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SIALKOT: Historic fort in a shambles

July 23, 2004

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SIALKOT, July 22: The Tehsil Municipal Administration and archaeology department have failed to crack down on encroachers, who have illegally built small shops and kiosks around the centuries-old Sialkot Fort.

Encroachments have spoiled the beauty of the fort, which has become a victim of neglect.

Although offices of the district administration and the TMA are located at the fort, none of the officials concerned has bothered to keep an eye on the malaise and protect the historical site.

A survey conducted by this correspondent revealed that people had encroached upon the area around the fort thanks to the TMA's indifference. Moreover, several parts of this fort have become a safe haven for the addicts.

According to Diayas Jee, a prominent historian, Hindu Raja Sul had established the Sialkot city 5,000 years ago for ruling over the area between the Ravi and the Chenab. Raja Sul had built this fort for the defence of city.

Kiyaan Shakti, which is also reckoned as an authentic book on history, corroborates facts about the establishment of city and the fort. Our historian late Rashid Niaz revealed in his Tareekh-i-Sialkot that the second faseel of the ancient Sialkot fort was founded by the then municipal corporation in 1923 during digging in various parts for installations.