Multan Fort In Lahore, Pakistan – Facts And History

The city of Multan is situated at about 400 km southwest of Lahore. Multan is one of the oldest cities in Pakistan. It is also known as the city of “Garma, Gard, Gada and Goristan”. The city is situated east of the Indus River. It is also the most populated city in Southern Punjab.

The Multan Fort was built on a mound that separated it from the city by the old bed of the river Ravi. The date of its construction is not known with accuracy. The Fort was constructed of brick and stone and was surrounded by a moat. It had four gates, and the main gate was guarded by two massive elephants. The Fort was the home of the rulers of Multan and their families. It was also the site of the treasury and the mint. The Multan Fort was destroyed by the Sikhs in 1818.

Most of the forts in the Punjab region were destroyed by the British in 1848-49 to avenge the death of Lieutenant Alexander vans Agnew, who was killed in Multan by order of the Sikh governor. The British saw this as a direct challenge to their authority and responded by sending a large force to invade and subdue the Sikhs. In the process, they destroyed many of the forts built by the Sikhs. This was a major blow to the Sikh military and helped pave the way for the British conquest of Punjab.

 

Location of the Multan Fort

Multan Fort is a historic fort located in the center of the city of Multan, near the Multan Cricket Club and next to the Hazrat Shah Rukn-e-Alam’s Mazar. The Fort has a long history, dating back to the era of the Muslim conquests of the Indian subcontinent in the 11th and 12th centuries. The Fort was built by the rulers of the Ghaznavid dynasty and served as their base of operations in the region for many years. In recent times, the Fort has been used as a barracks for the Pakistani Army. Today, the Fort is open to the public and is a popular tourist destination in Multan.

 

Structure of the Multan Fort 

The Multan Fort was built in the 11th century and served as a key defense installation for the city. The Fort was notable for its high walls and strong gates, making it an effective defense against invaders. The Fort was also notable for its architecture, including several ornate buildings and towers.

The Multan fort’s 46 bastions included two flanking towers at each of the four gates. The towers were designed to provide an additional layer of defense against attackers and were also used as lookout posts. The Fort was built by using a combination of brick and stone, and it was adorned with several intricate carvings and motifs. The Fort was an important stronghold for the Muslim rulers of the region, and it withstood several sieges and attacks over the centuries.

 

Within the Multan Fort

 

  • Citadel flanked by 30 towers Enclosing mosques
  • Hindu temple and a 
  • Khan’s palace

 

Citadel flanked by 30 towers 

The citadel was flanked by 30 towers, each towering over the others. The sight was breathtaking, and the sheer size of the structure was imposing. Clearly, this was a place of great importance, and it was no wonder that it was so heavily fortified.

Maharaja Ranjit Singh was the ruler of the Sikh Empire in the early 19th century. In 1818, he laid siege to the city of Multan, held by the Afghan ruler, Shah Shuja. The city was heavily fortified, and the Afghans put up a strong resistance. However, after a prolonged bombardment by the Sikh Army, the citadel was severely damaged, and the city fell to the Sikhs. This was a significant victory for Maharaja Ranjit Singh and cemented his position as one of the most powerful rulers in India then.

 

Enclosing mosques

The mosque was built in the 16th century by the Mughal Emperor Akbar and is one of the finest examples of Mughal architecture in Pakistan. The mosque is decorated with intricate carvings and has a large courtyard with a fountain in the center. The mosque is an important religious site for Muslims and is visited by pilgrims worldwide.

 

A Hindu Temple

A Hindu Temple inside Multan Fort is a beautiful and serene place. The temple is decorated with colorful paintings and sculptures. A temple is a peaceful place where people can come to pray and meditate. A temple is also a place where people can learn about Hinduism and its customs.

 

Khan’s Palace

Khan’s Palace is a beautiful building located in the Multan Fort. It was built in the 16th century by the Mughal Emperor Akbar. The palace is made of red sandstone and is decorated with intricate carvings. It has a large central courtyard and a series of smaller rooms and courtyards. The palace was the residence of the Mughal governor of Multan and was used as a state guesthouse. Today, it is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the city.

 

Attractions Inside

 

Damdama

The Damdama is a massive building block constructed on a mound of earth fill. It is the highest part of the Fort. It was used as a watch tower / Gunnery. The walled inner old city of Multan is higher than the new Multan, and Fort is the highest in the inner walled city, so it is the highest place in Multan. People come here and have photo shoots as the tomb of Shah Rukn Alam comes in the background. Tomb Bahaudin Zikarya 1170 AD is another ancient tomb in Fort Kohna Multan.

 

Tomb Shah Rukne Alam 1335 A.D

The Shrine of Hazrat Shah Rukne Alam was constructed in 1335 A.D. It is very old and holds historical importance. It is located inside Fort Kohna of Multan. Comprising ancient Multani architecture, a large doom is said to be the second largest in the world then. It is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Multan. The tomb was awarded Agha Khan Award for architecture. Since then, it has been used as the identity of Multan city.

 

Barood Khana / Nigar Khana / Gunpowder Store

Barood Khana of the Multan Fort was used as a storehouse of gunpowder and weapons. The British badly damaged it during the siege of Multan in 1848. The Pakistani government converted it into a Nigar Khana, or art house for selling handicrafts.

 

Gates of Multan Fort

There were four other gates which belonged to Kohna Fort of Multan:

  • Qasim Gate
  • Khizri Gate
  • Sikhi Gate
  • Hariri Gate

 

The Qasim Gate

The Qasim Gate is the main entrance to the Multan fort, built in the 16th century. It is named after the ruler of Multan at the time, Qasim Khan. The gate is elaborately decorated with carved stonework and has two large arches. It is flanked by two smaller gates, once used as entrances for women and servants. Today, the Qasim Gate is the only Fort entrance and a popular tourist attraction.

 

Conclusion

The Multan Fort was built on a mound that separated it from the city by the old bed of the river Ravi. It was completed in 1566 AD. The fortress covers an area of about 2 square miles. There are 53 bastions, towers, and gateways in the Fort. It is said that the structure is built in the shape of an irregular octagon. The Fort is almost a kilometre in circumferential length. The Fort has a mosque, a palace, and a bazaar inside it. The mosque is the earliest example of Mughal architecture in the Sub-continent. The entrance of the mosque is a tall, slender arch. The mosque also consists of several small domes. The palace within the Fort is known as the Sheesh Mahal. The Sheesh Mahal has beautifully painted walls. The Fort also consists of several stepwells and baolis. The Fort was taken over by the Sikhs in 1748

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