mention has already been made, in 1710 A. D. before the lower steps. The shrine of the goddess is in a cave at the base of a sheer scarp, the summit of which is at the highest point of the hill. The figure of the goddess, carved in relief out of the natural rock, is about 2.43 metres (eight feet) high. Though generally called as ashta-bhuja or eight-handed, the goddess is actually eighteen-handed, all hands armed with different weapons. She wears a high crown not unlike the papal tiara and is clothed with a bodice and a robe wound round the waist and limbs. She has a different robe on each day of the week. Every day she is given a bath, warm water being used on two days in a week. In the open square in front of the temple is planted a trident or Trishula with the usual accompaniments of bells and lamps. A silver nose-ring and necklaces are the only ornaments in daily use. The other jewellery of the goddess is kept at Vani and brought to the temple only on the day of the great fair. The whole figure is painted bright red, save the eyes, which are of white porcelain. Something like a portico was added to the shrine of the goddess at the beginning of the last century by the Satara Commander�-in-Chief (?) and the plain structure was later added by the then chief of Vinchur. It is widely believed by the credulous villagers that a tiger almost every night comes and stays in the gabhara keeping a watch on the temple and disappears at day-break.
A large fair lasting for a week and attended by over a lakh of persons is held on the full moon of Chaitra (April). On the occasion a large number of booths are erected and business worth several thousands of rupees is transacted. On the occasion the steps leading to the shrine are crowded with the sick and the maimed who are carried up the hill in the hope that they would be cured. Barren women also go in numbers to make vows to bless them with children. Offerings of grain, flowers, coconuts, money or ornaments are made according to the means. The daily service of the goddess consists in bringing bathing water from the Surya kund and laying before her offerings of rice, milk and sugar boiled together called khir, of cakes, of flour and butter called turis, and of preserves. These offerings, excepting ornaments, become the property of the Bhopa or the hereditary guardians of the temple.
Like the top of Mahalakshmi at Dahanu the top of Saptashring is said to be inaccessible to ordinary mortals. The headman of the village of Burigaon alone climbs on the April full-moon and next morning at sun�rise is seen planting a flag. How he climbs up and climbs down again is mystery, any attempt to pry into which, says the tradition, is punished by loss of sight.
As the merit of the pilgrimage is believed to lie in the labour endured in the ascent of the hill, there are for those who desire to secure special religious merit, three other paths round the mountain, one a sort of goat�-path round the base of the scarp, a second of greater length on the lower plateau, and a third round the base below. The last which passes through the narrow valleys which divide Saptashring from the rest of the Chandor range is said to be nearly 32 km. (twenty miles) in circuit.
To the east of Saptashring and divided from it by a deep ravine lies the hill of Markinda, believed to have been the abode of sage Markandeya. His spirit is believed to have taken its dwelling in the rock, where during his life-time, he used to recite puranas for the amusement of the Devi, a tradition to which a remarkable echo may have given rise.
Besides the three allowances mentioned above, the temple has the revenues of a village by name Chanakapur which was set apart for the service of the goddess by Bajirav, the second Peshva (1720-1740) in the time of ascetic Gaudasvami. These funds are administered by a panchayat. It is said that Chhatrasingrav Thoke, the chief disciple of the Bengal ascetic, was a small chieftain who owned the Abhona petty division of twenty-two villages. These villages were granted to his forefathers on the condition that they put down the Mehavasi tribes of the Dangs harassing the pilgrims coming for the great fair. Chhatrasing, instead of following in the wake of his forefathers, him�self became their leader, greatly harassed the pilgrims and carried away all the presents from the Bhopas whom he either killed or let go as it suited him best. To put a stop to these depredations the commandant of Dhodap sent every year a guard of fifty to seventy men. One year Chhatrasing came with a band of best of the Mehavasis and putting the guard to flight, dashed into the shrine and carried off a large amount of plunder. Thereupon the Dhodap Commandant Haibatrav Naik Dhor, came against Chhatrasing and was mortally wounded in a pitched battle near the Shivalaya tirth. The Bhopas then came to terms with Chhatrasing and made an agreement, which bears date 1785 (Shaka 1707), allowing Chhatrasing half the income of seventy-two holy days. Devising, Chhatrasing’s son, dying without heirs, the Abhona petty-division lapsed to the British and his two widows were given yearly pensions of Rs. 500 each. One of the widows, Krishnabai, long continued to enjoy the pension.
Satana, the headquarters of Baglana taluka, is a municipal town of commercial importance, settled, at the confluence of the Aram and Sukhed rivulets. It lies about 48 km. (30 miles) west of Malegaon, with which it is connected by S. T. bus service.
In 1297 Ray Karan, the last of the Anhilvada kings, after his defeat at the hands of Ala-ud-din Khilji’s general, Ulugh Khan, fled to Baglana and maintained himself in independence until 1306 when he was forced to seek shelter with Ramdev of Devagiri.���
In 1971 its population was 16,720. Besides the revenue, judicial and police offices the town has post and telegraph, panchayat samiti, sub-divisional soil conservation office, a sahakari marketing sangh and a market yard which is important for cotton and grains. The chief crops taken are bajra, wheat, cotton and sugarcane. A second class bandhara and irrigation wells together irrigate an area of approximately 408.73 hectares (1,010 acres). There are quite a few ginning factories as also oil mills. The financial needs of the cultivators are supplemented by a land mortgage bank and branch of the Nasik district central co-operative bank. In 1665 Satana was noticed by� Thevenot as a considerable town on the high road about half-way between Surat and Aurangabad. At Satana Thevenot met Bishop of Heliopolis on his way from Siam to Surat and France. Mr. J. A. Baines tells us that the iron bars in the windows of the Mamlatdar’s office, now used by the veterinary dispensary at Satana, are the barrels of the Arab guns or jizails which were taken from Mulher fort in 1818.
Municipality: The municipality here was established in 1954. Its jurisdiction extends over an area of 13.46 square kilometres (5.2 square miles). The municipal committee composed of 16 councillors is presided over by the president. He is elected by the councillors from among themselves. The committee directs the municipal affairs.
Finance: The normal income, excluding receipts under extra�ordinary and debt heads, for the year 1971-72 stood at Rs. 6,37,000 It comprised such sources as municipal taxes, realisation under special Acts, grants from the Government and miscellaneous. Expenditure, also excluding extra-ordinary and debt heads, amounted to Rs. 6,99,000.
Health and sanitation: For medical aid, the Zilla Parishad maintains a primary health centre and a maternity home. It also conducts a veterinary dispensary. No medical aid institution is maintained by the town municipality. Drainage system consists of only open gutters, stone-lined and cemented. A large part of the refuse is turned into compost manure. Water-supply is drawn from wells, private and municipal.
Education: Primary education is compulsory and is enforced by the Zilla Parishad. The municipality, however, contributes 5 per cent of the total cost. The amount so paid stood at Rs. 21,016.55 in 1964-65. There are two high schools, both being conducted privately. There are also two libraries, one of which is maintained by the municipality and for which a new building is under construction.
Cremation and burial grounds: Cremation and burial grounds are managed by the municipality. The cremation ground for Hindus is situated on the Aram bank and the Muslim burial ground along the road to Malegaon.
Platforms for weekly and daily markets have been provided. There is also a proposal to have a separate fire-fighting unit for the municipality.
Satana has temples dedicated to Mahalakshmi, Mahadeva, Khandoba, Maruti. All these were damaged during the 1872 floods, but have since been re-built. There is also a temple built in commemoration of one Yashavant Maharaj, a saint highly revered by the local populace. At this temple a fair attended by about 3,000 persons is held on Margashirsha Vadya 11.
Sayakhede, with 2,975 inhabitants in 1971, settled along the banks of the Godavari, is a prosperous and well-built village in Niphad taluka growing rich crops of bajra, wheat and onion. In fact it is one of the principal commercial centres in the district dealing in onion and other agricultural produce. It has an advantageous situation in that, the railway stations of Khervadi and Niphad are only 4.82 and 16 km. (3 and 10 miles) to its south and south-west, respectively. The commercial traffic to the railway stations used to be disrupted in the monsoons due to the flooding of the Godavari, but a bridge laid across it connecting Sayakhede with Ozar on the opposite bank has done away with this hurdle thereby giving impetus to trade and commerce. The village has a high school and a primary school, a library, a civil dispensary, a sub-centre of the veterinary dispensary, a co-operative credit society and a post office. There are several temples on the banks of the Godavari giving it sanctity and a well-built ghat for drawing river-water upon which the villagers depend. Sayakhede was for quite some time held by the Vinchurkars, the Maratha Sardars. In olden days it was known for its locks.
