Nothing ‘ghostly’ about this majestic fort
Feroz Shah Kotla Fort was built by Sultan Feroz Shah Tughlaq to house his version of the city called Ferozabad. An immaculate polished sandstone pillar from the 3rd century BC, created by Emperor Ashoka is situated in a part of the fort. Folklore dictates that the Sultan had put up the Buddhist pillar in his fort as an attempt to unite various cultures.
The fort also consists of a mosque and a bawli. The auspicious well (bawli) in the premises, was believed to have been shut down due to a spate of suicides over the years, which has given birth to a plethora of urban legends as it reportedly closes by 6 pm. The guards however dispel such rumours and blame the absence of lighting which add on to the certain degree of mystery in this place.
It is popularly believed, that a Jinn resides in there. According to Jyoti and Muskaan, regular visitors to the holy place, “Yeh Jinnaton ka Badshah hai. Inse jo bhi mangte hai, wo de deten hai, kyunki yeh acche Jinn hai. Hum yaha par dhai saal se aa rahe hain. (He’s the King of all the Jinns. He’ll grant all the wishes of his followers since he is sacred. We’ve been coming here for about two and a half years now and our wishes have been fulfilled by him).”
The mosque is divided into several cubicles, each, dimly lit by diyas or candles. They are frequented by believers who write letters or prayers to the Jinn and stick them onto the walls of these little dark rooms. When asked about any paranormal activity in this place, one of the night guards who has worked there for 22 years said, “I have stayed here for a number of nights in search of the jinn, but I was disappointed as I found nothing uncanny.” Radhika, a tourist and history enthusiast is amazed how followers treat the place with great reverence and light candles and incense sticks to offer prayers. Sadly, this historical site has also been the victim of vandalism with people scribbling on the walls and floors.
The mystery and the enigma of the fort is a major drawing factor for tourists from all around the world. The strong construction of the fort has ensured that it has withstood the vagaries of nature remarkably well. Even though this fort has managed to find a spot in the top ten haunted places in India, there is no basis for such an intimidating reputation. On the contrary, hopeful souls have come here over the years in search of faith and admiration. It is a place that people believe is the abode of a guardian angel who they can trust and share their troubles with as well as a place where people come in search of peace. The fort is also the perfect getaway for students and tourists looking for a relaxed outing. It is an abode for photographers who take great delight in capturing captivating images of architecture as well as different types of creatures like squirrels and eagles.