(Daultabad of the later period), 11kms north-west of Aurangabad, is a
famous for its formidable hill fort. The fort is situated on an
isolated cone-shaped hill rising abruptly from the plain to the height
of about 190 metres. The fortification constitutes of three
concentric lines of defensive walls with large number of bastions.
The noteworthy features of the fort are the moat, the scarp and the sub-terranean
passage, all hewn of solid rock. The upper outlet of the passage
was filled with an iron grating, on which a large fire could be used to
prevent the progress of the enemy. The Chand Minar, the Chini
Mahal and the Baradari are the important structures within the fort.
The Chand Minar, about 63 metres in
height, was erected by Alauddin Bahman Shah in 1435 AD to conquest of
Daulatabad. Opposite the Minar is the Jumma masjid, whose pillars
originally belonged to a temple. Close to it, there is a large
masonry tank. The Chini Mahal at the end of the lower for is the
place where Abdul Hasan Tana Shah, the last king Golconda, was confined
by Aurangzeb in 1687 AD. Nearby is a round bastion topped with a
huge canon with ramís head, called Kila Shikan or Fort breaker.
The Baradari, octagonal in shape, stands near the summit of the fort.
The principal bastion at the summit also carries a large canon.
Though the city of Devagiri was founded
in 1187 AD by the Yadava king Bhillan V, the fort was constructed during
the reign of Singhana II (1210-46 AD). It was captured by Ala-ud-Din
Kalji in 12 94 AD, marking the first Muslim invasion of the Deccan.
Finally in 1318 AD, Malik Kafur killed last Yadava Raja, Harapal.
Then in 1327 AD, Muhammed-bin-Tughluq sought to make it his capital, by
transferring the entire population of Delhi and changing the name from
Devagiri to Daulatabad. Then it was in the possession of the
Bhamanis till 1526 AD. The fort remained in Mughal control till
Aurangzebís death in 1707 AD., when it passed on to the Nizam of
Hyderabad. The famous Ellora Caves are just 16kms away from
Pictures-View of Devagiri for
and its citadel (top left) from the top of its entrance gate (above),
and the Chand Minar (inset). Country of the Jumma masjid, with old
carved pillars (below, left), and the Kila Shikan canon with ramís head