Rani Kot Fort, The Mysterious Place in Sindh


Rani Kot Fort, The Mysterious Place in Sindh

The largest fort in the world is in Pakistan, whose wall resembles the Great Wall of China, also known as the Indus Wall.

Rani Kot also known as Great Wall of Sindh is located in mountainous areas of Jamshoro District. The fort is about 300 km away from Karachi, near the small town of Sann, about 120 km below the city of Jamshoro.

Unfortunately, we don't know about this great fort. We will get an idea of ​​the war skills and defense strategies after visiting this fort. We will know how a king is able to do everything for the survival and security of his country and his subjects.

History of Fort

Researchers have yet to know about Rani Kot history, purpose and buidlers and owner of the fort. Yet, some historians believe that Rani Kot was a fortress of the Sassanid period. Some scholars link it to the Greek style of construction. While others believe that Rani Kot Fort was built in 836 AH by the Arab governor Imran Ibn Musa.

Some scholars say that the fort was built long before the arrival of Muslims in the subcontinent when Sindh was considered part of Iran. But there is no concrete evidence of this.

Researcher Mr. AW Hosey wrote in Sindh Gazetteer in 1856 that Rani Kot may have been built by the Talpur rulers of Sindh to preserve their valuables.

Renowned researcher of Sindh Dr. Nabi Bakhsh Baloch also agrees with Mr. AW Hosey to some extent and writes that there is evidence that Qila Talpur was built by Nawab Muhammad Khan Leghari, the minister of the rulers.

Researcher Abdul Jabbar Junejo writes that according to the Encyclopedia Britannica, the world's oldest fort was the city of Jericho, built in 7000 BC, with walls 21 feet long and 15 feet wide. While the walls of the fort are 9 feet in the ground was sunk. Considering the architecture and art of other forts, including Rani Kot, Junejo writes that Rani Kot and the Great Wall of China are also a link to the fort of Jericho.

According to Fateh Nama, the most important book in history, Rani Kot was built from 1812 to 1829. It was later confirmed by AW Hughes in his book Sindh Gazetteer published in 1876. The English historian and researcher HT Lambrick has written many important things about the history and civilization of Sindh in his books 'Sir Charles Napier and Sindh, John Jacob of Jacobabad'. He has also mentioned Rani Kot in these books. Other important books of history also mention about the Rani Kot Fort.

 There is no authentic history of Rani Kot. However, historians and researchers estimate that the fort is at least 3000 years old.

Due to the lack of authentic and accurate research on Rani Kot, Rani Kot could not find the place in the world that came in the part of other forts of the world including the Great Wall of China.

The famous English traveler Alexander Burns also passed through Rani Kot during 1831. He had given some identification to the fort. But the spiritual leader and nationalist politician Sain GM Syed has a major role in giving popularity to Rani Kot in the world.

Structure of Fort   

According to renowned researcher and historian Badar Abro, MH Panhwar and Taj Sahrai, the walls of Rani Kot are 30 feet long and 7 feet wide. While Rani Kot fort is spread within 16 to 30 km.

According to the Endowment Fund Trust (EFT), an organization working with the Sindh government on the restoration of Rani Kot, the fort covers an area of ​​more than 32 km and its walls stretch for 7 and a half km.

The special feature of this Great Wall of Sindh known as Rani Kot is that inside this fort there are 2 more small forts named "Meri" and "Shergarh Kot" which make it one of the unique and great forts of world.

Shergarh Fort is built on a hill at least a thousand feet above the ground level. Since everyone cannot go there due to being on the mountain and less visitor are go this fort.

The other fort 'Meri Kot' inside Rani Kot has the importance being in the centre of main fort. Since, every tourist is interested in this and takes attention of the people.

At least 18 Watch Towers on the wall are built around the fort. According to historians, these were once used for warfare and protection.

Badar Abro, a researcher on Rani Kot, writes in his research that the construction of the fort would not have been completed in a single time. But it would have been built during the reigns of more than one ruler.

According to the researchers, at least 3,000 to 4,000 laborers would have worked for several months in the construction of Rani Kot. It is estimated that Rs 12 lakh would have been spent on the construction of the fort, which is billions of rupees today.

There are 5 gates to enter Rani Kot. Names of these gates are 'Sann Gate, Mohan Gate, Amri Gate, Shah Bur Gate and Tory Dhoro Gate'.  Sann Gate is mostly used to enter fort. This gate is also said to be as the main gate of the fort.

There are high mountains and lush fields inside Rani Kot. There is also a spring of water inside the fort, which is called 'Parin Jo Tar' in Sindhi language.

This spring receives fresh water from the peaks of the mountains whole the year. These springs are located in a place of the fort, surrounded by mountains of 1500 to 2000 feet height. There are also fascinating stories about this spring. It is said that at one time fairies or princesses of royal families used to come and bathe in this spring. Since this spring received the name 'Prin Jo Tar', however, there is no authentic history in this regard.

98% of the visitors come the fort enter the fort by road through this gate as this gate is on the way from the main highway.

Settlement within the Rani Kot Fort

The most unique thing about this fort is that there is a population inside this fort. These inhabitants of Fort belong to Gabol tribe. They claim to have lived here for their last seven generations and were told by their ancestors that Rani Kot is 2,000 years old.

A young man living in the fort said that the land of the fort has been their property for the last seven generations and they have also documents. He said that they only own the fertile land inside the fort and the place where their houses are built. However, they don’t know about the ownership of the rest of the fort i.e walls, hills and 2 other forts inside the fort. He said that a total of 40 houses are inhabited in the fort.

The young man said that they don't remember ever having a water problem; they always have access to clean water from the foothills either in winter or summer. However, quantity of water is reduced for some times. He said they do not know about the water comes from where, but they survive better lives because of this fresh water. Because where they use this water for drinking and eating, they also grow crops from this water. Moreover contagious disease never spread any in their village due to using water from these mountains.

Step taken by Government

Ghayyur Abbas said that it was unfortunate that after the formation of Pakistan on this historic fort. The federal government conducted seminars or programs twice during the 1980s and 1990s. However, after transfer of historical places to provinces as a result of the 18th Amendment, the Sindh government first focused on Rani Kot in 2014 and started some construction work here.

For the first time in 2017, an Assistant Curator was posted at Rani Kot by the Department of Culture and Tourism. The Antiquities Department appointed Ghayyur Abbas in-charge of Rani Kot and also gave him other staff of 3 employees.

In 2017, 5,000 people came to see Rani Kot, while due to better facilities, the number of tourists doubled in 2018 and 12,000 people came here in 2019.

The Sindh Tourism and Culture Department has also built guest houses around this fort.

The rent of the guest house is very reasonable and they charge very meager cost. While the rooms are also rented for 6 hours with the lower cost. Guest houses also have emergency medical facilities.

Canteen has been set up in Rani Kot, which facilitate the tourists for their refreshment.  While a hotel has been established for easiness of tourists.

Post a Comment