The massive strong walls of Tughluqabad, the third city of
Delhi, are located east of the
Qutub Minar. The citadel frowns
down ominously like some Gothic palace all over the Qutub-Badarpur road
and seems to prefer its splendid isolation.
Making Of Tughluqabad
Ghiyath-ud-din Tughluq built the walled city and the fort with its 13 gateways. Its construction involved a legendary quarrel with the saint Nizam-ud-din. When the Tughluq ruler took the workers whom Nizam-ud-din wanted for work on his shrine the saint cursed the king with the warning that only the Gujjars (shepherds) would inhabit his city.
The dispute between the king and the saint did not end with curse and counter-curse. When the king prepared to take vengeance on the saint, Nizam-ud-din calmly told his followers, in a saying that is still current in India today, ' Delhi is a long way off'. Indeed it was for the king was murdered on his way to Delhi in 1325.
Earlier, Ghiyath-ud-din had been a general in Ala-ud-din Khalji's army. Once while on the road with Ala-ud-din, Ghiyath-ud-din, on spotting this area, mentioned to the sultan what an ideal setting it seemed to provide for a new city. Upon this the king indulgently replied, that when Ghiyath-ud-din will become the king he should built one. After the death of Ala-ud-din various events conspired to put the general on the throne at last. Then he fulfilled his long-cherished dream, of building Tughluqabad.
Tughluqabad Fort was situated on high rocky ground, an ideal location to withstand enemy attacks. The fort walls were constructed of massive blocks and outside the south wall of the city is an artificial lake with king's tomb in its centre. A long causeway connects the tomb to the fort, both of which have walls that slope inwards. The fort is half-hexagonal in shape. The outer walls are built around the outline of the surrounding land adding a formidable strength to the natural barriers.
Tughluqabad was built in just four years and got abandoned in 1327. Muhammad-bin-Tughluq, was probably one of those modern freethinking men who did not want to be known by his father's laurels. That's why he chose to make a city of his own called Jahanpanah. With Ghiyath-ud-din Tughluq's death, the city's short-lived glory came to an abrupt end.