CHAPTER XIX

 

PLACES OF INTEREST

 

            Fatehgarh Sahib is a place where the two younger sons (Sahibzada Jorawar Singh and Sahibzada Fateh Singh) of Guru Gobind Singh were bricked alive by Wazir Khan the then Fauzdar of Sirhind in 1704. The place was inside the fort of Sirhind (built by Ferozeshah Tuglak ). With the victory of Banda Bairagi over Sirhind in 1710 the fort was raised to ground  and to commemorate the memory of martyred Sahibzadas, the place was named Fatehgarh Sahib after the names of younger Sahibzada Fateh Singh. Now a magnificent Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib stands here. Keeping  in view the historical and religious importance  of the place Fatehgarh Sahib was made a district at the time of the formation of PEPSU in 1948. In 1953, Fatehgarh Sahib District was merged with Patiala District and made subdivision of it. Again on 13 April 1992, Fatehgarh Sahib was made a District with its headquarters at Fatehgarh Sahib. In 1996 Fatehgarh Sahib place was designated as a separate town but in 1998 it was merged with Sirhind Town. Now the place is known as Sirhind Fatehgarh Sahib with the head-quarters of Fatehgarh Sahib District. The Fatehgarh Sahib District is known in the State as well as in the country for its places of historical, religious and archaeological interest.

The tahsil-wise description of various places of interest in the district having historical and religious and archaeological significance of tourist attraction has been given below:

 

Fatehgarh Sahib Tahsil

 

Fatehgarh Sahib /Sirhind

 

Fatehgarh Sahib /Sirhind is the most historical town of the State. Sirhind was made capital of Satardu kingdom in the seventh century. This fact has also been authenticated by Hieun Tsang, the Chinese pilgrim.  Under the later Hindushahi rulers, the place was elevated to the status of  State Capital and became a major frontier defence post.  Later on, Sirhind reached its pinnacle of glory during Muslim period.  The period from Akbar to Aurangzeb is considered the golden period in the history of this city.  It was then one of the most flourishing town of the Mughal Empire having 360 mosques, tombs, serais and wells. It is situated on Sher Shah Suri Marg between Ambala and Khanna.  It is about 47 km from Chandigarh via Chunni, 48 km from Ambala and 61 km from Ludhiana.  It is a railway Junction on the DelhiAmritsar railway line connecting it with Ambala-Ludhiana.  The Sirhind-Nangal Dam railway line starts from here.  The twin place (Fatehgarh Sahib-Sirhind) has now two railway stations, i.e. Sirhind on Amritsar-Delhi railway line and Fatehgarh Sahib on Sirhind-Nangal Dam railway line. It is also connected by road with Morinda, Rupnagar and Nangal in the north and Patiala in the south. Its population as per 2001 Census was 49,825.

            In the medieval period, Sirhind had become a great centre for trade.  Because of its proximity to the hills, Chinese goods were pouring in large quantities for commercial purpose.  This increasing amount of trade added to the prosperity of the people of Sirhind.  Seth Todar Mal, a native and a businessman of Sirhind rose to the position of the Diwan of Sirhind.  He proved himself to be an efficient administrator of Sirhind and this town made much progress under him.

            There is thus no doubt that under the patronage of Akbar, Jahangir and Shah Jahan, Sirhind continued to march on the road to peace and prosperity and it became one of the most flourishing towns of the Mughal Empire.  However, the policy of religious persecution launched by Aurangzeb reversed the whole development of Sirhind.  In 1704, a single act of barbarity of the execution of two innocent sons of Guru Gobind Singh committed by Wazir Khan, the then Faujdar of Sirhind, had the effect of a curse on the prosperity of this ancient town. The Sikhs considered Sirhind as an instrument of the sufferings of Guru Gobind Singh and for this prejudice they destroyed it time and again.  The first severest blow to Sirhind was given by the Sikhs under the leadership of Banda Bahadur who was able to capture it from the Muslims in 1710 and established Sikh rule here for a short time.  Later on, this town was included in Patiala State by Ala Singh in 1763-64.

            After passing through many catastrophic events, Sirhind is a developing town.  It has a number of educational institutions including Mata Gujri College at  Fatehgarh Sahib and six Higher Secondary / High Schools.  A newly constructed complex at Fatehgarh Sahib has been set up, which is now the headquarters of newly created Fatehgarh Sahib District.

            There are still remnants of many palatial buildings of medieval times which speak of a very high standard of masonry of those time.  Tombs of Ustad and Shagird, mosque of Saint Butcher Sadna and Jahaji haveli of Seth Todar Mal are fine specimens of art, craft and masonry of those times. The mosque of Sadna Kasai (Butcher), has been renovated. Unique features regarding the medieval housing pattern was that almost all the houses had basements (Bhoras), where the inmates of the houses could hide whenever they were attacked by foreign invader, these basements can still be seen in many of the old houses of the town.

            The great Tirtha of the Sikhs, Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib lies just on the out-skirts of Sirhind opposite to Mata Gujri College, Fatehgarh Sahib and on the metalled road running from Patiala to Rupnagar via Morinda. A majestic commemorative Gurudwara stands on road side  to attract the attention of all those passer-by. With the establishment of Mata Gujri College, Engineering College, Public School, District Headquarters Complex, Civil Hospital, Police Station, Red Cross Bhawan and staff quarters for government employees and for police personals, a new township has come up around Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib. A brief description of the important places of historical interest of Fatehgarh Sahib/ Sirhind is given as under:

 

Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib.- The  Gurdwara with its annexes commemorates the martyrdom of the two younger sons, Sahibzada Zorawar Singh (9 Years) and Sahibzada Fateh Singh (7 Years) of Guru Gobind Singh, who refused to apostatise from religion and truth under threat from Wazir Khan, the then Fauzdar of Sirhind. They were bricked alive in 1704 and were suffocated to death in the walls which were raised around them. A  memorial with the name of Fatehgarh Sahib was raised in 1710 during the days of  Banda Bahadur over the spot where the two Sahibzadas (Sons of Guru Gobind Singh) were bricked alive. After the final Sikh conquest of Sirhind in 1964, the place was occupied by Maharaja Ala Singh, the founder of the Patiala State. A  memorial Gurdwara was built on the ruins of the demolished and for its maintenance some land was donated by the Maharaja. Maharaja Ranjit Singh also assigned to it the land revenue of few villages. Maharaja Karam Singh of Patiala gifted land of five villages to the Gurdwara.

The main entrance to the Gurudwara was built by MaharajaYadvindra Singh of Patiala in 1953. In an underground cell of the Gurdwara the historical wall where the younger sons of Guru Gobind Singh were bricked alive has been preserved. The sanctuary containing the historical wall is known as Gurudwara Bhora Sahib.

Gurudwara Burj Mata Gujri is located in the main complex of Gurudwara Fatehgarh Sahib. On  the site where Mata Gujri and her two little grand sons, Fateh Singh and Zorawar Singh were kept in detention and receipt of the shocking news of their execution, the Mata breathed her last.  During those times, this part of the fort was known as Thanda Burj which was considered a cool place during the summer.  But it was a punishment for Guru’s sons and his mother to keep them here in extreme winter.  Later on, Gurudwara Mata Gujri was constructed in her memory at this place.

            A Gurdwara known as Gurudwara Shahid Ganj no.1 has been built to commemorate the memory of those 6,000 brave Sikhs who laid down their lives while fighting with the Mughal forces under the banner of Banda Bahadur.  The place is also called Chhe Hazar Shahidan Da  Katalgarh Angetha (sacrificial furnace of 6,000 martyrs).

            Another gurdwara known as Gurdwara Bibangarh Sahib has been built at the place when the bibans (biers) of Mata Gujri and her grandsons were prepared before cremation.

            A very big hall in the memory of Seth Todar Mal who purchased land by paying gold coins for the cremation of the said martyrs has been constructed behind the main gurdwara.  A big tank has also been built in the complex.  A big Jor Mela is held here in the month of December every year when a large number of people from far and near visit this place.

 

            Gurdwara Jyoti Sarup.- This gurdwara is about 2 km to the south of Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib and on Sirhind-Chandigarh road.  It was at this place where cremation ceremonies of Mata Gujri, the mother of Guru Gobind Singh and his two younger sons Zorawar Singh and Fateh Singh were performed under duress.  It is said that Wazir Khan refused to allow the cremation of bodies unless the land for this purpose was purchased by spreading gold coins (mohurs).   Seth Todar Mal who was an ardent devotee of Guru Gobind Singh, purchased this piece of land by offering gold coins as demanded.  In order to pay tribute to Todar Mal for his act of courage and bravery, the road leading to this gurdwara and further going to Chandigarh has been named after him.  A new gurdwara has been constructed recently at the place of old gurudwara.

 

            Gurdwara Shahid Ganj.-There is one more gurdwara called Gurdwara Shahid Ganj. It is situated just half a km from Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib.  It commemorates the martyrdom of those Sikhs who were killed by the tyrannical Mughals.  It is said that at this place bullock carts loaded with the corpses of slain Sikhs,  which were being taken to Delhi by the Mughal forces for getting prize, were captured by the Sikh warriors of this area and cremated.

 

            Rauza Sharif.-The Rauza or Dargah of Hazrat Mujaddid- Alfi-Sani Sheikh Abmad Farooqi is situated at a small distance to the north of Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib. Of all the tombs, big or small of Sirhind, the mausoleums of Mujaddid and his successors are undoubtedly the best maintained. Theses are regarded as very sacred by the Muslims. in general and the nobility of Kabul in particular to pay visit as a place of pilgrimage. Sheikh Ahmed Farooqi lived at this place during the times of Akbar and Jahangir from 1563 to 1624. The Sheikh is held in high esteem and is considered by Sunni Muslim to be second to Prophet Mohammed. For this reason, this mausoleum is regarded as Second Mecca by Sunni Muslims all over the world. The Urs celebration (death anniversary) of the Mujadid are held here for more than 300 years and are largely attended by Muslims from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Indonesia, Bangladesh and other Muslim countries.

                        The mausoleum is a fine building made of bricks partly overlaid with stone and marble.  Close to it there is the mausoleum of Rati-ud-Din, an ancestor of the Mujadid. Not far here are the rauzas of Mujaddid’s sons Khawaja Muhammad Sadiq and Khwaja Muhammad Masum. The rauja of latter is some times called rauza chini on account of its excellent mosaic work. In its premises are many other graves of the members of the house of the said reformer and some members of the ruling family of Kabul.  There is a grand mosque with a basement and a small tank for performing ablution before the prayers.  The shrine has since been taken over by Government of India as a historic monument and regular employees have been kept here for its maintenance, up keep and care.

 

Tomb of Ustad and Shagird.-  There are two tombs situated at a distance of about one kilometre west of Rauza Sharif in village Talanian, these are commonly known as the tombs of Ustad (master mason) and Shagird (apprentice mason). It is said that these buildings were constructed by them during their life-time, some times in 16th century. The tombs separated from each other by a distance of about 200 metres, are fair examples of contemporary architectural skill, including glazed ornamentation. The design of two are identical but there are few differences in minor details. The building of Ustad’s tomb has  been protected under the Punjab Ancient and Historical Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1964.

 

Tomb of Mir-I-Miran, Sirhind.- This tomb is situated 5 kilometre north to the Aam Khas Bagh, Sirhind and is connected by a link road. The tomb of Mir-I-Miran is the only important building of stone in Sirhind. Alexander Cunningham has referred to it “as the finest and oldest building of Sirhind. Altogether, the tomb of Mir-I-Miran is one of the most perfect specimen of the later Pathan or earlier Afghan architecture”. It is believed that Mir-I-Miran was a great saint of the place to whom Bahlol Lodhi’s daughter were married. Another important old monument in the vicinity of Mir-I-Miran’s tomb is a tank called Bibi sar, meaning Lady’s Tank. It is said that this tank was constructed by Bahlol’s daughter after the death of her husband. According to another tradition the tank was constructed by Sultan Sikander  Lodhi in the name of his sister, wife of Mir-I-Miran. Sultan Bahlol was crowned at Sirhind, he would therefore regard it as a fortunate place for himself and the area was given in Jagir by Sultan Lodhi to a holy man, together with his daughter’s hand. After the Saints death, the present tomb was built by Bahlol Lodhi and known as tomb of Mir-I-Miran. Sultan Bahlol was crowned at Sirhind, he would therefore regarded it as a fortunate place for himself and the area was given in Jagir by Sultan Lodhi to a holy man, together with his daughter’s hand. After the saint’s death, the present tomb was built by Bahlol Lodhi and known as tomb of Mir-I-Miran.

 

            Aam Khas Bagh.- One of the most remarkable monuments of the Mughal period the Bagh Aam Khas (some times pronounced as Aam-o-khas Bagh) is situated on the eastern side of the city, not far away from the main road from Sirhind to Bassi Pathana. The Aam Khas Bagh, which as its name denotes was a highway-inn for the use of royalty as well as common people which was initially built by Babar extended and almost rebuilt by Emperor Shah Jahan.  Both Jahangir and Shah Jahan used to stay here while going to and coming back from Lahore.  There were adequate number of palaces for the stay of Mughal Emperors.  The royal part of the building has mammoth water storage tank, a palace with beautiful murals on its walls, complete with hot-and-cold air-conditioning facilities and a unique hydraulic system to work fountains.  It provided ample facilities for rulers to camp here while in transit.  Some portions of these buildings have now been renovated.  There is a tourist restaurant, known as Maulsari Tourist Complex run by the Punjab Tourism Development Corporation.  It provides boarding and lodging facilities to the visitors.  And rare plants are also being maintained.  It is a very good spot for tourists.

            The brief description of the monuments situated in the vicinity of the Aam Khas Bagh is as under:

 

(1) Sard Khana.-This monument was got built by emperor Jahangir.This is an  air conditioned chamber of that time. The water was pulled out through large pulleys from the adjoining well and was passed through water channels running through the walls of  this building and was used for fountains and creating water falls.

 

(2) Sheesh Mahal.- This beautiful building was known as Daulat-Khana-E-Khas and was also called Sheesh Mahal. This was got built by the orders of Emperor Jahangir. There have been some subsequent alterations in the original building. The domes of this monument were decorated with glazed tiles, some of which can be noticed even today.

 

(3) Hamam (Bath).- This monument was constructed by the orders of Emperor Jahangir. In this, water  was taken through underground terracotta channels and a unique method of heating the water was adopted.

 

(4) Tank.- This tank was got prepared by orders of Emperor Jahangir. There was a Mehtabi-Chabutra in the centre which has fallen down. On the east and west  sides of this tank quarters for Mughal Employees were built. The total area of the complex is 700 x 485 the Tank is 320 x 280. On the northern side there was a beautiful enclosure having a garden 600 x 400 during those times.

 

(5) Daulat Khana-E-Khas.- This double storeyed monument was got built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan as his private residence. This must have been the most beautiful building of those time. All the rooms and main walls of this building were decorated with designs. The central hall measured 18 x 14 and eastern walls were having two tall minarets. On the northern side there were many tanks and fountains which added to the grandeur of this building.

 

              Dargah of Baba Salar Pir.-The Dargah of Baba Salar Pir is situated in old Sirhind near Das Nami Akhara.  It is held in great esteem by people of Sirhind and surrounding area.  Baba Salar Pir is said to be the contemporary of Guru Gobind Singh.  He was known for his spiritual powers and performance of miracles.  It is believed that he could make a wall move through his spiritual power.

 

            Dera Baba Das Nami Akhara.- Dera Baba Das Nami Akhara is situated very close to the dargah of Baba Salar Pir.  It commemorates the memory of Baba Hardit Giri who was a great saint.  Annual congregation of saint is held here for three days on Friday, Saturday and Sunday after Diwali.  On Monday, a grand bhandara is held in which food cooked in pure desi ghee is served to the people.  Preachers come from distant places and deliver religious sermons to the people.             

 

Dera Baba Dyal Puri.-Close to Dera Baba Das Nami Akhara, another religious place known as Dera Baba Dyal Puri is located.  it commemorates the sacred memory of Baba Dyal Puri who was a saintly figure.  He was also a contemporary of Guru Gobind Singh.  The dera is managed by the same body which looks after the Dera Baba Das Nami Akhara.  It is believed that the present town of Sirhind (old portion) could survive only with the blessings of Baba Dyal Puri when a large portion of the town was destroyed by the Sikhs under Banda Bahdur.

           

Floating Restaurant, Sirhind.-Floating restaurant constructed over the Bhakhra Main Line Canal is an important tourist spot run by the Punjab Tourism Development Corporation.  It is at a distance of 5 km from Sirhind on the Sher Shah Suri Marg.  It attracts a large number of tourists, especially during summer.  There is also a provision for night stay at the restaurant.  It has 8 suites.  It is a unique type of restaurant in the whole of Punjab.  Built in the middle of the canal, it presents a picturesque view to the visitors.

 

            Mata Shri Chakreshwari Devi Jain Temple Village Attewali (Sirhind).- It is situated in village Attewali opposite to Gurdwara Jyoti Sarup on Sirhind-Chunni-Chandigarh road.  This ancient temple is said to be nearly 1000 years old.  The legend goes that during the times of Maharaja Prithivi Raj Chauhan, a large number of pilgrims from Rajasthan were going on bullock-carts to the ancient Jain Temple of Kangra (situated still in Kangra Fort) to have the blessings of Lord Adi Nath.  The pilgrims had also brought an idol of Mata Chakreshwari Devi, an ardent worshipper (known as Rakshak Devi for Lord Adinath) of Lord Adinath. On their way the caravan halted for the night at the present site.  Next morning when the caravan was all set to move, the Rath (chariot) carrying the idol of Mata Shri Chakreshwari Devi did not move inspite of the best efforts of the pilgrims.  The devotees were at a loss to know the reason and were perplexed.  Then all of a sudden, there was flood of light inside the Palki carrying the idol and there was an Akashwani ‘Let this be my place of Abode’.  The pilgrims said ‘Mother, this is all sandy area, there is no water around here, we had a miserable night yesterday’. The voice replied ‘A few yards towards north of this place dig the land and you will get water’.  To the astonishment of pilgrims, they just dig a few feet and a fountain of water started flowing. The pilgrims were very much pleased and they established the idol of Mata Chakreshwari Devi at this place and built a small but beautiful temple there.  The pilgrims settled here and also in neighbouring settlements.  An annual function is held on 14th moon day of Asooj, i.e. 4th day after Dussehra, which is attended by a large number of devotees.  The festival opens on the night of 13th Moon day and close of Puranmashi. Food and refreshment is served to all the devotees.

 

Amloh  Tahsil

 

During the period of Princely rule Amloh was a Nizamat headquarter (District) of Erstwhile Nabha State. After the Independence the formation of PEPSU in 1948, it was merged with Patiala District and made a Sub-Tahsil of Nabha Tahsil . On 13 April 1992, when Fatehgarh Sahib was made a separate district, Amloh was upgraded to the level of a Tahsil Subdivision.

Amloh is situated on Nabha-Gobindgarh road and is at a distance of about 12    km from Gobindgarh.  It was originally founded by Fair Bakhsh, the Governor of Sirhind.  After the fall of the Sirhind in 1763, Amloh was annexed by Raja Hamir Singh, the ruler of Nabha State.  The fort in the town was constructed by Raja Hira Singh of Nabha.  It was given the status Nizamat headquarters.  The major portion of the fort is in dilapidated condition. A Subdivisional Complex has been constructed in one part of the fort.

 

Mandi Gobindgarh

 

            The town lies on Sher Shah Suri Marg between Khanna and Sirhind and is about 7 km east of Khanna.  It is also connected by metalled road with Amloh its Tahsil headquarters and is a railway station on Delhi-Amritsar railway line.  It is the most flourishing industrial town in Fatehgarh Sahib District as well as in the State and is well-known as ‘Steel Town’ of India.  This town has flourished as ‘Steel Town’ because of the blessings of Guru Hargobind, the Sixth Guru, who stayed here for some time.  The town itself derives its name from Guru Hargobind.  Now there is so much concentration and expansion of the industry that the place is also called the ‘Birmingham’ of Punjab.

            The sagacious Maharaja Hira Singh of Nabha sowed the seeds of industry by starting some industrial units in this town in 1902.  Maharaja Partap Singh took some special measures for the industrial development of the town.  The town which developed as a small iron and steel market during the World War-I when there was no control on iron and steel in Nabha State unlike the surrounding territories.  Accordingly, Gobindgarh was declared a free trade zone for steel by Maharaja Pratap Singh in 1928.  Thereafter, it began to make tremendous progress in steel business.  The first steel re-rolling mill was established at Gobindgarh in 1940.  There are now more than 250 steel re-rolling [d1] mills here.  These mills are exporting re-rolling steel to various parts of the country and also to some foreign countries.  It is due to vast industrial activity that this town has almost touched Khanna Town in Ludhiana District and both towns look like as one town.

            The Municipality of Mandi Govindgarh has no dearth of financial resources.  It is maintaining a beautiful Rose Garden and an indoor stadium.

            The important places of interest of the town are briefly described as under:

 

            Gurdwara Sri Har Gobind Sahib Ji, Chhevin Padshahi, Mandi Gobindgarh.- This magnificent gurdwara is situated near railway station.  It has been built in the sacred memory of Guru Hargobind who stayed here for two months.  The Guru stayed nearby a big sarovar (tank) where the present gurdwara has been built.  This then known as Barri Dhab (big tank).  It has also been authenticated by the Shiromani  Gurdwara  Prabhandhak Committee that the name then known as ‘Barri Dhab’ was adopted as ‘ Gobindgarh’ after the name of Guru Har Gobind.  Regarding the historicity of the site of the Gurdwara, Bhai Kahan Singh Nabha, in his book ‘Guru Shabad Ratanakar Mahankosh’ at page 430 has stated( translation) as under:

“Mandi Gobindgarh has been named after the name of a small village Gobindgarh situated in Tahsil and Police Station Amloh, where sixth Guru of the Sikhs, Shri Guru Hargobind Sahib stayed for two months during 1646 at the tank of big sarovar known in those days as ‘Barri Dhab’ in Punjabi.  He was accompanied by his followers and warriors.  Some clash  occurred between Guru Sahib’s Lashkar (sepoys) and then Mughal Fauj in which swords of some sepoys went blunt and broke.  They then requested Guru Sahib that there was not even a tiny tissue of steel in this area for repair of their weapon so how could they fight further.  Guru Sahib smilingly said “some day this place will be big steel producing centre in the country where you say that no steel is available for repair of the weapons”.  Then the sepoys were directed to a nearly place, where they found some steel scraps and repaired their weapons.  The village (repair place ) is now known as ‘Lohar Majra’.

 

Therefore, according to Sikh traditions, Mandi Govindgarh has become the biggest steel re-rolling centre of the country, due to the blessings of Guru Hargobind. The structure of the gurdwara is marvellous.  There is a big tank for taking holy bath. People of surrounding areas visit this place in large numbers every month during Puranmashi (full moon) .  A big annual fair is also held at this place in the month of June at the birthday of Guru Hargobind.

 

Ram Mandir, Mandi Govindgarh.-   This temple has been built near the G T Road.  It is visited by a large number of people.   There are grand idols of Lord Hanuman, Durga Mata, Ram, Laxman and Sita installed in the temple.  This temple is maintained by a trust known as ‘Ram Mandir Trust’.  Adjacent to the temple there is a grand dharamshala known as ‘Ram Bhavan’ which has also been built by the trust.  This dharamshala has quite modern structure and provides adequate amenities for accommodating visitors and marriage parties.

 

Bassi  Pathana  Tahsil

 

            Bassi Pathana then known a Basi was the headquarters of Nizamat (District) Amargarh of Erstwhile Princely State of Patiala. After Independence, on the formation of PEPSU, Fatehgarh Sahib was made a district with its headquarters at Bassi Pathana, but with the merger of Fatehgarh Sahib District with Patiala District it became the headquarter of Fatehgarh Subdivision which were later shifted to Fatehgarh Sahib. Keeping in view the importance of the town Bassi Pathana was made a subdivision after the formation Fatehgarh Sahib as a District.  It is a small town located between Sirhind and Morinda.  It has a railway station on Sirhind-Nangal Dam railway line and is connected by metalled roads with Fatehgarh and Morinda.

            It appears that Bassi was founded in 1540 by an Afghan, Malik Haider Khan, who settled here during the reign of Sher Shah Suri and named the place after his own name.  After the sack of Sirhind by the Sikhs in 1763, it was occupied by Sardar Diwan Singh of the Dallewala Misl.  Later on it passed on to the possession of Maharaja of Patiala. 

            The old fort of Sardar Diwan Singh in dilapidated condition can still be seen.  Some parts of fort are in good condition, wherein a Government Primary School and Sub-Jail are situated.

            In the heart of the town, there is located a smadh of Baba Budh Dass.  It is believed that with the blessings of the Baba, the desires of the people are fulfilled. There is a house near the fort called the Darbar Sahib, where a hair of Prophet Mohammad’s beard was kept in a glass showcase and the Muslims used to visit the place on the Prophet’s birthday and his death anniversary.  This historical hair was taken away to Pakistan in 1947 by its Muslim custodians.

 

            Sant Namdev Temple, Bassi Pathana.- It is said that in Bassi Pathana, Sant Namdev (who was born on 26 October 1270 in Maharashtra) stayed for a considerable period and preached Bhagti Marg (way to worship God) to the people of the area.  Thence, he moved to other parts of the Punjab for spreading his religious message.  Sant Namdev’s sermons in 61 ‘Shalokas’ have been included in Guru Granth Sahib by Guru Arjan Dev Ji at the time of its compilation.  This place became known as Swami Namdev Ji Ka Dera. A magnificent temple was constructed at this place in 1925.  The affairs of this temple are managed by all India Sant Nam Dev Sabha (Regd.) with headquarters at Bassi Pathana.  A big fair is held here for three days on Basant Panchmi when a large number of persons from other states also visit this place.

Khamano Tahsil

 

A brief description about the important places of historical interest of Khamano Tahsil is given as under:

 

            It is a small  town situated on Ludhiana-Chandigarh road at a distance of 18 kilometres from Samrala. It was part of Ludhiana District and on 13 April 1992, Khamano along with surrounding areas was transferred to the newly created district of Fatehgarh Sahib District and made a subdivision. In 1997 the village Khamano was raised to status of a town by forming  a Nagar Panchayat there. It is connected by road with Morinda, Samrala and Khanna. The population of the town during the year 2001 Census was 8,842.

