GANDHARI KHILLA OF GOND KINGS
(The worshiping place of KOVA MOKASHI CLAN)
One of the historical places of Gond kings is Gandhari Khilla.History tells that Gond kings have ruled Chandrapur area for more than 1000 years .If we examine this sculptures and structures at Gandhari Khilla we can understand that Gond king have built this has a formidable fort. Gandhari Khilla was used has leisure resort and to keep the treasury. Gond Kings were known as nature worshippers. This fact is proven by sculptures fond in this area later on Kakatiyas, Reddy kings and velama kings have ruled this area.
During the rein of Gond kings along with Gond kings we find Mokashis (Rajal,Mokshal)eventhough Gond kingdoms have perished the mokashi system is still prevalent Mokashis were hereditary chieftain of a rank below that of Raja however mokashis enjoyed power equivalent to kings and they acted as hereditary chief of Armey.
The Bronze certificates found with present day mokashis clearly established the fact that mokashis were given the power to act as jagirdar for three thalukas namely Chennur ,gandhari and luxettipet .that is why they are called as theen thaluka Mokasis .the antique armaments found with Mokasis prove the fact that they used to worship Gandhari Maisamma from time immemorable gandhari Maisamma is called as the Goddess of nalven saga . within this nalven saga there are 105 sub sects (clans).KovaMokasis belongs to one of the sub clan and they are worshippers of gandhari maisamma from the beginning.
Kova Mokashis treat Gandhari Khilla as a sacred place the Legend tells that the Gond Kings have installed goddess maisamma idol in front of the fort to defend them from enemies. One folklore tells that in those days one peacock and tiger used to roam in this area people believe that as per the instructions of peacock tiger used to strike at the men. People complained to Delhi king about these animals and the king the announced that whoever kills the tiger will be rewarded suitably at this point. Kova Mokashis vowed that they will kill the tiger. Before going to hunt the tiger the Kova Mokashis had put their arms at the feet of maisamma and worshipped her in the end they could kill the tiger as a result the Gond king had given the bronze certicate allotting theen (3)thalukas. likewise legend tells that kovamokashis have spread their asta naga bandhanam in this area that is why people believe that whoever digs the area for secret treasures will find nothing we can still see the arms (kachin, dalk) used by Kova Mokashis we can also see peacock stone and tiger stone at Gandhari Khilla. people believe that even in the present time Goddess Maisamma roams in the area on every full moon night in the guise of white tiger.
RAM KHATODA DHADI(WALL)
This is situated at 3 km from Gandhari Khilla at western side near Mokasha Mundas.Elders tell that during the exile of pandavas bheema had put something near this wall and this wall is endowed with supernatural power.
THE WORSHIPPING OF GODDESS MAISAMMA BY KOVA MOKASHIS
(Masemal Devatha poojalu)
Mokashis of theen (3)talukas worship goddess Maisamma every year on three occasions. That is During Dusehra ,Pushyamasa and Vaishakamasa.
During Dushera they worship goddess with all the rituals and hoist their flag. This is a tradition continuing for ages. During these rituals they take some vows and resolusions. The Mokashis will give half of their earnings to king and remembering half they will spent for maisamma rituals likewise during pushya masa a big jathara will be held at this place. At this jathara along with Kova mokashis soryal, dharyal, atum, kutum, selad, miyad and several tribes men will converge at this place. Kova mokashis believe that goddess Maisamma will fulfill all their wishes. Kova Mokashis will take the holy water from the pond and sprinkle that in their fields people believe that by sprinkling this holy water they will get a rich harvest during their harvest season. Also the kova mokashis will put some crop at the feet of maisamma and worship her
During vaisakha masa the special prayers conducted by Kova mokashis are called persa pean (Great God) as part of persa pean newlywed daughter-in-law will be brought to maisamma to get her blessings. The persa pean will be brought to maisamma one’s in every 3 years.
In search of livelihood KovaMokashis have spread to different areas, but still Mokashis of Rally gadpur,Dubbaguda,Nagasamudram,Vandurguda and bheemji guda come to gandhari Khilla to worship maisamma till now. This fact is not known to outer world as this area is covered by dense forest along with gandhari khilla rituals will be conducted at neighboring places like jeerla munda, Moksha munda, and Moksha gadi.
Gandhari Khilla is abundant with many herbal medicine plants around 300 hundred verities of herbal medicine plants are available in this area which are used by people to cure different diseases. With the emergence of Telangana as a separate state the gandhari khilla and surrounding areas are being developed as tourist places Kova Mokashis welcome this. However care should be taken to preserve the distinctive culture of Gandhari Khilla.
Gandhari khilla is associated with rituals customs and traditions of adivasi gonds .In the name of development the distinctive culture of gandhari Khilla cannot be allowed to perish. Some antisocial elements are conducting diggings in such of secret treasures the government should take steps to stop this.
To this end a preservation and protection committee should be established by the government .Kova Mokashi clan people should be given preference in this committee. The committee should also take measure for the employment and development of local adivasis.
As many pilgrims are coming to visit Gandhari Khilla from par away places like Chattish gharh ,Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh basic amenities like Drinking water ,Electricity and Road etc are to be provided by the government immediately.
Kova Nago Rao
Gandhari Khilla KovaMokashi Clan
Kova Parsuram Mokashi Doulath rao
Kova parivar National Leader President
Cell.no.9494305014, Gandhari Khilla KovaMokashi Clan
9550172750 Welfare Society,Telangana.