MULTAN, Dec 16: The restoration of centuries-old tomb of Ghazi Khan, the ruler of Dera Ghazi Khan city, will be completed by January-end at a cost of Rs4.5 million, says Archaeology Department Multan In-charge Malik Ghulam Muhammad.
The city was founded at the end of the 15th century and named after Nawab Ghazi Khan Mirani, son of Nawab Haji Khan Mirani, a Baloch chieftain, who had declared independence from the Langah Dynasty of Multan.
Historian M.Y. Qaisrani told Dawn 15 generations of the Miranis ruled Dera Ghazi Khan out of which seven were ‘Haji Khans’ and eight were ‘Ghazi Khans’.
He said Haji Khan-I was the first ruler of the family while it was a misconception that the city was founded by Ghazi Khan. “In fact the city was founded by Haji Khan in 1476 who named the town after his son Ghazi Khan.”
He said the tomb had been built by Ghazi Khan to bury his father but later many Mirani rulers were buried, including Ghazi Khan, as “there are 11 graves in the tomb but commemorative inscriptions are missing.”
He said Mulla Quaid Shah, a famous saint of the area, had suggested Ghazi Khan to build the tomb at current location.
Qaisrani said inside the tomb Quranic verses are engraved on arches. The dome had once collapsed in the past and the British government laid the present simple flat wooden/iron roof truss during its tenure.
Exterior of the tomb is decorated with beautiful enameled tiles in blue and Persian blue colours with geometrical and floral patterns.
Entrance to the tomb has been provided in the east while the north and south sides have two large windows. The main chamber of the tomb is about two metres below the adjoining ground level due to growth of modern graveyard around the tomb.
Malik said initially it was decided that the dome would be reconstructed but the idea was dropped as the “present roof is also 150-year old and as per international laws we have to preserve the construction of all periods”.
“The other problem is that we do not have the original picture of the dome and we do not know as to what kind of work was done on the dome so we had decided repair the wooden roof,” he said.
The missing parapet and spouts of special types for proper drainage of rainwater on roof had been reconstructed, he said.
Malik said all the chipped off and missing glazed tiles were being replaced with original size and design on the exterior and interior of the tomb. He said the floor of the tomb that had been cemented was also being replaced with bricks on edge flooring.