Let’s Show Some Love towards the Spirit of Patriotism
In simple terms, heritage is our inheritance of land, language, ecosystems, knowledge, and culture. It is the truth that connects us to our past. It is a book full of mystery, thrill, and suspense that we can’t stop reading. It is a message in a bottle that survived the giant waves of the ocean and drifted to the shore. It is a beautiful sonnet that a lover writes for a beloved that he hasn’t found yet.
Our ancestors have left behind a precious & vast heritage of forts for us. Buried deep in the foundations of these magnificent structures is the history of our forefathers, preserved for the future generations. Protected from the blows of time, by the mighty walls of these fortresses, lie the narratives of the glorious past that form our rich heritage. These ancient buildings have a lot to tell, you just need to listen to the whispers of the bastions.
The kingdom of Maharashtra is embellished with more than 350 forts that depict the saga of the bravery of the warriors who defended this land under the able leadership of the King ‘Chhatrapati Shivaji’ . Weathered with age and crumbling in sections, these looming structures still glow with the spirit of patriotism. Be it the imposing forts that stand atop hills or those that guard the coastline, each of these monuments holds the teachings of wiser generations, to protect our culture at all costs.
Adorning the summits of the Western Ghats are the mountain forts of Ajinkyatra, Daulatabad, Pratapgad, and Raigad, among several others. These hill-forts are the evidence of the strength and power of the ancient civilizations that thrived on this soil. On the other hand, the Janjira Fort, Sindhudurg, and Vijaydurg Fort kept the marine invaders at bay for several centuries. Not just the guardians of the state, the Ahmadnagar Fort and the Kandhar Fort nurtured full-fledged cities in their hearts.
These forts may seem to be constructed with stones and rocks but what truly went into building these imperial monuments was the sweat and blood of our ancestors. They could not have left us behind a more valuable fortune than these relics of their valour and resilience.
To explore a heritage site so grand and to discover its history is nothing less than stumbling upon a hidden treasure. It’s a wealth that surpasses mounds of material fortune. To conserve this wealth is our responsibility.
Unfortunately, we haven’t kept our side of the bargain. For years, these forts have been subjected to immense harm and damage. There’s no end to the vandalism that these heritage sites have suffered at the hands of people who have either feigned ignorance of their importance or simply haven’t cared at all.
Therefore, on World Heritage Day, it is our appeal to each one of you to protect this beautiful heritage that our ancestors have left behind as well as the precious culture that came along with it. This heritage is the most prized possession that we can pass on to our children. Can’t we care for our heritage like we do for our homes?
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