Phul Fort is near Bahtinda in Punjab.
Built by Baba Phul in 1712, this fort has been through quite the transformation over the years. Emperors Hamir Singh and Bharpoor Singh put their stamp on it, and even the British got in on the action by spending a pretty penny on ornamentation. But as time went on, the fort was sadly forgotten and left to crumble.
Now, the fort is a shadow of its former self. The gates have been closed for a couple of years and the structure is falling apart. The Market Committee has set up some stalls outside the gates, and even installed a power transformer. Inside, the old Baradari of the emperors is now being used as an office for the Block Development and Panchayat. The old kitchen and tombs are neglected and the wooden doors have been attacked by pests.
But the Phul Fort isn’t just a pile of rubble. It’s the birthplace of the Phulkian states (Patiala, Jind, Nabha) and has the potential to be a tourist hotspot. Sadly, it seems that no one is willing to step up and preserve it, not even the Archeological Survey of India or the state Tourism Department.
It’s a shame that this fort has been left to decay, but don’t let that stop you from visiting. The Phul Fort may not be in its prime, but it’s still worth exploring for a glimpse into the past. Plus, you might just bump into an elderly local who’ll regale you with tales of the fort’s glory days.