Vasai Fort, Mumbai is very large. There main gate of this fort leads to a small courtyard from where one can climb the ramparts to take a look around which reveals the numerous old structures of the fort which has now turned to ruins. Though most of the part of this fort has turned into ruins still the floor plans give a good idea of the structures that were built by Portuguese. There are certain well-preserved facades, which are very well decorated with carved stones. But there are some, which have weathered beyond recognition. There are three chapels inside the fort, which are still recognizable. The southernmost of these has a well-preserved barrel vaulted ceiling.
Past Of Details:-
The fort is comparatively small one. In 1414 Sardar Bhandari Bhendale built this fort. In 1530 Sultan of Gujrat captured the Fort. In 1534, after knowing significance of this fort, it was conquered and reconstructed by Portuguese, which took ten years. The Fort is decagonal with bastion at each of the corner. The fort is one km length and width too. The ramparts are very strong and about 30 m high and 5 m wide. Some of the bastions are named as Bahri Buruz, Kalyan Buruz, Phateh Buruz, Kailas Buruz, and Darya Buruz. There is the fortress in the central part. There are entrances to the fort from both seaside and landside. There are secret passages too. Lot of water is available on the fort. It is surrounded by swamp on three sides and sea on one side. There are bridges at Sopar and Gokhrava.
Vasai was built with an intention to keep a watch on the region of Saashti. In 1737, the Marathas tried to capture the fort, but failed. Later Bajirao Peshwa chose Chimajiappa for the mission. He planned for it and decided to attack from swamp side of the fort. They broke the rampart on the northern side. The army broke inside roaring ‘Har Har Mahadev’. Unfortunately mines burst late and many soldiers died. There was a heavy skirmish. The war started on 2nd May 1739 and took two days. 800 Portuguese lost their lives in the war. The ammunition ended and finally the Portuguese surrendered to Chimajiappa. Women and children of the enemy were allowed to go out safely without any harm.
In 1780 British started making plans to capture the fort. At that time Visaji Krishna Lele was the chief of the fort. Colonel Goddard was appointed as chief of the British army. He decided to attack the fort from both the seaside and landside. Colonel Hartley was to attack from Kalyan and Colonel Goddard from seaside. Goddard was to beleaguer the fort. Care was taken that the enemy would not get the help from Pune side. Nana Phadanavis sent Anandrao Raaste to Gokhrava village, which is 8 km away from Vasai. On 23rd October, army of Chimaji Panse and Bhavani Shivram started for Vasai via Talegaon and were having gunnery with them. There was shortage of food and treasury on the fort. Goddard was ready with the cannons. On 28th of October he started firing. The Marathas also started firing from the bastions. The British destroyed Gokhrava and Sopar bridges. On 7th December there was a big explosion on the fort. The war continued till 9th and 10th December. On 10th December, 200 Marathas made an attempt to pass Gokhrava, but it was unsuccessful. Finally on 10th December the British captured the fort.
Way To Reach:-
From Pune:- National Highway 4/NH 4, 192 km, 2 hours 55 mins
From Mumbai:- Western Express Hwy and National Highway 8/NH8, 62.2 km, 1 hour 7 mins
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