Shaniwarwada Fort: The facts you must know about the most haunted place
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The opening ceremony was performed according to Hindu religious customs, on January 22, 1732, another Saturday chosen for being a particularly auspicious day. Later the Peshwas made several additions, including the fortification walls, with bastions and gates; court halls and other buildings; fountains and reservoirs. Currently, the perimeter fortification wall has five gateways and nine bastion towers, enclosing a garden complex with the foundations of the original buildings.
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Full moon nights are especially haunted here. This is the place where the 13 year-old Peshwa Dynasty heir Narayan was brutally assasinated. As his assassins chased him all across the fort, the boy yelled, again and again "Kaka, mala vachva!" (Uncle, save me!) And even today locals say that they hear his cries for help at midnight on every new moon day. Visitors to the fort after nightfall can still hear his cries for help.
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Shaniwarwada has five gates:Dilli Darwaza (Delhi Gate), facing north, Mastani Darwaja (Mastani's Gate) or Alibahadur Darwaja, facing north, Khidki Darwaja (Window Gate), facing east, Ganesh Darwaja (Ganesh Gate), facing south-east, Jambhul Darwaja or Narayan Darwaja (Narayan's Gate), facing south
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Each pane of the Delhi Gate has seventy-two sharp twelve-inch steel spikes arranged in a nine by eight grid, at approximately the height of the forehead of a battle-elephant. Each pane was also fortified with steel cross members, and borders were bolted with steel bolts having sharpened cone heads.
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Narayan's gate was used by concubines to enter and leave the fort. It obtained its second name after Narayanrao Peshwa's corpse was removed from the fort for cremation through this gate.
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The complex had an impressive lotus-shaped fountain: the Hazari Karanje (Fountain of a thousand jets). It was constructed for the pleasure of the infant Peshwa Sawai Madhavrao. It was designed as a sixteen petal lotus; each petal had sixteen jets with an eighty foot arch. It was the most complicated and intricate fountain of its time. In one corner is a marble Ganapati statue and the palace is flanked by a fountain and a flower garden.”