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Savitri River near Mahad
|Mahad City Municipal Council||1866 A.D.|
|• Type||Municipal Council|
|• Body||Mahad City Municipal Council|
|• Total||12 km2 (5 sq mi)|
|Elevation||18 m (59 ft)|
|• Density||7,500/km2 (19,000/sq mi)|
|• Regional||Konkani , Agri-Koli|
|Sex Ratio and Literacy in Semi-Urban region(Mahad City)|
|• Sex Ratio||963 Females : 1000 Males|
|Time zone||UTC+5:30 (IST)|
402301(Mahad City), 402309(Mahad MIDC/Birwadi)
Mahad pronunciation (help·info) is a big town in Raigad district(formerly Kulaba district) situated in the North Konkan region of Maharashtra state, India. It is located 108.5km from District's Headquarter Alibag, and 167km from Mumbai state capital of Maharashtra and Economic capital of India, towards Western Coast.
The town is well-known historically due to its Raigad fort-Former Capital of Maratha Empire in Shivaji Era and Revolutionary Mahad Satyagraha launched by Dr.Babasaheb Ambedkar at Chavdar Tale in the wake of Modern India.
- 1 The Savitri River Bridge Incident
- 2 Tourist attractions nearby
- 3 Etymology
- 4 History
- 5 Economy
- 6 Transport
- 7 Shimga Festival
- 8 See also
- 9 Notes
The Savitri River Bridge Incident
In 2015, major flood hit Mahad due to which the British-era bridge on Mumbai Goa highway collapsed causing a great life loss. Several disasters like Floods, Landslides have devastated Markets and Old houses having Classic Konkani-styled architecture earlier too, causing great loss of life. This is due to Lower elevation of the City compared to surrounding areas and having rivers on all sides, making the city appear like a Triangular island. Also, Konkan predominantly receives very heavy rainfall in comparison to rest of Maharashtra. 
Tourist attractions nearby
Raigad, popularly known as "Gateway of Konkan", Mahad is among famous tourist destinations in Konkan. Some important tourist attractions are:
- Raigad Fort
- Pratapgadh Fort
- Gandhar Pale Buddhist Caves
- Shivthar Ghal
- Lingana Fort
- Birwadi Fort
- Warandha Ghat
- Mulshi-Tamhini Ghat (Bhira)
- Vireshwar Temple
- Chavdaar Tale Park
- Hari-Hareshwar, Shrivardhan and Diveagar Beach
- Dapoli-Mandangad beach
The word "Mahad" derived from Konkani-marathi words "महा"(Mahā) and "हाट"(Hāt)."महा" meaning "Great or big" and "हाट" meaning "Market", which means "A Big Market", as the town was popularly known as.
The city was well known due to its history, dating back to as far as Raigad fort, the capital of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and one of the biggest Socio-political movement in India-Dalit Satyagraha by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar.
Chavdaar Tale Satyagraha and Freedom Movement
Mahad is considered as the Land of freedom fighters. Many revolutionary freedom movements of India originated in Mahad. It is famous for the Chavdaar Tale Water Satyagraha of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar for Dalits at Chavdar Tale, which played as a turning point in Indian sociopolitical history.
Many disciples of Lord Buddha and followers of Dr.Babasaheb Ambedkar visit Chavdaar Tale every year on Kranti Din(Day of Revolution).
Shivaji Maharaj and Raigad fort
Apart from this, it had a glorious history during the rule of the great Maratha King Shivaji. The capital of Hindavi Swarajya and Samadhi of Shivaji Maharaj is at Raigad fort. which is around 24 km from the city. It was part of Birwadi Subha (Tehsil) and was ruled by Birwadi Subhedar's Kadams (Mahamunkars). The samadhi of Shivaji's mother Jijabai is at Pachad situated at foothills of Raigad fort. Hirkani was from Raigadwadi village. It is true and widely accepted that the Shivaji's political victory was followed by the social revolution carried out by his teacher Saint Tukaram. The village Umarath of Tanaji Malusare & Kinjaloli of Murarbaji are also in the vicinity of Mahad.