Shivare, with 1,334 inhabitants in 1971, is a village in Niphad taluka lying 6.43 km. (4 miles) south-east of Niphad railway station having a remarkable group of memorial stones. Such memorial stones are found scattered practically all over the district and are specially numerous near the Sahyadris. At Chausale, 12.87 km. (eight miles) north-west of Vani in Dindori taluka, there is a group of unusually large stones. These memorial stones vary in height from 0.914 to 1.828 metres (three to six feet) and are cut square generally about one foot (0.304 metre) across. The faces are carved with rude figures, some�times of one or more men on horse-back sometimes armed with swords. There are great varieties of figures on foot, some of which are armed. Their number varies from one to three and even four. Many of them are shown to hold each other’s hands. Some wear the waist�-cloth; others apparently children, are dressed in petticoats. In some cases rude inscriptions are carved under figures. Many of the stones somewhat resemble the old stones found in some of the Scotch grave�yards. It is told that they do not necessarily mark the spot where the dead were buried or cremated. The custom seems to have prevailed among all the cultivating classes, but more especially among Kunbis, Kolis and Vanjaris.
As distinguished from memorial stones, memorial pasts have also been discovered at some places. They are of all shapes. The figures are generally fewer and the carving poorer than on the stone slabs. Sometimes stones and posts are found side by side. On Shraddha days both these are worshipped and smeared with red paint. Unlike the posts, the stones are highly revered and jealously preserved. In no case have stones and posts been found which are said to mark an old battle-field. As a rule they are close to the village but not connected with temple or any holy spot. They are always said to be memorials of ancestors. This practice of erecting such type of memorials has, however, fallen in disuse in modern times. In some of the western villages there are posts with a small shrine at the top containing an image inclosed with glass. These are not common nor monumental and belong to the Bhils. The village has a primary school. Some land has been brought under well-irrigation.
Sinnar, a municipal town and headquarters of the taluka of the same name, with in 1971, a population of 20,218, stands on a high level ground, on the Poona-Nasik road, about 27.35 km. (17 miles) south-east of Nasik. It was surrounded by a mud-wall, practically in ruins now, the people having taken the mud for build�ing and thatching cottages. It contains quite a few modem houses. A town planning scheme has been prepared by the municipality on the lines of which the further development of the town would be carried out.
Municipality: Constitution: The municipality here was established in 1860. Its jurisdiction extends over an area of 11.36 square kilometres (4 square miles). Eighteen elected councillors constitute the municipal committee, which, with the president as the presiding head, looks after the administration. The council is assisted’ by the necessary ministerial staff.
Finance: The total municipal income accrued from sources like taxes, municipal property, and grants for special and general purposes amounted to Rs. 7,66,000 during 1971-72. During the same year an expenditure of Rs. 8,98,000 was incurred on various heads such as administration and collection, public health, safety and convenience, public instruction, grants and contributions and the like.
Municipal Works: No permanent sheds have been provided for holding the daily and weekly bazars. However, such a proposal is now under consideration. A bridge across the Sarasvati was con�structed in 1952-53 at a cost of Rs. 29,376 thus facilitating communica�tions. The municipal office and the dispensary buildings are of municipal propriety.
Health, sanitation and water-supply: In recent times the munici�pality has considerably improved and extended the medical aid facilities rendered to the public, there being a dispensary with eight beds and a maternity home with twenty beds. Measures are also taken from time to time to immunise the people against various epidemics. The drainage system consists of pucca stone-lined gutters and as the town expands so is the drainage system extended. The proposal for under�ground drainage was shelved, as the need of asphalting the roads was more acutely felt.
The works supplying water to the greater part of the town were completed in 1954 at a cost of Rs. 7,09,542. It is installed on the Dev river and draws water from three wells sunk in the river-bed, the third having been sunk at a later date. Besides this, the Gaothan area supply is drawn from another well fitted with a pump.
Education: Primary education is compulsory. It is conducted by the Zilla Parishad, the municipality sharing five per cent of the total annual expenditure so incurred. Apart from the primary schools, there are two bal vadis and two high schools, one of the latter of which is conducted by the municipality. The high school which is privately conducted receives an annual grant of Rs. 1,500 from the municipality. In 1964-65 the public library of the town also received a grant of Rs. 751.
Fire service: For fire fighting a tractor with a pulley and a tanker with the other necessary equipment is maintained.
Cremation and burial places: There are two cremation and four burial grounds out of which one burial-ground is used by the Muslims and the rest by the Hindus.
Trade and industries: Sinnar is one of the important weaving centres in the district. A large number of power-looms and to a lesser extent hand and other ordinary looms are worked here, weaving a variety of robes and sadis. Most of the weavers have been brought under the co-operative fold, there being quite a few co-operatives of weavers. Though the trade is not very flourishing, nevertheless it has succeeded in giving employment to a large number of families. Sinnar has as many as five bidi factories, the bidis turned here being well- known not only in Maharashtra but also in parts of Mysore State and Goa. The trade is likely to get an impetus with the increasing foreign demand especially from the U.S.A. There is also an oil mill. In spite of this the major section of the population continues to depend solely on agriculture, the main crops grown being wheat, bajri, tobacco, sugarcane and groundnut. A large area round the town is watered by means of channels connected with one or the other of the two rivers, the Shiv and the Sarasvati which unite close below the town. It yields rich crops of sugarcane, betel leaves and rice. The town is served by an agricultural produce market committee, a Kharedi Vikri Sangha and branches of many of the leading banks including those of the District Central Co-operative Bank and the Agricultural Development Bank.
History: The earliest historical mention of Sinnar appears to be Sindiner in a copper-plate grant of 1069 A. D. Tradition ascribes the founding of the town to a Gavali chief by name Rav Shinguni, perhaps Seunendu of the copper-plate about 800 years ago. In the seventeenth century it became the headquarters of the Chief Officer of the Emperor of Delhi in these parts and its population greatly increased. Later still it was the seat of the government of Amritrav Deshmukh, who was appointed head of fourteen sub-divisions by the Moghal Emperor. In his time the population of Sinnar still further increased. He is also said to have built the aforementioned town walls and laid a masonry dam across the river. His vada or palace, now in partial ruins, was perhaps the largest building in the town then, and contained within its outside walls many separate collections of houses. About the year 1790, Sinnar appears in Maratha records as the headquarters of a sub-division in the district of Sangamner with an yearly revenue of about Rs. 29,000. Sinnar also figured mildly in the revolutionary activities that culminated in the 1857 War of Independence. In November 1822 a band of forty insurgents assembled at Sinnar and were joined by twenty-five more. Their leader, one certain Krishna Kuver gave out that their object was to overthrow the British authority from Kankari, a village about 16 km. south-west of Sinnar and take posses�sion of it; but this was only small part of a large plot. Unfortunately all were captured at Kankari and on surrendering their arms and horses, were released.
Gondeshvar Temple: Of the numerous shrines in Sinnar, the ones sacred to Gondeshvar and Aieshvar are the most significant as also antique. To the north-east outside the town stands the splendid black-stone temple of Gondeshvar weathered by the wind and sun of centuries. According to one tradition it was built by the Gavali prince, Rav Govinda, the son of the founder of Sinnar, at a cost of Rs. 2,00,000. Yet another tradition assigns the building to Govindaraja, a Yadava king who ruled about the beginning of the twelfth century A. D. Be it as it may, it is still the largest, most complete and the best preserved example of mediaeval temples of the Deccan built on a variation of the Indo-Aryan style, which had penetrated into a part of the Deccan during the middle ages. It is a Shaiva Panchayatan, or a group of five temples, within a large enclosure, the central shrine being dedicated to Shiva, and the remaining four around it to Parvati, Ganapati, Surya and Vishnu. The central shrine con�sists of the sabhamandap or the assembly hall and the gabhara or the towered cell enshrining the Shiva linga. It is beautifully proportioned and entered by three imposing and pillared porticos. The design of the shikhars or the towers and the pillars are original and unlike those of any other region. The temples of the Deccan are different from other northern or Indo-Aryan temples, in that the shikhar does not have turrets or urushringas grouped around the lower part of the structure. Instead the shikhara has a distinct vertical band rising upwards along each of its angles and taking the form of a spine or quoin. The space between the quoins is filled with smaller reproduc�tions of the shikhara. The pillared hall itself, though small, is elegant and is one of the finest in this part of the country. Facing the main or the eastern entrance is a Nandi pavilion housing a stone-bull, Shiva�s vehicle. An unusual feature of the Gondeshvar temple, and one peculiar to this part of the Deccan, is the deep projections and the recesses on the wall surfaces. Rising upwards these catch the light or fall in deep shade and to counterpart this upward trend a series of horizontal mouldings have been laid across the entire composition. Many of these mouldings have a knife-edge section called koni. Koni�-mouldings are found not only on the walls but are particularly notice�able on the pillars. On its walls are sculptured scenes from the Ramayana, gods and goddesses, apsaras and myriad other figures, male and female, from the Hindu mythology. Many of the missing panels, how�ever, appear to have been deliberately removed by curio-hunters. The sculptures, though well executed, do not stand comparison with the best of Indian carving and authoritative references tell us that it shows a decline in style at this date. The real beauty of Gondeshvar temple lies in its symmetrical disposition on a moulded and stepped platform only 125‘ X 95‘. Lying around are the crumbling remains of the temple walls and the entrance gate. It is still frequented by worshippers.
