Sheikhupura, on the outskirts of Lahore, derived its name from the nickname of prince Jahangir. It was one of Jahangir's princely dominions during his father Akbar's reign. Just north of Sheikhupura town lies a hunting complex known as the Hiran Minar.
Hunting grounds were an important part of the physical environment of Mughal Emperors, and the Hiran Minar is one of the best known of such sites. Its structure consists of a large, almost-square water tank with an octagonal pavilion in its center, built during the reign of Shah Jahan, a causeway with its own gateway connects the pavilion with the mainland and a 100-foot-high minar, or minaret. At the center of each side of the tank, a brick ramp slopes down to the water, providing access for royal animals and wild game. The minar itself was built by Emperor Jahangir in 1606 to honor the memory of a pet hunting antelope named Mansraj. Besides the antelope's grave, there is a distinctive water collection system in the Minar. At each corner of the tank (approximately 750 by 895 feet in size), is a small, square building and a subsurface water collection system.
The five story fort was built by Emperor Jahangir in 1619 AD. The Fort was constructed by Moein Khan but after his death it was completed under the supervision of Irdat Khan. Rs. 1.5 lac were spent on the construction of this building.
This fort is situated in the South West of the old city. The front door is on the West. In the East there is the shrine of Shah Qaland. There are holes and trelliswork (jallian) on the walls for the sunlight. The front door of the Fort is about 7 inches wide and is very strong. There are about 4 enclosures on the South and North walls. Lime is the basic material which is used in its construction.
It is said that during the Sikh reign, Malayan, who was the wife of Maharajah Ranjeet Singh, built the second story of Fort. Arbail Singh was defeated here by Maharajah Ranjeet Singh and he took possession of all his property. Arbail Singh was behind many of the robbers and dacoit and the people from the city requested Maharajah to help them against Arbail Singh.
Shrine of Shah Jamal
This shrine is located adjacent to Sheikhupura Fort on the North East side. Ganesh Das Wadayrah wrote in his Persian book:
“Near the shrine of Shah Moti also known as Shah Jamal, King Jahangir started a village with his name and made the surrounding a hunting place.”
This quotation shows that in the era of Mughal Emperor Jahangir (1605-1627) this shrine was there. In December 1972, the shrine was transferred to the Department of Charitable Endowment. His anniversary takes place on the 2nd Thursday of Har (Punjabi year). There are four graves in the South.
Shrine of Waris Shah
A few kilometers beyond Hiran Minar is the historical village of Jandiala Sher Khan a birthplace of poet Waris Shah, the author of the Punjabi Classic 'Heer'. Besides the newly constructed mausoleum of the poet, there are a few historical buildings worth seeing in the village. Waris Shah was born in Jandiala Sher Khan in a Syed family. His father’s name was Gul Sher Shah. Waris Shah’s specialty was the poem Heer. Many poets have written it in the Mugals reign but he became the legend after rewriting Heer in Punjabi in 1766. The motive behind this poem was his love for a beautiful Hindu woman. He died in 1798. Shrine of Waris Shah is located in village Jandiala Sher Khan at a distance of 15 kilometers form Sheikhupura at Kasha roadside. Adjacent to this Shrine is the tank whose water is considered sacred by some classes of the people. An annual festival is held in July to mark the Urs of this Sufi Poet and the event is a major attraction in the area that attracts thousands of his devotees.