District collector Shaik Yasmeen Basha inspecting the Jagtial Fort on Saturday. (Photo: By arrangement)
Hyderabad: The district administration has reopened the 17th-century Jagtial Fort for visitors and is planning to develop it as a tourist spot. This comes after district collector Shaik Yasmeen Basha inspected the monument on Saturday.
The development comes following a report in ‘Deccan Chronicle’ (Historic Jagtial fort out of bounds for visitors) about the monument lying in a state of neglect and out of bounds for the visitors despite being the venue for national and state functions.
The collector directed the officials of archaeology, forest, and civic departments to come up with a detailed project report to develop the spot as a tourist hub and the same would be submitted to the state government for approval.
According to the Archaeological department, the historic fort was closed for the public for want of a watchman for close to four years. Archaeology department assistant director N. Sagar told ‘Deccan Chronicle’ that a watchman would be soon appointed on a contract basis. Plans are afoot to add amusement features, landscaping will be taken up at the fort to make it a tourist destination.
The star-shaped fort was built during the reign of Mughal governor Nawab Ibrahim Baig Khan Dhounsa and was designed by French engineers Jack and Tal, after whom the town was named -Jagtial. The fort has over three dozen cannons that are strategically placed along its ramparts. The structure also has a step-well which is in good shape and has water.
Expressing happiness over the reopening of the fort, local activist Meer Kazim Ali said the fort is a treasure house of information and gives a sneak peak into the past. Water management, defence system, and various other facets of the fort will be beneficial to school students who used to visit the monument before its closure four years ago, Kazim Ali said.