PLACES

SANGOLA

The head-quarters of the taluka bearing the same name situated in 1725' north latitude and 75 10' east longitude on the Man about fifty miles to the south-west of Sholapur, is a railway station on the Kurduwadi-Miraj narrow gauge branch line of the South-Central Railway. It is a municipal town and has, as per the Census of 1971, a total population of 11,189 souls. Being the head-quarters of a taluka, there are located in the town the offices of the Mamlatdar and a Block Development Officer as also the Court of the Civil Judge, Junior Division. It has a post and telegraph office too. The jurisdiction of the police head-quarters also located at Sangola extends over 69 villages. The educational needs of the town populace are met by the primary schools conducted by the Zilla Parishad and the Sangola Vidya Mandir High School. The medical facilities are provided by the municipal dispensary with ten beds and by the private medical practitioners. Wells form the main source of water-supply.

Municipality: The municipality was established at Sangola in the year 1855-56 and had in 1882-83 an income of Rs. 1,220 and an expenditure of Rs. 2,340. As per the Census of 1961 the municipality covers an area of 26.6 square miles. The municipal council is composed of fourteen members with one seat being reserved for the scheduled castes. Formerly governed under the Bombay District Municipal Act of 1901, the municipality is now governed under the Maharashtra Municipalities Act, 1965. The only other municipalities which are more than a century old besides that of Sangola are those of Pandharpur and Sholapur. The chief officer is the executive head of the municipality.

For the convenience of the public the municipality conducts primary schools and maintains a dispensary with ten beds. There are stone-lined gutters.

The fort at Sangola is said to have been built by a Bijapur king. The town that grew up round the fort was so prosperous that it was locally called the Golden Sangola or Sonyache Sangola until it was sacked by Holkar's Pathans in 1802.

History: After the death of Chhatrapati Shahu in 1749, Balaji Bajirao, the Peshwa, decided to take charge of the entire State administration and as part of this plan, Fattehsing Bhosle, Shahu's adopted son, was confirmed in possession of his estate, in various minor claims or shares of revenues and in the title of Raja of Akkalkot, which excepting the detached claims, his descendants enjoyed till the merger of the State in the Indian Union after Independence. In 1750, Balaji Bajirao was opposed by Yamaji Shivdev, a partisan of Tarabai, who threw himself into the fort of Sangola and raised the standard of rebellion. Sadashivrao Bhau, the cousin of Balaji Bajirao, marched to Sangola to put the rebellion down. Sadashivrao Bhau was accompanied by Ram Raja, the Satara chief, so that Yamaji might have no excuse for resistance. Yamaji's rising was soon suppressed. During his stay at Satara, Ram Raja agreed to give up the entire power and to lend his sanction to whatever measures the Peshwa might pursue, provided a small tract round Satara was assigned for his own management. Though Balaji Bajirao agreed to these conditions, they were never carried out and Ram Raja was taken under a strong escort from Sangola to Satara. The town was attacked and looted by Holkar's Pathans in 1802 and so severe was the death blow given that the town has never recovered since the ruin it suffered since that attack in 1802.

Objects: The only objects of some interest in the town are the fort and a temple of Ambika Devi in the town. The fort was a centre of action at the time of the rebellion of Yamaji Shivdev against Peshwa Balaji Bajirao in 1750 and also at the time of the attack by Holkar's Pathans in 1802. In the fort are now housed the public offices. In the temple of the goddess Ambika Devi every year a fair is held in honour of the goddess in Magha (January-February). Between 5,000 and 10,000 people assemble at the time of the fair.

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