1 CHAPTER FIVE PILGRIMAGE SITES OF NORTH INDIA AT A GLANCE North India is the home of many pilgrimage sites. Among these, some places having their importance at international level are Mata Vaishno Devi in Jammu, Jwalaji and Chintpurni in Himachal Pradesh, Golden Temple in Amritsar, Kurukshetra in Haryana and Haridwar in Uttarakhand. To study the important religious places in and around the above mentioned places, their management and facilities available to the tourist s at these places, this chapter has been planned. Further, this chapter has been divided into five sections and each section represents a particular place i.e Mata Vaishno Devi, Jwalaji and Chintpurni, Golden Temple, Kurukshetra and Haridwar. Section-1 Mata Vaishno Devi Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine is situated at Trikuta Mountain at an altitude of 5200ft. The Shrine is about 12 km from Katra situated in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Goddess Laxmi, Sarasvati and Maha Kali reside here in the form of pindis inside the shrine. Further, this place is among one of the holiest pilgrimage places popular among both the domestic and foreign tourists. It is also believed that all the wishes of the devotees are fulfilled here. Places En-Route Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Important places en-route Mata Vaishno Devi are Ban Ganga, Ardh Kuwari, Charanpaduka, Ganesh Matha and Sanji Chhat. Another en-route place is Bhaironath Temple. It is believed that yatra to Vaishno Devi is never complete without going to Bhaironath Temple while
2 returning from the Bhawan. Historical importance of the above mentioned places are as under. Ban Ganga The first place en-route after Katra is Ban Ganga. It is believed that during the battle with Bhaironath when Mata Vaishno Devi felt thirsty she shots an arrow in the ground and the water came out. With this water she satisfied her thirst. Due to its origin from the arrow (Ban), later it came to be known as Ban Ganga. Charanpaduka This place is second stoppage in yatra and about 2.5 km away from Ban Ganga. It is believed that this is the place where Mata Vaishno Devi took rest while going to Trikuta Parvat. The holy foot prints of Mata Vaishno Devi are imprinted here hence this place is called Charanpaduka. Ardhkuwari This place is about 3 kms from Charanpaduka. Nearly half of the journey is completed here and the devotees can take night rest here. Two most popular places named Ardhkuwari Temple and Garbhjun is situated here. In Ardhkuwari Mata Vaishno Devi hid herself from Bhaironath in Garabhjun for nine months. Garabhjun gufa is very congested. People who cross this gufa take an experience of birth. Sanjichhat Sanjichhat is about 4 kms from Ardhkuwari and highest place of the yatra. From Sanjichhat, the holy shrine is only 2.5 kms. Bhaironath Bhaironath Temple is about 2.5 km from Mata Vaishno Devi shrine. People visit this temple after visiting the Mata Vaishno Devi Temple. It is believed that at this place the Goddess Durga killed Bhaironath and his head flew here. Further, it is believed that the
3 Goddess Durga gave benediction that those who visit this place after visiting the holy shrine, their wishes would be fulfilled. Management of Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine All these places are managed and maintained by Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board. Before 1986, the shrine was managed privately by a trust called the Dharmarth Trust and Baridars. Baridars were local people who collected their offerings as per their turn. The main source of income of Dharmarth Trust was rental income and royalties. So the management and control of the shrine was with these people. Further, a very less amount was spent by these people for the development of this place and for better basic facilities to the yatris. Due to this mismanagement, yatris faced lots of inconvenience while visiting Mata Vaishno Devi. So, it was necessary to takeover the management of Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine from the Trust and Baridars. For the betterment of yatris, The Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board was established in August, 1986 under the provisions of The Jammu and Kashmir Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Act, 1986 and repealed in August, 1988 as Jammu and Kashmir Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Act, The task of management, administration and governance of the shrine is performed by the Shrine Broad. The main objectives of the Shrine Board are: 1. To provide better management and governance of the shrine. 2. Provide basic tourism infrastructure facilities to the pilgrims. 3. Endowments of the Shrine and lands and buildings in near by places. The structure of the board includes Chairman and not more than ten members. The Governor of the state of Jammu and Kashmir is the ex-officio Chairman of the Shrine Board and must be a Hindu. If the Governor is not a Hindu, he may nominate any other person who profess Hindu religion and qualifies to be a member as Chairman of the
4 shrine board. He has the power to nominate nine members in the board. The nomination of these members is at policy making level in the following manner: 1. Two persons who, in the opinion of the Governor, have distinguished themselves in the service of Hindu religion or culture. 2. Two women, who in the opinion of the Governor have distinguished themselves in the service of the Hindu religion, culture or social work, especially in regard to advancement of women. 3. Three persons out of the persons, who have distinguished themselves in the administration, legal affairs or financial matters. 4. Two eminent Hindus of the State of Jammu and Kashmir. For the implementation of policies, a Chief Executive Officer is appointed. Further, for the help of the Chief Executive Officer an additional Chief Executive Officer, various area heads and functional heads are appointed. As per provisions of the Act, the shrine funds vest with the board and with the help of these funds the work of shrine administration, management and governance is performed by the board. The term of the members other than the Chairman is for three years from the date of their nomination. Further, a person may be disqualified for being appointed, as a member of the Board: 1. If such person is not a Hindu. 2. He is of unsound mind. 3. He is an undercharged insolvent. 4. He is sentenced by a criminal court for an offence involving moral turpitude, such sentence not having been reserved. 5. In the opinion of the Governor he has acted against the interest of the shrine.
