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Rajasthan, the cultural crown of India, with its majestic forts and palaces, and colourful festivals, manifests vibrancy like no other state in India. Hidden among the Rajput forts, is the haunted ruins of Bhangarh Fort, located at the border of the Sariska Tiger Reserve in the Alwar district of Rajasthan.
Designated as the most haunted site in India, even the Archaeological Survey of India has forbidden entrance inside the premises of the fort from dusk to dawn. The 17th-century fort, which once buzzed with life is now abandoned. Adding a pleasant appeal to the remains of the fort, are Aravali hills and abundance of greenery. However, the presence of a negative aura and a chilling hollowness in this ancient specimen is undeniable. You may have heard numerous stories from people around you, testifying to unusual, and even paranormal happenings - the spirits, strange noises, screams, sounds of bangles and eerie smells after dusk. Well, there is only one way to know the truth. But who knows whether you would return if you go after dark?
The most popular horror tale behind Bhangarh Fort is about the curse of a lover, a black magician, tantrik Singhia. For long, he had been in love with the princess of Bhangarh. One fine day, he plotted to unite with his love. Princess Ratnavati, who was infamous for her beauty, wore a cosmetic which was bought by her maid from the market. Tantrik, taking this opportunity, bewitched the cosmetic into a love potion. Princess Ratnavati smelled suspicion and immediately threw it over a massive stone boulder. Potion worked but the plot did not and the boulder squashed the black magician to death. With his last breath, he cursed the land to destruction and abandonment. The territory, since then, has not inhabited human life. Apparently, if any villager tries to build a roof, it mysteriously collapses.
With all these tales and some research in mind, we reached the fort. More excited than scared and the weather so pleasant, we were having a good time shooting the virtual reality experience. We saw some locals in the fort, not many visitors and everything went peacefully. Although we all stayed together and did not wander alone, we did feel an eerie vibe to the fort and as if we were being watched constantly. On our way back, we realised that our car had a punctured tire. So, don't forget to carry a stepney!
Haunted or not, Bhangarh Fort can still be identified as an architectural excellence, with immense scenic beauty. India's most haunted place is definitely worth a visit, maybe just out of curiosity.
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