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Guru Nanak Gurdwaras in Gurdaspur District

dalvinder45

SPNer
Jul 22, 2023
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Guru Nanak Gurdwaras in Gurdaspur District
Dr. Dalvinder Sigh Grewal

The District of Gurdaspur is situated in Punjab State of Northwestern India surrounded by District Kathua of Jammu and Kashmir State in the North, District Hoshiarpur in the Southeast, Districts Chamba and Kangra of Himachal Pradesh State in the Northeast, District Kapurthala in the South, District Amritsar in the Southwest and Pakistan in the Northwest. . It is 3569 Sq. Km. in area. It is The City of Gurdaspur is the Headquarter of this District.

Gurdaspur was founded in the begining of 17th Century by Guriya ji a resident of Village Paniar situated 5 miles North of Gurdaspur. He purchased land for Gurdaspur from farmers of Sangi Caste. This District is famous for manufacturing Machine tools and Woolen products. It has been divided into 5 Tehsils and 10 Sub-Tehsils – Tehsils – Batala , Dera Baba Nanak , Gurdaspur , Pathankot , Dhar KalanSub-Tehsils – Bamyal , Dhariwal , Kahnuwan , Kalanaur , Narot Jaimal Singh , Qadian , Sri Hargobindpur , Dina Nagar , Naushehra Majha Singh , Fatehgarh Churian.

Gurdaspur has been the key centre of Guru Nanak’s activity once he settled in Kartarpur Sahib which earlier was a part of Gurdaspur district but now is in Pakistan. Area around Pakhoke where Guru’s family had settled and where Guru Nanak meditated have been plaves of pilgrimages. Following Gurdwaras I present Gurdspur District commemorate Guru Nanak’s visit.

  • Gurdwara Darbar Saib Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur
  • Dehra Sahib Batala
  • Kandh Sahib Batala
  • Fallahi Sahib Wadala Granthian
  • Gurdwara Achal Sahib District Gurdaspur
  • Gurdwara Guru ka Baag, Kathiala, Dera Baba Nanak District Gurdaspur
  • Gurdwara, Thada sahib, Kathiala, Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur
  • Gurdwara, Gosht Asthan, Kathiala, Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur
  • Gurdwara Guru Nanak Dev ji, Kiri Afghana, Batala, District Gurdaspur
Dera Baba Nanak, District Gurdaspur

Dera Baba Nanak is located in Gurdaspur District of Punjab, India. It is 36 km away from Gurdaspur city. 50 kms from Sri Amritsar KM and 30 Kms from Batala.[1][2] Dera Baba Nanak has been visited by Three famous Gurudwaras at Dera Baba Nanak are Sri Darbar Sahi, Sri Chola Sahib [3] [4] and Tahli Sahib (Gurudwara of Baba Sri Chand ji) eldest son of Guru Nanak, the first Sikh Guru. Guru Nanak,[3] the first Sikh Guru settled and is believed to had become one with the Almighty near the village Pakhoke Mehmaran, opposite to the present town and named it Kartarpur - a town which lies over the border in Pakistan.[5] The Bedis (Khatris),[3] descendants of Guru Nanak built a new town and named it Dera Baba Nanak after their ancestor. It is an ancient city of the time of Guru Nanak. \

Dera Baba Nanak being situated only 1 km from India-Pakistan border, Gurdwara Kartarpur Sahib on Pakistan side across Ravi can be seen from the border with naked eyes at a distance of about 4-5 kms from Dera Baba Nanak. Pilgrims come to this holy town in large numbers. Since November 2019, a corridor between India and Pakistan has been established at its shrine. Before the corridor came the pilgrims used to see Gurdwara Darbar Sahib at Kartarpur across the border of Pakistan through telescope. Now the Kartarpur corridor in the area of Dera Baba Nanak has been created for the visitors to go to Kartarpur Sahib and the town forms part of the Kartarpur Corridor.

The town was established later in about 25 acres of land by Baba Manak Chand ji and Baba Mihar Chand ji, grandsons of Baba Lakhmidas ji, on whose names the main markets here are known. After Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Guru Angad Devji, Guru Amardas Ji, Guru Arjan Dev Ji and Guru Hargobind Ji visited this place. Famous Gurudwaras at Dera Baba Nanak are Sri Darbar Sahib,Thada sahib, Sri Chola Sahib[6] and Tahli Sahib (Gurudwara of Baba Sri Chand ji) eldest son of Guru Nanak.[3][6][7] The first Sikh Guru settled and is believed to have joined eternal light with the Almighty" near the village Pakhoke Mehmaran, opposite to the present town and named it Kartarpur - a town which lies over the border in Pakistan.5] Dera Baba Nanak is a tehsil headquarters [3]. The Bedis (Khatris),[3] descendants of Guru Nanak built a new town and named it Dera Baba Nanak after their ancestor. Dera Baba Nanak is a historical town and has many lanes and houses that have been preserved since the time of Guru Nanak.

Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Dera Baba Nanak, District Gurdaspur
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Gurudwara Sri Darbar Sahib

Gurudwara Sri Darbar Sahib was built in commemoration of vsit and stay of Guru Nanak in Dera Baba Nanak. He came here after his first Udasi (tour) during December 1515 AD to see members of his family. His wife Mata Sulakkhani [6] and his two sons Sri Chand [7] and Lakhmi Chand had come to stay here in their maternal home at Pakho-Ke-Randhawa [3] [8]near Dera Baba Nanak, where Lala Mool Chand, father–in–law of Guru Nanak, was working as a Patwari.[9] Dera Baba Nanak was made the headquarter of newly created Tehsil of Dera Baba Nanak. Two famous Gurudwaras commemorating Guru Nanak’s visit to the place are Sri Darbar Sahib and Sri Chola Sahib where garment (Chola) of Guru Nanak are preserved at Gurudwara Sri Chola Sahib. Gurudwara Sri Darbar Sahib was built in commemoration of Sri Guru Nanak Dev. Guru Nanak used to meditate on by the well called "Ajita Randhawa da khooh" Guru Ji usd to have discussions with Ajita Randhawa at this place. Guru Nanak spent the last days of his temporal life at Gurdwara Dera Baba Nanak location. Guru Nanak dev Ji used to stay with a Sikh Sadharan who had some thatched hut and in one Guru Nanak Dev Ji used to meditate.[15] Guru Nanak DevJi finally settled at Kartarpur 4 kms from Dera Baba Nanak and later joined the eterenal light.

Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji came here and did kirtan at time of death of Baba Dharam Chand Ji (Grand Son of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji). This place was also visited by Sri Guru Angad Dev Ji, Sri Guru Amar Das Ji and Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji.(12)(13) During the late 1800's, Maharaja Ranjit Singh provided a copper gilded throne to the Gurdwara and got its canopy covered with marble.

