History of Gingee Fort (Senji or Chenji Fort)
Gingee fort, commonly called as Senji Fort is located in Viluppuram district of Tamil Nadu. This fort is 160 kilometers away from Chennai and it is close to Pondicherry city. This fort is one of the oldest Fort found in Tamil Nadu which is best known for its architectural excellence. Gingee fort is structurally strong and it is constructed over small rocky hills with huge compound to prevent enemy from entering the premises. The British called this fort as “Troy of the East”. This fort is currently maintained by Archeological Department of India and it is one of the lesser known tourist sites in South India.
This fort is also one of the famous cinema shooting spot found near Chennai.
There are evidences that this fort was occupied by many kingdoms since BC. Some inscriptions suggests Jains lived at this place from 200 B.C till 5th century A.D. From 6th to 9th century A.D there were evidences that this place was under Pallava kings who engraved cave temples here. It was then the turn of Chola kings who constructed their fort here around 9th century A.D. After this, there were again series of invasion of this fort. Konars occupied the fort between 11 and 13th century, Vijayanagar kings in 14th century, under Nayaks from 14th end to 15th Century, under Sultan and Sivaji's rule in 16th century, Mughals in 17th century and then finally it went to French troops in 17th century which again was captured by Britishers.
About the fort
The fort is constructed over 3 small hillocks Krishnagiri, Rajagiri and Chakkiliya Durg. The fort is surrounded by a big wall like compound that runs around 13 kilometers long enclosing the fort at an altitude of 800 feet.
The Rajagiri fort complex has a seven-storeyed Kalyana Mahal (marriage hall), prison cells, a temple, madapams, a sacred pond called as Aanaikulam. The cannon, cannon balls made of rock were still be seen in the fort complex.
The Krishnagiri fort complex is also called as English Mountain. It is believed that this fort complex was occupied by Britishers.
The Chakkiliya Durg fort complex is fully in destroyed state. The cobblers who were making shoes for military is said to have their workshops here at this hill.
See the below album for more pictures of this fort,