Less than 2 km away from Taj Mahal is Agra Fort, which was the first building project of Akbar. Built between 1565 and 1575, this fort contains the famous Diwan-i-Khas (private court) and Diwan-i-Am (public court). This was also the fort in which Aurangazeb imprisoned Shahjahan. The fort has two gates, the Delhi Gate and Amar Singh Gate. Now workers in the fort have discovered two new gates.
Workers engaged in the fort’s repair discovered the hidden ‘Water Gate’ and the ‘Haathi Gate’ during their restoration work. Historians say that the British who set up their military bases here and made alterations to the fort’s architectural structure had sealed the gates for their own convenience.
Hathi Gate forms one of the four main entrances to the fort, whereas the Water Gate lies hidden between the fort’s wall and a ditch.
“When work was being done from Amar Singh gate to Haathi Ghat gate, all the undergrowth and bushes surrounding it was being cleared. Then two gates namely the water gate and hathi ghat gate were revealed,” said Amarnath Gupta, Conseravation Assistant.
Trade was mainly conducted through the Hathi Gate whereas the existence of the Water Gate has also been acknowledged in historical texts.
It is believed that the gate was operated in times of water crises. Moreover it was also the gateway, which the queens used for boating. [Hidden gateways discovered in Agra fort]