5 6. He is an office-holder or servant attached to the board, provided that nothing in this clause shall apply to the Chief Executive Officer of the board. 7. He has been guilty of misconduct and corruption. 8. He is addicted to intoxication of liquor and drugs. The main liabilities and duties of shrine board are as follow: Liabilities Every member of the board shall be liable for loss, waste and misapplication of the shrine fund if such loss, waste and misappropriation have been occurred willfully while he is a member. The Board may also file a suit against that person for compensation. Duties Duties of the shrine board are as under: 1. To arrange for the proper performance of worship at the shrine. 2. To provide facilities for the proper performance of worship by the pilgrims. 3. To make arrangements for the safe custody of the funds, valuable security and jewellery and for the preservation of the funds. 4. The construction of buildings for accommodation. 5. The construction of sanitary work. 6. The improvement of means of communication. 7. To undertake the development activities concerning the area of the shrine and its surroundings. 8. To make suitable arrangements for imparting of religious instructions and general education. 9. To make provisions of medical relief for the worshippers and pilgrims. 10. To make provision for the payment of emoluments to the salaried staff.
6 11. To do all such things as may be incidental and conducive to the efficient management, maintenance and administration of the shrine and shrine fund and convenience of the pilgrims. Services and Facilities Available to Pilgrims/Tourists Accommodation Facility A large number of privately owned hotels and Dharamsala facilities are available at Jammu and Katra for the pilgrims/tourists. The Shrine Board also provides free and rented accommodation at Jammu, Katra, en-route and at the Bhawan to the people visiting Mata Vaishno Devi. In Jammu, accommodations are available at Vaishno Dham and Saraswati Dham at a very economical rate. These two places are situated near the Jammu Railway Station. In Katra, accommodations are available at Niharika Complex at a very low price throughout the year but during rush, pilgrims can also get free of cost accommodation at Niharika Complex. People can also get free of cost accommodation near yatra parchi counter number 2 and near the bus stand. In en-route and the Bhawan, pilgrims can get free of cost accommodation in the form of halls. These halls are situated at Ardhkuwari, Sanjichhat and Bhawan. People can get these halls on first come first get basis. Other facilities like food, sanitation, medical and blankets are also available near these residing places. The Shrine Board also provides accommodation at a very marginal rates. Yatris can book their rooms at reception of these guest houses or directly at reception counter of Niharika Bhawan. They can also reserve their accommodation online by accessing the Shrine Board website. Transportation Facilities Jammu is well connected with other parts of the country by train, bus, and air. People choose different mode of transportation like bus, train, air and own vehicle to visit Jammu. From Jammu buses are
7 easily available to visit Katra. People travel from Jammu to Katra by bus or by their own vehicle. Medical Facilities To fulfill the medical needs of the yatries, the following facilities are available: 1. A block hospital is situated at Katra to provide medical aid to the yatries hours charitable dispensary run by the Shrine Board is also situated at Katra. 3. For emergency oxygen cylinders and drugs are also available at Banganga, Sanjichhat, Ardhkuwari and Bhawan hour ICU facilities are also available at Bhawan. But for advanced treatment facilities are available at Jammu only. Banking Facilities State Bank of India, Bank of Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir Bank provide ATM facilities at Katra. Further, main private and nationalized banks have their branches at Katra. Names of the banks situated in Katra, Ardhkuwari and Bhawan are Oriental Bank of commerce, United Commerce Bank, Jammu and Kashmir Bank, Jammu Citizens Co-operative and Ellaqui Dehati Bank (at Katra), Oriental Bank of Commerce and Jammu and Kashmir Bank (at Ardhkuwari), and Jammu and Kashmir Bank (at Bhawan). Shelter Facility To protect the pilgrims from direct heat, rain and shooting stones, sheds have been constructed by the shrine board. Area from Sanjhichhat to Bhawan has been fully covered with sheds. In the remaining area, sheds are available after every 500 meters. Refreshment and sanitation facilities are also available near these sheds.
