Sunday, June 12, 2011



Date : 10th, 11th and 12th June 2011
Route : Bangalore-Tumkur-Sira-Hiriyur-(150 Kms)
Hiriyur to Vanivilasa Sagara DAM(17 Kms) -
Hiriyur to Chitradurga (40 Kms)
and Back to Bangalore

Sateesh N (Myself)
Ananth Kaskar
Promod Solomon
Kumara Swamy J
Harsha AS
L-R : Promod,Kumar,Lokesh,Harsha and Ananth

The team of Karnataka Government Secretariat Cricketers after finishing their League Matches organized by KSCA are eagerly waiting to go out to refresh their body. As we decided to plan an outing the first instance it was decided to move on to Bheemeshwari Nature Camp as it was too nearer to Bangalore, again decided to change the venue to Bhadra and Gajanur as we could not get accommodation, finally decided the destination to Vanivilasa Sagara Dam and JogiMatti at Chitradurga, Promod had a talk with this friend Nandish who is working at AC, Office, Chitradurga that we are planning to visit your place, please look into make arrangements to stay, he arranged to reserve the rooms and VaniVilasa Sagara Dam and the tour begins

10th June 2011 :

Left Bangalore at 3-30 pm from Yelahanka-Jalahalli-Nelamangala, as no one had lunch had a lunch at Petrol bunk near Nelamangala and also had petrol to the Vehicle. Reached Hiriyur by 6-00 pm, One Mr. Manjunath who was friend of Mr. Lokesh was informed to have a cup of tea at his residence in Hiriyur, after light tea and snacks we moved to Vani Vilasa Pura which is 17 kms from Hiriyur. We reached VV Pura at 7-30 pm as it was already booked Mr. Rangaswamy Incharge of the IB had given room, we had fresh’n’up and had a Dinner and went to sleep

11th June 2011:

Early morning I woke up at 5-30 am as the sun was coming from the clouds, I and Ananth proceeds towards the DAM site and had a early morning view of the DAM as well as SunRise, it was one the fine views (actually I visited this place in the year 1997), I took some good pics over there and came back had bath and breakfast and decided to move to chitradurga fort, JogiMatt and in and around Chitradurga, as Mr. Lokesh had a back pain, he was stayed back in the room, we five started journey towards Chitradurga reached by 11-30 am near the Fort had Tender Coconut, after taking a Entry Ticket we moved towards the Entry, Mr Swamy the Guide approached us and informed that he would make a Fort Journey through his experience, we decided to have a guide, he took us and explained the each and one important places with his narration, he had good database of all the names who visited the place, Finally the important one we reached Onke Obavva’s Place, to narrated the full story and he took almost 15-20 mts to cover only the One Obavva’s Kindi story, as he was narrating I was clicking the pics of Chamelion nearby, finally had a small lunch over there at canteen eating Puliyogere and Alu Bajji with some tea, Majige etc, and returned back to VV Pura by 5-00 pm had tea, after finishing Tea all the team members visited the DAM Site with a spectacular Sunset view came back to Rooms had dinner went to sleep

12th June 2011:

Early morning lonely, I once again visited the DAM Site and took another round of pics. After finishing Breakfast, settling the accounts, we moved from VV Pura to Hiriyur as instructed earlier by Mr. Manjunath of Hiriyur he had arranged a beautiful Lunch at his residence (Veg and Non-Veg). From there we proceeded back towards our journey to Bangalore and reached Bangalore by 6-00 pm.

Sri Nandish,
Sri Rangaswamy and Sri Shivanna (Cook and Caretaker at VV Pura IB)
Sri Manjuanth (Hiriyur)
Finally to Sri Lokesh who is the owner of Vehicle SCORPRIO
And the Drivers of our Team (Sri Promod and Sri Kumaraswamy J) who drove safely


Mari Kanive (Kannada: ಮಾರಿ ಕಣಿವೆ) is a dam near Hiriyur Taluk, Chitradurga District, in the Indian state of Karnataka. It is the oldest dam in the state.

The dam was built by the Mysore Maharajas pre-independence across the river Vedavathi. The dam is an exquisite piece of architecture, an engineering marvel for that time, and provides water to lots of surrounding cities, towns and villages, which are largely dry lands of the Deccan area of Central Karnataka.


The dam was constructed by a team led by an Engineer called 'Tara Chand Dalal' at the order of his Highness the Maharaja of Mysore Sri Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV.

