A popular local adage goes “If you have not seen Lahore, you are not born”, hence the World Bank Managing Director Sri Mulyani Indrawati started her visit on Sunday from the country’s second-largest city and capital of its most populous province, Punjab. With a living history of over 1000 years, Lahore’s Androon Shehr (Inner or Walled City) serves as the city’s historic core and forms a part of Pakistan’s rich cultural heritage. As a link to the shared history of the countries of South Asia, Lahore has served as the capital of the Mughal and Sikh Empires, and then a major administrative center of colonial India. The Walled City also serves as a site of a World Bank-assisted project that helped the provincial government restore neighborhoods along a heritage trail, the Shahi Guzargah (Royal Trail), while uplifting livelihoods of the community living there.
Among the many historical gems to which the old part of Lahore is home, the most impressive are the Mughal-era monuments of Badshahi Mosque and the Lahore Fort. Indrawati was impressed with the traditional design and workmanship at both the heritage sites.