8 Cloak Room Facility In Katra, cloak room facility is provided privately by hotels, shops, Dharamsalas, guest houses and lodging places. The Shrine board also provides this facility at its guest houses situated in Katra. Free of cost cloak room facilities are also available at the Bhawan in Sridhar Bhawan and at main Bhawan complex. Cloak room facilities at Bhawan are available 24 hours. Blanket Facility At Bhawan, yatries need blankets throughout the year. So to cater the need of the yatries blanket stores have been opened at the Bhawan at different locations. Yatries can get blankets form these stores free of cost only after depositing nominal but refundable security. Food Facility To provide fresh food at reasonable price, the shrine board has opened 12 refreshment units en-route. Out of these units 9 are situated at old track and 3 are situated at new track to the Bhawan. These refreshment units are also known as view points because these units are situated at places from where the yatries can see full view of the valley. The food is provided at these units at affordable price on no profit no loss basis. Besides this, the shrine board also runs five bhojnayalyas. Out of these, one each is situated at Ardhkuwari and Sanjichhat while remaining three are situated at the Bhawan. Pithu, Palki and Pony Facility Pithu, pony and palki facilities are also available for the yatries at fixed rates. Helicopter Facility Helicopter facility from Katra to Sanjichhat is also available to the devotees. This facility is provided by the Deccan aviation.
9 Section-2 Amritsar Amritsar is situated in the Majha region of Punjab. Further, the word Amritsar means holy pool of nectar and the word Majha in Punjabi means heartland. So, Amritsar is heartland of Punjab. Places In and Around Amritsar A large number of places of tourist interest are there in and around Amritsar. Some of these important places are The Golden Temple Amritsar was identified by Shri Guru Amar Dass ji the 4th Guru of the Sikhs and a pool was established by him at this site in Later, a small town grew up around this pool named Guru Ka Chak or Chak Guru Ram Dass. The Golden Temple was designed by Shri Guru Arjun Dev ji and in 1588 on his invitation, foundation stone of the Golden Temple was laid by great Sufi Hazarat Mian Mir of Lahore. After this in 1604 the holy book of the Sikhs Sri Guru Granth Sahib was installed in the temple. This building acquired its name when Maharaja Ranjit Singh got its domes covered with gold in Moreover, this place is the most sacred shrine of the Sikhs and a pilgrimage to the Golden Temple is must for a Sikh. This shrine (Gurudwara) is managed by Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC). Shree Durgiana Tirath This place was constructed by Guru Harsai Mal Kapoor and it is a sacred place for the Hindus in Amritsar. The most sacred place in the entire Durgiana Complex is Shree Lakshmi Narayan Temple and Garabh Griha. Further, the tirath is surrounded by the holy sarovar and domes of the temple are gold plated these days. Some other historical Temples at Durgiana complex are Shitala Mata and Bara Hanuman Temple.
10 Ram Tirath This place belongs to Rishi Chawan. In Ram Tirath, Mata Sita took shelter with Rishi Valmiki and later he composed Ramayna here. Further, this place is also famous as the birth place of Luv and Kush and for famous battle between Luv-Kush and Lord Ram. A sacred pond is also situated near the temple and according to a historical legend this pond was dug by Sri Hanuman ji. Ram Baag Ram Baag was built by Maharaja Ranjit singh in 84 acres of land. This place has two storied building with a basement and now a protected monument. A museum having paintings, armurs, arms, manuscripts and rare coins of the 18 th and 19 th century have been preserved here. Wagha Checkpost This place is about 29 kms from Amritsar and witness to the division of India-Pakistan. Every evening during the sunset a flag lowering ceremony known as The Retreat is performed here. Jalianwala Baag This place is the famous monumental icon of the freedom movement. On 13th April, 1919, around 2000 innocent people killed here due to indiscriminate firing by General Diar. Some important places in Jalianwala Baag include the building with bullet marks, the historical well and 45 feet high flame of liberty. Gurudwara Shri Taran Taran Sahib Gurdwara Shri Tarn Taran Sahib is about 25 Kms from Amritsar and situated in the city of Tarn Taran Sahib. This place was established by the fifth Guru, Shri Arjan Dev ji and has the distinction of having the largest sarovar (Water pond) of all the gurudwaras.
