Through the Hyderabad Municipal Maps
City of Hyderabad within the fortified wall
The city was surrounded by a stone wall flanked with bastions. The city wall was erected during the last days of Subadarship Mubariz Khan Imadul Mulk, the last Mughal Governor. Initially, the construction started from Chadarghat gate to Dabirpura gate with stone and mortar without turret-parapets. The rest of the wall surmounted by the turret-parapets was done by Asaf Jah I. Later it was extensively repaired by Bahadur Dil Khan Shuja-ud-Daula, governor of Hyderabad during the reign of Asaf Jah II. The city wall had 13 gates (Darwaza) and 13 Khirkis (posterns). These 13 gates were Chadarghat Darwaza, Delhi gate, Afzal Ganj Gate, Champa, Old Bridge (Narva) gate, Dudh Bauli gate, Aliabad gate, Lal Gate, Gaulipura, Ghazibanda or Fateh, Mir Jumla, Yakutpura, and Dabirpura gates. And, 13 doors (Khirki) were Borah Khirki, Mir Jumla Khirki, Matha Khirki, Rangeli or Rangali Shah Khirki, Bodla Khirki, Darushshifa Khirki, Kalala Khirki, Dhobi Khirki, Hasan Ali Khirki, Champa gate Khirki, Char Mahal Khirki, Dudh Bauli Khirki, Khirki of Kahar.
Few years after the foundation of the city, Muhammed Quli Qutb Shah built a rectangular building with four minarets, hence called Char Minar in 1594. Four roads meet the structure are Purana Pul Road in the west and Panj Mahla in the south, while Charminar Road on the north and Maidan Chauk Road in the east clearly visible.
To the south of Purana Pul Road as well as west of Panja Mahla Road lies Makka Masjid. A grand building with arches and minaret commissioned by Muhammad Qutb Shah in 1617 under the supervision of Darogah Mir Faizullah Beg and Chaudhari Rangaiyah or Hunarmand Khan with the help of around 8000 masons and laborers. The construction work continued during the reigns of Abdullah Qutb Shah and Abul Hasan Tana Shah. The work completed by the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb after 77 years. Interestingly, two entrance to the Makka Masjid can be seen on the map.
Gosha Mahal Hauz
Gosha Mahal Hauz, was originally a palace built by the Sultan Abdullah Qutb Shah in 1627 A.D, but it was completed by Abul Hasan Tana Shah, last ruler from Qutb Shahi Dynasty. At the time of its erection, the structure consisted of 1000 halls. Interestingly, the palace was actually used as a resort for the royal ladies, hence, it is said that the name of Gosha (secluded) was given to the building. But, nothing survives today except the guest house called Baradari and a housing lodge which Nizam was given to the Freemasons. It was during the last siege of Golconda Fort by Aurangzeb the palace was destroyed almost and even Prince Shah Alam had also been encamped at Gosha Mahal. Moreover, it is said that there had a subterranean passage even connected to Golconda.
The construction of Masahiba Tank is attributed to the Qutub Shahi reign. Masahiba Tank presently known as Masab Tank evolved out of Ma Saheba, the title popularly attributed to Hayat Bakshi Begum, wife of Muhammed Qutb Shah VI. An inscription on the tank attributed the construction of the Tank to the Khanum Agha, mother of Muhammed Qutb Shah VI. Also, the title of Ma Saheba was applied to all the queen mothers of Qutub Shahi rules were in practice.
Hussain Sagar Tank
The Hussain Sagar Tank was constructed by the Ibrahim Qutub Shah, the fourth Qutub Shahi Sultan in 1562 A.D for the purpose of solving drinking water issue. Initially, its name was Ibrahim Sagar, but Since the construction was supervised by his son-in-law namely Hussain Shah Wali, who was then the superintendent of Public Works, people began to refer it as Hussain Sagar. It says that when Sultan came to know that Tank was popularly known as Hussain Sagar, immediately he constructed another tank known as Ibrahimpatnam Tank. Until 1925, the Hussain Sagar Tank served as the source of drinking water to the then suburbs Khariatabad and Saifabad. Since the Tank covered an area of 21 K.M, the Bund lies between Hyderabad and Secunderabad. Now the water body is no longer in use due to the pollution. The Tank fed by a canal runs about km in length diverted from the river Musi.
Badshahi Ashur Khana
Badshahi Ashur Khana, known as the Royal Ashur Khana, was built by Sultan Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah in 1596 A.D. Ashur Khana literally means 'a house of the 10th day of Muharram or Shiite house of mourning'. A mourning place for Shias during Muharram festival constructed in the memory of Imam Hussain. There are many Ashur Khanas identifiable in the city of Hyderabad, and construction of those are traceable back to the Golconda Sultanate, indeed, indicate the Shiite affiliation of Qutb Shahis. Apart from these, a canal diverted from the river Musi for the distribution of water, graves of people belongs to the Muslim community, and temples are visible on the map.
The Purana Pul Bridge connect city to the suburbs of Karwan
The Purana Pul Bridge, also known as Old Bridge was built by the Muhammed Quli Qutb Shah in 1593 A.D. The Bridge built of stone and styled with 26 arches. According to the legend, when his son Sultan Muhammad Quli fell in love with Bhagmati, hurried once to cross the River Musi to meet her on an occasion. The overflow of the river did not discourage him from crossing the river on horseback. Sultan Ibrahim Qutb Shah was informed of this venture and who immediately ordered to build a bridge over it. Later, during the reign of Nawab Sikandar Jah, the bridge was reconstructed following the flood of 1820 A.D and again repaired extensively after the flood of 1908 by sixth Nizam Mir Mahbub Ali Khan, the then masonry walls were replaced by railings of pierced Ashlar. Thus Purana Pul gave an idea and opened the way to the planned city of Hyderabad also. The plan was drawn up under Muhammad Quli along with the provisions for shops, caravanserais, and other public facilities. Hence we can note that, Purana Pul is older than Hyderabad.
Purani Idgah (the ground or structure constructed for the congregational prayer during two Eid celebrations) dates back to the 17th century, the period of Sultan Muhammad Qutb Shah. The peculiar feature is its amazing two pillars which has the resemblance to the Charminar. It was in 1806, Abul Qasim Khan Mir Alam, popularly known as Mir Alam Bahadur, then the Prime Minister of Nawab Sikandar Jah Bahadur, Asaf Jah III, built a New Idgah near Mir Alam Tank, since then this existing Idgah came to be called as Purani Idgah.
The Dar-ush-Shifa hospital, the oldest one established by Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah in 1595 A.D, was where medicine had been provided at free of cost. The building had consisted of quadrangular courtyard paved with stone and special chambers for the accommodation of travelers and sick persons. Later, the building was in ruined condition and even used as a barrack for irregular troops.
Maps from the collection of Prshant K. Lahoti, and Karen Leonard
Online curation: Fareeda Farsana.E