Chitor Fort. The Tower of Victory [Jaya Stambh]
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Jaya Stambh or Tower of Victory at Chitorgarh in Rajasthan, taken by an unknown photographer, part of the Elgin Collection: 'Autumn Tour 1896'. This view shows chhatris in the foreground with the tower in the distance, partly obscured by trees. The tower is the taller of two in the spectacular hill-top fort of Chitorgarh. Approximately 37.2 m (122 ft) high, it was erected by Rana Kumbha (r.1433-68) to commemorate his victory in 1440 over Mahmud Shah I Khalji, the Sultan of Malwa. It is dedicated to Vishnu, the principal cult deity of Hinduism. The walls are decorated with carved images of Hindu deities. It has an interior staircase with nine storeys articulated by mouldings and balconies. The dome at the summit is a modern addition. The fortress of Chitorgarh was the home of the Guhilot (later the Sisodia) Rajputs from the 8th century until the middle of the 16th century, a dynasty renowned for its resistance to Mughal rule. After the fort was sacked for the final time in 1567, by the Mughal Emperor Akbar, Udaipur was chosen as a new state capital and Chitorgarh was abandoned by the ruling family.