11 Khandoor Sahib Sri Khadur Sahib was home of the second Guru Sri Guru Angad Dev Ji and about 15 Kms from Tarn Taran. The Guru settled here with his wife and established his religious centre. Here Shri Guru Angad Dev ji appointed Guru Amar Das as his successor and a Gurudwara named Khaddi Sahi, has been constructed in the memory of Guru Amar Das ji. Management of the Golden Temple The Golden Temple is managed by Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee. Main objectives, functions, duties and list of educational institutions run by SGPC have been given in the following parts. Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) is the supreme organisation which administers the Golden Temple in Amritsar. It upkeeps the gurudwaras in Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Haryana also. SGPC, a representative of the Sikh community works under the provisions of Sikh Gurudwara Act 1925 and controls all the Gurudwaras under section 87 of this Act. Originally the committee constituted of 132 elected members from Punjab, heads of four takths (Shri Akal Takth Sahib, Amritsar, Takht Shri Kesgarh Sahib, Anandpur Sahib, Takth Shri Patna Sahib, Patna and Takth Shri Hazur Sahib, Maharastra), 12 members nominated by the Darbars of Indian states (Patiala-4, Nabha-2, Faridkot-2, Kapurthala-2, Jind-1 and Kalsia-1) and 17 members residing in India co-opted by the members of the board. Regarding voters, each and every male or female more than 21 years of age who does not trim or shave his beard or hair (except sehajdhari) have right to vote. Presently, the tenure of the committee is 5 years while the tenure of the executives is only one year. The responsibility of conducting peaceful elections of the committee is of the state government. It is essential to hold the first committee meeting within
12 one month from the government notification regarding the constitution of the committee. At least one meeting must be held once a year which is known as annual general meeting of the committee. The quorum of the meeting is 31 members. The Executives are selected in the annual meeting every year. The Executive work on behalf of the committee and consist of President, 2 Vice Presidents, and a General Secretary. Majority vote method is used by the executive in the annual meeting regarding all important decisions. In case of equality of votes, the president has right to second or casting vote. The SGPC committee has certain powers and duties regarding the management and operations of Gurudwaras. Powers and Duties of the SGPC Main powers and duties of the SGPC are as under:- 1. It is the duty of the SGPC to ensure that every committee formulated for the management of Gurudwaras must perform according to the provisions of the SGPC Act. 2. The SGPC has the power of general superintendence over all committees appointed under the provisions of the Act. 3. It does not interfere with or have any control over any place of public worship in Punjab otherwise than provided in this Act. 4. The SGPC is competent to hold and administer the trust funds for religious and charitable (educational or industrial nature) purposes. Whether such funds are derived from allotments duly made by a committee out of the surplus funds or income of a Gurudwara under its management or from donations, or contributions or endowments made directly to the SGPC for such purpose. 5. In the general meeting, the SGPC may call upon its executive committee to report upon any matter with in the jurisdiction of
13 the SGPC. If required, it may also give direction to this committee to take appropriate action on the matter. 6. It may consider and discuss any matter directly related with Sikh religion but shall not consider, discuss and pass any other matter. 7. The SGPC may in general meeting make bye-laws not inconsistent with this Act. Services/Facilities Available to the Tourists Accommodation A large number of privately owned hotels, dharamsalas and lodges are available for the tourists around the Golden Temple and in Amritsar as a whole. Beside this accommodation facilities are also available at the Golden Temple. In the Golden temple, there are six dharamsahlas having lodging facilities. These Dharmsalas are maintained and managed by the Gurudwara authorities. Details of these Dharamsalas are as under: Sri Guru Ramdas Dharamsala: The foundation stone of this dharamsala was laid by Sant Sadhu Singh ji of Patiala on 17 th January, All the responsibility of construction of this dharamsala was of the SGPC. This dharamsala is also known as Sri Guru Ram Das Sarai. This building has 2 stories having 18 halls with all modern basic amenities. Sri Guru Nanak Dharamsala: Different Departments of the SGPC are situated in this building. Further lodging facility for the pilgrims is also available here. Guru Arjan Dev Dharamsala: Scooter parking and branch of Punjab and Sind bank is situated in this building. Counter for room booking is also situated in this building.
