Kusak Fort is a historic fort in the scenic Jhangar Valley of Choa Saiden Shah. This fort was built in the 11th century by Raja Jodh who was the son of the legendary Janjua Sultan, Raja Mall Khan Janjua. Kusak Fort is almost 48km away to the south of Chakwal city and 25km to the southern-east of Kallar Kahar.
History of Kusak Fort
Kusak Fort was built on 13 acres and at the peak of a mountain which is now known as Jodh mountain. While constructing the fort, Raja Jodh kept in mind the constant threats of invasions from the west. The fort was built with the local red stone and the soil. On the premises of the fort a palace for the king was constructed plus 70 houses were also constructed for the army. This fort had two ponds for storing water and there were two large gates at the northern site. Raja Jodh also built temples for his soldiers as majority of them were Hindus. A 370 feet high large wall was also constructed all around the fort.
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Salt Range was an ideal route for the rulers from Iran, Afghanistan and Turkey to invade therefore the Kusak sate was attacked on regular basis. The rulers of Kusak state tried their best to defend their motherland either by fighting the invaders or by making alliance with them. Kusak was hit badly when Jalaluddin Feroz Shah Khilji (the first king of Khilji dynasty in India) attacked it in 1290 AD. Khilji defeated the Janjua Rajputs and they were forced to relocated themselves. With the passage of time they re-established their hold once again. In 1398 AD was on the verge of destruction when Amir Taimur marched towards Kusak but then the ruler of the state along with the sardars of Janjua tribe assured the invader that they will provide all sorts of support in conquering Delhi. After the assurances, Amir Taimur decided not to harm anyone and spared the fort from attack.
Janjua Rajputs saw worst of the times in 1810 when the Sikh Emperor Maharaja Ranjit Singh besieged the fort. Sultan Fateh Muhammad Khan, the then king of Kusak state gave very tough time to Ranjit Singh. They fought with the Sikh emperor for six months and kept them at bay. But the half an year long siege badly affected the inhabitants of Kusak Fort as they ran short of basic necessities of life i.e. food and water. With no other option in sight, the Sultan decided to relocate his tribe to Haranpur and the tribe stayed there for 40 years. The Sultan died in Haranpur in 1830 while his family returned to their motherland in 1850.
How to reach Kusak Fort?
Kusak Fort is almost 160km away from Islamabad. You can take Islamabad-Lahore M2 Motorway route to first reach Chakwal city. Then you need head towards tehsil Choa Saiden Shah by taking Chakwal road. Few kilometres before Choa Saiden Shah you have take Basharat road which will lead you towards Kusak Fort.
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