Wednesday, January 30

Sinhagad Fort Horror – Illusion or a Paranormal Encounter?

A Personal Encounter by Rohit (Pune)

For those of you who have never been to Pune or to the Sinhagad Fort residing close by, this is a small introduction. The Sinhagad Fort (Sinhgarh, Sinhgad – previously known as the Kondhana; Sinh-garh means the Lion’s Fort) is a 1,300 meter high fortress, the history of which goes beyond the 14th century. The fort has seen some of the most epic events in the history of Maharashtra and India, in general. Apart from the historical significance, the fort remains a popular picnic spot and is favored for its lush green locality, adventure activities and a perfect place for a Sunday getaway. 

This experience is broken into two parts. One goes back to 1997, when the road going uphill to the fort was open throughout the day and night (now, the authorities have placed a barricade to restrict the entry; also, entry after the evening hours is prohibited). A friend of mine, who was apparently in a depressed mood, drove halfway up the fort at around 9 in the evening. The ghat (road which goes uphill) is dominated by thick forest (especially during the monsoons) and there are no street lights. Mid-way through the journey, there is a sharp U-turn which is extended by a small piece of flat land at the corner. There are a couple of benches put up so that travelers can enjoy the panoramic view of the city and the neighborhood. During the mornings, this place is flocked by tourists and village folks who sell home-made lemonade. So this friend of mine chose to sit here, all alone. 

photo courtesy:

About a couple of minutes later, he sensed somebody coming from behind. He looked back and saw a whitish figure coming towards him. He thought it was normal, since the villagers were known to travel across the hill even during the late hours of the night. The villager came near and stood to my friend’s left side, about ten feet away. My friend looked at him and saw that the villager was not even looking at him or was even least concerned about his presence. Instead, the old guy was looking blankly at the valley lying ahead. My friend found this a little weird, but only for a while… 

A moment later, the villager climbed over the stone fence and jumped down the valley! My friend was shocked to the core – he stood up immediately and ran to his car. Only when he sped down into the village he could breathe clean. He suffered a high fever for the next few days. 

About six years later, I chose the same spot. Despite having heard the myth, the place itself was a dear one for me, since one could actually sit for hours and be himself. It was about 8 in the evening and the traffic was very low. I sat alone, thinking of a fight I had with my friend. About ten minutes later, I had the same feeling that somebody was approaching me from behind. You can sense it by the small hair on the back of your head standing up. I looked back and saw an old man dragging his way to me. I did not panic but yes, I was alert. He came over and stood by my side, completely ignorant of my presence. As my friend described, even this guy was looking blankly at the valley ahead. 

Instead of trying to put the pieces together and waiting for ‘IT’ to happen, I tried calling the old man and diverting his attention. But it was as if he was entirely into a different dimension. I stood up without a moment’s choice, took my bike and got away from the place. Not that I wasn’t interested in the phenomena, but yes, I am a believer of keeping things in their place, when they don’t want to be meddled against. 

There have been many other ghost stories and paranormal encounters in and around Sinhagad Fort. I am trying to put them together – will be publishing a version soon.

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