The shrine is in the centre of the town and comprises three separate memorials. The well which originally belonged to Bhai Ajita Randhava still exists and is reverently called Sarji Sahib. Pilgrims take home its water in the belief that it possesses curative properties. The second memorial is the "Kirtan Asthan", a rectangular hall, which marks the site where Guru Arjan listened to Kirtan when visiting Dera Baba Nanak to condole the death of Baba Dharam Das. The Guru Granth Sahib is seated in the hall.[10]

Gurdwara Shri Chola Sahib Dera Baba Nanak
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Gurdwara Chola Sahib Dera Baba Nanak

The Chola, or the cloak of Baba Nanak, is the holiest relic of the Guru and is preserved in Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur District of the Punjab. This is a cloak which Nanak wore in his life-time and it is considered so sacred that his immediate followers took every care to keep it safe. The regard and reverence rendered to the Chola by the Sikh community is a testimony to the authenticity of the cloak. The Chola was handed down by Nanak himself and has come down to our times in its original condition. It is commonly alleged that verses from different scriptures in different languages are written on the Chola. But this is not true. The verses chosen for writing on the Chola are quotations from the Holy and Quran as revealed by photographs recently taken.
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Inner view of sanctum sanctorum Gurdwara Chola Sahib Dera Baba Nanak. At this place Guru Nanak’s robe presented to him in Iraq is preserved. Along with this are the handkerchief embroidered by Bebe Nanaki at the time of Guru Nanak’s marriage, Chaur Sahib received along with Chola Sahib and the Rumala presented by General Hari Singh Nalwa. The Gurdwara has been under the control of Bedi family. [9]

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Chola sahib of Guru Nanak Dev Ji
Though Guru Nanak had not visited the place but his belongings are preserved at the place; one of them is Chola Sahib, the most revered among the local Sikhs. Dhanna Singh Chehal in his biography has recorded some details about it .(15) “This Chola Sahib was presented to Guru Nanak during his visit to Iraq which Guru Nanak used to wear in Iraq considering it as a presentation from a devotee attached to God. TheKing of Iraq Lajbarad tried to get the chola back from Guru Nanak but could not get it and became Guru Nanak’s follower when the Guru gave guided him to the true Lord and the path of truth. After returning from Iran Guru Nanak gve this chola to Guru Angad it passed on to Fifth Guru in sequence. When Guru Arjan Dev Ji was getting Saovar at Sri Harmandir Sahib constructed, Tota Ram a resident of village Shahan near Bukhara, who was involved in dirging the sarovar was wounded his foot with the spade with which he was digging. He tore a piece of cloth from his turban and tied his wounded. Guru Arjan Dev Ji asked him to return to his village, rest and get treated as his services have been duly acknolweldged. Tota Ram prayed saying, Guru ji, here I am able to see you daily but when I go home I would not get this opportunity”. Guru Arjan Dev Ji took the Chola Sahib and gave it to him saying, “This Chola belongs to Guru nanak dev Ji. By seeing thi you will have my darshan.” He enquired,” Once I die, how this Chola will be preserved?” Guru Arjan dev Ji said, “You leave it at a proper place and it will be found out with the blessings of Guru Nanak.” Before dying Tota ram kept the Chola in a cave and covered it with a heavy stone. Later a Sikh Qabli Mal had a dream if this Chola. He went to Tots Ram‘s place and found the place where this Chola was kept. He removed the heavy stone after due meditation on Gurus and bani and took out the Chola A Paras stone wa lso found with the Chola which Qabuli Mal kept with him. Qabli Mal Bedi brought this chola on 17 Falgun after it was for 17 years at Tota Ram’s location. This day a large fair is held at gurudwara Chola Sahib. This chola has been preserved by Bedis ever since in a separate gurdwara. Colour of Chola is brown (gora) as that of Guru Nanak. There are two lage roundals one in the front and the other in the back which have astronomical figures in them in number of languages.. The writing is black. The roundels have red outlines. A handkerchief having been embroidered with human figures by Bebe Nanak is attached to it. This handkerchief came to a Bedi from Bebe Nanaki. Front nd back appear to be the same. It colour is also the same as that of Chola. Bedis then ties this handkerchief to the Chola. Chola sahib is open to visitors all the time, hence it has large income.[15]

There are two gurdwaras named Chola Sahib one maintained by SGPC and the other by Bedis. When Akalis took over Gurdwaras, Bedis kept kept Chola sahib with them and made a separate gurdwara. These days Chola Sahib is in this Gurdwara. A large fair is held everyyear on 22, 23 Falgun where large donation s are collected by Bedis.

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Gurdwara Chola Sahib
Gurdwara Chola Sahib, in the eastern part of the town, is connected with a relic a chola, or cloak, believed to have been presented to Guru Nanak by a Muslim devotee at Baghdad

Gurdwara Thada Sahib
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Gurdwara Thada Sahib is the place where Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji held a series of important discussions with Baba Ajita Randhawa, after returning from his first preaching tour or Udasi in 1515.

The third memorial is the central shrine, called Thada Sahib. This marks the 'thada' or platform, on which Guru Nanak had sat when he first came to Ajitta's well and later Baba Sri Chand buried his father's ashes. Gurudwara Thada Sahib was constructed where Guru Ji held discussion with Ajita Randhawa. Following this discussion Ajit Randhawa became Guru’s devout follower. After Guru Nanak having joined the eternal light the pot containing Guru’s ashes was buried in Kartarpur Sahib but when the Ravi was flooded Baba Sri Chand took the pot of ashes from there and buried it here at the place now known as Thada Sahib. [7]

The Guru Granth Sahib is seated here in a small square pavilion with a pinnacled lotus dome under an overhanging gilded canopy. The whole pavilion is covered with gold-plated metal sheets with some of the hymns of Guru Nanak embossed on them. The 'Thara sahib' is at one end of a recently constructed spacious hall, above which, over the sanctum, is a square domed room with an ornamental arched coping and domed kiosks at the corners. The entire exterior above the roof level of this room is covered with gold-plated metal sheets. The goldwork on top as well as on the sanctum was got executed in 1827 by Maharaja Ranjit Singh, who also made endowments in cash and land for the maintenance of the shrine. A handwritten copy of the Guru Granth Sahib is preserved in this Gurdwara. It has 1660 pages, each page having a handsomely illuminated border.[7]
The Gurdwara is administered by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) through a local committee. Special divans take place on every amavasya, the last day of the dark half of the lunar month, and all major anniversaries, especially the one marking the death of Guru Nanak, are observed. But the most important annual event is the fair celebrating the Baisakhi festival. (14)(15)

Reference
1. Dera Baba Nanak
2. Dera Baba Nanak Municipal Council City Population Census 2011-2023 | Punjab
3. "Shri Darbar Sahib Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
4."Kartarpur Sahib Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
5. Gurdwara Dera Baba Nanak - SikhiWiki, free Sikh encyclopedia.
6. "Gallery Dera Baba nanak". derababananak.com.
7. "Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
8. "Kartarpur Sahib Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
9 Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, Gurdwara Darbar Saib Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur,Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, Punjab October 2019, p.87
10. "Chola Sahib Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
11. https://www.nativeplanet.com/gurdaspur/attractions/thada-sahib/#overview
12. www.prakashpurb550.mha.gov.in
13. HistoricalGurudwaras.com, a Journey to Historical Gurudwara Sahibs
14. Gurdwara Dera Baba Nanak - SikhiWiki, free Sikh encyclopedia.
15. Dhanna Singh Chehal,Gur Tirath Cycle Yatra, (20 November 1931) , p. 339
 
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dalvinder45

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Jul 22, 2023
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Batala

Batala, a tehsil Headquarters of Gurdaspur district is a famous industrial city on Amritsar-Gurdaspur Road. The marriage of Guru Nanak in this place has made it special for the Sikh sangat where three Gurdwaras commemorate the events related to Guru Nanak at Batala. Gurdwara Dera Sahib is the marriage place of Guru Nanak. Gurdwara Kandh Sahib is at the place where Guru Nanak was seated under a kutcha wall before going for final ceremony of marriage and Gudwara in Wadala Granthian where he plnted a wooden brush (datan) of Falahi which has sproted into a lrge tree and the Gurdwara constructed there is kown as Fallahi sahib
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Batala, the main city of district Gurdaspur, which is also known as an industrial city. It has the honor of being the in-law family of Guru Nanak Sahib. Apart from this, three shrines related to the marriage of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji and his religious wife Bibi Sulakhni Ji exit in Batala. Gurdwara Dehra Sahib, Gurdwara Kandha Sahib, Gurdwara Falahi Sahib related to the marriage of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji and Mata Sulakhni Ji are the center of faith for the Sangat.

