In the land of Kharan, surrounded by barren mountains and golden landscapes, there stands a majestic ancient fort. Legend has it that Kharan was named Karan, which transliterates to "barren mountains," as if the very rocks themselves whispered tales of a desolate land. In the colourful language of the Baloch people, Kharan itself means "Yellow Mountain," like a shimmering jewel nestled in the rugged terrain. This remarkable fortress held within its ancient walls a treasure trove of historical facts and captivating tales, captivating both the minds of warriors and the spirits of the land.
In the annals of time, Kharan's fate intertwined with that of a noble conqueror named Azad Khan Nosherwani. This visionary warrior had a dream to protect his beloved city from the warring tribes of Afghanistan, the neighbouring mighty Kingdom of Kalat. To realize his dream, Azad Khan embarked on a grand endeavour, constructing not just one, but eleven fortresses around Kharan. Each fortress was like a guardian sentinel, keeping watch over the land. Yet, Azad Khan knew that the key to true protection lay in a central fort, a fortress that would stand as an impregnable bastion of security.
But fate had a peculiar sense of humour, for every time the construction of the main fort began, it was halted by the cruel grip of water scarcity. Wells were dug, and Karez (underground aqueducts) were excavated, yet water remained as elusive as a mirage in the desert. It seemed as though the very land conspired against the fort's completion.
In this moment of despair, the people turned to a famous spiritual personality who held a close bond with Azad Khan. This wise soul knew that the answer lay beyond the realm of mortals. With Azad Khan by his side, he embarked on a sacred journey, leading them northward to the mystical land of Dilkasha, a place of great renown in those ancient times. It was there that the spiritual guide, armed with his supernatural wand, marked the location of the Karez and the fort. From that moment on, a miracle unfolded—the water of the Karez flowed, neither less nor more, a steady stream nourishing the fort for eternity.
Buoyed by this miraculous turn of events, Azad Khan and his people devised a new strategy to complete the fort. The architectural design took inspiration from the grand palaces of Iran, with solid burnt bricks and dome-shaped structures adorning its mighty walls. The construction materials were brought from afar, a distance of 6 kilometres, through the coordination of a human chain, symbolizing the unity and determination of the people.
Inside the fort, a kitchen with three rooms was built, its warmth spreading across the southern wall. Adjacent to the exterior, an Iranian-style anchorage and restrooms for the parade contingents were constructed, a testament to the fort's military might. And in a corner of the fort's eastern side, a magnificent mosque with an arcade-shaped facade rose, its beauty untouched by the passage of time.
A well, nestled in the heart of the fort, quenched the thirst of both warriors and visitors alike. Window motifs adorned the fortress walls, acting as watchful eyes, ever vigilant against any approaching threat. Outside the fortress, forty bustling shops flourished, creating a vibrant hub of trade that connected Kharan with neighbouring lands like Afghanistan and Iran. The fort stood tall, overlooking the entire city, a symbol of strength and resilience.
As the years passed, the fort witnessed the rise and fall of many leaders. After Azad Khan's departure, his son Sardar Nawroz Khan Sherwani utilized the fortress for defence, fortifying its walls against any who dared challenge his tribe's authority. And it was within the very confines of the fort that the last chief of the tribe, Sardar Yaqub Khan Nowsherwani, breathed his last breath, forever becoming a part of the fort's enduring legacy.
Source: Voice of Balochistan