Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Clock Towers in India: The famous Chaubara in Bidar [Karnataka]

The Chaubara structure in Bidar (Karnataka)
Bidar is a historic town in Southern India and has a host of historical monuments. 

Though located in Karnataka, the district borders Andhra Pradesh and is quite close to Maharashtra.

As a result, Urdu, Marathi and Kannada are the major languages spoken here. It has been ruled by Chalukyas, Kakatiyas, then Hasan Gangu and Bahmani Sultans until it became a dominion of the Asif Jahi dynasty--under the Nizam of Hyderabad--till independence.

The chaubara is basically a watch tower cum clock tower. In olden days, from its top one could get a view of the entire town. The imposing cylindrical tower in the heart of the town attracts the new comes to the town. More so, as it is not much known outside.

Though Bidar has no dearth of historical monuments including the fort and the great madarsa established by Mahmood Gawan [the Mughal governor of Bijapur during Humayun's reign], it is still not a major tourist destination. Though there have been some efforts to clear encroachments around, no serious step has been taken to preserve this unique structure as yet.

Located just around 120 km from Hyderabad, Bidar's language also has a Deccani influence. The place is also well-known for the Bidri work. The fort was constructed in 1428 by Ahmad Wali who named it Ahmadabad-Bidar Fort.

For me right now it is the Chaubara [also written as Choubara] for which I have written the post. I have already mentioned by fascination about the clock towers of  unique shapes and sizes in India. But it is not just the clock tower, you must visit Bidar for the monuments that dot this ancient city.

Read my earlier post Clock Towers of Awadh (UP) And Father Built Clock Tower in Son's Memory