Aieshvar Temple: About a furlong distant to the north-west of the town and nearer the main road lie the ruins of Aieshvar temple, also a Shaiva shrine built in the Chalukyan style of Mysore. Here again the date of the temple seems to be in doubt. One source puts it somewhere in the eleventh century and therefore prior to the Gondeshvar shrine. Another source dates the building in 1450 A. D. But regardless of the date this temple is of unusual interest, as two temples of such divergent styles are rarely to be found so close to one another. Owing to its isolated situation the builders of the Aieshvara introduced certain features of the Indo-Aryan Deccani style, such as the brackets above the capitals. This particular motif was unknown to the Chalukyans. It had originally a hall or sabhamandap, all of which except four beautifully carved pillars, seems to have been carried off to build or repair other structures. The shrine remains, but without the spire of Shikhar. The Maithuna ritual of Tantrism – a particular phase of Hinduism — is depicted on the walls of this tem�ple. It is still used as a place of worship though no fair or yatra is held. Sinnar has also a huge, majestic image of Ganapati. Such large images of that deity are rarely found.
Sinnar, besides the Mamlatdar’s office, has a civil judge�s court, panchayat samiti, a police station under a sub-inspector, sub-divisional soil conservation office and a host of other public offices. There are a post and telegraph office and a telephone exchange. A largely-attended weekly bazar is held on Sundays. Sinnar is one of the places over which the Nizam released his control after his defeat in the battle of Udgir fought in January 1760.
Trimbak, more correctly Tryambak or the three-eyed, a name of Mahadeva, is a small but a far-famed place of Hindu pilgri�mage, with in 1971 a population of 5,495. It is a municipal town at the base of the eastern spur of the Sahyadris, about 29 km. (18 miles) south-west of Nasik with which it is joined by a fine tar road, buses plying between Nasik and Trimbak every one hour.� Taxi service is also available. The road winds with many ups and downs past the precipitous scarps of the Anjaneri range, which continues till the semi�circular wall of hills is reached which encloses the town of Trimbak. Below lie the buildings of the town; then a sloping hill-side covered with brush-wood, then a sheer wall of rock crested with bushes, and a back-ground of upper slopes covered with coarse grass converging in a ridge. On the left, that is, on the east are many curiously-shaped hills split into peaks, ridges and blocks. The ancient outline of Trimbak village is broken by cultivated patches which now occupy the sites of the old houses, many of them having small walled gardens or courts, and of irregular rows of buildings which here and there form a street. In other parts there are many large well-built and antique houses, some of them with richly-carved wooden pillars and eaves. Most of these old houses are on well-raised plinths, and have deep verandas; the roofs are tiled and have a great pitch and far projecting eaves, and some of them have weather boards as a further protection from the rains. In contrast most of the modern houses have small plinths and tin roofs. One line of road is tarred to allow Trimbakesh�var Mahadeva’s car or chariot to be dragged in procession, and within the last one or two decades the municipality has not only laid out more roads but has asphalted the major ones.
The 1961 Census showed that the Hindus are in predominance and that a large proportion of them are Brahmans connected with the temples, mostly pilgrims, priests or tirtha padhyayas. Some of them held in mediaeval times the hereditary village accountantships of the neighbouring villages in Nasik and Igatpuri. Most of them are well�-to-do. Besides Brahmans there are several classes of traders and a large number of shop-keepers. The greater part of the population consists of Koli husbandmen, some of whom also work as doli-bearers and thus serve the decrepit and old pilgrims wishing to go up the Brahmagiri and the Gangadvar.
Municipality: The town municipality has an area of 11.90 square kilometres (4.6 square miles) under its jurisdiction. Sixteen councillors constitute the municipal committee which is responsible for the adminis�trative and other affairs connected with the municipal functioning. The committee is presided over by a president elected by the councillors from among-themselves. In 1971-72 the total municipal income, derived from various sources of which the pilgrim tax was the major source, amounted to Rs. 3,47,000. Expenditure during the same year stood at Rs. 3,91,000. The town, has a municipal dispensary and a maternity home, and a veterinary dispensary of the Zilla Parishad. As yet there is no good drainage system, there being stone-lined gutters which embrace only a small part of the town. In 1921 were installed the water-works by the Government on the Gangasagar tank. These were later made over to the municipality. A few primary schools, a high school and a Ved Shala are the only educational institutions in the town. A library is maintained by the municipality.
Climate: Although Trimbak is only 4.82 km. (three miles) in a direct line from the main Sahyadri line, it is almost completely shut from the western breezes by the intervening hill, on which the hardly accessible fort of Trimbak is built. The fort is 1,297.79 metres (4,248 feet) above the sea-level and about 548.64 metres (1.800 feet) above the town. Towards the town the hill on which the fort stands presents at the foot a steep slope of fragments of trap rock. Above the slope is a sheer, in some places a overhanging cliff, probably a thousand feet (304.80 metres) high. In the northern spur is a great gap called the great Vinayak Khind and in the southern face is a cleft known as the great gate or Mahadarvaja which served as the main entrance to the fort. Its shut in position as also the want of good drainage once made the town of Trimbak very unhealthy, and sickness, especially fever, was very common. Epidemics used to break out after the annual fairs and during the great Simhastha or twelve, yearly gathering. Conditions have eased in modern times due to the tremendous advance in medical science, and the prompt measures taken by the town municipality in concert with the Government. During the 1967 Simhastha medical corps were posted at all the check-posts to prevent the entry of pilgrims and others in Nasik and Trimbak without vaccination and inoculation. Since 1865 though there has been a great increase in the number of pilgrims no serious epidemic has occurred either at the annual fair or the twelve-yearly gathering.
Water-supply: As has been already mentioned, the water-supply is drawn from two of the eight tanks or talavs in and around the town. These two are the Visoba talav at some distance from the centre of the town on the south and the Gangalaya, also known as Gangasagar, on the west. The Gangalaya is a large talav of 175.26 x 175.26 metres (575‘ x 575‘) dimensions and holds ample water. Its sides are said to have been stone-lined about 1777 by Naro Shankar at a cost of Rs. 75,000. Water from both these talavs is pumped in an overhead tank from where it is distributed by pipe-lines. The Gangasagar is fed by springs which never show signs of failing. The overflow of the talav is the source of the Trimbak branch of the Godavari, which, though not the highest, is the sacred source. The stream is led to a temple in the town where it feeds a large cut-stone pool, the Kushavarta tirth, considered by the Hindus as the holiest of the holy bathing places, in Trimbak. The municipality clears it thrice every year. Legend arid mythology whisper many a tale and one such tells us the origin of the Simhastha fair as also the formation of the Kushavarta tirth. It is told that once Brahma poured water from his earthen pot or Kamandalu on the feet of Vaman, the fifth incarnation of Vishnu. The water flowed in all directions till it was checked by Shiv who, laid his matted hair in the way. In later times Trimbak became the residence of the great sage Gautama whom the Brahmans requested to bring the Ganga on earth so that they might bathe in her purifying waters. The sage refused to do this. Now one day Parvati sent a cow to graze in the field where Gautama used to cultivate rice for his daily consumption. Gautama in driving the cow gave her a blow with a stick from which it died. Anxious to cleanse himself from the sin of cow-killing the sage began to perform austerities and ceremonies to propitiate Mahadeva. The God pleased with his penance released Ganga from his matted hair and striking her against a stone gave her leave to go on earth. As the water was coming down the sage Gautama gave her a circular motion by turning it round by a blade of Kush grass. Thus arose the Kusha�varta or Kush-turned pool. As this happened when the sun was in the zodiacal sign of Leo, a special fair is held once in every twelve years when the sun enters that sign. The date of the descent of the river from Trimbak or as it is locally called Brahmagiri hill is given as Saturday the tenth day of the bright half of Magh (January-February) in the tortoise incarnation of Vishnu during the era of King Mandhata after two hundred thousand years of Krita or first cycle had passed. Kusha�varta is 24.68 x 22.55 metres (81‘ x 74‘) and has three dharmashalas on three of its sides. It is stone-lined and has fifteen steps on each of its four sides leading to the water. Platforms have been provided where people can take advantage of the holy bath. It was built by Ravji Mahadev Parnerkar, the Phadanavis of the Holkar in 1768 at a consider�able cost. Every Monday a silver facial plaque of Trimbakeshvar Mahadev is brought here in palanquin procession for bath.
