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The Dark Secrets of the Most Haunted Place in India

Ravi is a traveler who loves to visit mysterious places and discover the culture, history and customs behind them.

Bhangarh Fort is known as the most haunted place in India, and perhaps the greatest unsolved mystery.

Bhangarh Fort is known as the most haunted place in India, and perhaps the greatest unsolved mystery.

The Most Haunted Place in India

A modified interpretation of Pareto's principle can be applied when we talk about haunted places, ghosts, or even supernatural stuff that cannot be explained satisfactorily.

“80% of the falsehood comes from 20% of the truth”.

Over time, any ‘haunted’ place becomes so intertwined with a potpourri of legends, bloodshed, myths, and rumors that, by the time scientific minds start applying logic and decide to find the ‘ring’ of truth, their efforts turn out to be futile. They are unable to find out where the truth starts and the falsehood ends. The Bhangarh Fort in India is no exception to this rule. The history of the fort is so steeped in folktales, blood, black magic, and sorcery that it is no wonder that it has been officially declared the most haunted place in India. Indeed, the Archaeological Survey of India was forced to post a sign(in Hindi) that stated: “Entering the borders of Bhangarh before sunrise and after sunset is strictly prohibited.”

While the tales weaved about ghostly sightings within the fort might sound outlandish, the stories are so pervasive that special permission must be taken from the government to enter the premises after sunset or before sunrise. Perhaps there might be some element of truth after all.

Locals believe that anyone who has entered the fort in the dark has never been found again, and this fear was the very reason that the entire fort city was abandoned. The citizens established a whole new city nearby (Bhangarh), far away from the ghosts said to be inhabiting the fort premises.

The Story of Bhangarh Fort

Situated on the border of Sariska Tiger Reserve in the Aravalli range, the Bhangarh Fort was built by Bhagwant Das, then ruler of Amber. Later it was made the capital by Madho Singh, a minister in the court of the Mughal emperor Akbar. After Madho Singh, his son, Chhatr Singh, became the ruler, and after his death in 1630, the fortunes of Bhangarh slowly declined.

By 1720, the town had considerably diminished in size, and after the famine of 1783, it was completely abandoned by the locals who moved on to other greener pastures. And soon, Bhangarh, a once prosperous town with people and businesses, degenerated into a ghost town, left with the ruins of endless rows of shops, rest houses, and palaces of the rich.

But that is not the reason,” says Mahendra Singh, a guide in the fort. "The downfall of Bhangarh has to do with its princess Ratnavati. She was beautiful, and when she turned 18, marriage proposals started pouring from nearby regions.”

Unfortunately, her mesmerizing beauty also caught the attention of a sorcerer who was notorious for using his black magic for nefarious purposes. The sorcerer decided to cast a spell on her and make her his wife.

The Sorcerer Curses the Town

It was the town’s marketplace where the ill-fated events unfolded. The princess’s maid had come to buy perfume for Ratnavati. After roaming through the shops, she came to the sorcerer’s shop, where a brightly colored sweet-scented perfume caught her attention. The sorcerer could not believe his luck as he cast a spell on the perfume and gave it to the maid for the princess.

It is not certain how Ratnavati found out about the evil intentions of the sorcerer. But she came blazing to the marketplace, her beautiful eyes red with fury as she threw the bottle in front of the sorcerer’s shop. The bottle broke, and its vile contents morphed into a boulder, trampling the sorcerer under its weight.

The dying sorcerer cursed the princess and her family to death. Within moments, the entire city collapsed and all its inhabitants, including the princess, were killed. Every trace of inhabitation was erased from Bhangarh as the sorcerer’s curse destroyed everything—Ratnavati and her smile, the prosperity, the people, and the vibrant community.

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It is said that the princess Ratnavati still roams in the palace premises waiting to be reborn again so that the curse of the evil magician can be lifted from Bhangarh’s destiny and the city can be prosperous again.

Yes, the story is unproven and no more than a legend. Still, it is rumored that a sort of restlessness and anxiety overcomes you whenever you enter the premises of Bhangarh. You get the feeling that somebody is watching you and following you around. Despite the place's popularity, people seldom hang around for long within the fort, even in the daytime.