 This dam is the source of domestic water for Hiriyur and Chitradurga. It irrigates more than 100 km² of land in Hiriyur and Challakere taluks through right and left bank canals. This place is 160 km from Bangalore on the NH-4 highway and 40 km from Chitradurga. For the construction of this dam royals of mysore had to pledge royal jewellery due to shortage of money,that is why it was named as "vanivilasa sagara".vanivilasa was the name of youngest daughter of the then maharaja of mysore.mari kanive is the oldest and biggest man made reservoir in asia.This dam is higher than KRS dam of Mysore.

Two Members Serious about DAM, Another Two keenly interested to give a pose

SunSet View with a colourful Clouds

Enjoying the View of Sunset at VV Sagar DAM

The dam has been a tourist attraction for many years, but has been apparently neglected as a prime tourist destination. Recently, though, the development work undertaken by the forest department to restore the nearby forest cover, and the 'panchavati' gardens-a garden of medicinal plants with the old Indian cultural theme has improved the tourist figures, making it a popular weekend picnic spot. The 'panchavati' garden has medicinal plants lined up representing cultural themes - the 'Rashis', 'Sapta swaras', 'Nava grahas' and many more. The tourists who visit Chitradurga and Hosdurga often visit Mari kanive on the way. The historic maarikaamba temple here also attracts many tourists. The place is around 20 km drive from Hiriyur on a deviation from NH4 (Bangalore - Mumbai National Highway).
(Source: Wikipedia)

Inspection Bungalow at VV Pura


Chitradurga Fort

Built 18th century
Built by Nayakas of Chitradurga
Construction materials Granite Stones

Current condition Ruins
Open to the public Yes, Controlled by Government of Karnataka
Battles/wars Nayakas against Hyder Ali in 1760s, 1770s & 1799

Chitradurga Fort (Kannada: ಚಿತ್ರದುರ್ಗದ ಕೋಟೆ), or as the British called it Chitaldoorg, straddles several hills and a peak overlooking a flat valley in the Chitradurga District, Karnataka, India. The fort's name Chitrakaldurga, which means 'picturesque fort' in Kannada, is the namesake of the town Chitradurga and its administrative district.

The Fort was built in stages between the 10th and 18th centuries by the dynastic rulers of the region, including the Rashtrakutas, Chalukyas and Hoysalas as well as the Nayakas of Chitradurga, feudal lords in the Vijayanagar Empire. The Nayakas of Chitradurga, or Palegar Nayakas, were most responsible for the expansion of the fort between the 15th and 18th centuries. They were defeated by Hyder Ali at Chitradurga in 1779. Later the fort was expanded and strengthened by Hyder Ali and his son Tippu Sultan,who succeeded Madakari Nayaka V, the last ruler of the Nayaka clan. The fort is built in a series of seven concentric fortification walls with various passages, a citadel, masjid, warehouses for grains and oil, water reservoirs and ancient temples. There are 18 temples in the upper fort and one huge temple in the lower fort. Among these temples the oldest and most interesting is the Hidimbeshwara temple. The masjid was an addition during Hyder Ali’s rule. The fort's many interconnecting tanks were used to harvest rain water, and the fort was said to never suffer from a water shortage.


Chitradurga Fort lies in the midst of a valley formed by the Vedavati River. The Tungabhadra River flows to the northwest of the Fort. Seven hills constitute the Chinmuladri range. The seven circles of the fort enclose these hills. Features of massive rock hills and scenic valleys, huge towering boulders are seen in the fort precincts. The hills on which major part of the fort and the city rest, belong to the oldest rock of granitic formation in the country. The highest hill peak of the area is located at Jogi Matti, 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) to the south of Chitradurga. The highest elevation of the hills at the fort is 976 metres (3,202 ft).[5] The area covered by the fort is reported to be 1,500 acres (607.0 ha).

The fort is located 120 km (74.6 mi) from Hampi, the UNESCO World Heritage Site and 200 km (124.3 mi) from Bangalore. The nearest railhead is Davanagere on the Bangalore/Mysore – Arasikere broad gauge railway line.