The wastage and the leakage of the Gangasagar talav flow through the town in a channel lined with cut-stone masonry, with at short intervals steps leading to the water. The bed of the channel is used as a dust-bin by the residents in its neighbourhood. The flow of water runs low as early as October, and ceases in the hot season. In pass�ing through the town the water becomes very impure, the last defile�ment being the ashes of the dead, as the cremation ground is only a short distance from the town.
During and for a short time after the rains a small stream trickles from one of the numerous fissures on the face of the scarp of the Trimbak hill, and flows from a gomukha or cow’s mouth under a small stone image of goddess Ganga, which stands in a niche and is the chief object of worship. This is known as Gangadvar and is held to be the source of the Godavari. The water from the gomukha disappears mysteriously on the hill and reappears in the Kushavarta tirth, and hence the superior holiness of this tirth.
Trimbakeshvar temple: Trimbakeshvar Mahadeva temple is the chief and most noticeable temple in the town. It was built by the third Peshva Balaji Bajirav (1740-1761) on the site of an older but much humbler shrine. It stands in the midst of a paved courtyard enclosed by a huge rampart wall of 80.77 x 66.45 metres (265 x 218‘) measure�ments with four entrances, the northern entrance being surmounted by a nagarkhana or the drum chamber. Near the western entrance is the kothi or the store-house. In front of the doors to the temple stand large dipmals or lamp-pillars furnished with numerous branched brackets on which lights are placed on festive and holy occasions. Near the temple door, under an elegantly carved stone pavilion with ornamented roof rests the great bull or nandi, the carrier of Mahadeva. A square outer hall or mandap of massive proportions having a door on each face stands in front of the shrine. Porches with separate roofs, but with the same entablature and cornice as the hall stand out from it. The doorways of the porches are richly ornamented with cusped arches, upon carved side-posts supporting a strongly projecting entablature above which, round both the porches and the outer hall, runs a double cornice and frieze, sculptured with elaborate minuteness. The roof is formed of slabs rising in steps from the architraves. These slabs are curvilinear externally and each supports a discoid termination, the shape of which in every case is related to that of the dome which it surmounts. Above the discoid terminations is a lotus-like finial which gives what grace it may to the flattened domes of these ponderous structures. The great tower of the temple covering the shrine rises behind the outer hall. The ground plan is what may be called a broken square, heavily and thickly buttressed. An excessive solidity of appearance is given by the form of the buttresses which spread at the base, and seem to root the whole building to the ground. The face of every buttress is niched and every niche is filled with carved figures of men and animals, with flowers and scroll work crowded everywhere. The far projecting entablature and the deep cornices cast their strong shadows and add to the rich and massive appearance of the whole. Above the cornice rise numerous spirelets of the same shape and proportions as the great spire, the conical layers of which are each surmounted with a carved ornament. The spire itself rises to a great height. It is crowned with a proportionate terminal and supports a brightly gilt pot or kalash unlike the other linga symbols, the linga here has a hollow or pit in which three small lingas of the size of a betel-nut representing Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh are set in from under which water oozes out drop by drop. This water is collected in a kund in the courtyard and used as tirtha by the devotees and pilgrims.
Fairs: Every year two fairs are held at this temple, one on Karttika full moon (October-November) and the other on Magha Vadya Chaturdashi or the great Shivratri (February-March) both of which are attended by a large number of people. Besides land the temple has a Government cash allowance of Rs. 11,514 a year and receives offerings from pilgrims valued at a little over Rs. 5,000. The beautiful chariot or the Ratha drawn by worshippers on the fair days was presented to the temple by the Vinchur chief in about 1865, Even to-day the Vinchurkars bear three days’ expenditure.
In 1952 was created the Trimbakeshvar trust. The management of the temple as in the olden days rests with the Joglekars, a Brahman family. In olden days, the Tungars who lived in the temple, cleaned it and waited upon the god were under Joglekars receiving all perqui�sites except ornaments and money which were taken possession of by the Joglekars. Since the formation of the trust, the Tungars receive money and ornaments too. The God who wears a five-faced golden masque, is fed three times a day, at eight in the morning, at eleven and at nine at night. Besides the golden crown, there is another inlaid with diamonds and emeralds. It is told of this crown that the Moghals took it from the Mysore rulers which was later on taken by Bhausaheb Peshva from them and gifted it to the temple. It is donned only on festive occasions.
Besides this main temple there is a smaller one on top of the Trimbak fort and enjoys a yearly Government grant of Rs. 160. The original temple was demolished and a mosque erected in its place by the Moghals. After the cession of the fort to the Marathas under the terms of the Treaty of Bhalki ratified on 24th November 1752 between the Marathas and the Nizam, Nanasaheb Peshva demolished the mosque and re-built the original temple. Here also there are two tirthas known as Kushavarta and Gangodakan, the latter of which is considered to be the source of the Godavari by some which again descends into Gangadvara in the scarp below to which a reference has already been made. It is just behind the Nivrittinath temple and can be reached after climbing about 750 well-built steps built by one Karamsi Hansraj, a rich Lohana of Bombay, at a cost of Rs. 40,000. He is the same man who built the steps leading to the Elephanta Caves and the large temple near the Byculla Railway station in Bombay. At the top to the left is a broad platform protected by a retaining wall. From the back of this platform, which is a sheer cliff about 300 feet high, water drips and flows from a stone-cow’s mouth into a small reservoir. An attending priest constantly dresses the cow’s head with leaves and flowers.
Gangadevi Temple: Close-by is the shrine of Gangadevi. This is the Gangadvar where once in twelve years when the sun enters the Leo, or Simhastha a fair is held. It is attended by lakhs of pilgrims from all parts of India. Many shops are opened by Nasik merchants who sell grain, cloth, copper, brass and stainless vessels, and numerous other articles of daily use. The Nivrittinath temple is built on the spot where the venerated saint took his samadhi. It is said to be founded some 780 years ago by an ascetic, before Trimbak was inha�bited. Now the temple has been extended with a dharmashala by the Varakaris. It is the scene of a large annual fair held on Pausha Vadya 11 the day he took samadhi. It is attended by over a lakh of persons. On Jyeshtha Shuddha 15, a Dindi procession leaves towards Pandharpur to attend the Ashadhi Yatra held in honour of Vithoba of Pandharpur. In the vicinity is the Varaha tirtha and one or two smaller tirthas and a small shrine to Rama. Near the Varaha tirtha is the temple of Kolambika devi.
Gorakhnath’s Cave: To the west of the platform a path runs along the hill-side to Gorakhnath’s cave, where same Kanphata Gosavis reside. The platform commands a striking view of the town below with its temples and sacred bathing places like Kushavarta. Kankhal Bilv, Ballal, Prayag, Visoba, Moti and numerous others. Across the plain winds the small silvery streak of the Godavari flowing between high banks for about four miles (6.48 km.). Against the horizon, as viewed from the platform, stand the heights of Sapta�shring (4,659 feet), and close at hand rises the fine hill of Anjaneri (4,295 feet) surmounted by a rock like a crouching lion.
Nilambika Temple: About half a mile to the north of the town, crowning the top of a small hillock is the Nilambika temple of the Ahavani Gosavis (Ahavani) where Navaratra is celebrated. Close-by to the west of this mandir is another dedicated to Datta. The steps leading up the hill were built by a Bombay merchant in 1858 at an approximate cost of Rs. 16,000. This hill is known as the Nilparvat.