Gurdwara Sri Dera Sahib Batala
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Gurdwara Sri Dera Sahib Batala
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Painting depicting marriage of guru nanak and SulakhniJi
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Thada sahib Gurdwara Sri Dera Sahib Batala
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Gurudwara Sri Dehra Sahib, Batala, also known as Viah Asthan Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji, marks the house where Mool Chand father of Mata Sulakhni Ji lived and where the marriage nuptials of Guru nanak with Sulakhni Ji were performed. It is situated along a narrow lane called Gali Dehra Sahib between Tibba Bazar and Bara Bazar. Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji had travelled to Batala to marry Bibi Sulakhani in 1487. Gurdwara Sri Dera Sahib Batala is said to be the home of Mool Chand father of Bibi Sulakhani where the wedding took place. Guru Nanak and his bride took four rounds instead of the prescribed seven around the sacred fire. It is said that he also spoke a few words at the ceremony. Unfortunately, these words were not duly recorded and nothing has been written regarding Bibi Sulakhani's thoughts or sentiments on the subject. This place is now called Gurdwara Dehra Sahib. It is to be mentioned here that the recognition of Gurdwara Sri Dehra Sahib started only after the marriage of Guru Sahib. First during the Lodhi period and later during the Mughal period, Mool Chand Khatri's house which was called 'Moole da Dera' always remained a holy place for Nanak Naam Lewa Sangat. During the era of misals, when the Batala of Ramgarhia and Ghanhaiyya misals reigned supreme, Guru Ji's marriage was celebrated with great devotion every year at Sri Dehra Sahib.

In his later days, Mool Chand shifted back to his native Village, Pakhoke Randhave, and his house in Batala became a holy shrine for the Sikhs. Sri Gur Pratap Suraj Granth mentions that Guru Hargobind, at the time of the wedding of his son, Baba Gurditta, visited this house. It continued to be in private possession until taken over by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee in 1921-22. A civil suit filed by the original occupants ended in the early forties by an agreement, out of court, under which the plaintiff, Mahant Harbans Singh, surrendered his right of ownership on receipt of appropriate compensation for the property attached to the Gurdwara. Gurudwara Sri Dehra Sahib is situated in the middle of Batala town of Gurdaspur district in the back of Gurudwara Sri Kandh Sahib. Gurudwara Sri Dehra Sahib, Guru Nanak Dev ji's marriage was performed. [1]

Kandh sahib
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Gurdwara Kandh Sahib, Batala, District Gurdaspur

Another memorial of Guru Sahib's marriage is Gurdwara Sri Kandha Sahib where Guru Sahib's Barat took place. The mud wall near which Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji stopped at the time of Barat remained standing for centuries. Only a few people of Batala city knew about that wall and they used to worship that wall with devotion. Even till 1948, this mud wall stood steadfast with an opening. It should also be mentioned here that this holy wall is the oldest wall of the city of Batala and when King Ramdeo Bhatti laid the foundation of the city of Batala in 1465, it was also one of the walls of the first houses built at that time.Gurudwara Shri Kandh Sahib is situated in the middle of Batala Town of Gurdaspur Distt. When Guru Nanak Dev Ji came this town to get married in 1544 along with Baraat he ws made ti sit on the stage close to a wall (Kandh). An old lady asked Guru Ji to get up from there, as the wall can fall any time. But Guru Ji smiled at lady and told her that this wall will remain for centuries and will be witness of there marriage.
Gurudwara Shri Kandh Sahib is situated in the middle of Batala Town of Gurdaspur Distt. Gurdwara Sri Kandh Sahib was built at the place where the marriage party of Sri Guru Nanak Sahib Ji rested before the wedding took place. Mool Chand (Guru Nanak's father-in-law) arranged for the priests to discuss the exact marriage rituals to be followed with the Guru. The Guru was sitting besides a crooked mud wall (kandh) discussing the marriage plans with the brahmin clergy. As the wall was damaged and in a poor state, and there had been recent rains, some in the bride's party thought that it may fall on top of the Guru. An elderly lady was asked by the bride's family to warn Guru Nanak about the danger. The old woman approached the Guru and warned him of the pending danger from the damaged wall. Guru Nanak just smiled and said "Mata Ji, ehh kand sadeeya layah nehee digdee..." - "This wall will not fall for a long time. The will of God shall prevail." The wall so consecrated by the Guru became an object of veneration for Sikhs who also constructed a memorial platform near it. A symbolic mud wall, neatly plastered, 3 x 5 x 1.5 feet approximately, encased in glass, next to the Guru Granth Sahib at the ground floor, now represents the original wall. It is to be mentioned here that the recognition of Gurdwara Sri Dehra Sahib started only after the marriage of Guru Sahib. First during the Lodhi period and later during the Mughal period, Mul Chand Khatri's house which was called 'Mule da Dera' always remained a holy place for Nanak Naam Lewa Sangat. During the era of misals, when the Batala of Ramgarhia and Ghanhaiyya misals reigned supreme, Guru Ji's marriage was celebrated with great devotion every year at Sri Dehra Sahib. The mud wall near which Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji stopped at the time of Barat remained standing for centuries. Only a few people of Batala city knew about that wall and they used to worship that wall with devotion. Even till 1948, this mud wall stood steadfast with an opening. It should also be mentioned here that this holy wall is the oldest wall of the city of Batala and when King Ramdeo Bhatti laid the foundation of the city of Batala in 1465, it was also one of the walls of the first houses built at that time.

Construction of Gurdwara Sri Kandh Sahib: According to history and investigative journalist Inderjit Singh Harpura, the house of an elderly Mai Jamna Devi of Batala city was right next to the Versailles wall of Guru Sahib and this hole in the wall was also owned by Mai Jamna Devi. Mai Jamana Devi had also heard the glory of this wall. In this mud wall there was a niche for lighting a lamp and Mai Jamana Devi used to light a lamp in that niche. Jamana Devi would sit near the wall and spin a spinning wheel and if anyone came to pay obeisance, she would give him Prasad of flowers. At that time, only two or four people used to come to offer obeisance every day. Jamana Devi would sometimes put a fulkari on the wall and tell the Sangat the glory of this wall. Thus, for many years, Mai Jamna Devi continued to serve the 'Kachchi Kandh', the sign of Guru Sahib's marriage. This process of lighting a lamp on the wall by Mai Jamna Devi continued till 1948 after the partition of India-Pakistan. When India-Pakistan was partitioned, all the Muslims from Batala moved to Pakistan. Displaced people from Pakistan took shelter in Batala where they could find new dwellings and job.

