Adilabad, Tughlaq's Forgotten Fort - Delhi

Adilabad, Tughlaq's forgotten fort, TOI article: Adilabad-Tughlaqs-forgotten-fort

"... It's one of the lesser known of the many forts dotting the capital's landscape. Delhi may be known as the city of tombs and forts, but this 14th century edifice located in the outskirts of the city lies neglected and almost forgotten. Built by Mohammed-bin-Tughlaq, Adilabad Fort is referred to by the historians as the fourth fort of Delhi, in the footsteps of famous contemporaries like Red Fort, Old Fort and the adjacent Tughlaqabad Fort. But despite being under the protection of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Adilabad Fort remains a rare, hidden treasure of Delhi with very few people even aware of its existence..."

The only sure way of finding the way to Adilabad Fort is by asking the ASI officials at the ticket counter of Tughlaqabad Fort. A walk through the expansive open land (that now is an informal cricket ground for the villagers and also a container dumping site) leads to the beautiful fortress located southeast of Tughlaqabad fort; partially hidden by foliage and undergrowth. But once in Adilabad, it's like stepping back in time. Earlier it used to be broken steps and a kuchcha slope that led into the fortress but recent renovation conducted by ASI has eased the fort's access. However, the palace and other structures inside the fort are completely in ruins.

According to the historians, Adilabad began as a small fort with massive ramparts protecting it. In comparison to its predecessor, the mammoth Tughlaqabad fort, Adilabad is a dwarf as far as stonework is concerned. There used to be a lake surrounding this fort and the outer walls of this fort (that connects with Tughlaqabad fort via a causeway) additionally served as the dam embankment. The lake extended till the tomb of Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq and the bed of which today is the same vast open land through which this fort is accessible.

Adilabad fort's entrance, Delhi

Impressive incline of the fort's entrance.

Inner stairway after the main entrance, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

Inner stairway after the main entrance of the fort.

Trabeate style inner entrance, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

Interesting trabeate style arch at the inner entrance of the fort. Trabeate arch was invented by the Hindu artisans before arcuate or true arch, that was introduced to the land by its Muslim rulers.

Ruined buildings of the fort, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

Ruined buildings of the fort with a lone Tughlaq's signature rampart stone at the very top. In its prime these signature stones dotted the ramparts of the fort at close intervals. The same feature can also be seen in the adjacent Tughlaqabad fort.

Fort's rampart with the moat and lake bed down below, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

In its prime, there used to be a lake around this fort. The erstwhile moat and the lake bed is visible down below.

Rampart buildings, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

Administrative buildings built into a rampart of the fort.

A ruined sentry room, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

A ruined sentry room.

Palace ground, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

Wide-angle view of the palace ground.

Ruined pillars of the palace rooms, Adilabad Fort, Delhi

Central part of the palace of which only the majestic pillar bases remain.

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