Nirbani Gosavi Monastery: On the plain between Trimbak and Anjaneri are a monastery or math and a pool called Prayag tirtha where the Nirbani Gosavis live. It was from this monastery that the proces�sion of naked ascetics used to walk to the Kushavarta reservoir in Trimbak town. The men walked there abreast with banners flying and gold and silver trumpets blowing while crowds looked on in admiration. Besides Nirbanis, other wandering ascetics came from all parts of India to the great twelve-yearly fair. These are Niranjanis. Habnis, Udasis old and new, Kanphatas and Nirmalas. Except Nirmalas all these classes are Shiva-worshippers. The Nirmalas are Shikhs and Vaishnavas.
Pilgrims: As a rule pilgrims visiting Trimbak do not stay for more than fourteen days. Some lodge in the town, where wealthy men have provided rest-houses or dharmashalas, some others lodge with their appointed tirthopadhyayas, but most in the fields round the town. The pilgrim, after going through the prescribed bathing and worship, starts on the round of visiting the chief objects of holiness in and about the town. He bathes in the Kushavarta and after bathing goes to worship Trimbakeshvar Mahadeva. None is allowed to enter the sanctuary, thus putting a stop to the ancient custom when only Brahmans could enter the sanctuary. A feast to the temple Brahmans completes the ordinary round of observances. If the pilgrim has come to perform the Shraddha or commemorative ceremony he has to keep several other observances. After shaving and throwing the shaven hair in the small square Kankala pool, the pilgrim bathes in the Kushavarta. After that he prepares some rice balls if he is a Brahman and of wheat flour if belonging to other castes and performs the usual shraddha ceremonies, a priest officiating and reciting sacred texts. After having gone through the ceremonies he throws the balls in the marked out pools and then goes to worship Mahadeva in the great temple. On completing the other observances the pilgrim goes to worship other places starting with the source of the Godavari.
Trimbak has many other small temples dedicated to various deities. It has post and telegraph facilities and a rest-house at a mile�s distance from the town proper.
Fort: Trimbak fort, which is 4,248 feet (1.294.80 metres) above the sea, was described in 1818 as on a scarp so high and inaccessible as to be impregnable by any army or artillery, however numerous or well served. The hill was ten miles (16 km.) round the base and about four miles (6.43 km.) round the top. The scarp, which varied in height from two to four hundred feet (60.96 to 121.92 metres) of perpendicular rock, surrounded the hill in every part, leaving no points except two gateways. The chief gateway through which the garrison received their stores and provisions was on the south. The north gateway was only a single gate, the passage to which was by narrow steps cut out of the rock, and wide enough for only one person at a time. This passage was cut four to six feet (1.21 to 1.82 metres) in the rock, and had nearly 300 steps, each furnished with side grooves or niches. These grooves were required to hold on by, as at half way up and after, it was hazardous to look back down the cliff which had 600 to 700 feet (182.88 to 213.36 metres) of a sheer drop, The top was surmounted by a building through which a six feet (1.82 metres) wide passage wound about twenty feet (6 metres) in the rock. The mouth was protected by a double gateway, from which the further ascent was through a hatchway. These winding stairs were covered by the build�ing whose beams crossed the stairs overhead, and which, if knocked down, would only add strength to the place by burying the passage gateway. The head of this passage was defended by two towers con�nected by a curtain, in which was the gateway. The height of the hill was not so great on the north as on the south side, but it rose more abruptly and the ascent was steeper. Besides the gateways there were a few towers and works on different parts of the hill, but their position did not seem to have been chosen with a view to increase the strength of the fortress. The magazines and almost all the houses of the garrison were cut in the rock.
At the foot of the scarp, and at a short distance from the passage leading to the north gate, was an old village in ruins. The fort has now broad rock-cut steps leading up the top.
History: Trimbak with Nasik is said to have been governed by a brother of Ramchandra (1271-1311), the seventh of the Devagiri Yadavas. In the Musalman histories of the Deccan, Trimbak is always coupled with Nasik, and it is still the practice to speak of the two places as Nasik-Trimbak. The earliest known mention of Trimbak is in 1357 when Mahadeva, son of Bopadeva and author of Kamadhenukaran, is said to have distinguished himself in the royal court of that place. It is evident from this reference that although the Muslims succeeded Yadavas in the Deccan, a number of smaller Hindu states held their sway in the far-off mountainous tracts and certainly in the Konkan strip. After the disintegration of the Bahamani kingdom, Trimbak passed under the control of its Nizamshahi off-shoot. In 1629 its Maratha general Shahaji rebelled against the state and took possession of the farts in the Sahyadri range from Trimbak to Junnar. Later a force of 8,000 horse was sent by Shah Jahan, the Moghal emperor, to conquer Nasik, Trimbak and Sangamner. In 1633 mention is made that the commandant of Trimbak fort offered his services to the Moghals. In 1635 a force of 8,000 men was sent against the forts of Junnar, Sangamner, Nasik and Trimbak. In 1636, after his defeat at Mahuli, Shahaji agreed to deliver Trimbak fort along with Tringalvadi, Harishchandragad and others to Khan Zaman, the Moghal general About a week after the Vani-Dindori battle fought on 17th October 1670 between Shivaji and the Moghals, Trimbak was captured and occupied by Shivaji’s Peshva, Moropant Pingle. About 1680 Trimbak (Tirmek) is mentioned as a sub-division of Sangamner which was a district of Aurangabad. A manuscript quoted by Orme, apparently of Moghal times, describes the river Ganga as coming from the Konkan hills on which Tirmek is built, passing through the middle of the Sangamner district forty miles (20 kos) to Gulshanabad or Nasik. Numbers of Hindus from the most distant parts are said to come every year to Trimbak to bathe on the day the sun enters the sign of the Scorpion. Every twelfth year the multitude was much greater and some came on every day of the year. The pilgrim tax yielded a large sum and belonged to the commandant of Trimbak fort. The rock out of which the Ganga springs had been fashioned into a cow’s mouth. In 1682 Aurangzeb’s general advanced from Aurangabad to Nasik-Tirmek, near the source of the river Ganga and their detachments reduced several posts on detached hills. In 1684 one of Sambhaji’s generals gained leave to go with the troops under his command to bathe in the Ganga at Nasik-Tirmek, as according to their belief every Maratha was bound to wash at least once a year in the Ganga, and in preference at Nasik-Tirmek. In 1718 Sayyad Husain Ali, one of the Sayyad brothers, secured the assistance of the Marathas under Shahu for seizing the power at Delhi promis�ing among other things to restore the fort of Trimbak to the Marathas ; but the Moghal emperors refused to abide by the conditions and it seems to have remained with the Moghals till 1720 when the whole of Khandesh passed to the Nizam. In 1730 the fort was captured by Kolis, but the Nizam recovered it and held it till 1752 when it was ceded along with other forts by the Nizam to, the Marathas under the terms of the treaty of Bhalki signed on 24th November 1752. In 1750 Tieffenthaler mentions Trimbak as a good fort on the bank of the Godavari. In 1767 Trimbak is mentioned as part of the territory which Madhavrav Peshva agreed to give to his uncle Raghunathrav. In a revenue statement, prepared from Maratha records of about 1790, Trimbak is entered as a sub-division in the Sangamner district yielding Rs. 8,482.
During the Maratha war of 1817, Bajirav II yielding to the threats of Elphinstone surrendered the control of Trimbak, Sinhgad, Purandar and Rajgad to the British. He also issued a declaration branding devoted Trimbakji Dengle as a rebel who should be caught dead or alive. As the war continued Trimbak, Rajdhair and Malegaon were the only Nasik forts which offered resistance to Colonel McDowell’s force. Marching from Nasik on the 22nd of April Colonel McDowell’s detachment halted half way to Trimbak, while the engineers went ahead to reconnoitre and summon the fort to surrender. As the party approached the village of Trimbak, the enemy left it and opened fire from the guns on the north side of the fort which were numerous and well served. They afterwards made a sally on the patty but were at once driven back. The same evening a reconnaissance was made of the south gateway which was on the other side of the fort and at a considerable distance from the village. The commanding engineer Lieutenant Davies recommended an attack on the north gate. The plan of attack was to silence the fire of the enemy’s guns, particularly those which bore on the ruined village, and for this purpose to erect a battery for the heavy ordnance at the northern side of the bottom of the hill then to occupy and form a lodgment in the village at the foot of the north gate, to erect a battery in the village for four six-pounders to batter the gateway, and thence to carry the guns up to the gateway by band as bad been done at Rajdhair fort. At the short distance of about 100 yards it was hoped that the towers and curtains of the gateway might be demolished and that the troops might advance to storm the breach under cover of the fire of the batteries and of musketry from the post in the village. At all events, it was hoped that a lodgment so immediately under the gateway would alarm the garrison and induce them to surrender.
