The ruins of the Bhangarh , in Rajasthan are known for being the most hunted place in this south Asian country. We know that not all of us believe in ghosts, but there are warnings at all the entry points to the Bhangarh fort advising people not to venture into the city at night. Signs have also posted by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) strictly prohibiting the visitors to enter the fort before sunrise and after sunset. The sign explains that if any individual is a ghost hunter or loves to explore mysterious places then Bhangarh fort should be a must visit spot.
Location and Get in there
Bhangarh is located between the Pink City of Jaipur, the capital of Rajasthan and Alwar. Nearby cities of Jaipur and Alwal are great starting points as they are major metropolitan hubs and are easy to get to. There are regular bus services that will take you to the Bhangarh ruins but requires some walking as the nearest bus stop is not directly to the fort. You can also take a taxi which is more convenient.
The Bhangarh story began in the year 1573 when the fortress was built by Raja Bhagawant Das – the ruler of the city of Amber. The fort was a residence of the king’s second son Madho Singh who fought alongside his father and brother in many wars. The decline of the fort started in 1630 when Madho Singh’s son Chhatr Singh died in a violent attack. It continued till 1783 when the city and the fort were totally abandoned followed by a famine in that year.
The Bhangarh Myths
According to the myth, Bhangarh is cursed by Guru Balu Nath (Baba Balanath). Guru sanctioned the construction of the fort but warned that if the shadow of the fort would reach his sacred meditating place, which was nearby the palace, the city would be ruin. But Ajab Singh – one of the descendants of the dynasty raised the palace to a height that cast the shadow on the Balu Nath’s retreat and the city went into destruction.
Another myth tells the story about princess Ratnavati who was very beautiful and had no match in all Rajasthan. One day she was spotted by a tantric named Singha Sevra, who got bewildered by her beauty and decided to get her with his black magic. One day he saw his servant buying perfume for her and utilizing the opportunity he put a black magic spell on the lotion to draw the princess to him. But his intentions were soon discovered by a loyal to the princess who eventually informed her about the whole incident. The princess took the bottle and smashed it against the rock which came to life and rolled over the tantric killing him. Before he died, he laid a curse on entire land which came to be the following year during battle between Bhangarh and Ajabgarh. Everybody including the princess died.
There are several other myths attached with the place that explain the reason why the fort was abandoned overnight and was never re-inhabited.
The Government of India wanted to deploy military to patrol the fort at night but none of the Indian military personnel dared to take part in this ghost busting operation. Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), the official government body, responsible for the maintenance of ruins and monuments throughout the country officially declared Bhanghar and the fort as haunted. For this reason even the ASI office was built at a safe distance from the fort.
According to the locals
Though Bhangarh is deserted at night, locals report strange noises including dancing and music from the ruins of the fort. People say that nobody returned from there who stayed after dark.