One Surta Singh named Nihang Singh Thahar from Narowal in Pakistan came to Batala city in search of some place to settle. There was a mosque right in front of the place where Guru Sahib's mud wall was. Seeing the empty mosque, Surta Singh took shelter there along with his family. When Surta Singh started staying in the mosque, he saw that an elderly lady Mai Jamuna was spinning a spinning wheel sitting by a wall and at the same time serving it by lighting a lamp around the wall. One day Surta Singh asked Mai Jamna Devi about the secret of this wall. She told him that this wall is a sign of the marriage of Sri Guru Nanak Sahib. God's work, Surta Singh thought why not preserve this sign of Guru Sahib. Surta Singh started langar by collecting flour grains every full moon in a cell near the wall. Some ragi dhadi would also come in between and they would sing Guru Mahima. Thus the Sangat started gathering there.

Surta Singh went to nearby villages of Batala city and started propagating the importance of this wall among the people. Surta Singh contacted Batala resident Bhai Gurcharan Singh Uppal (Sarangi Wale) and sought his support. Surta Singh along with Dhadi Bhai Gurcharan Singh and his companions Dhanna Singh, Tara Singh and Virsa Singh Dhadi started the first collection for the construction of Gurdwara Sri Kandha Sahib by setting up Diwan at Raichak village. 5-7 maunds of wheat were collected from there. Diwans were also held in other nearby villages. With these colledctions the consruction of Gurdwara Sahib started enclosing the mud wall. The start of construction of Gurdwara Sahib this way, the enthusiasm in Sangat started increasing day by day. Surta Singh died shortly after starting the construction. After his death, a local committee was formed which took over the construction service. Jathedar Gurmej Singh, Harnam Singh Osahan, Kulwant Singh (owner of Faiz), Gurbachan Singh Bajwa (father of Minister Tripat Rajinder Singh Bajwa), Baba Bhola Singh (Beautiful Sewing Machine), Lala Girdhari Lal (owner of Guralal Foundry), Surjit Singh Bhuler etc. formed the first committee. Among these committee members, most of the members came from Pakistan and all of them paid a lot of attention to the construction of the Gurdwara Sahib. Gurbachan Singh Bajwa was the president of this committee who later became the MLA and Minister from Batala. In 1952, the local committee bought the mud-walled khola and her house from Mai Jamna Devi paying her some price and moved her to a new house near Gurdwara Dehra Sahib.

On the occasion of Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji's wedding anniversary on August 27, 1952,, Sant Harnam Singh Ji and Nowshera Majha Singh laid the foundation stone of Gurdwara Sri Kandha Sahib. On this occasion, Sant Jawala Singh Ji Harkhowal Wale, Sant Kharak Singh Bir Baba Buddha Sahib Ji, Sant Hari Singh Kaharpuri and other sants were also present. Sant Harnam Singh. Dr. Ratan Singh Bhalla gave Rs ten thousand for the construction of the building. After this, in June 1958, the construction of the building continued under the management of Narayan Singh Pradhan, Batale Baba Bagh Singh Bedi General Secretary and Giani Sampurna Singh Secretary. The Sangat gradually collected and bought the houses adjacent to the Gurdwara Kandh Sahib and merged them into the Gurdwara Sahib. With the support of the Sangat, the beautiful building of the Gurdwara Sahib was prepared and the Guru Sahib's memorial 'Kachchi Kandh' was encased in glass and Sri Guru Granth Sahib was illuminated along with it. Today Gurdwara Sri Kandha Sahib is famous all over the world as a sign of Guru Nanak Dev Ji's marriage.

The Gurdwara was maintained in a private house by a line of resident Granthis until it was acquired during the 1950's by the Seva Committee Gurdwara Kandh Sahib. The foundation of the present building was laid on 17 December 1956. Standing in a marble-paved compound about 2 metres above the street level, it consists of a 10 metre square hall, with a square sanctum in the middle. The room at the second floor level is used for continuous readings of the Guru Granth Sahib. Above it and over the sanctum is a room with a dome covered with white glazed tiles and decorated with a tall gold plated pinnacle and umbrella shaped finial. Arched copings decorate the top room and decorative pinnacled domes surround the central dome, while square domed kiosks at the corners adorn the top.

The verandah to the left, as one enters, has wall paintings depicting scenes from the life of Guru Nanak. Guru ka Langar is across the street, opposite the main entrance. The Gurdwara is administered by the Seva Committee Gurdwara Kandh Sahib. Largely attended congregations take place on every full-moon day. All major anniversaries on the Sikh calendar are observed, but the most important function of the year is the fair held to mark the marriage anniversary of Guru Nanak on the seventh day of the light half of the lunar month of Bhadon (August-September). [2][3][4]

Gurdwara Sri Falahi Sahib Wadala Granthians

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Gurdwara Dera Phalahi Sahib, Village Wadala Granthian, District Gurdaspur

While returning after marriage, a day after, Guru Nanak Dev Ji stopped at Wadala Granthian along with enire marriage party. According to history, Guru Nanak Sahib is said to have did teeth brushing with a twig of Flahi tree and planted it into the ground. This twig later turned out to be a la3rge tree which became the place of worship for the devotees. A gurdwaranow known as Gurdwara Falahi Sahib was constructed at the place. The people of Wadala and around came to know about Guru Ji's arrival and greeted Guru Sahibi. The datan planted by Guru Sahib has taken the form of a large Falahi tree adorns the Gurudwara Sahib complex. Village Wadala Granthian and people from the surrounding areas serve this shrine with reverence and respect. The service of this shrine was done by Baba Hazura Singh and later by Baba Basta Singh after the demise of Baba Hazura Singh. Now Baba Daler Singh is doing the service. [4]

References
1. Gurudwara Sri Dehra Sahib, Batala - World Gurudwaras
2. Gurudwara Kandh Sahib Batala : ਗੁਰਦੁਆਰਾ ਕੰਧ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਤੇ ਡੇਹਰਾ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਬਟਾਲਾ ਦਾ ਇਤਿਹਾਸ
3. Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, 87 Gurdwara Kandh Sahib, Batala, District Gurdaspur , Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, Punjab October 2019, p.80
4. Dhanna Singh Chehal,Gur Tirath Cycle Yatra, (20 November 1931) , p. 339
5. Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, 87 Gurdwara Phalahi Sahib Wadala District Gurdaspur, Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, Punjab October 2019, p.83
 

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Gurdwara Achal Vatala Sahib, District Gurdaspur

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Gurdwara Achal Vatala sahib

This Gurdwara is situated on the boundary of Chahal and Salho Villages about 8km South of Batala City on Batala-Jalandhar road. Guru Nanak Dev Ji visited this place along with his disciples on Shivratri Festival. Gurudwara Achal Sahib, sacred to Guru Nanak, is located at south of along the boundary of the villages of Chahal and Saho on the Jalandhar-Batala road 7 km south of the city of Batala. In front of gurudwara sahib there is an ancient Hindu temple dedicated to Kartikeya, son of Lord Shiva, which is popularly known as Achal Vatala. At the end of 17th century many sadhus from distant parts visited, especially during the annual fair held on the occasion of Shivaratri. Guru Ji held discussions with yogis and Sadhus here. Achal Batala has been also the most important centre of Nathpanthi yogis during the Mughal rule.The place was dominated by Siddh-Yogies by their physical presence. Guru Nanak came to this place on Shivratri festival along with his disciples. As soon as Guru Nanak reached the place, people gathered around him to touch his feet. This created jealousy and bitterness in the hearts of yogis, as people paid much attention to the Guru and ignored them outright.
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Painting of discussion of Guru Nanak Dev Ji with Siddh Yogis at Achal Vatala