To cut off from the Maratha resisters all hope of escape by the south side, and to distract their attention, two six-pounders and a howitzer were detached and established as high up the hill and as near to the south gate as the nature of the ground allowed. The attack began on the 23rd. At eight in the morning the detachment took its ground before the fort, and the whole of the entrenching tools and materials collected for the siege were carried into the village to the place chosen for the engineer’s store. At four in the evening a detachment of fifty Euro�peans, fifty irregulars, and 150 horse with two six-pounders, marched from camp to take a position opposite the south gateway. With them was a working party under an officer of engineers, consisting of a small detail of sappers and miners, thirty pioneers, and fifty litter-bearers, provided with forty wickercages or gabions and 2,000 sand-bags. A battery for the two six-pounders and a place of arms for the troops were prepared during the night, and one of the guns was carried up and placed in battery. For the operations on the north side a working party was got ready of half the corps of sappers and miners, fifty Europeans, 100 litter-bearers and about 100 lascars. As soon as it was dusk, the battery and place of arms were laid put, and when it grew dark the working party advanced and began operations. At twelve at night the relief for the working party arrived in the trenches, consisting of the remaining half of the sappers and miners, fifty sepoys, 400 pioneers and 200 litter-bearers. Owing to the rocky nature of the ground it was neces�sary to carry the earth to the battery from a distance. It was deemed, therefore, advisable not to relieve the old working party but keep both at work, and thus, by great labour, the works were finished a little before daylight, and four heavy guns, two eight-inch mortars and two eight-inch howitzers, were got into battery. During the night the enemy fired occasionally on the working party from their different guns, but no casualties occurred.
On the 24th the battery opened at daylight and with great effect, so that in three hours all the Maratha guns were silenced, and it was found on reconnoitring that they had left the ruined village. This induced the commanding officer to attempt a lodgment there at midday instead of waiting till night as had originally been intended. The work�ing and covering parties for this service were ordered to parade at noon in rear of the work. From some misconception of orders the covering party advanced three quarters of an hour before the time ordered and before the working party were ready and instead of remaining quiet under cover of the walls and houses, they attempted to force the gateway and the bluff rock 200 feet (60.96 metres) in perpendicular height.
The Marathas opened a very heavy fire of Jinjals rockets, and matchlocks, and rolled large stones on the assailants. When the working party arrived they tried in vain to establish themselves. At the same time the British battery discontinued firing as the artillerymen were worn out by twelve hours’ incessant labour and the working party were forced to retire with loss behind the walls of the village where they remained till night when a battery for four six-pounders was completed. During the afternoon of the 23rd the Marathas, fancying from the desperate enterprise of that morning that an attempt had really been intended by the narrow passage, and believing that neither rocks, walls nor artillery could stop their assailants, lowered one of their number by a rope, who when within hail, called out that the commandant was willing to treat with Colonel McDowell. The usual demand of the payment of arrears was made and refused. About six in the morning of the 24th, a Jamadar of the garrison came down, and terms were arranged for the surrender of the place, the garrison being allowed to retire with their arms and private property. In the course of the day the garrison turned out. There were about 535 men, Rajputs and Marathas with a few Sidis or Abyssinians. It was arranged that they should leave by the south gate but so well had it been secured inside by heaps of stones that they Were not able to clear a way for themselves before three O’clock in the afternoon. Within the fort were found twenty-five pieces of ordnance, from a thirty-three down to a one-pounder, with a sufficiency of ammunition. The loss in tak�ing this important fortress amounted to thirteen Europeans and nine Indians, including two officers. This loss was small, but the state to which the heavy guns and their carriages was reduced was a serious inconvenience. There were no means of replacing them. The siege of hill-forts was particularly destructive to gun-carriages. To give the pieces sufficient elevation it was necessary to sink the trails into the ground. Where this, as at Trimbak, was impracticable from the rocky site of the battery, the wheels had to be raised on sand-bags.
The fall of Trimbak so alarmed the commandants of the other forts that sixteen strong places surrendered without resistance. The occupation of so many forts caused serious embarrassment. No regular could be spared, and irregulars raised for the purpose were unworthy of trust. The temporary use of irregulars could not be avoided. At the same time application was made to Brigadier-General Doveton for more Native Infantry, who ordered two companies of the: second Battalion of the 13th Regiment to join from Jalna with all expedition.
Two months after the surrender of Trimbak fort Trimbakji Dengle tried to re-take it by surprise. Only a few men of the 13th Madras Infantry, commanded by a Subhedar, had been left in the fortress. One morning the sentries at the north gate were asked to admit a band of pilgrims who wished to worship the source of the Godavari. They were admitted without suspicion. Before all of the party had entered one of them attacked the sentry, who, at the cost of his life, succeeded in closing the gates. The garrison, immediately alarmed, overpowered the few who had gained admittance, and the rest of the pilgrims, in the narrow flight of steps leading to the north gate, suffered severely from stones dropped on them from above.
The Brahmans of Trimbak played a heroic role during the 1857 War of Independence. At their instigation a party of Bhils and Thakurs attacked the Trimbak treasury on the night of the 5th of December 1857, and some of the men who took part in the rising hid themselves in the hills round Trimbak. The hills were searched and among the men who were made prisoners a Thakur named Pandu acknowledged his share in the outbreak and stated that he and his people had risen under the advice of a Trimbak Brahman whom, he said, he knew by sight and could point out. Another of the prisoners confirmed this story and promised to identify the Brahman. Mr. Chapman, the civil officer in charge of the district, who knew that the rising and attack on Trimbak had been organized by Brahmans, had brought all the Brahmans of Trimbak into his camp and ranged them in rows, but no one had come forward to identify the leading conspirators. Pandu was called and told to examine the rows of Brahmans and find out whether the man who had advised his people to revolt was among them. Pandu walked down the line and stopping before a Brahman, whose face was muffed, asked that the cloth might be taken away, and on seeing his face said that he was one of the Brahmans who had persuaded the Thakurs to attack Trimbak. Then the other Thakur who had confessed, was called in, and walking down the line picked out the same Brahman. Next morning this Brahman was tried, found guilty, condemned to death, and hanged. Another family which participated in the 1857 struggle was the Jites. Their entire property was confiscated. Involved in the conspiracy was Vasudev Bhagvant Joglekar. Before being taken to the gallows he was asked to express his desire upon which he said that the management of the Trimbakeshvar temple should rest with the Joglekar family. His wish was given effect to.
Tringalvadi Fort, at the foot of which is the settlement of Tringalvadi with 1,018 inhabitants as per the 1971 Census, stands 881.78 metres (2,893 feet) above the sea and lies 9.65 km. (six miles) north-west of Igatpuri and 6.43 km. (four miles) north of the Thal pass. It was visited by Captain Briggs in 1818 who found the path up the lower part of the hill long and easy. The scarp of the rock is low and a flight of sixty rock-cut steps leads up its face at the end of which is a Hanuman in bas-relief in the opposite wall. Time has withered some of these steps. The way up has been strategi�cally cut in that its winding nature and open banks above do not permit the enemy to rush headlong as at every curve the enemy could be held only by a handful of men. Adjoining the Hanuman carving is the entrance gate also but in rock. One has to bend double to pass through this gateway as it is practically blocked up by silt and mud drained during successive monsoons. The sides of the rock in which the flight is cut have also developed deep fissures which might lead to the caving in of the sides and block the passage altogether. There is also a second approach on, the other side of the hill but it has purposely been stopped with stones and earth. In 1636 Tringal�vadi fort is mentioned among the places which Shahaji, Shivaji’s father, was forced to cede to the Moghals after his defeat at Mahuli in Thana district. It is one of the sixteen fortified places which surrendered to the British on the fall of Trimbak in April 1818. Tringalvadi has several caves of which only one is in a fairly good (condition and a ruined temple of Brahmadeva with a Sanskrit inscrip�tion dated Shako 1266 (A. D. 1334).
