Uperkot Fort: Historical Gem
Uparkot is a fort located in east side of Junagadh, Gujarat, India.
town was established at the foothills of Girnar hill during reign of the Maurya Empire and continued to be used during Gupta period, but it lost its importance when the capital of Saurashtra region was moved from Junagadh to Vallabhi by Maitraka. Chudasamas settled around Junagadh from 875 CE according to bards when they acquired Vamansthali (Vanthli) from Chavda ruler.
Chudasama ruler Graharipu (r. c.940-c.982) cleared the old citadel free from the jungle. From the evidence contained in the Hemchandra’s Dvyashraya, it can be concluded that Graharipu laid the foundations of the citadel as it now exists. the legend is told about its rediscovery.
After several Chudasamas of Vamansthali had ruled, a woodcutter one day managed to cut his way through the forest and came to a place where stone walls and a gate existed. Nearby sat a holy man in contemplation, and on being asked by the woodcutter the name of the place and its history, he replied that its name was “Juna” — old. The woodcutter returned by the way he had come to Vamansthali, and reported his discovery to the Chudasama ruler, who ordered the forest to be cleared away. This being done, the fort came into sight. But there was none who knew its history, or who could tell more than the holy man had told the woodcutter. So the place became known as “Junagadh” for want of a better title.
If this story is to be believed, either Graharipu rediscovered an ancient stronghold or else after he had built the fort, it was abandoned and afterwards found again by a later ruler Navaghana who transferred Chudasama capital from Vamansthali to Junagadh.
In 1893-94, Haridas Viharidas, the Dewan of Junagadh State, had restored the fort.
In July 2020, the Government of Gujarat initiated the restoration of the fort and the structures inside it at the cost of ₹44.46 crore. The project will be completed in 18 months.
Highlights: Historical site
Timings: 8:00AM – 6:00PM
Entry Fee: Free
Location: Junagadh, Gujarat