A saffron flag will be hoisted at a height of 105 feet at the historic Ghodbunder Fort in Kashimira on the occasion of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Jayanti, also known as Shiv Jayanthi- the birth anniversary of the great Maratha warrior which will be celebrated on 19th February. This was revealed by legislator (Balasahebanchi Shiv Sena)- Pratap Sarnaik who said this will be the first of its kind of initiative to be taken up in forts across the state.
Surrounded by high mast lights for night visibility, the flag’s fabric would be in the range of 20 feet long and 30 feet wide. Five years after biting dust at various government offices, the proposal to beautify the vast 9-acre surroundings of the historic Ghodbunder Fort finally received an official nod from the Archaeological Survey of India (Ratnagiri) and the Directorate of Archaeology & Museums Mumbai in 2019. Both agencies issued their no objection certificates (NOCs) to the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) for the beautification work under the ambitious “Shiv-Srushti” project, following which heritage experts and architects were roped in for the conservation work. The Ghodbunder Fort has been adopted by the MBMC under the government’s ‘Maharashtra Vaibhav Protected Monuments Adoption Scheme’, introduced to help protect and preserve historical monuments. Notably, the state department of cultural affairs has granted heritage structure status to eight monuments in the state, including the Ghodbunder Fort, paving the way for their adoption by the respective civic bodies in 2019.
Originally named Cacabe de Tanna, the Ghodbunder Fort was built in 1730 by the Portuguese who had settled in the region in 1530. The territory and fort remained under the rule of the Portuguese until 1737.
Despite several attempts, the Maratha warriors failed to capture the fortress, but eventually besieged and successfully occupied it by defeating the Portuguese army in 1737. There is also an ancient church in the vicinity of the fort which was founded by the Portuguese.
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