KP govt plans to declare historical buildings as world heritage

PESHAWAR    -    The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government has conceived a comprehensive plan to declare the historic buildings of the provincial capital as world heritage sites including the Gor Khatri and restore their grandeur through renovations and open them to domestic and foreign tourists.

Sufficient funds have also been allocated in the provincial budget for this purpose.

This was revealed by the Advisor to the Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Tourism, Culture and Archeology Zahid Chanzeb during a detailed visit to the ancient building Gor Khatri situated in the center of Peshawar on Sunday.

Director of Archaeology and Museums Dr Abdul Samad and Manager Marketing and Cultural Events of Provincial Culture and Tourism Authority (KPCTA) Madam Haseena briefed the advisor about the salient features of this magnificent 160 x 160 sq ft fort and apprised him about its history from medieval to modern times besides taking a tour of the Peshawar-based historical picture gallery.

Zahid Chanzeb also witnessed the fire brigade vehicles and ambulances used in the English era during 1912 AD and the shops, furnaces and factories of artisans who had different skills on all four sides of the fort compound.

He was told that during the excavation some decades ago, the fact was revealed that the fort located on the highest cliff of Peshawar valley was built by the Greeks, White Huns and Sassanis invaders between the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD who named it Gor Khatri, because of the burial of their warrior hero Kanishka, as the name Gorkhatri, meant warrior hero’s tomb, and this name gained popularity.

Later it came under Kushan, Sethi and Parthian, Kudra, Hindu Shahi, Ghaznavid, Suri, Mughal, Durrani, Sikh and British rulers.

Jahan Ara Begum, the daughter of Mughal Emperor Shahjahan, built an inn for travellers in the shape of the present building and, in addition to a mosque, also constructed two wells of cold potable water in it and named it as Jahan Abad inn. Sikh governor Abu Tabila declared it his Governor House and decisions of various cases were also started settling there.

Jails were also built adjacent to the main gates for the prisoners.

The KP Advisor Tourism, calling Gor Khatri a home of diverse civilizations, directed the Manager Marketing and Cultural Events Madam Hasina to start a food street and cultural activities in the vast courtyard of Gorkhatri, while Director MIS Mahad Hasnain was asked to make it a part of virtual tourism gallery and expose it to the world after restoring the fort-like building to its original form.

He also posed for taking his personal portraits in different galleries of the fort.

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt