Courtesy: Daily Times
KARACHI: The Sindh Culture Department has allocated Rs 100 million for the construction of a cultural complex at the ruins of Moomal je Mari in Mirpur Mathelo town in district Ghotki, a place that is associated with the legendary love story of Moomal and Rano – which is also one of the seven Soormis to whom Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai had paid rich tribute to in his poetry.
The proposed cultural complex at Moomal je Mari site would be constructed on five acres of land and there would be a museum, library, art gallery, auditorium and a handicraft centre for women.
For the first time, the site of Moomal je Mari has been given importance. The Sindh government had carried out evacuation work at the site a few years ago and the experts had estimated that the ruins could be around two centuries old.
A legendary myth is associated with the site that there existed a river name Kak as big as the Indus River. It was on the edges of that river where princess Moomal lived. Her father, King Raja Nand, was ruling a state where today Mirpur Mathelo was located. He had nine daughters, out of whom Moomal was the most beautiful and her sister Soomal the most intelligent. During a hunt, the king found a magical tusk of a wild bore with which he could enter the river and hide his treasure.
But a magician came to his palace and Moomal have him the tusk. Moomal and Soomal then had to leave the palace to escape the king’s wrath and built a magical palace, where she met Rano Mahandro.
Suitors from all over were enchanted by Moomal’s great beauty, but she spurned them all.
Mahendro, the prince of Amarkot, was also attracted to her and bribed her maid into revealing the secret entrance to the princess’ palace. He managed to win her heart, and they became lovers.
After a misunderstanding both of them committed suicide. The tragic love story became a folk story and Bhittai praised them in his poetry.
There are three sites associated with the story, one in Mirpur Mathelo and others in Moomal jo Bharo in district Umerkot and Jaisalmer in India.
“In the next phase, we are planning to conduct an in-depth research to ascertain the real history,” said Sindh Culture Minister Sassui Palijo.
She said the project was a part of the ongoing scheme for constructing cultural complexes at ancient sites of the province.
The culture department has so far allocated funds for the construction of cultural complexes in different districts including Mirpurkhas, Umerkot, Mithi, Benazirabad (former Nawabshah district) and an open-air theatre in Larkana. The department has also planned to open arts councils in Khairpur, Sanghar and Sukkur districts next year.