Is There Any Truth?

While paranormal experts have reported an unusually high degree of paranormal activity within the fort, scientists have repeatedly rubbished these claims, citing that they are rumors or stories created by over-imaginative locals over the years.

That said, people have heard noises that could not be accounted for. Many people have disappeared from the fort premises, forcing the Archaeological Survey of India to ban entry into the fort after sunset.

There have also been instances when the smell of a sweet perfume could be sniffed in the air, with bangles breaking and strange music emerging from the fort. People have even reported being slapped by ghosts and followed by unseen forces.

Is the Bhangarh Fort really haunted? Nobody can say. But these very tales and legends bring thousands of tourists to its premises every year to experience the supernatural and the paranormal.

A landscape surrounding an abandoned cursed fort in a place named Ajabgarh on a way to the allegedly haunted place Bhangarh fort

A landscape surrounding an abandoned cursed fort in a place named Ajabgarh on a way to the allegedly haunted place Bhangarh fort

Travel Details

The nearest town to Bhangarh fort is Alwar which is 90 km away from the fort. Alwar can be easily reached by cab, train, and air.

  • By Air - The nearest airport is Delhi which is 159 km from Delhi.
  • By Train - Regular train services are available connecting Alwar to the rest of India
  • By Road - It takes around 5 hours to reach Bhangarh fort from Delhi via Alwar.

The best time to visit Bhangarh is from October to March. Summers are very hot in Rajasthan, and monsoons bring lots of rain. As such, the winters are the best time to visit Rajasthan state. The trip to Bhangarh can be combined with other places like Jaipur, Jodhpur, and Jaisalmer that are also worth visiting in the fabulous state.

Bhangarh Fort Entry Fees

  • For Foreigner: Rs. 200
  • For Indians: Rs.25
  • Video Camera fees: Rs.200
  • Open hours: all days of the week, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Take Care and Be Sensible

Being an intrepid traveler, I have had my share of desolate and spooky places across India. While I always try to soak in the fabulous stories of any place, I generally approach ghost stories with a pinch of salt. But the visit to Bhangarh was different.

For the first time, I felt a kind of uneasiness within me and felt as if unseen eyes were watching me. Certain rooms inside the fort give you the creeps even during the daytime. So if getting spooked out is not your cup of tea, stay out of this place for your own good. Here are some tips one should follow while visiting this place.

  • Entry to the Bhangarh Fort is legally prohibited before sunrise and after sunset. Do not show foolish bravado. Stay safe.
  • Wear comfortable shoes and clothes and drink plenty of water.
  • Certain areas of the fort have a lot of bats. Avoid those areas.
  • Stick to a group. Do not wander alone.
  • Lastly, exploring all the fort's rooms will not get you a gold medal. If some room makes you uncomfortable, get out immediately.

Sources

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Ravi Rajan

Comments

Ravi Rajan (author) from Mumbai on February 16, 2021:

Thanks Devika

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 16, 2021:

This is an interesting hub about the haunted place in India. An abandoned building looks scary and some people will find it strange to walk close by.

Ravi Rajan (author) from Mumbai on February 14, 2021:

Thanks MG.

MG Singh emge from Singapore on February 14, 2021:

Nice article, must visit this place sometime.

Ravi Rajan (author) from Mumbai on February 14, 2021:

Thanks Peggy

Ravi Rajan (author) from Mumbai on February 14, 2021:

Thanks Meibakagh

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on February 14, 2021:

That is an interesting tale as to why many people think that this place is haunted.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on February 14, 2021:

The town is probably haunted. The scientists willnot agree to it. The thing is that 90% of scientists do not believe when it comes to spirt things. An interestly and captivating article indeed. Much thanks.

Miebakagh Fiberesima from Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NIGERIA. on February 14, 2021:

The town is probably haunted. The scientists willnot agree to it. The thing is that 90% of scientists do not believe when it comes to spirt things. An interestly and captivating article indeed. Much thanks.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on February 14, 2021:

That place just looks haunted! LOL Thanks for the tour and history. Very interesting place!

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