By Tooba Israr
The second largest city of Pakistan, Lahore is also known as the ancient city. This city is secured by a 30 feet brick wall surrounding it from all sides with only 13 gates for passages. Through these gates is the oldest version of Lahore, called the Walled City of Lahore or Androon Lahore by the residents. 7 of the gates were completely demolished and no one rebuilt them. Other 6 are still standing in the place. The list of the 13 gates of Lahore is below:
1. Akbari Gate
This gate was constructed by the Mughal emperor of that Era Jalal-ud-din Akbar and named it after himself. This gate was totally damaged and thus, does not exist anymore.
2. Mochi Gate
It was named after a Hindu during the Akbar’s Era. It was blown off by cannon balls in British rule, so it does not exist anymore.
3. Shah Almi Gate
This gate of Lahore was named after Aurangzeb Alamgir’s son Muhammad Moazzam Shah Alam Bahadur. During the independence of Pakistan, this gate was burnt down through communal riots. Thus, it doesn’t exist right now.
4. Lohari Gate
This gate was originally named Lahori Gate, but it gained popularity as Lohari or The Blacksmiths Gate. It was reconstructed in the British Era and still exists.
5. Mori Gate
Source: Historical Places
It was the smallest gate of all 13 Gates of Lahore. But, it also doesn’t exist at the moment.
6. Bhaati Gate
This gate is on West side of Lahore. Bhaati gate is historically significant because it was named Bhatti Gate before. But as the situations changed, it changed to Bhaati Gate. It was because many Rajpoot Clans resided here. In addition to them, many poets and intellectuals also used to live here. Bhaati gate is called the Chelsea of Lahore.
7. Taxali Gate
It was named after the royal mint presided there. It is also known as Taxal or Royal mint. This gate is not present in its original shape but is famous for the Royal Neighbourhoods. The Shoe Markets here are also very popular.
8. Roshnai Gate
This gate was illuminated during the evening prayers to facilitate the people saying prayers because it was a passage for masjid. Hence this gate was named Roshnai Gate. This is the only gate which is still present in its original condition.
9. Masti Gate
This gate was named after Masti Baloch, a royal servant. Because of the heavy damages to the structure, the Masti gate was completely demolished.
10. Kashmiri Gate
This gate was named Kashmiri Gate because it was facing Kashmir. It still exists in good condition.
11. Sheranwala Gate
This gate was built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh. After its construction, he placed two cages of tigers at the gate. Thus this gate was named Sheranwala Gate (The Tiger’s Gate). This gate still exists in a good state.
12. Yakki Gate
Source: Pakistan Today
This Gate was named after a royal guard named Zakki. But over the decades, it changed to Yakki. This gate also does not exist at this date. You probably heard the legend of Pir Zakki, who fought the battle with his companions even after his head was separated from his body. That’s why he has two separate graves, one for his head and one for the body.
13. Delhi Gate
This gate faces towards New Delhi, an Indian city in East, that’s why it is called Delhi Gate. This is the most popular gate for entrance into the Walled City of Lahore, because of a railway station nearby. Many famous metropolitan cities like Jalandhar and Amritsar are adjacent. The building was deteriorating until the British era. They took down the original building and started a new construction of the Delhi gate as we know it today. There are two story buildings surrounding the door, including a Girls High School.
The Walled City of Lahore Authority is taking as many actions as they can to rehabilitate our prestigious heritage. We as Lahori Citizens have this responsibility to honor it, and take accountability. Because the citizens make a city thrive, or take it to demise.
The source was originally published here.