Thursday, October 13, 2016


In the first day of our trip (Saturday 8th Oct.), after having lunch at a hotel in ChitraDurga, we proceeded to Kote(Fort) entrance. Unfortunately, we had to enquire several people on the way, as there was not a single signboard, indicating directions to this historic place.

It was 3pm when we reached, the weather was pleasant and after paying entrance fee of Rs15.00, we entered the place. A guide was hired (For Rs 500) for explaining the place.

The Kote (Fort) was built in 17th to 19th centuries by dynastic rulers including Rashtrakutas, Hoysalas, Chalukyas and Nayakas of ChitraDurga, feudal lords in the VijayaNagara Empire. They were defeated by Hyder Ali in 1799 and later strengthened by his son Tipu Sultan, who succeded Madakari Nayaka, the last ruler of Nayaka Clan.

The fort is built with seven concentric fortification walls with various passages, warehouses for grains, oil and reservoir for water. There are 18 temples in the upper fort and one in the lower fort. Among these temples, the oldest and interesting is the Hidembeshwara Temple. There is also a mosque built during HyderAli's time.

In story of ChitraDurga Kote, one cannot skip the name of a brave woman, called "ONAKE OBAVVA", wife of a soldier guarding one of the tower entrance. The husband Maddha Hanumappa was having lunch break and Obavva was taking care of the entrance. Her heroics have entered the annals of legendary folklore. While fetching water, she noticed enemy soldiers attempting to enter the fort through a small crack opening where only one person can squeeze through. With great presence of mind, she hid behind the crevice and hit at each soldier with "Onake", a wooden rod used for pounding paddy. In the process, she bravely killed several soldiers. The brave act of Obavva saved the fort from further attacks.

Walking up on the rocks is quite tiring but coming down the fort was an easy task. Several photos were clicked and we were out from the exit gate by 6pm.

written Friday 14th Oct.2016

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