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Forts and Palaces of the Western Himalaya

Ashok Jerath (Author)

Before the growth of civilization early settlers tried to fortify their surroundings to secure themselves from the attacks of other clans. Later, the concept of forts and castles developed which provided the facility of storage of water, foodstuffs and arms etc. to suffice the needs of the inmates for sufficient time, especially during emergent situations. At the time of external attacks these served as formidable structures. The power of the monarchs of the erstwhile states always depended upon thes citadels, the seats of their power. Thus the history of these forts reflected on the history of their states. Kangra fort, Nurpur, Taragarh, Mau fort, Haripur fort, Jammu fort, Bandralta, etc. were some of the important forts situated on both sides of the Ravi and were the seats of power of their respective states. The lords of these forts were the undisputed lords of their erstwhile states.

After independence the role of these forts and fortresses was reduced to naught; they were left deserted with the result most of them have been reduced to rubble. They were the symbols of our heritage and source of history, their columns echoed the struggle of races, battling for existence and cries of the folk crushed under the load of the whims of the chieftains holding the reins of these formidable forts and palaces.

The author has worked on these fast decaying forts and palaces and has collected data from both sides of the Ravi, documented them with still photography and collected several stories and legends about them.

It is hoped the study will be of value to the research scholars working in this field and stimulate them to do further research in this context.

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About the author

Ashok Jerath

Born at Jammu, Dr. Ashok Jerath is a prolific writer, an author of twenty-three books in addition to hundreds of articles and research papers published in reputed magazines on the subjects of art, architecture and social anthropology. He is an acclaimed art critic and an expert in the field of Himalayan art and culture. His book Folk Art of Duggar is a landmark in the field of Dogra folk culture of this region. His book on Ripples in the Himalayas is a treatise on sociological anthropology of the people inhabiting the western Himalaya. Another book Rajat Shikhron ke Rupehle Swar opens new horizons in the field of folk culture of this region. The book was awarded by Central Hindi Directorate. Dr. Jerath is an authority on comparative study of literature; his work, Stream of Consciousness and Hindi Fiction, has been acknowledged as one of the best works in this field.

Dr. Jerath has been awarded twice by Central Hindi Directorate and once by J&K Academy of Art, Culture and Languages. He was honoured by almost three scores of literary and cultural organisations for his services rendered in the field of folk culture and literature. He is a laureate of national scholarship bestowed upon him by National cademy of Letters, Sahitya Academy, New Delhi. He was honoured to be member of several prestigious institutions like Jammu University’s Oriental Faculty and Research Studies and a jury member of Sahitya Academy.

Dr. Jerath is a broadcaster by profession and he has done some pioneering work in the field of production of documentaries both for Radio and Doordarshan which has been acclaimed at national level. At present he is serving as Station Director in All India Radio, Jammu.

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Bibliographic information

Title Forts and Palaces of the Western Himalaya
Author Ashok Jerath
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2000
Edition 1st Ed.
Language: English
isbn 8173871043
length 160p., 29 Col. & b/w Plates; Index; Bibliography; References; 23cm.
Subjects History