On Sunday morning, a grand ceremony was held at Rajhunsgad fort in Belagavi rural constituency to unveil the 50-foot-tall statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.
The event was attended by several prominent figures, including Yuvaraj Sambhajiraje Chatrapati, the 13th descendant of Shivaji Maharaj, Congress MLA from Latur Dheeraj Deshmukh, and Kolhapur MLA Satej Patil alias Bunty.
The unveiling was preceded by a palanquin procession and flag hoisting, accompanied by the sounds of dhols and Tasha.
The inauguration of the statue was marred by political battles between BJP leaders in the region and Belagavi Rural MLA Laxmi Hebbalkar of Congress, who are vying for credit for the event.
Despite the controversy, Karnataka Chief Minister Basavraj Bommai inaugurated the statue of Shivaji Maharaj on March 2. Hebbalkar, who has been instrumental in getting the historic fort developed and installing the mammoth statue, was determined to hold a grand ceremony to commemorate the occasion.
About the Rajhansgad Fort –
The Yellur Fort was originally constructed by the Rattas, an ancient dynasty of the Deccan region, and later renovated in stone by Asad Khan Lari of Bijapur. It served as an outpost of the Belagavi Fort, providing a strategic vantage point to spot and prevent enemies from the Goa and Karwar areas. Throughout its history, the fort has been controlled by many rulers, and has withstood three wars: the first between the Nawabs of Savanoor and the Peshwas, the second between the forces of Tipu Sultan and the Peshwas, and the third between the officials of the Bhimgad Fort and the Rajhunsgad forces. During the British rule, the fort was garrisoned with around 100 soldiers for its protection.