Bala Hissar Gate, leading to City [of Kabul].
Photographer: Bengal Sappers and Miners
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Bala Hissar Gate, leading to city of Kabul, taken by the Bengal Sappers and Miners, an engineering arm of the Indian Army during the course of the Second Anglo-Afghan War (1878-80) in c.1879. Home to some of Afghanistan’s most important kings, the Bala Hissar is an ancient citadel, dating back to the time of the White Huns in the 5th century. It is located to the south of Kabul in a prominent position overlooking the city. The fortress was originally divided into two parts, the lower fortress contained three royal palaces, stables and barracks and the upper fortress housed the armoury and dungeon of Kabul. In the 19th century the British were engaged in conflicts with Afghanistan due to British fear of Russian encroachment on their Indian colony and internal divisions within Afghanistan. The Bala Hissar was occupied intermittently by the British and was partially destroyed by General Roberts in retaliation for the killing of the British resident, Cavagnari and his mission in 1879.