The pre-historic Rohtasgarh Fort in Rohtas district of Bihar, considered a sacred site for Oraon tribals, might soon see facelift and development as a tourist destination.
Jharkhand Congress working president and member of the coordination committee of Jharkhand government, Bandhu Tirkey, who met former Bihar chief minister and RJD national president Lalu Prasad last week, told The Telegraph on Monday that though the discussion with the veteran leader was mainly on political affairs and strengthening INDIA alliance prospects in the 2024 elections, they talked about Rohtasgarh Fort too.
“Rohtasgarh Fort is an important cultural and mythological heritage for Oraon and Kherwar tribals and a sizeable populace of tribal do reside in the Rohtasgarh area. Lalu ji has assured that Bihar tourism minister Tejashwi Yadav is very serious about conservation and development of Rohtasgarh Fort,” said Tirkey, former Mandar MLA and considered close to Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren.
“Lalu ji also claimed that Tejashwi and the Bihar government are committed to not only find prompt resolution of the problems of the tribals living in Rohtasgarh Fort but also in different parts of Bihar and initiate measures for improving their socio-economic conditions,” Tirkey added.
According to legend, the fort located on a plateau at a height of about 1,500 feet was built by Rohitaswa, son of the legendary king Harishchandra. Some historians opine that the initial phase of the fort's construction was done by local tribes like Kharwars and Oraons. The fort passed through several Hindu dynasties and it is believed that it was in use till the Brahmin king Chandra Ban's reign in the mid-16th century.
“Tribal scholar from Ranchi University Bande Oraon also went with me to meet Lalu ji. A six-member team from the tribal and regional languages department of Ranchi University would visit Rohtasgarh Fort soon to carry out research activities and submit their report to the Bihar government,” Tirkey said.
He also said that immediately after the Chhath festival, a team of tribal leaders along with senior officials of the Bihar tourism department will visit Rohtasgarh to promote development and tourism in the area which will boost employment opportunities for locals.