Manora fort in Thanjavur gets a facelift

It stands as a symbol of the Thanjavur Maratha Kings’ loyalty to the British Empire. King Serfoji constructed a tower known as Manora Fort at Sarabendrarajanpattinam, 24 km away from Pattukottai, in Thanjavur district to commemorate the British victory over Napoleon Bonaparte in Waterloo in 1814.

As part of its effort to protect the historical monuments, the Department of Archaeology has carried out conservation works in the tower, the fort and the moat around it.

“It is one of the 12 projects funded by the Asian Development Bank. The Chief Minister has already inaugurated three monuments and another seven will be inaugurated soon,” Tamil Official Language and Tamil Culture Minister K. Pandiarajan said.

The 75-foot hexagonal structure has eight layers, and is surrounded by a moat and a fort. It also functioned as a lighthouse. A stone tablet in the fort says in Tamil, Telugu, Marathi and English that “it was constructed by Maharaja, a friend and ally of the British, to commemorate triumphs of British Arms and downfall of Bonaparte”. Manora derived from the word minaret. It is also called ‘Jayasthampam’. The total cost of the restoration project is ₹2.30 crore.

“We think that only Rajasthan is the State of forts. But Tamil Nadu also has a lot of forts, and it is our duty to secure a place for these forts in the tourist guide. We are also planning to publish a cultural text similar to the texts published by Rajasthan and Delhi,” Mr. Pandiarajan told The Hindu.

K. Olimalik, Assistant Executive Engineer of the Department of Archaeology, said the restoration work included a special coating on the walls to prevent erosion caused by the salty winds of the sea. “We have erected fencing and done face-lifting by creating a lawn around the structure,” he said.

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Printable version | Dec 4, 2020 2:11:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/manora-fort-in-thanjavur-gets-a-facelift/article32905837.ece

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