This was too much for yogis to tolerate. Feeling that Guru Nanak was an intruder to their sacred place to win over their disciples, their leader Bhangar Nath had a bitter debate with the great Guru. Guru Nanak told the yogi that Bhangar Nath was a hypocrite. Though outwardly he had renounced the world being a recluse, yet he goes to the houses of the worldly people to beg his food. Guru Ji asked Bhangar Nath, "In what way' you are superior to those at whose door you beg your daily meal? What do you give them in return" Instead of replying, the Yogi started showing miracle of black magic and occult powers. But Guru Nanak was not impressed by his magic tricks. Guru Nanak told them that meeting the lord is the tre Yog which cannot be by mere talk. When you see everyone equal then only only are your true Yogi.
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Instead of replying Bhangar Nath tried to show miracles but could not withstand the charisma of Guru Nanak and lost his powers before him as he realized that Guru Ji had Greater Powers. Instantly humbled, he along with other Yogis fell on Guru’s feet and begged for forgiveness. The Guru forgave them, after telling them that it is the love and compassion for God that is the most supreme and no miracle or magic can come anywhere close to it. Guru Ji asked people to remember and recite the name of the God. Guru Ji planted a datan (a Twig of a tree) at this place. People said that it is a thorny tree. Guru Ji asked, "Which tree do you want?" People said, "We want some fruit tree". Guru Ji said, "It will grow into a Beri Tree and would bear fruits for 12 Months in the Year". That tree is present inside the Gurdwara Complex.(1)
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Gurdwara Achal Vatala

After the famous discussion between Guru Nanak and the Nath yogis, in which the Guru humbled them, a small platform was constructed to honour him. Later in 18th century, a small Gurudwara was built to commemorate the sacred memory of the holy Guru. It was further developed in 1935 when the foundation of the structure of main gurudwara was laid on the 17th of October 1935. Its construction was completed in the year 1946. This gurdwara complex now comprises of a hall with a high ceiling, an 8 meter sanctum and a gallery all around at its mid height. Gurdwara Chola Sahib was constructed to commemorate his visit. The Gurudwara rests on a low mount and is quite close to the Hindu temple that worships Lord Kartikey, eldest son of Lord Shiv. The temple is also known as Achal Vatala. A lotus shaped dome pinnacle rests on top of the structure. The wall tops have solid lotus leave blossoms. The corners of the roof of the hall have square domed kiosks. A bricked enclosure in the gurudwara premises provides rooms for the pilgrims. The enclosure also offers Guru Ka langar- providing food free of cost to all visitors. On the occasion of the festival of Shivratri an annual fair, Hindu and Sikh pilgrims gather in large number in harmony.

To reach this place Amritsar is the nearest place from where taxis are available to this place. By rail the nearest railway station is Gurdaspur, connected via the Jammu-Delhi railway line. Jammu Mail and Chennai Mail are among the major trains that halt at Gurdaspur. By road Gurdaspur is connected to all parts of the country through the National Highway 15. Private as well as Government buses operate between Gurdaspur and other cities.

When Sixth Sikh Guru, Shri Guru Hargobind sahib Ji visited Batala for the marriage ceremony of his eldest son, Baba Gurditta Ji, he came to this place. Guru ji got an eight cornered well dug up which is situated in front of the main gate of the Gurdwara. That well is present even now in front of the main gate of gurudwara.Gurdwara Achal Sahib is situated on the Batala--Baba Bakala road. (2)

References

1. Gurudwara Sri Achal Sahib - Batala - World Gurudwaras
2. https://utsav.gov.in/view-event/mela-achal-vatala-1
 

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Gurdwaras related to Guru Nanak at Kathiala

Kathiala village is located in Dera Baba Nanak tehsil of Gurdaspur district in Punjab, India. It is situated 12 km away from Dera Baba Nanak and 52 km away from Gurdaspur. and 252 KM from Chandigarh As per 2009 stats, Kathiala village is a gram panchayat. The total geographical area of village is 437 hectares. Kathiala has a total population of 991 peoples, in about 183 houses. According to Census 2011 information the location code or village code of Kathiala village is 02896 and Pin code is 143604 and postal head office is Dera Baba Nanak . Ramdas is nearest town to Kathiala village for all major economic activities. (1)(2)

Guru Nanak Dev Ji visited this place during his second Udasi. He met two faqirs in Guru ka Baag, sat on Thada sahib and held discussions with these two faqirs at Gosht Asthan. Three different Gurdwaras commemorate these events.

Guru Nanak Dev Ji had a discussion (gosht) with Mian Mitha. Three Gurdwaras in Kathiala Gurdwara Guru ka baag (meeting place of the two), Gurdwara Thada sahib (the place in the village where they held discussions and Gosht Asthan (where they held discussions, commemorate this event. A jod mela (fair is held in Mohalla Nihang Singhan to commemorate these events

Discussion with Mian Mitha

Pir Abdul Rehman a resident of Kathiala was a sufi faqir. Mian Mitha was his pupil. During the discussion Pir Abdul Rehman told his pupil Mian Mitha about the Guru Nanak's greatness. Pir Abdul Rahman told his pupil, Mian Mitha of the Guru's greatness, and advised him to meet the dear one of the Lord and obtain his blessings. Mian Mitha, though a Sufi, was not free from religious narrow-mindedness. Sufi Faqir Mian Mitha was well known for his real or occult powers. He was held in great awe by the people near him. Many were his followers. Many a Hindu youth had accepted Islam under the spell of Mian Mitha's power. The faqir himself was given to penances and austerities. His heart was dry. He lacked the saving qualities of love and human sympathy. In consequence, the path that he had chosen took him daily farther and farther away from the righteous path which should lead one to the source of love, life and light. He was misleading himself and others too. He was verily like a man who sets out from his home intent on drinking at the ocean of nectar, but who, reaching near the shore, begins to play with conchs and pebbles lying there, and forgets the object of his journey thither. Mitha was engaged in such child's play. He was in grips of a great delusion. But his example was catching. He had enslaved the belief of the people around him. They had ceased to look up to the fountain of all love, life and light.

Pir Abdul Rehman had told him that the Guru was a 'Hindu'. Hence he did not like the idea of a renowned Muslim faqir's going to a 'Hindu', no matter how great the latter might be. Still, when his teacher praised the Guru and called him a "beloved one of the Lord", Mian Mitha had in mind to meet the Guru.

Since Mian Mitha was spreading falsehood in the garb of a faqir, Guru Nanak too had resolved to break the dome of Mian Mitha's delusion and to show him the Light of heaven, as he had already shown to Hamza Gaus. He went and halted in a garden; a little distance from Mian Mitha's place. The Guru's heavenly music and divine songs (kirtan) attracted the common people, who began to assemble in the garden compound in large numbers. All who saw the Guru and heard his divine songs became his devotees, body and soul; they began to adore him. Among new admirers of the Guru was Pir Abdul Rahman, Mian Mitha's religious teacher.

