September 18, 2010

A Matter of Interest : Have you heard of Miri Fort?

This is Miri Fort ...No this is not in Miri.

If you are interested then read on.....

Ranikot is the largest fort in the world and so far, no other fort (or country) has disputed that claim. Its walls stretch some 24 km across rough and stunning terrain. Some walls are not man-made; they are natural rock formations. It is so immense that within its walls it has two smaller forts, the Miri and the Shehrgarh forts.

Ranikot is located about 30 km from the small town of Sann (Pakistan). This fort is not part of the Kirthar Mountains (Balochistan). The mountains of Ranikot are called Tora Mountains, forming one of the boundaries of the fort.



  One way to travel to this place is by bus or train. From Sann, you can book a wagon or a chinchi (motorcycle rickshaw) for the whole day or two. (about Rs500 for a two-way ride by a chinchi.)

Ranikot has four main entrances: Mohan gate (west side), Amri gate (north-west side), Shehpar gate (south side) and Sann gate (Sann side). But there are no gates, only wide open spaces, and on both sides are huge blocks of stones that mark them.

The history of the fort is quite enigmatic. Local legend passed down through generations, claims that the Talpurs built this fort.
On the other hand, foreign scholars believe that this fort was built much earlier by the warring tribes who settled here, before the Muslims arrived and that the two forts inside (Shehrgarh and Miri) were built much later, possibly by the Talpurs themselves.
And what about the strange name, 'Ranikot'? People offer two different answers. One local claims that 'rani' is a place where water from its source flows underground and reaches some other place.  Another possible explanation for the name is that Ranikot, according to many locals, belonged to the Talpurs. When the British took over the fort from them, through betrayal, the locals started calling the fort 'Rankot' (a deviation of Ranikot), which in Sindhi refers to a woman whose husband has been killed.



Another option is to go to the small fort, Miri. There is a ramshackle 'government house' built by the British who stayed here when they ruled India. The caretaker, who is an employee of the Govt. of Pakistan, can provide the keys.

There is a village of around 500 people who live within the boundaries of the fort, and whose major occupation is herding and farming. They are extremely poor but they don't beg.

(Source :Wikipedia)




2 comments:

Uncle Lee said...

Hi Sarawakania, wow! Never knew that! Coming to your place here I always get enlightened.....like sitting under a jambu tree crosslegged, ha ha.
Outstanding....hope some Americans read this, ha ha.

By the way, guess who's coming for dinner here, in Toronto?
Drop by see who....you'll never guess, *wink*. Lee.

Sarawakiana@2 said...

Hi Uncle Lee...I like to surprise people....especially you because it is not easy to surprise a mature man with so many extraordinary experiences.....wink...