Oct 17, 2008

Pannu Fort Balochistan, Pakistan

This fort, built by the Baloch prince, is located in the Ketch District of Balochistan, Pakistan. The construction of the fort dates back to 6,000-8,000 BC. 
Pannu was the prince of the Makran region and he had fallen in love with a girl from the Bhambore of Sindh. The tragic story of true lovers, full of suspension and nail-biting, related to the prince and princess is narrated as:

Mir Punnu Khan, the son of Mir Aali, son of King Mir Hooth Khan, Ancestor of the Hooths, was a famous Baloch tribe in Balochistan

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Sassi was the daughter of the Raja of Bhambore in Sindh (now in Pakistan). Upon Sassui's birth, astrologers predicted that she was a curse for the royal family’s prestige. The Raja ordered that the child should be put in a wooden box and thrown in the River Indus. A washerman of the Bhambore village found the wooden box and the child in the box. The washerman believed the child was a blessing from God and took her home. As he had no child of his own, he decided to adopt her.

When Sassi became a young girl, she was as beautiful as the fairies of heaven. Stories of her beauty reached Punhun and he became desperate to meet Sassi. The handsome young Prince, therefore, traveled to Bhambor. He sent his clothes to Sassi's father (a washerman) so that he could catch a glimpse of Sassi. When he visited the washerman's house, they fell in love at first sight. Sassui's father was dispirited, hoping that Sassi would marry a washerman and no one else. Sassui's father asked Punhun to prove that he was worthy of Sassui by passing the test as a washerman. Punhun agreed to prove his love. While washing, he tore all the clothes as, being a prince, he had never washed any clothes; he thus failed the agreement. But before he returned those clothes, he hid gold coins in the pockets of all the clothes, hoping this would keep the villagers quiet. The trick worked, and Sassi's father agreed to the marriage.

Punun’s father and brothers were against his marriage to Sassi (Punnu being a prince and she being a washer man's daughter) and so, for their father's sake, Punnu's brothers traveled to Bhambor. First,  they threatened Punhun but when he didn't relent, they tried more devious methods.
Punnun was surprised to see his brothers supporting his marriage and on the first night, they pretended to enjoy and participate in the marriage celebrations and forced Punnu to drink different types of wines. When he was intoxicated they carried him on a camel’s back and returned to their hometown of Kech.

The next morning, when Sassi got up, Sassi realized that she was cheated, she became mad with the grief of separation from her lover and ran barefoot towards the town of Kech Makran. To reach there, she had to cross miles of desert. Alone, she continued her journey until her feet were blistered and her lips were parched from crying "Punnu, Punnu!". The journey was full of dangerous hazards, which lead to her demise. Punhun’s name was on Sassui's lips throughout the journey. She was thirsty, there she saw a shepherd coming out of a hut. He gave her some water to drink. Seeing her incredible beauty, dirty lustful thoughts came into his mind, and he tried to force himself on Sassi. Sassi ran away and prayed to God to hide her and when God listened to her prayers, land shook and split and Sassi found herself buried in the valley of mountains. When Punnu woke he was himself in Makran he could not stop himself from running back to Bhambor. On the way, he called out "Sassui, Sassui!" to which the shepherd replied. The shepherd told Punnu the whole story. Then Punhun also lamented the same prayer, the land shook and split again and he was also buried in the same mountain valley as Sassi. The legendary grave still exists in this valley. 

Sassi Punnu trip - Libra -309931
Shrine of Sassi and Pannu


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