But when Mian Mitha heard of the Guru's arrival, he said 'Nanak is a good faqir, no doubt; but if I meet him, I shall squeeze him dry like a lemon. I will go to see him and will take the cream off him as I would skim milk.' Mardana heard these boasts of Mian Mitha and reported them to the Guru and added, 'Mian Mitha is but your automation and will play as you cause him to play.' The Guru remarked, 'Wait, Mardana and see how God carries out His will'.

On the advice of Pir Abdul Rehman, Mian Mitha could not refuse but had to obey and go. So he went. He found that Mardana was playing a heavenly tune on the rebeck and singing a soul stirring song of the Master. The Guru was sitting as in a trance. The music, the divine singing and the radiance on the Guru's face penetrated the innermost depths of Mian Mitha's heart. He quietly sat near the Guru.

The beauty of the Guru struck the Fakir. ,After a while the divine singing ceased. A little later, the Guru opened his eyes - What eyes? They seemed to be laden with ambrosia and emitting the lustre and glory of a mind at peace with all. They were so sweet, so loving, so deep, so penetrating and so full of repose and joy!

The Guru's countenance that looked like that of a bride who had enjoyed the company of her Lord to her heart's content and touch of her Lord, her eyes yet filled with sleep-free heavenly pleasure and trying to recatch the glimpses of the Lord who had just hidden himself from view.

In that countenance there were the calm and joy of hearty satisfaction, a hope and an assurance of future blissful union and a compassion for the unfortunate creatures who were unable or unwilling to enjoy the company of the Spouse and a resolve to convey to the people the joyful tidings of the eternal Abode of the Bounteous Lord. Mian Mitha saw all this. The Guru turned his eyes on him. The Mian felt as if he had been pierced through the heart. Impure blood which had engendered and nourished in him seeds of pride, hatred and jealousy, seemed to be oozing out, drop by drop. In its place, pure bright blood, supercharged with love, compassion and sweetness, was beginning to take root through his veins. The Guru greeted him with a loving smile and enquiring how he was. The words roused the Sufi faqir from his reverie. He returned the greetings and thanked the Guru. All around him he saw sitting people from the village, Hindus and Muhammadans alike. But, the Fakir's past pulls him backwards. A look at them revived in him his old pride and his zeal for Islam. He remembered that the Guru was a 'Hindu'. How good it would be, he thought, if he could be converted and "saved"

Siddhas, Yogis, Pandits, Qazis and Faqirs had all, on meeting the Guru and knowing his greatness, cherished the same desire. They had wished to convert such a great one to their path. But little did they know, when they gave themselves up to such ambitious dreams, that the Guru was destined to convert the like of them all to his "new faith".

Mian Mitha began by questioning the Guru about his faith. When he learnt that the Guru was a worshipper of One God, he felt glad; for he thought that the Guru was already very near Islam. Half the battle was already won. 'He has,' thought he, 'already freed himself from the worship of millions of the Hindu gods and goddesses. If I can graft on his faith a belief in the Prophet, what glory shall I win for myself and my faith!' But the Fakir under-estimated Guru Nanak's greatness.

Thinking thus, he said, 'O Nanak there are two things by accepting which one can be approved by God”. The first is God himself and the second, the recitation of the Kalma (Islamic Creed), yu shall find acceptance in God's court. He then tried to impress upon the Guru the spiritual necessity of having a mediator at the court of God and dilated upon the powers and greatness of the Prophet of Islam.

The Guru calmly heard all the zealous Muslim faqir had to say. Then he smiled and said, "Yes, the first name is that of God; the Prophet is but a gatekeeper at His gate. O Sheikh, form good intentions, be sincere in thought and actions; you shall find acceptance in God's court without the aid of any mediator. I believe in and worship the One alone. I need no second. No mediator is necessary. If you join with Him one whom you call His Prophet, you cease to be a worshipper of the One alone. Why, then, should you denounce as Kaffirs or infidels those who join with Him two, fifty, a hundred, some thousand or some million? The difference is one of degree and not on kind. They are like you in not worshipping the Peerless Lord alone".

"But", replied the Fakir, "We do not believe the Prophet to be God. We believe only that through his mediation we shall be saved from consequences of our sinful acts. He is not the end of our worship, but only the means of our getting His Grace; whereas the Hindus actually worship their deities. Their thoughts do not rise above or beyond the objects of their worship. For them, each one of the latter is God".

"But friend", said the Guru, "They too, can say that they regard their gods only as intermediaries. They can as well aver that through these deities they hope to please and reach God."

"Yes", returned the faqir, "They, may say so, but such is not their actual belief. We actually believe that One God is the Creator and Sustainer of all, and that He alone is worthy of our homage".

The dialogue continued. The smile on the Guru's lips became brighter. "No friend", said he, "You don't believe that One God is the Father of all mankind. If you did, how could you hate, oppress, persecute, and murder your fellow-men?

If you believed in One God and at the same time, felt that the 'idolatrous' Hindus were wrong in their faith, you could not have hated them as you do now; you could not have treated them as you treat them in your fanatic zeal for your religion.

If, in your view, they are misguided, your love for God should have aroused in your hearts love and sympathy for these misled sons of God. God is Love. It is through love that we can hope to reach Him. Hatred leads us away from Him.

I think you do not really believe that the same God made you as made the unfortunate Hindus. How then can it be said that you believe in One God who is the Father of all mankind? There is something wrong with your belief and conduct".

The Fakir realised his shortcomings and changed course. The Fakir found himself beaten on his own ground. He changed the topic and said, "Do you believe in the day of Judgement?"

"Yes", replied the Guru, "Everyone has to reap what he sows, has to be judged by his deeds".

"That is good", said the faqir, "But have you ever though how unlucky will Hindus find themselves on that day? Muhammadans are buried after death. Their bodies are placed in the custody of the earth. When, on the Day of Judgment, the angel of the Lord blows his clarion the earth shall deliver forth the dead ling in its bosom. They will then be conducted into the Paradise. But how different will be the fate of the Hindus. Their bodies are burnt. The bones and ashes are scattered. How can they regain their bodies? They are burnt here and will, on that account, burn for ever in the fires of Hell".

"That is an idea, indeed", replied the Guru. "But you ignore one or two things. In the first place, the bodies of Muhammadans buried under the earth are changed to dust as well as those of Hindus. Until your Day of judgement no trace of the body will be left of any of them. If they can rise in spite of all of this, there is no reason why the bodies of Hindus incur the wrath of God on account of their bodies being burnt. Well, then Muhammadans, too cannot escape a similar fate; for even their bodies, too, get burnt, after all, in most cases".
"How do you say that?" enquired the faqir.
“Thus", replied the Guru. "You know that potters are very fond of the clay from old grave-yards as that is very tough. They dig up such places, shape the clay into pots and bricks and set them to bake in furnaces. There thus burns the clay produced from the decayed bodies of Muslims, and, if your argument be true, cries aloud in great agony.

But you are misled, my friend. These things that you talk of are beyond the comprehension of man. He alone knows - the One who created the universe and maintains and sustains it in His own way. Let us only Love Him and His creatures. In that way alone can we hope to become acceptable to Him".

The Fakir could say no more. What more could the faqir say? He was silenced. . The Fakir's heart was awakened. After a while, the Guru smiled on him his gracious, illuminating smile and said, "Well, brother, in the path set before us by the Lord, all are treated according to their deeds and actions. Castes or creeds make no difference. Don't be misled by the thought that because yours is the state-religion in this land and because you can force it on others, you are, in any way higher or better in the eyes of God. Throw to the winds all such narrow thoughts, jealous views and man-made barriers and limitations. Drink at the fount of Nectar, if you get a chance to get it".

The faqir was won over. He bowed at the Guru's feet, and was blessed with the priceless gift of Naam - of a life lived in a constant, steadfast communication with the Lord and in lovingly serving all His creatures on the path of righteousness.

Gurdwara Guru Ka Baag, Kathiala

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Gurdwara Guru ka Bagh

In village Kathiala Guru Nanak came and st in a garden of dates now known as guru ka Bagh. H sang hymns in accompaniment of Mardana and also delivered discourses. He came to the village and sat on a platform now known as Thara sahib. Here too he held discourses. Two faqirs Mian Mitha and Abdul Rehman came to the Guru in this placn and held discussions at the place now known as Gurdwara Gosht Asthan.

Gurdwara Guru ka Baag is located outside the village Kiathiala in a beautiful building in lush green surroundings commemorating the place the Guru first visitd in Kathiala and met Mian Mitha Siyal and his Pir Abdul Rehman. Descendants of Abdul rehman still live in this village. This was once a dates and palms orchard. Pir Abdul Rehman brought Mian Mitha to Guru Nanak at this place. The long flight of marble steps leads to the sanctum sanctorum above the massive langar hall and is enclosed b verandas on all sides. (4)

Gurdwara, Thada Sahib, Kathiala
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Gurdwara Thada sahib Kathiala

Finally both the seers sat under a pepal tree on a platform (Thada) and held discussions. Guru nanak deliberated upon the spiritual and religious aspects of a human being as given in the discussion above. Gurdwara Thada sahib is a small shrine nearly dwarfed by a peepal tree in fron of the platform. It is locatdnext to Gurdwara Guru ka Baag. Local tradition holds tht Pir Abdul rehman was the first of the two mystics met. A brick platform in a recess below the sanctum marks the exact spot of their meeting. Deeply impressed by his interaction with Guru nanak dev ji, the Pir asked his disciple Mian Mitha who belonged to kathiana to follow suit. Mian Mitha returned unimpressed as Guru Nanak had very different ideas. His spiritual master however insisted on a dialogue resulting ina ghoshti (long deliberation) that ensued convinces=d Miar Mitha abou Guru Nanak dev Ji’s message of universality. (6)

Gurdwara, Gosht Asthan, Kathiala
Gurdwara Gosht Asthan is situated at the place where Mian Mitha debated with Sri Guru Nanak Dev Ji for plong time with number of questions and finally surrendering to Guru’s philosophy. This Gurdwara is in the middle of the picturesque kathiala village. Its nishan sahib is encircled by a covered red brick tower dominates the sky line here and can be seen from a distance. A few minutes’ wals from the residence said to be of Mian Mitha. Mian Mitha’s grave is located at this place. It is the place wher Pir Abdul rehman is believed to have returned with his disciple Mian Mitha to hold discourse with Guru Nanak Dev Ji. The goshti took place here this shrine now stands.
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Gurdwara Gosht Asthan Kathiala Dera Baba Nanak, Gurdaspur

References

1. Kathiala Village , Dera Baba Nanak Tehsil , Gurdaspur District
2. Kathiala Village in Dera Baba Nanak (Gurdaspur) Punjab | villageinfo.in
3. Mian Mitha - SikhiWiki, free Sikh encyclopedia.
4. Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, Gurdwara Guru ka Baag, Kathiala, Dera Baba Nanak District Gurdaspur,, Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, Punjab October 2019, p.84
5. Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, Gosht Asthan, Kathiala, Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur, Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, Punjab October 2019, Gurdwara, p.86
6.Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, Gurdwara, Thada sahib, Kathiala, Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur,, Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, October 2019, p.85
 

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Kiri Afgana
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Gurdwara Kiri Afgana

Kiri Afgana village is located in Batala tehsil of Gurdaspur district in Punjab, India situated 33km away from Batala and 40km away from Gurdaspur. As per 2009 stats, Nawi Kiri is the gram panchayat of Kiri Afgana village. The total geographical area of village is 1076 hectares. Kiri Afgana has a total population of 3,294 peoples in about 585 houses. According to Census 2011 the village code of Kiri Afgana village is 028511 and pin code is 143527. Sri Hargobindpur is the nearest town to Kiri Afgana village for all major economic activities. [1][2]

According to the Purantan Janamsakhi and the Janamsakhi Meharban Guru Nanak Dev Ji visited Kiri Aghana also known as Kidi Pathana. He discussed with Daula Shah, a Muslim Pir who lived at this place. Grave of this mystic enclosed in a room and cared by the villagers, is close to the gur dwara. The original flat- roofed structure of the gurdwara is being repaced by a lager complex at present. [3]
References
1. Kiri Afgana Village in Batala (Gurdaspur) Punjab | villageinfo.in
2. Kiri Afgana Village , Qadian Tehsil , Gurdaspur District
3. Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, Gurdwar Sri guru Nnak Dev ji Kiri Afgana, Batala, Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur,, Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, October 2019, p.78
 
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Gurdwara Guru Nanak Pakhoke Mehmaran, Dera Baba Nanak

Pakhoke Mehmaran village is located in Dera Baba Nanak tehsil of Gurdaspur district 2 km away from Dera Baba Nanak and 42 km away from Gurdaspur. The total geographical area of village is 85 hectares and has a total population of 676 peoples, in about 118 houses. According to Census 2011 information the location code or village code of Pakhoke Mehmaran village is 028967 and pin code is 143604. Dera Baba Nanak is nearest town to Pakhoke Mehmaran village for all major economic activities.[1]

Guru Nanak, [2] the first Sikh Guru settled and is believed to have "mingled with the Almighty" near the village Pakhoke Mehmaran, opposite to the present town and named it Kartarpur - a town which lies over the border in Pakistan.[3] Guru Nanak settled near village Pakhoke Mehmaran where he meditated and also held his communes there. Ajit Randhawa, a wealthy farmer and a very sincere devotee of Guru Nanak was the resident of Pakhoke and Mool Chand, father-in-law of Guru Nanak dev ji was a patwari of Pakhoke under Ajita Randhawa. Ajita Randhawa met Guru Nanak first at a well which existed in village Mehmaran. Now Gurdwara is constructed at the place to commemorate this meeting. This village is just on the outskirts of Dera Baba Nanak. [4].

