When we talk about history of Bandhavgarh forest, we will come to know about Bandhavgarh fort first and Baghel dynasty. As they were last rulers thus in popular history, tourists were informed about them only. In reality, it is much older than Baghel rulers. Before Baghel rulers, it was ruled by Kalchuri rulers. If you got the chance to visit one of the hill in which fort is located, we will notice series of statues, rock cut shelters, temples, statues etc. Many of them are of Kalchuri period. Among all of them, only Bandhvdheesh temple is active which means it is the only monument which is still occupied by human being i.e. the family of priest. Century after century, generation after generation, priest is from same family. Forest department has allowed them to stay and do daily worship here. Now a days, visit to Bandhavdheesh temple is not allowed to normal tourists thus new generation is not much aware of it and you will also not find latest images of Bandhavgarh monuments spread over this hill top.
Bandhavdheesh is a hindi language word formed by combining two different words "Bandhav" and "Dheesh". Meaning of Bandhav could be derived in two different ways. One popular meaning, as per theory given here is "brother" but at the same time we also use Bandhav word, in broad sense as synonymous to "relative". Other word "Dheesh" means King or head of the organization. Thus here we can derive its two meaning as Bandhavdheesh is bother's fort and relative's fort.