Sunday 11 June 2023

165. Sangni Fort, district Rawalpindi.

Sangni is a small fort located about 60 kilometers to the east of Islamabad, 10 km from Kallar Syedan in district Rawalpindi at  33°22'18.10"N,  73°27'0.38"E. It is a small fort and despite being a structure several centuries old in remarkably good condition. Who built it and when is not known. Actually, almost nothing is known about its history. At least I could not find any relevant information. Some writers give its origin from the Mughal era and some others from the Sikh period.  Others claim to be built by the Dogra rulers of Kashmir. This seems to be unlikely, considering its location, well within the borders of Punjab, and the fact that the Dogra rule started in Kashmir comparatively recently in the mid-nineteenth century. 

Its small size suggests that it was never meant to be an important stronghold and probably never played in important role in history. It was probably used just to house a small garrison to keep an eye on the adjoining areas and roads passing through this area. However, it was far away even from the old path of the Grand Trunk road between Lahore and Peshawar. Serai Pakka, which definitely marks the old path of this famous road is at least 12 km in the southwest.

The northern side of the Sangni Fort. (30.04.2023.)

The northern wall and the two bastions. (30.04.2023.)

A valley to the west of the fort. (30.04.2023.)

Looking from the northwest, across a deep gorge. (30.04.2023.)

The main (perhaps the only) entrance of the fort. (30.04.2023.)

The mausoleum of Sahibzada Abdul Hakim. (30.04.2023.)

In the plaque given above, some details of the life of Sahibzada Abdul Hakim are written. But unfortunately, no dates are given. The interior of the fort is also well preserved. Some pictures are given below. 

The writer. (30.04.2023.)

The fort was built on easy-to-defend ground, with three sides covered with deep gorges and a valley. Each side is more or less 30 meters in length and the fort covers an area of approximately a quarter of an acre. It is heartening to see the fort in such a good condition. One reason could be the tomb of saint Sahibzada Abdul Hakim, located inside the fort. The condition of the fort clearly indicates that the fort is well-maintained and repaired from time to time. 

The fort is situated in a picturesque area, very beautiful, and a good trip can be planned in pleasant weather. A good place for sightseeing and picnicking. 

Tariq Amir
June 11, 2023.

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