Gombe Mantapa
A number of inscriptions of the Chalukyas, the Hoysalas and the Vijayanagar kings have been found in and around the fort. These inscriptions trace the history of the fort to the 3rd Millennium B.C. Ashokan period rock edicts found near Brahmagiri also link Chitradurga to the Mauryan Empire during the reign of the royal dynasties of Rashtrakutas, Chalukyas and Hoysalas. However, the area where the fort now exists achieved prominence only under the dynastic rule of the Nayakas of Chitradurga or "Paleygars" (called "little Kings") as a feudatory of the Vijayanagar Empire. 

Thaneer Konda
Between 1500 AD and 1800 AD, Chitradurga Fort witnessed a turbulent history starting with the Vijayanagar Empire; Vijayanagar Empire had got control of this region from the Hoysalas. Vijaynagar rulers brought the Nayakas, the traditional local chieftains of the area under their control as their feudatory, till their dynastic reign ended in 1565 A.D. Thereafter, the Nayakas of Chitradurga took independent control of the region and their clan ruled for more than 200 years until the last of their rulers Madakari Nayaka V was defeated by Hyder Ali of Mysore Kingdom, in 1779. During all these years, Chitradurga Fort was central to the reign, particularly of the Nayakas.

Timmana Nayaka or Thimmappa Nayaka, a chieftain from Matti in Davangere taluk, during the rule of Saluva Narasimha, was the first ruler in the hierarchy of the Nayakas of Chitradurga. Initially, he was a chieftain under the Vijayanagar Empire but was soon elevated to the rank of Governor of Chitradurga by the Vijayanagar ruler in recognition of his excellent provence in military service to the empire. His rule covered areas of the Davangere district and Chitradurga district. His rule lasted for a brief period and ended with his incarceration and death in the jail of the Vijaynagar Empire. After him, his son Obana Nayaka or Madakari Nayaka (1588–1602) succeeded him. Madakari Nayaka was followed by a series of hierarchical or other adopted forms of successions of the same clan; Madakari Nayaka V was the final ruler of the clan from 1758 to 1779. Bharamappa Nayaka who ruled from 1689 till 1722 is regarded as the greatest of the Nayaka rulers famed for building forts, palaces, tanks and temples, including several gateways and bastions. He fought several battles against the Mughals.

However, it was during the reign of Madakari Nayaka V (1758 to 1779) that the city of Chitradurga and the Fort were besieged by the troops of Hyder Ali. Madakari Nayaka used the fort effectively for defense during three battles that were fought against Hyder Ali. At times he had allied himself with Hyder Ali of Mysore Kingdom and at other times with the Marathas. Hyder Ali attacked the Chitradurga Fort first time in 1760, the second time in 1770 and the third time successfully in 1779 when he defeated Madakari Nayaka. Madakari Nayaka was taken a prisoner and killed. Nayaka's gamble of playing with both Hyder Ali and the Marathas did not work out. He was betrayed by the Marathas and some local Muhammadan officers in his service. Subsequent to his death the treasury at the fort is said to have yielded a rich bounty. It was during one such war that the heroics of Onake Obavva, the wife of a soldier guarding the fort became a legendary event.

Two men holding and Two pulling pushing the hill (Mr Hercules and Gang)
The dynastic reign of the Nayakas lasted for over 200 years and the Chitradurga fort was their stronghold and the very heart of their province.

In the Fourth Mysore War, Tippu Sultan was killed by the British in 1799, and the Mysore Kingdom was reordered under the Wodeyars. Chitradurga became a part of Mysore province. The British considered Chitradurga Fort a potentially useful base for providing a strong line of defense to Mysore's northern border. Between 1799 and 1809, the British garrisoned their troops in the fort. Later, the control of the fort was restored to the Government of Mysore.

Brave woman

Guide Narrating the history of Onake Obavva near Obavva's Kindi
Heroic deeds of a woman named Obavva, wife of a soldier called Kalanayak was guarding a fort tower, substituting for her husband during a lunch break. She was guarding the Chitradurga Fort at a crack opening, a secret opening (where only one person could barely squeeze through). Her heroics at this location have entered the annals of legendary folklore of the Karnataka State. While fetching water, she heard the muted sounds of enemy soldiers attempting to enter the fort through the crevice. With great presence of mind she immediately hid behind the crevice in the fort and hit at each soldier trying to squeeze through the crevice with Onake, the name given in Kannada to a masse or pestle, a wooden rod used for pounding paddy. In this process, she bravely killed several enemy soldiers. By the time her husband appeared on the scene, she had already dragged several bodies of dead soldiers into the fort wall and was standing around the dead bodies with the blood stained Onake in her hand. Kalanayak blew the bugle when other soldiers also joined him and killed all the enemy soldiers. This brave act saved the fort on that day from further attacks by Hyder Ali’s soldiers. Her heroic act has been commemorated with her impressive statue (sculpted by Ashok Gudigar) erected in front of the District Commissioner’s office in Chittradurga town. The stadium in the town has also been named after her. This act also earned her the epithet Onake Obavva and the crevice in the fort where she showed her bravery is called Onake Kindi. However, in the battle for the fort, Madakari Nayaka V lost and Chitradurga fort eventually fell to Hyder Ali, in 1779.