Vaghera, about 37 km. (23 miles) north-west of Nasik, is a fort and hill-station 1,161.90 metres (3,812 feet) above sea�-level. It differs from most of the Nasik forts in its waving and coni�cal shape, and being almost all covered with grass except on the west where there is a steep descent. Captain Briggs who visited Vaghera in 1818 rode almost to the foot of the fort without any difficulty. Here he found a few houses occupied by a part of the garrison. Today only a few remnants of those houses are seen. The way up the fort is steep and difficult. It leads to two gateways, the outer of which has two bastions. Both the gates as well as the bastions are in disrepair. Captain Briggs found many thatched huts for the garrison but not a single bomb-proof for ammunition and provision. Vaghera is one of the sixteen fortified places that surrendered to Colonel McDowell’s force on the fall of Trimbak in 1818. When it was taken by the Britishers it had a large quantity of ammunition and stores The water-supply in the fort is ample.
Vani, perhaps the largest village in Dindori taluka, lying about 20.92 km. (thirteen miles) north of Dindori and 4.82 km. (three miles) south of Saptashring hill, was once the headquarters of a petty division. The Nasik-Dindori-Vani road branches off at this point towards Surgana and Kalvan, and it is because of facilities of good transport that the timber depot from Chausale seems to have been removed hither. About a mile south of the village is located the forest bungalow. Vani is also known for grain trade and is inhabited by many well-to-do grain-dealers. The weekly market is held on Tuesdays. In 1971 its population was 6,548.
The earliest historical mention of Vani is as Van in a copper-plate or 930 A. D of the Rashtrakuta king Govinda Ill. The old site of Vani is said to have been at the base of the Ahivant fort, about 8 km. (five miles) to the north-west of the present site. According to the local account about 1478 A. D. (Shaka 1400) Ganpatrav Janardan, the Moghal commandant of Ahivant fort, seeing that great injury was caused to Vani and its people by cannon balls fired on Mehvasis, and other free-booters from Ahivant fort, settled Vani on the present site, and built a small fort to the west of the new settlement. In 1760 when the Nasik forts passed from the Moghals to the Marathas, Dhodap took the place of Ahivant, and the people of the village of Ahivant went and settled at Vani thereby greatly increasing its population. In a statement prepared from Maratha records about 1790, Varia, probably Vani, appears as the headquarters of a sub-division of Sangamner next to Nasik with a yearly revenue of Rs. 1,17,100.
Near the fort built by Ganpatrav there was a small reservoir and a temple of Mahalakshmi. After the temple fell to ruin the image of the goddess lay in the fort till it was taken to Nasik when Vani ceased to be the local headquarters. To the east of Vani is a temple dedicated to Saptashring-nivasini Goddess. It is widely believed that the goddess comes from the top of Saptashring to help such of her devotees who cannot climb the hill. These are stories built by credulous villagers and do not have any credence. The present tem�ple was built in about 1780 by a Shenvi named Shridhar Lakshman, the agent or Vahivatdar of Gopikabai, the mother of Madhavrav Peshva (1761-1772), who lived at Nasik and enjoyed as her private allowance the revenues of the petty division of Vani-Dindori. Shridhar also built two reservoirs and threw a dam across a small stream in the neighbourhood. Immediately after the fair held in honour of the goddess on the hill the Vani fair starts and lasts for about a fortnight. Over a lakh of persons gather on the occasion. The fair arrangements are looked after by the grampanchayat. The jewels of Saptashring goddess are kept at Vani. To the west of Vani lie the ruins of a Hemadpanti temple of Agastyeshvar Mahadeva. The temple of Tilbhandeshvara Mahadeva on the Deva river was washed away in one of its floods. Both these shrines also were built by Shridhar Lakshman. Where the Tilbhandeshvara temple stood once are three reservoirs and a dam over the Deva river, also known to have been built by Shridhar. Vani has, besides the primary schools, a high school, a veterinary dispensary as also a civil dispensary, to which a maternity ward is attached. There are also postal facilities.
Vinchur, largely an agricultural village in Niphad taluka with a population of 7,199 in 1971, lies 6.43 km. (4 miles) south of Lasalgaon, the nearest railway station on the Bombay-Nagpur route of the Central Railway, with which it is connected by a bridged and metalled road. It was the residence of the Chief of Vinchur, a Maratha Sardar of rank, and whose descendants continue to stay there to the present times. Vinchur was granted as a military saranjam estate to Vitthal Shivdev who distinguished himself at the capture of Ahmadabad in 1755. The scheming Raghunathrav had halted here for some time after his break with the Peshva Madhavrav. Here he was joined by his friends and accomplices and decided to fight the Peshva with the support of Nizam Ali and Janoji Bhosle. In olden days it was surrounded by a mud-wall of which hardly any trace remains to-day. The tank here used to be supplied with water through earthen pipes of which traces still remain. However, there are quite a few good houses. The chief of Vinchur was a Deshastha Brahman and held 45 villages in Nasik, three in Ahmadnagar and two in Poona, with a total population of 30,000 and an yearly rental of approximately Rs. 72,700. He held the powers of a first class magistrate in criminal offences and settled civil suits as they arose among the people.
Though Vinchur has made good progress in the co-operative field and has co-operative societies of weavers, oil-expellers, better farming, multi-purpose and the like, it has made no progress whatever towards industrialization and hence the population even to-day depends upon the land. The chief crops grown are wheat, bajra and groundnut. There is also a small trade in cotton goods, the weekly market being held on Fridays. The village has a high school, an agricultural school, a primary school and an Urdu school. An ayurvedic dispensary is conducted by the Zilla Parishad. There is also a post office. Vinchur has quite a few temples and four mosques, none of which merit any attention. Fairs are held in honour of Shani, Khanderav and Mahadev on Magha Vadya Amavasya, Margashirsha Shuddha Shashthi, and Chaitra Shuddha Pratipada respectively. Each fair is attended by nearly 2,000 persons.
Vavi is largely an agricultural village in Sinnar taluka with a population of 6,142 in 1971, chiefly producing bajra. It is connected by a good made road with the taluka headquarters, buses plying either way. The coarse blankets woven here are well-known and find a ready market all over the district. Vavi contains two antique shrines dedicated to Siddheshvar and Vaijeshvar respectively and a samadhi built in memory of one Parasharam, a local poet.
Siddheshvar Temple: Built on a dressed stone-plinth of 4.34 x 5.04 metres (14‘ 3” x 16‘ 6�“) dimensions, the Siddheshvar temple is situated near the bus-stand on the land belonging to the grampanchayat. It is simple in construction and square (3.48 x 3.48 metres = 11‘5” x11‘5“) in shape comprising a sanctuary crowned with a shikhara. There is a projection of stone-slabs all around over the top of the sanctuary, with the shikhara consisting of three tiers superimposed with the traditional kalash. The lowest tier is square in plan with five carved images on each side. The upper two tiers are octagonal with eight panels each and images carved therein. Whereas the sanctuary is white-washed the shikhara is painted. An inscription in Devanagari could be seen over the lintel but it is so thickly coated with white�wash that it is indecipherable. It may probably be giving the date of the construction of the temple. Inside the sanctuary there is a linga. In front of the temple a nandi is housed under a canopy.
As one faces the temple there is a rectangular step-well to the right having two flights of steps, one each on either side of the rectangular platform-like structure on level with the ground. In the wall above the flight of steps nearer the temple there is an inscribed stone bearing an eight-lined inscription. It has developed cracks, but the date Shaka 1710 is clearly legible. It appears that the well was constructed in that year, viz., 1788 A. D. and perhaps is contemporaneous with the temple. Local inhabitants use the well for washing clothes. There is no provision for the maintenance of the temple or for the daily puja. However, the local gurav attends to the daily routine.
Vaijeshvar Temple: Situated about a furlong away from the Siddheshvar temple, the Vaijeshvar shrine is Hemadpanti in style and resembles more or less the temple at Lonad in Bhivandi taluka of Thana district. However, it is in a better state of preservation than that at Lonad. Like the one at Lonad it has five carved panels over the lintel. The square wooden pillarred sabhamandap appears to be a later addition. The vestibule contains a Linga facing east. A nandi is seated in front of the sanctuary across the sabhamandap. As one approaches the sanctuary on the left is an inscription in six lines, the third and the sixth lines being half. The letters are so irregularly carved, that the style cannot be determined. The colour wash has made deciphering a difficult job. From the text, however, Shaka 1139 (A. D. 1217) can be read. This probably is the date of construction of the temple. The monument is in bad repair.
