Saturday, February 1, 2014

Walls of 680 years Old Mausoleum in Multan under threat

Saturday, February 01, 2014 - Multan—Water penetration from two ablution points has badly damaged two boundary walls of the 680-year-old mausoleum of Hazrat Shah Rukn-e-Alam on its north-east corner, one of them subsided with cracks visible and the other tilted by three inches towards north.

The pre-Mughal era masterpiece can safely be dubbed as the symbol and glory of Multan and was declared one of the best conserved monuments in the country following its conservation in 1977.

The two ablution points, both on the north-east corner, one was built inside in 2010 and the other on the other side of the wall was built in 2012. Both ablution facilities were connected to the wall and were closed last year after the Archaeology Department found cracks on the wall running southwards from the north-east corner.

However, after the passage of three months, cracks in the wall running southwards widened further enough for anybody to peep through them and it also subsided by 2.5 inches down making its upper surface curved in the middle. The 38 feet long portion of the wall that is 2.5 feet thick would have to be rebuilt from its foundations which might be 30 feet deep, officials said.The wall running westward from the north-east corner tilted by three inches towards north, Archaeology Department officials said on Friday. They added that the wall was situated on the edge of a slope and its five bastions saved it from a possible collapse. The tilt of the wall also developed a long crack in the floor of the mosque inside the mausoleum.

One heavy rain would cause more water seepage to the foundations and may deteriorate the situation, the SDO Archaeology said, adding that it might also damage the 100 feet portion of the wall that was recently conserved at a cost of Rs 2.7 million.He said the Auqaf and Archaeology Department officials had been informed of the situation.

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