Temples in the fort

Venugopal Swamy Temple
 Entrance to Hidimbeswara Temple. Hidimba and Hidimbi are stated to have lived here
Eighteen temples were built in the upper fort. Some of the well-known temples were: the Hidimbeswara (an ancient legend is linked to it), Sampige Siddeshwara, Ekanathamma, Phalguneshwara, Gopala Krishna, Lord Hanuman, Subbaraya and Nandi
Hidimbeswara temple displays the tooth of Hidimba, the giant (Rakshasa in Sanskrit). It is said that Hidimba and his sister Hidimbi, a giantess, used to live in this temple. Hidimbi, who fell in love with Bhima (the second of the Pandava brothers of Mahabharata) married him and had a child by him named Ghatotkacha. A large cylinder about 3 metres (9.8 ft) in circumference and 2 metres (6.6 ft) high made of iron plates known as Bheri or Drum of Bheema is also located here. A monolithic pillar and two swing frames are also seen at the gate to this temple. Sampige Siddheshvara temple can be seen at the foot of the hill. In the Gopalakrishna Temple, inscriptions date the idol to the early 14th century.

In the lower fort, a temple dedicated to the tutelary deity of the Nayaka Palegars, the Uchchangiamma or Uthsavamba, was built, amidst the rocks of the fort complex on the hill
The Murugarajendra Matha, a famous religious institution of the Lingayats, which was originally located within the fort, is now situated about 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) to the northwest of Chitradurga]

Other structures
One of the tanks in cascade development in the precincts of the fort.Rain water-harvesting structures were built in a cascade development, which ensured large storage of water in interconnected reservoirs. It is said that the fort precincts never faced any water shortage.

Historical linkage has been established by an archeological inscription dated 1284 AD found in the Panchalinga (Five Lingas) cave in the Ankhi Matha area, to the west of Chitradurga. The inscription attributes the establishment of the Five Lingas, (aniconic symbols of Lord Shiva), to the Pandavas. At Ankhi Matha, approached by stone steps, a series of ancient subterranean chambers cut out at different levels are seen, in addition to several places of worship and platforms
In the lower fort, a Cutcherry (Administrative office) was added during Tippu Sultan’s rule. Another interesting find in the arsenal is a quadruple mill made of masonry of 3 metres (9.8 ft) depth and about 7 metres (23 ft) dia, which is inferred as a device used for preparing gun powder during Hyder Ali and Tippu Sultan’s rule. In Kannada language, it is called 'Maddu Bisuva Kallu', which means "Gun Powder Grinding stone". The quadruple mill has four massive grinders with teeth or slots. These were rotated either by elephants or bullocks (in a central circular space) with independent collection point for each of the four slots to collect the explosive gun powder.

Palegarara Kacheri (Office of the erstwhile Palegars)

Inside view of Palegaar's Kacheri

I found this  Macaque, (Monkey) near the Fort (Just besides Onake Obbava's Kindi, it was trying to get the Empty Slice Drink Tetra Pack from the Dust Bin. and he did not know to drink, he was trying i clicked all the below fotos


  1. very beautiful photos and also meaningful information thank u and congradulations for u r beautiful creativity .

  2. Excellent report. I had been to the same two places about 10 days after your visit(23rd June 2011)
    My report on this places can be found here
    Comments & Feedbacks welcomed :)

  3. Very good narration and photos. Thanks Sathish.

  4. being thousand miles long, i enjoyed reading this blog and loved the scenic photographs...very well written

  5. u shown our chitradurga,vary beautiful,thank u


  6. can u plz provide the contact details to book the GUest house.

  7. Very beautiful pictures and great information about the Chitradurga.Thanks for sharing.Book your bus tickets in Kaleswari Travels