Jun 7, 2014

Deodurga fort

November 27, 2013
After spending the first hours of the day Waganageri I head towards Devadurga aka Deodurga via. Shorapur. It was about 10-30 when we reached Deodurga town outskirts. There was hillock in sight but no sign of fortification on it. When I asked people about the fort most did not even know a fort existed here. One person said there's an old structure called Dodda Darbar.. I asked him him if he could  show us the place. Yes, he joined us.. I forgot his name :( We drove through the narrow streets and came to this structure. The person on the left is our guide.

This ancient structure measuring about 85m (275') x 70m (232') in plan has walls 25' high. As you see there are balconies at the top. Perhaps the ruler gave audiences to subjects from the balcony.

This once a grand structure is crumbling. Within the walls are multi-level living quarters and a large courtyard.

Jaali-gida rules all open spaces. In fact the ground is littered with thorny twigs making it difficult to move around.

Sentry posts at corners for tight security.

This is the entrance to the stairway to the upper floor. We did not want to take risks knowing the condition of the walls.

I mentioned about the hill fort to my guide, he said this is the only fort at Deodurga. Then he pointed at the hill close by and said there's only Burj up there. I insisted about the existence of a hill fort here but he said this is the only fort. Opposite Dodda Darbar is an ancient temple.

One of the side walls has a circular bastion..

..while the opposite side is almost completely collapsed.

Deodurga was under Nayakas rule who were feudatories of Vijayanagara empire. After the collapse of Vijayanagara they came under the Muslim kings. Besides the Dodda Darbar is a smaller fort known as Sanna Darbar - this was supposed to have been used by a Nayaka leader known as Ramappa Nayak. In this picture part of the hillock is visible. The road leads to another ancient temple known as Gopalaswami Gudi. Perhaps if I had gone there I might have seen an ancient well called Nayakana Baavi.

An ancient grinding stone used to extract oil from seeds.

Our host took us to another ancient structure half kilometer away from Dodda Darbar. This structure with arches and towers is the entrance to an ancient graveyard.

I chatted with my guide over refreshments about the route back to Shorapur. He suggested us to go via Tintini, the road was better and also we could visit the ancient Tintini Mouneshwara temple on the left bank of river Krishna.

Back home, I checked Deodurga hillock on Google Maps.. there were ruins of a fort on it :( So close yet so far. Anyway, I'll go there during a trip to Raichur, there are few other places on my list which are nearby Deodurga. Perhaps I must carry a tablet during my future trips, that way  need not depend on my memory and people's information too much. But its a pain to lug around too many gadgets.

Dodda Darbar coordinates: 16°24'55"N   76°56'12"E
Deodurga fort coordinates: 16°25'1"N   76°56'24"E

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