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Rachakonda Fort Nalgonda – Telangana Fort of the Velama Kings

Rachakonda Fort – Symbol of Rich Telangana History

Rachakonda Fort Nalgonda Telangana
One of the Entrances at Rachakonda Fort , Nalgonda – Image Source: wikimedia.org

The Rachakonda Fort in Telangana is a testimony of the short lived power of the Velama rulers. The fort in its present form is in ruins. However, it is still an epitome of medieval Hindu art and culture and even adheres to the principles of Vasthu Shastra that influenced most Hindu fort architecture.

In the 14th century AD Recherla Singamma Nayak the erstwhile commander of the Kakatiyan Kings, declared independence and established their own lineage of kings under the Padma Nayaka dynasty. The Velama rulers, as they came to be known as, established their stronghold over the Telangana region in the post-Kakatiyan and pre-Bahamani era and built the small yet strong Rachakonda fort.

Built in two tiers, the upper and the lower, the fort displays a perfect view of the whole city from its South East corner. Moreover, it also displays an excellent example of monolith pillars supporting its entrance gateways. One unique fact about its construction is that the fort is built in cyclopean masonry without the use of mortar. This is a construction methodology wherein huge limestone boulders are placed next to each other with minimal clearance. The fort also houses beams and lintels with rock cut walls which provide sufficient fodder to feed the appetite of history lovers who come to the fort to catch a glimpse of the yesteryears.

The history of the fort is intricately woven with that of the velama rulers. Legend expounds that the meteoric rise of the Velama rulers had made them extremely proud and vain. They had even started believing themselves to be invincible. Their pride had started making them impose several atrocities on their people particularly women. It is said that a woman who was thus humiliated, cursed the Velama rulers of never being able to achieve success in their objectives and turned herself to stone. It is this curse which is said to have brought about their downfall. The stone figure of a woman is still found within the fort premises which establish the credibility of the legend.

Rachakonda Fort Nalgonda-exploretelangana
Entrance to Rachakonda Fort at hilltop – Image Source: wikimedia.org

While the exterior walls of the fort are built with stones of uneven shapes and sizes, the interior walls are plastered with mud. The fort was essentially built to serve as one of the most prominent and significant defense bastions of the Velama kings. Moreover, another interesting fact about the fort is that it belonged to the pre-firearms era. However, unlike most of its contemporaries like the Golconda fort that upgraded its technologies to meet up to the demands of the advent of firearms, the Rachakonda fort continued in its own slow pace.

Throughout its history, the Rachakonda fort has witnessed the rule of several dynasties. After the fall of the Velama rulers, it passed under the Bahamani supremacy and served as Shitab Khan’s seat of power in 1480. Later in 1503, Shitab Khan declared his independence and spread his full control over the three forts of Rachakonda, Khammam and Warangal. Finally it emerged as a province or Jagir under the Qutub Shahi kings.

Distance from Hyderabad: Rachakonda is located at a distance of 70 km from the city of Hyderabad. Tourists with an interest in Telangana History can easily make a perfect day trip and visit the Rachakonda Fort of Nalgonda district.

Recently, a 6 feet Shiva Lingam was found when unidentified people started digging for treasure of Rachokonda Fort.

Shiva Lingam found at Rachakonda Fort Nalgonda
Shiva Lingam found at Rachakonda Fort Nalgonda- Image Source: www.thehindu.com

Special Attraction: The decaying glory that is clearly written on the stone walls is a major attraction for lovers of Telangana History.

Nearby by Tourist Attractions:
– Deverakonda Fort
– Panagal Temple
– Nandi Konda
– Kollanpaku Jain Temple
– Pillalamari
– Lateef Sheb Darga

Timings: Daily 9 AMam to 5:30 PM

Where to stay: As the fort is located at a distance of 60 kms from Hyderabad, tourists can easily avail the excellent accommodation facilities present in Hyderabad the capital of Telangana state. Many Hyderabad hotels also provide transport facilities for a day trip to visit Rachakonda.

How to reach Rachakonda Fort:
– The fort can be reached from Hyderabad by private transport. Tourists need to reach Tippaiguda from the Nagarjunasagar highway. The fort is located at a distance of 2 km from Tippaiguda.

Useful Contact Numbers:
– Nalgonda District Information – 090 10 206748
– District Tourist information Officer Nagarjunasagar – 08680-277361
– State Tourism Department: 040-23450444

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