 

Sanghol.- Sanghol, popularly known as Ucha Pind, in Khamano Tahsil of Fatehgarh District is situated about 5 kilometres from the tahsil headquarters and about 40 kms from Chandigarh on the Chandigarh-Ludhiana road.  Prior to Independence Sanghol formed part of the former Princely State of Patiala and was included in the erstwhile PEPSU on its formation in 1948.  The village along with some other villages, was transferred to Ludhiana District of Punjab on 25 January 1950 in connection with the exchange of enclaves between PEPSU and Punjab and PEPSU was merged with Punjab in 1956, on 13 April 1992, it was transferred to Fatehgarh District when the district was came into existence.  It is situated on top of a big mound, which is believed to be very old and touches a height of 24 metres and is spread over an area of 200x200 metres.  Practically, the internal part of  the new village has been constructed with the burnt bricks dug out from the ruins of earlier inhabitations.  Surface finds from the mound, especially after the rains, include copper, silver and gold coins and beads, etc.  as a result of digging or even ploughing by the farmers in the lower strats of the mound large quantities of antiquities and earthern areas of a special conical type have been recovered from time to time.  The coins found at the place clearly establish the historical sequence at least from the Gupta period up to the Sultanate.  Among the coins, the earliest is a gold coin of Kumar Gupta, and the last one bears the name of Sultan Salban.

            According to the local tradition, Sanghol was formerly known as “Sangaldwip” and the folk-lore of Rup Basant was associated with it.  The name Sanghol might have been derived from Sanghalaya, a home of Sangh because some Buddhist monasteries were located here.  The earthen-wares are pots and vassals of varying sizes.  Large size bricks or tiles with deep marks of three fingers have been found at the place.  Other articles include grinding-stones, votive tanks and clay seals.  A large carved red sand stone trough has also been found at the place.

            The presence of dried up old channels at places would lead to believe that Satluj, which at present flow about 10 km away, was running nearby Sanghol and has shifted its course now .

Some of the stone sculptures recovered from Sanghol bear marked Mongoloid features.  The name given to some of the localities of the village even at present, such as ‘pheelkhana’ and ‘mahal’ are indicative of the fact that the place enjoyed a very high status and was probably the seat of the ruler of the area.  The biggest find at Sanghol  is the 117 sculptures from one place.  All these sculptures which were unearthed in the area near the stupa are displayed in the museum.  These are in the form of pillars (69), coping stones (13) and cross bars (35).  All these sculptures are of Kushan period (1st to 2nd century AD) belongs to Mathura School of Indian Arts.

            The bulk of the archaeological evidence at Sanghol leaves little doubt that the mound, which is still about 70-80 feet raised from the surrounding area, is very ancient and excavations at the place might yield rich historical date.

 

Gurudwara Gobindgarh Sahib ‘Ranwan’.- Gurudwara Gobindgarh Sahib is situated about 6 kms from Khamano (the tahsil Headquarter) towards east on Ludhiana-Chandigarh road. The village Ranwan is just a half km away from the gurdwara. The place was visited by Guru Hargobind, the Sixth Guru of  the Sikhs. The  Raja Tara Chand of Kahloor met Guru Hargobind at this place in 1632 (on 22 Bhaisakh of 1689 Bikrami ) and asked for help. Guru Gobind Singh the Tenth Guru also visited place and fought a battle here with Royal Army and defeated them. Maharaja Karam Singh of Patiala State got constructed the Gurdwara and assigned some land to it. Due to the visit of the Sixth and Tenth Gurus it is known as the Gurdwara Gobindgarh Sahib Patshahi Chhevin (Sixth) and Dasvin (Tenth). The present Gurdwara is an imposing six-story edifice.

 

 

 

 

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