Friday, February 8, 2013

Multan

Multan is a city in the Punjab province of Pakistan. It is Pakistan's third largest city by area and it’s
Multan
fifth largest by population. The city is located on the banks of the Chenab River in the geographic center of the country and is about 562 km (349 mi) from the capital Islamabad, 356 km (221 mi) from Lahore and 966 km (600 mi) from Karachi.
Multan has its own charm, culture and crafts. It is fast becoming an industrial town. The origin of the name Multan is obscure and so is the period of its founding. It has been called as Mulosan Pulu by hiuen tsang and Alberuni called it Multan which ultimately came to be called Multan.


General Information
Location:         North Latitude 29-22 and 30-45 and East Longitude 71-4 and 72-55
Area:               45 square km
Population       1,288, 170 (1998 census)
Languages:      Urdu, Punjabi and Saraiki, English spoken and understood by educated people.
Multan City
Climate;           Cold in winter and very hot in summer. The normal rainfalls are about 7 during the monsoon from July to September.
Tourist Season:            October to march.

Wildlife:          Fox, jackal and wild boar, amongst birds are grey and black partridges, sand-grouse visit the district in winter quail, plover and pigeons are common.

The City
Multan city has the distinction of being the birthplace of three distinguished men in history: Mohammad Tughlaq is said to have been born in 13th century in hamlet at the place which is now known as ‘Kotla tolen Khan’. Emperor Bahlol Lodhi was bron in Qazian wala Makan near Hussain Agahi, Ahmed Shah Abdali, the first Durrani sovereign of Afghanistan, was also born at Multan in 1722.
The city of Multan is bound on the north by the depression lying between it and the fort and on all other sides by a brick wall. It has six gates i.e Lohari Gate, Pak Gate, Bohar Gate, Dehli gate, Haram gate and daulat gate. The old city has narrow colorful bazaars full of local handicrafts and narrow winding lanes. There are many places of historical, cultural and recreational interest in the city.

The fort
Ghanta Ghar
Multan fort was built on a mound separating it from the city by the old bed of river Ravi. Its date cannot be fixed with accuracy. When intact, it circumference was 6,600 ft, having 46 bastions, including two towers at each of the four gates i.e Dehli Gate the British to avenge the murder of one Mr. Agnew in 1848 . At present it is survived by some parts of the old rampart and bastions besides the shrines of Hazrat Bahauddin Zakaria and Shah Rukn-e-Alam, and obelisk, in memory of Agnew and a Hindu temple. The famous Wasim bagh and a stadium are located within the walls of the fort. A panoramic view of Multan city can be had from the highest point in the fort.


The famous mosques of Multan are Wali Muhammad Mosque in Chowk bazar built by Ali Muhammad Khakwani in 1758 A.D. Mosque Phulhatt in Chowk Bazar built by Emperor Farrukh Sheir, Baqarabadi Mosque built by Baqar Khan in 1720 A.D and the beautiful Eidgah Mosque built by Nawab Abdul Samad Khan in 1735 A.D.

Festivals, faris & Melas
Religious festivals in Multan are a peculiar mixture of devotion and recreation. Multan is famous for its shrines. Annaual urs is held on very shrine. Well known are the urs of Shah Rukn-e-alam. Bahauddin Zakria , Shah Shams Sabzwari, Shah jamal, Sher shah & Mela Ludden Pir, etc.    

What to Eat
Multan
Western and Pakistani dishes are available in Western style hotels. Lassi , Sharbat and Faluda are local cold drinks. Multani Sohan Halwa (Sweet Preparation) is also famous. Amongst fruits, managoes , water-melons, kino oranges, pomegranates, guavas and dates are grown in the district and are available during the season besides other fruits.

What to Buy
Local handicrafts;
 Multan is famous for various type of souvenirs, Multani Khussa (shoes) , embroidery work of all types thread and Aar” work costumes for ladies, emboridered cloths cholas or kurtas “for men” painted and glazed earthen pottery. Camel skin products, carpets and lacquered wooden products etc, are available in the narrow colorful bazaars.
Shopping Centres:   
Main shopping centers are Bazaar hussain Agahi, chowk Bazaar , bohar gate, Haram Gate, Delhi Gate, lohari Gate and Pak Gate Bazaars in the old city and the Cantonment shopping area.
Costumes:
The main in rural areas wear a ‘Pag” or Palka (turban) or sometimes a “kulla’ white or blue waist cloth or ‘Majhla a ‘chola’ or long shirt and a ‘chadar’ worn over the shoulders. Amongst educated class in urban areas. Shalwar qameez and the western dress is common. Women war Shalwar , ‘Lehnga’ or Ghagra’ Chola and ‘kurta’ or bright colours. Short sleeved ‘ choli’ or Kurti” is laos worn in the ruaral areas. The head is covered with Bochan’ or dupatta or emboidered and Phulkari chadars.

History
Tomb of Shah Rukn-ne-alam Multan
Tomb of Shah Rukn-ne-alam
The history of Multan prior to the arrival of the Arabs in the 8th century A.D is obscure. Alexander is said to have passed through the district in about 325 -326 B.C, but his route cannot be traced. It is probable that Multan was the city of Malli which alexander stormed and where he was wounded.
About 327 B.C the Macedonians were ousted by Chandragupta and the Maurya dynasty remained in power till the beginning of the second century A.D. From 30 B.C to 470 A.D. the Kushan dynasty ruled over the area, and from 470 to 550 A.D, the while Huns are believed to have held sway.
Multan figure as the capital of an important province of the kingdom of Sindh in the writings of the early Arab geographers. At the time the Arabs first came to Sind, the country was ruled by Raja Chach, a Brahmin, Multan was conquered by Arabs under Muhammad Bin Qasim in 712 A.D after defeating Raja Dahir descendant of chach.
Thereafter, the town remained for three centuries the outpost of Islam in South Asia, under the caliph of baghdad.
It remained nominally subject to the Lodhles, ghaznavids and Mohammad Ghauri up to the end of 12 century. From the beginning of the 13 century for the next three centuries, the history of Multan is practically the history of the incursions from Western and Central Asia.
In 1397 came invasion of taimur, whose troops occupied Uch and Multan, sacked Tulamba, raided the Kohkhars of Ravi and passed across Biass to Pakpattan and Dehli, in 1528 , came the peaceful transfer of the province of Multan to the emissaries of the Mughal Emperor Babar. Under the Mughal Emperor. Mulan enjoyed a long period of peace between 1528-1748 and was known as Dar-ul-Aman (city of peace).
Bahuddin Zakariya University
In 1752 Multan became a province owing allegiance to Afghan Kings. It was then ruled by Pathan Governors and Daud Chiefs of Bahawalpur for some time. After 1771, Multan witnessed continued warfare between sikhs and the Nawabs of Multan. Between 1818 and 1845, it remained under the Sikh rule and finally came under the British rule in 1849.

Other places
Multan has some beautiful modern buildings such as Nishtar Medical College, University Campus, Arts Council building with an auditorium, Multan Railway Station building, the famous Clock Tower building of the Multan, Municipal Corporation and state Bank of Pakistan, etc,
There are places of recreation in Multan such as the Stadium, the Lake Chaman zar-e-Askari and Company Bagh in the Cantonment, the Stadium and Qasim Bagh in the Multan Fort. Lange Khan Garden, Am-Khas garden and the parks of Bohar gate, chowk Shaheedan, Tabbi Sher Khan and the Nawan Shaher in and around Multan.

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