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Missing link: ASI to wrap up ‘Tughlaq jigsaw’

South of Tughlaqabad,and once connected to it by a causeway,the fortress of Adilabad is not considered a “full-fledged city”.

South of Tughlaqabad,and once connected to it by a causeway,the fortress of Adilabad is not considered a “full-fledged city”. It is considered a transitory Capital leading to Jahanpannah,the fourth city of Delhi.

Built in the early 14th Century by Mohammad Bin Tughlaq,after the death of his father Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq,the ASI has chosen to work on Adilabad to fill in the “missing link” between Tughlaqabad and Jahanpannah.

As of now,work at the small citadel of Adilabad is basically focussing on the outer fortifications. “Extensive excavation work needs to be carried out within the fortress but that has been planned for a later stage of the project. Since we have very little time before the Commonwealth Games,and a shortage of funds and manpower,we will do up the fortifications in the first phase of restoration work,” a senior ASI official told Newsline.

A replica of the Tughlaqabad Fort,Adilabad retains the ruins of gigantic ramparts. The fortress was also home to the famed Palace of Thousand Pillars,within which there was a huge audience hall built on columns of varnished wood. Towards the southern gateway,a vaulted corridor can still be seen,which used to be flanked by guardrooms.

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An amount of Rs 1.53 crore has been sanctioned for the short-term project,to be completed before the Games next year.

Like Qila Rai Pithora,Siri and Tughlaqabad,on completion of restoration work,Adilabad will also be illuminated. There are also plans to develop a huge plot of adjoining land,which is within the DDA’s jurisdiction,into a park. Migrant workers from Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh have set up small bases within the fortress and the site hums all day,as partial excavation to find the plinth of the bastions and the outer fortification is on at a feverish pace. The area around the fortress was surrounded by water but over time it dried up. ASI officials propose that if the land around it is desilted and rain water harvesting is taken up on a large scale,it will restore the ancient look of the fortress once again. On completion of this project,the ASI plans to take up Bijai Mandal in Sarvapriya Vihar,where Mohammad Bin Tughlaq had arranged for a reception for his father,during which the latter died.

First published on: 01-08-2009 at 12:29:01 am
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