The history of Multan is as ancient as the history of human beings. The antiquity of Multan cannot only easily absorb the history of Pakistan and India but also the history of the world. Hundreds and thousands of cities like Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa dwelled and ruined but the elderly city of Multan remained thousands of years ago and still lives.
Many unsuccessful invaders came to destroy the city and turn it into ashes but neither of them succeeded in their efforts and no one even remembers them but the great city of Multan is still there and will remain there by the grace of Almighty Allah.
Hazrat Bahauddin Zikaria (RA) praises the city of Multan in a very incredible manner relating it to a place like paradise. He himself was a great noble man of Islam and took part in many religious activities during his stay here. Hindus were on top in Hazrat’s tenure and many of the temples were participating in Hindu religious activities.
But being impressed by the attitude and behavior of the Muslims and Sufis of Multan they also adopted Islam. Hazrat founded an institution for religious education named Madrisat-ul-Islamia, which has now become Bahauddin Zikaria University and is considered to be one of the best universities worldwide.
River Ravi once flowed in the base of the ancient fort of Multan and once it was recognized as a port as well. Multan was easily accessible via boats from not only Sukkur and Bhakkar but also from Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Kabul, Delhi and Deccan. This helped the city of Multan to gain educational, religious and vocational status at international level and from this region Islam not only reached India but also the world over.
Multan was actually glorified in the Islamic reign when a young knight named Muhammad Bin Qasim in 712 emerged victorious. He populated approximately 10,000 Arabs here and also built a mosque. The famous writer and scholar Al-Bairuni also came here in Qasim’s era and spent five years of his life here. He wrote a book named Al-Haz in which he specifically discussed about the culture and heritage of Multan.
Multan has developed a lot after the declaration of Islamic Republic of Pakistan. The old city is limited inside the six doors with its old bazaars and streets. The six gates are Delhi Gate, Lohari Gate, Harm Gate, Paak Gate, Bohar Gate and Dollat Gate.
The old city was very congested and hence there was no option except to demolish and rebuild the architecture with modern design. However, the external areas of the city have expanded a lot. The Cantonment area has beautified and modernized. The lakes and garden also add to the grace of the city. The mother tongue of Multan is Siraiki.