KAUAI, HAWAII, March 1, 2021 (HPI): One of Hinduism Today’s young reporters is preparing a story on the Maharashtrian tradition for children of making a model fort (killa or quila) during Diwali. The tradition is generally said to be in honor of the great Maharashtrian king, Shivaji, who himself built model forts to develop military strategies. The children’s forts can take weeks to build and be quite complex.

Do any of our readers know how and when this tradition started? Or why it is specifically connected with Diwali? If you can help, kindly email our managing editor, Acharya Arumuganathaswami, at ar@hindu.org.

We’re also seeking photos of well-made forts not only in India but in other countries where Maharashtrians have settled. Our story, for example, is on fort building in California.