Hanamasagar fort & Abhinava Tirupati

November 24, 2012

It was noon when we arrive at Hanamasagar fort. This place is known more for Venkateshwara temple rather than the fort. Folks refer to the place as Abhinava Tirupathi. There are two ways to reach this fort from Hanamasagar town: one is by footpath and the other by road. This is the gateway to the fort (as seen from inside) and Venkateshwara temple is located within the walls of this fort.

That's the temple. The stone in the foreground is a grinding stone, I have no clue why its kept in the open here. In the inset is the top part of a small structure opposite the temple. This temple originally was a small structure, what we see is recent construction. The inset is a small structure opposite the temple, it is similar to minarets of Adil Shahi architecture.

A shelter has been made in the front yard for visitors' benefit.

The temple priest was about to lock the doors as we reached. We got a good Darshan of Lord Venkateshwara. Here's a board which states this place's history in brief.

Here's a rough translation: This temple has history dating back to the time of Bijapur Adil Shahi's rule i.e. about 400 years ago. Katapura was a small kingdom ruled by Shrimanta Timmappayya Desai who was a devotee of Lord Venkateshwara. Every year Desai would visit Tirumala temple (in present day Andhra Pradesh) without fail. During those days people going on pilgrimage would walk all the way. As Desai aged he found it difficult to carry out his annual pilgrimage to Tirumala. He was worried about not seeing his Lord's image. One night Desai had a dream in which his Lord orders him to visit Hanamasagar hill and look for a sleeping cow and an image of his feet. The Lord also commands Timmappayya Desai to worship his feet and not travel all the way to Tirumala. Timmappayya Desai along with family members finds a cow sleeping on a pair of feet as seen in his dream. Desai was happy to see his Lord's feet. He starts living on Hanamasagar hill spending his time in his Lord's service. Some time later, Desai begs to see the full image of his Lord because he's not satisfied by just worshiping his feet. As an answer to his prayers Lord Venkateshwara commands Timmappayya to search for his murthy on a washerman's stone at Kalabhavi village near Kushtagi town. As directed Deesai finds his Lord's image, brings it to Hanamasagar hill, installs it there and gives a name to the place as Abhinava Tirupathi. Later a small temple and a kitchen were constructed.

The priest locks the temple doors and off he goes. Malatesh and I go exploring. Hanamasagar Kote is a small fort and mostly in ruins. We walked along the walls on the north; as you see the walls have collapsed. Construction style is similar to forts of Gudur, Chikanal and Belur. We found a small dolmen close to the wall (see inset). It is a known fact that Hanamasagar hill is a prehistoric site. Some where close to this hill in the plain below is a prehistoric stone arrangement which I'm trying to locate for quite some time now.

Now we are outside the fort walls.
Malatesh checks out the surroundings.

Part of Hanamasagar town.

We are the tip of the hill, looking in the south-easterly direction.

That's the inner fort; rectangular in plan and comprising of four bastions, one at each corner. Close to where I was standing I saw a stone with an unusual texture.

Closer look at a well preserved bastion.
Another bastion as seen from the outside.

Efforts have been put in to restore some parts of the fort.

A short video-

We were hungry and the place was peaceful, we almost decided to have lunch here however, we decided to head towards Chandaalingeshwara temple near Bilagi.

Hanamasagar fort coordinates: 15°52'34"N   76°2'49"E

◄ Newer Post Older Post ►
eXTReMe Tracker

Copyright 2011 Journeys to temple is proudly powered by blogger.com