Parasharam Samadhi: Hardly a furlong away from the Vaijeshvar temple is the samadhi of Parasharam, a poet of Vavi, whose period is given as 1754 to 1844 A. D. The vrindavan is supposed to have been built at the place where he resided. He belonged to the tailor community and composed ballads. The samadhi is inside a walled structure with a roof of tin-sheets. It is half open. The whole construction is in a miserable condition. The date of construction of the samadhi cannot be determined in the absence of any records. It may be considered to be of historical importance, and sentimental value.
In a mound near a tank a stone prabhaval was discovered. The main image is missing from its place. At the top of the prabhaval there are a few images including one of seated Buddha.
Yeola, the headquarters of the taluka of the same name, with in 1971 a population of 24,533, is a station on the Manmad�-Dhond section of the Central Railway, 29 km. (18 miles) south of Manmad and 260.71 km. (162 miles) north-east of Bombay. It is also connected with all the major towns of the district as also outside with good made roads, the Malegaon-Ahmadnagar high road passing close to the west of the town.
Municipality: The town has a municipality which was established in 1858. Its jurisdiction extends over an area of 6.73 square kilometres (2.6 square miles). A council composed of 21 members and presided over by a president looks after the administrative affairs.
Finance: In 1964-65, the total municipal income amounted to Rs. 4,03,941. The items composing the municipal income were municipal rates and taxes Rs. 2,61,334; revenue derived from municipal property apart from taxation Rs. 73,419 and grants and contributions Rs. 69,188. Expenditure during the same year stood at Rs. 3,75,734. It comprised general administration and collection charges Rs. 99,233; public safety Rs. 28,781; public health and convenience Rs. 2,07,112; public instruction Rs. 9,229 and miscellaneous including capital expenditure Rs. 31,179. However, it is to be noted that both income and expenditure figures quoted above exclude extra-ordinary and debt heads which stood at Rs. 40,544 and Rs. 61,950 respectively.
Health, water-supply and sanitation: The medical aid facilities available to the inhabitants have been considerably improved with the establishment of the Zilla Parishad. Now the town has one civil dispensary with an attached maternity ward and a veterinary dispensary working towards the improvement of the live-stock bread as also treating the live-stock. There is also a charitable ayurvedic dispensary privately conducted by Messrs. Gangaram Chhabildas.
The water is supplied, at present, from quite a few wells fitted with electric pumps. One of these wells is located about a mile north of the town and has a good spring. From this well water is led by a drift way and piped into some reservoirs in the town. This supply is augmented by another water-supply scheme executed in 1953, as also from a well in Nagde village which is brought by means of tankers. However, supply from all these sources falls short of the requirements of the town in summer. To counter this scarcity, a water works scheme to be implemented in two stages and estimated to cost about Rs. 22,87,800 is being implemented. The first stage would consist of the tapping of the Godavari left bank canal at its mile No. 34 near Isgaon village. The water so tapped would, after filtering, be stored in a service reservoir near the Mamlatdar’s office and then distributed. This is expected to meet the immediate requirement. To meet the ultimate needs the Kadva left bank canal would be similarly tapped during the second stage. In order to meet the liabilities the scheme may impose upon the municipality, it is proposed to distribute water on metre basis at the rate of Rs. 1.25 per 1,000 gallons (4,546 litres) at least till the second stage actually materialises. It is expected to take at least ten years’ time for the second stage to materialise.
The town has no special drainage. There are only stone-lined open gutters which are inadequate to carry the waste water. With the implementation of the water-supply scheme it is expected that the drainage problem would be very acute and hence the municipality is proposing to have underground drainage.
Education: Primary education is compulsory and is entrusted to the care of the Zilla Parishad. However, the municipality bears 5 per cent of the total annual cost so incurred. Yeola has two high schools, both privately conducted and two libraries, viz., Sarvajanik Vachanalaya and Akbari Vachanalaya which receive annually Rs. 1,000 and Rs. 300 respectively from the municipality as grant-in-aid.
Fire Service: The municipality maintains no separate equipment for fire fighting as such. In times of emergencies the water tankers are pressed into service.
Cremation and burial places: Only one cremation and burial ground is managed by the municipality. Besides this there are nine such burial-grounds located at different places which are privately maintained and used, i.e., by the communities concerned.
History: Yeola is the birth-place of that famous revolutionary Tatya Tope who played such a prominent role in the 1857 War of Independence against the British. At the time of its foundation it was under the emperor of Delhi. Subsequently it passed on to the Satara King. Madhavrav, the fourth Peshva (1761-1772) made it, along with several other villages, in military grant over to Vitthal Shivdev, the ancestor of the Chief of Vinchur. The Chief of Vinchur enjoyed the revenue of the lands attached to the town even during the British days. He, however, had no authority within the town-limits. Yeola had also its share in the struggle for independence. During the twenties and thirties of the present century Yeola threw in quite a large number of selfless workers who participated in the non-co-operation and civil disobedience movements launched by Mahatma Gandhi. Yeola had a national school several of whose students and teachers played no small part in the struggle for independence. Many of Yeola’s rich inhabitants are presumed to have secretly supported the movement financially. In olden days the town was surrounded by a mud-wall of which no trace remains to-day.
Miscellaneous: Yeola is the third important town in the district, its importance dating back to 1667, when one Raghoji Patil persuaded a number of craftsmen to settle them by offering them land on favourable terms. From historical times Yeola is well known for the manufacture of silk and cotton goods and of gold thread or jar. Though this industry finds itself in the doldrums to-day, yet silk saris, shalus and paithanis woven here find a place in the markets of Bombay, Calcutta, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh. Despite the competition of mill-made cloth and decline in silk and jar manufactures, it still continues to be a major handloom weaving centre. A little over a thousand persons are engaged in this occupation. There is a weaving school here. There are also carpentry and leather schools. A club affords some means of entertainment.
Muralidhar Temple: Yeola has two temples dedicated to Muralidhar of which the one standing in front of the ruined vada of Mahajani, the money-lender of the Peshvas, is quite antique. The temple resembles more or less an old palace, the wooden pillars and the arches in-�between them being some of the finest wood-work in the district. The ceiling is also similarly decorated. To-day for want of proper maintenance it lies in a disused and decayed condition. Nothing except the frontal gate of the Mahajani Vada giving a glimpse of its grandeur, remains to-day. Not far away from the old Muralidhar temple, in the Tilak Chowk is the new one dedicated to the same deity. Built in 1935 it is a double-storeyed structure of mosaic floors and galleries on the four sides. Yet in point of artistic beauty it pales into insignificance when compared to the old one. In the Tilak Chowk is installed a bust of Shivaji flanked by two lion statuettes under a canopy.
Parshvanath Temple: Yeola has also a temple of Parshvanath with its floor tiled in mosaic with black and white combination. Whereas its entrance is decorated with images of animals and dvarapalas moulded in plaster, its walls are beautified with some mural paintings, covered with glass, depicting scenes from the Jain Puranas. Eight of its pillars on the ground floor are plated with silver sheets highly decorated.
Jumma mosque: The Jumma masjid admeasuring 15.24 x I5.24 metres is located in the Pinjari lane and is the biggest mosque in the town. Its ceiling is supported on massive pillars and the top is crowned by two minars.����������
Being the headquarters of a taluka there are a court, Mamlatdar’s office, panchayat samiti, soil conservation and land consolidation offices, a police station and amenities of post and telegraph and telephone, A market is held on Tuesdays on a well-shaded site. The prominent commodities that figure among others are wheat, bajra and other cereals, cattle and sheep. It is attended by about 20,000 persons some of whom come from great distances. A large amount of business is transacted.
Zodage, with 5,134 inhabitants as per the 1971 Census, is a large village on the Bombay-Agra road, about 24 km. (15 miles) north-east of Malegaon in Malegaon taluka. In 1881 it was noticed as a staging station for troops on the road from Ashirgad to Malegaon with 100 houses and a rest-house. Today the rest-house is no more maintained, while the number of houses has considerably increased and touches almost a thousand. It has a beautiful shrine of Shankara about 5.57 square metres (60 square feet) partly ruined and containing an almost illegible inscription. On Magha Vadya 13, a fair in honour of Shankara is held. The village has a high school, a post office and a dispensary. Thursday is the weekly bazar day.