References
1.https://villageinfo.in/punjab/gurdaspur/dera-baba-nanak/pakhoke-mehmaran.html
2. "Shri Darbar Sahib Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
3. "Kartarpur Sahib Dera Baba Nanak". derababananak.com.
4. Punitinder Kaur Sidhu, Gurdwara Pakhoke Mehmaran, Dera Baba Nanak,, Dera Baba Nanak , District Gurdaspur,, Guru Nanak’s Blessed Trail (Punjab), Lonely Planet Global Limited, October 2019,p. 89
 

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Gurdwara Guru Nanak DevJi, Guru Arjan Devji, Guru Hargobind Ji and Baba Sri Chand Ji Baarth, District Gurdaspur

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Gurdwara Baarth Sahib

Dhanna Singh Chehal in his book Gur Tirath Cycle Yatra having visisted Barth on 27 November 1931 writes at page 355: 1. Having travelled Hill areas Guru Nanak Dev Ji visited Barth from Gurdaspur and went to Suultanpur Lodhi. 2. Guru Arjan DevJi visited in samwat 1599 Bikrami and stayed for 22 days at baarth and held discussions woth Baba Sri Chand. Ayt this place Sukhmani Sahib was completed. Earlier he had written 19 Paudis but added 8 more at this place. Slok Aad(i) sach(u) jugaad(i) sach(u) hai bhi sach(i) hosi bhi sach(u) was added at this place in Sukhmani sahib at the instance of baba sri Chand. (3) Guru Hargobind Sahib came here on Chetar Bikrami 20 Samwat 1618 1561 AD) and stayed for three days. He came from Hargobindpur and returned to Hargobind pur. Baba Sri Chand asked for one son of Guru Hargobind Sahib, who offerd Baba Hardita Ji. Baba hardita was given the sehli Topi the symbol of Udasis and said, “Baba Gurdita te deen Dunia da Tikka” meaning baba Gurdita is anointed the symbol of kingdom of religion and the world. He also writes that Baba Sri Chand meditated here for 12 years and 9 months. This village was previously known Rahimpur Pamu as it was settled by a Pathan named Pamu. ( 1)

This gurdwara was initially consructed as Guru’s place by Sikhs of Dharamkot in Batal tehsil. A sarovar was also attached to it. Later a Pukka Manji of Guru Arjan Dev Ji was constructed and a Barandari was constructed for the pilgrims to stay. They then handed over the Grdwara to Nirmal sants.[1}

The village of Barth is located about 12 km's from Pathankot in the Gurdaspur district of the State of Punjab. There are 2 Historic Sikh Gurdwaras in Baarth. Baba Sri Chand Ji was born in 1494 to Mata Sulakhani Ji and Sri Guru Nanak Sahib Ji at Sultanpur Lodhi. Guru Nanak's sister Bibi Nanaki adopted Sri Chand Ji as her own son. When Guru Nanak Sahib Ji left for his preaching tours (known as Udasis), Baba Sri Chand Ji with his younger brother Baba Lakhmi Das Ji and Mother Sulakhni Ji came to Pakho-ke-Randhawe, where the parents of Mata Sulakhni Ji used to reside. When Guru Nanak Sahib Ji settled at Kartarpur (now in Pakistan), during the later part of his life, the entire family moved there. After Guru Nanak rejoined with god, Baba Sri Chand Ji went to the place where Gurdwara Dera Baba Nanak is situated. But Baba Ji loved solitude. Guru Nanak's mother, Mata Tripta belonged to village Barth. So Baba Sri Chand Ji moved to Barth and established a hermitage. At that time a dense forest existed at this place. Baba Ji on seeing this secluded place started meditating and lived at this place for a considerable period of time.

Baba Sri Chand Ji with his disciple Bhai Kamalya Ji went to Amritsar from Baarth Sahib to meet Sri Guru Ram Das Ji. Guru Ji came forward to receive Baba Ji with respect. Guru Ji asked Baba Ji to sit on his own seat and offered Rs. 500 and a horse. After staying for 2-3 days, Baba Sri Chand Ji came back to Baarth Sahib.

After some time Baba Sri Chand Ji sent Bhai Kamalya Ji to Amritsar to invite Sri Guru Arjan Sahib Ji to Barth Sahib. When Guru Arjan Sahib Ji reached Baarth Sahib, Baba Ji was meditating. Guru Arjan returned the following day waiting for Baba Ji to complete his meditation. This continued for 6 months. The place where Guru Ji waited has an octagonal pillar of mosaic concrete, in front of a square flatroofed room, known as Tham Sahib.

When Baba Ji opened his eyes, he received Guru Ji with respect. Guru Ji had discussions with Baba Ji. Guru Ji recited his 16 Ashtpadis. Baba Ji asked Guru Ji to utter 24 Ashtpadis. Guru Ji asked Baba Ji to add to 'Sukhmani Sahib'. Baba Ji uttered this Slok: "Aad Sach Jugad Such Hai Bhi Such Nanak Hosi Bhi Such." Guru Ji collected some pothi's (holy books) from Baba Ji for compilation of 'Sri Adi Granth.'

Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji with his family visited Barth Sahib to pay homage to Baba Ji. Baba Ji asked Guru Ji, "Will you keep all your sons with yourself or will you offer any to me?" Guru Ji offered his eldest son Baba Gurditta Ji. Baba Sri Chand Ji appointed Baba Gurditta Ji as his successor and head of Udasi's.

Gurdwara Sri Baarth Sahib

Gurdwara Sri Baarth Sahib is also known as Gurdwara Tap Asthan Baba Sri Chand and is in memory of Baba Sri. Baba Sri Chand lived here deep in the forest for the last part of his life. Baba Sri Chand was visited here by Guru Arjan Sahib who told Baba Sri Chand about the hostility of the Gurus elder brother. Baba Sri Chand replied: "This will be his undoing and ruin both in this world and the next".

Guru Hargobind also visited Baba Sri Chand here and when Baba Sri Chand complimented the Guru on his chivalry and piety, Guru Hargobind replied with great humility, "It is all the result of your blessing". Guru Hargobind also gave his son Baba Gurditta to Baba Sri Chand as the next leader of the Udasi order. Baba Sri Chand died and was cremated here at Barth Sahib in 1612 at the ripe old age of 118. Baba Sri Chand had a baoli (well) dug. A Sarovar has been constructed on both sides of the baoli. Baba Sri Chand planted a beri tree, which still exists. A samadh of Bhai Kamalya Ji is located nearby.

The Gurdwara at Baarth was maintained by udasi's until the Gurdwara reform movement of 1920`s when it passed into the control of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee. Construction of the present complex commenced in 1968. It comprises the old domed room, with a tall brass pinnacle, on top of a mound, since renovated and extended by a circumambulatory verandah, a vast fenced compound on an elevated surface, and a row of rooms for pilgrims and the Guru ka Langar. The old Baoli Sahib, since converted into a small circular tank, is in a separate compound about 50 metres away from the main Gurdwara. A small pond and a few trees, to the southeast of the Gurdwara, represent the old garden where Guru Hargobind is believed to have encamped at the time of his visit to Barth.

The Gurdwara owns 60 acres of arable land and is administered by a manager appointed by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee and assisted by a local committee. The Tap Asthan, where the Guru Granth Sahib is now seated, is visited by a large number of Sikhs, especially on amavasya, the last day of the dark half of the lunar month, when religious divans and community meals take place. The most important function of the year is a two day fair held in mid-April to celebrate Vaisakhi. Gurdwara Sri Guru Arjan Sahib Barth is located where Sri Guru Arjan Sahib Ji stayed when he came to visit Baba Sri Chand. Guru Arjan stayed here for 6 months and would hold diwans for the Sangat. Guru Arjan had a sarovar constructed and also planted a Baag (garden). Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji also visited here afterwards.

References

1. Dhanna Singh Chahal, Gur Tirath Cycle Yatra, (ed. Chetan Singh ), viited Baarth on 27 November 1931 p.355
2. Gurdwara Sri Barth Sahib | Discover Sikhism
 
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