Shivtharghal and Daasbodh
Now the banks of Savitri river have changed during the course of time and only creek water fishing is carried out and Mahad is no longer known as a port.
Yet the Mahad's market is still more prosperous than any other market in Southern Raigad.
Pandav Leni/Gangharpale Caves
According to the mythological story, Gandharpale Caves are the sculptured houses built in one night by the Pandavas. Originally these caves are Buddhist caves build during the reign of Prince Vishnupalita Kambhoja.
Mahad is one of the well-known holiday destinations in North Konkan region. It sees heavy rainfall during monsoon. There are numerous temples around Mahad. The festivals most celebrated by local people are Holi (which falls in summer around the month of March) and Ganpati festival (which falls during the monsoon, around the month of September).
Apart from this, Mahad was the central market for people of Poladpur, the Raigad villages and the hill station Mahabaleshwar. It has a large market. The city is surrounded by the Sahyadri mountain ranges and the Savitri, Kal and Gandhari rivers originating through Mahabaleswar, hills in Mulshi and Raigad fort respectively. Mahad was a flourishing port in the past. "Mahadi Gul"[clarification needed] was well known in Gujarat, which is made in Satara, Pune districts and exported to other locations through Mahad's port.
Mahad M.I.D.C. and Economic Corridor
Mahad is now well-developed with town infrastructure.Mahad MIDC which is set-up near Birwadi is the small Chemical industry cluster. It houses several polymer, pharmaceutical, organic, pigments, fertilizers, Aroma Chemical manufacturing industries. Notable industries like: •Pidilite •Piramal Healthcare •Sandoz •Lakshmi Organic •Hikal ltd. Company •Maharashtra Aldehydes •Sudarshan •Maharashtra Seamless •EMBIO •Privi Organics India Limited Mahad consists of two Industrial zones- Mahad-Birwadi and Mahad Additional Industrial zone.
- Navi Mumbai International Airport, Ulve-Panvel, Navi Mumbai
- CSIA, Mumbai
- Pune International Airport, Lohagaon, Pune
National Highway NH 66 (previously known as NH 17) passes through Mahad. It connects Panvel(Southern Navi-Mumbai) to Kanyakumari, passing through the states of Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu.
Since many people from Mahad are commuting to Cities like Surat Vapi and Valsad in Gujrat even before the Independence, for means of inter-state public transport Gujrat State Road transport corporation started Buses from Mahad and Poladpur bus stand which are under operations of Mahad MSRTC Bus Depot to Surat and other cities in Gujrat.
The most important festival among whole Konkani community spreading from Thane, Raigad to Goa and Karawar coast is "Shimga". It is speciality of "Konkan and Goa". Every City, every town or Village has its own way of celebrating it. Almost every Konkani working day and night, sleeplessly in metropolis like Mumbai, Pune, Delhi or in foreign countries rush to their homeland during Shimga. People worship their local deities, fun-fair are organised; the Palkhis of local deities are main attraction and is considered prestigious among locals. Each town represents its own Religious Culture and Traditions.
Shimgotsav in Mahad
Lord Vireshwar is the most-worshipped Local deity of Mahad. The temple of Lord Vireshwar was believed to be constructed during or before Shivaji Maharaj Era. A local fair is organised during shimga called "Mahad chi Jatra", uniquely known as "Chabina Utsav of Mahad". The "Palkhis" of Seven sisters of Lord Vireshwar who are Gram-devi(goddess) of nearby villages and another towns like Mangaon, Poladpur and Khed are brought at Lord Vireshwar Temple in Mahad. Goddess Zolai Devi is considered the most favourite sister of Lord Vireshwar. The people are so devoted that they bring Palkhis from many miles far villages by walking, sometimes bare-footed, they consider this holy and sacred and feel lucky to be part of it.
- Mahād (Approved) at GEOnet Names Server, United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
- "Mahād". World Gazetteer. Archived from the original on 2013-02-17.
- Ahir, D. C. (2003). Buddhist sites and shrines in India: history, art, and architecture (1. ed.). Delhi: Sri Satguru Publ. p. 198. ISBN 8170307740.