14 Guru Hargobind Dharamsala: In the basement of this building Guru Ramdas Library is situated. Mata Ganga Ji Dharamsala: In this building the internet department of the SGPC is situated. New Akal Rest House: Special rooms for foreign tourists are available in this building. This building is situated near Guru Arjan Dev Niwas. Table-5.1 Accommodation Available in the Golden Temple Name of Niwas Number No. of Charges Payable of Rooms Rooms Sri Guru Ramdas Niwas None but Refundable Security of Rs.!00/- Sri Guru Nanak Niwas Refundable Security of Rs.!00/- Guru Arjan Dev Niwas Rs. 100/- Day and Rs.300 Refundable Security AC Room = Rs.300/- Day and Rs.600 Refundable Security Guru Hargobind Niwas 88+3 Halls 88+3 Halls Rs. 100/- Day and Rs.300 Refundable Security AC Room = Rs.300/- Day and Rs.600 Refundable Security Mata Ganga Ji Niwas Rs. 100/- Day and Rs.300 Refundable Security AC Room = Rs.300/- Day and Rs.600 Refundable Security New Akal Rest House Rs. 100/- Day and Rs.300 Refundable Security AC Room = Rs.300/- Day and Rs.600 Refundable Security Baba Deep Singh Ji Niwas (Gurudwara- Shaheedan) Rs. 100/- Day and Rs.300 Refundable Security AC Room = Rs.300/- Day and Rs.600 Refundable Security Other Accommodation Facilities in Amritsar Large number of star and non-star hotels are there in Amritsar. Further, there are mainly 3 five star, 4 four star, 12 three star and 5 two star hotels in Amritsar. Details of these have been presented in Table-5.2.
15 Table-5.2 Hotels in Amritsar Name of Hotel 5 Star 4 Star 3 Star 2 Star Others Amritsar International Blue Moon Comfort Inn G.S.K Country Inn & Suites Grand Hotel Heritage Inn A J Golden Cresent Airlines C J International City Heart Hotel Golden Tower Grace Grand Legacy Indus Ishan Villa Ista Amritsar Kishore Castle Kishore International La Cascade Lawrence Mohan International P.R.Residency Punnu International Queens Land Raj Continental Raj Darbar Randhawa International Ritz Plaza Royal Castle Royal Inn Sanjog International Sapphire Sarovar Plaza Shiraz Castle Shiraz Regency Sita Continental Sita Niwas Sun City Tower Swarn House Khyber Continental Le Golden M.K. Hotel Mercury Inn Ranjit s Svaasa Temple View Trehan s Ashiana
16 Transportation Facility Amritsar is well connected with other parts of the country by road, train and air. So pilgrims can avail any of the above mentioned mode of transportation according to their convenience. Further, direct trains arrive here from New Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Jaipur, Agra, Varanasi, Nanded, Gorakhpur, Jamshedpur, Guwahati, Nagpur, Patna, Lucknow etc. Bank Facilities Almost each and every bank has its branches with ATM facilities in Amritsar. So the pilgrims never face any difficulty regarding banking facilities while visiting Amritsar. Further, the HDFC bank has a tie up with the Golden Temple authority. Now people can easily make donations online through this bank. Tourist Information Centre Main tourist information centres in Amritsar are situated in hotel Amritsar International, Youth Hostel and Raja Sansi Airport. Educational Institutions Running under the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee A large number of educational institutions are running under the SGPC. Details of these educational institutes are given in Table-5.3, 5.4 and 5.5. Nankana Sahib Educational Trust, Ludhiana This Trust is running Guru Nanak Engineering College Ludhiana, Guru Nanak Polytechnic Ludhiana and approximately three dozen public schools.
17 Sri Guru Ramdas Charitable Hospital Trust Amritsar This Trust is running (A) Sri Guru Ramdas Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, Valla, Amritsar (B) Sri Guru Ramdas Institute of Dental Sciences and Research, Amritsar (C) Sri Guru Ramdas Hospital and (D) Sri Guru Ramdas School of Nursing Amritsar. Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Educational Trust, Fatehgarh Sahib This Trust is running Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College Fatehgarh Sahib. Baba Jorawar Singh Baba Fateh Singh Educational Trust, Fatehgarh Sahib This Trust is running Baba Jorawar Singh Baba Fateh Singh Sr.Secondary School, Fatehgarh Sahib. Sr.No. Table-5.3 Colleges Run by the SGPC Name of Colleges 1. Guru Nanak Khalsa College Kings Circle Matunga, Mumbai. 2. Sri Guru Teg Bahadur Khalsa College, Sri Anandpur Sahib (Ropar). 3. Mata Gujri College, Fatehgarh Sahib. 4. General Shivdev Singh Diwan Gurbachan Singh Khalsa College, Patiala. 5. Guru Nanak College Budlada (Mansa). 6. Mata Sahib Kaur Girls College, Talwandi Saboo, Bathinda. 7. Sant Baba Dalip Singh Memorial Khalsa College Dumelli (Kapurthala). 8. Guru Nanak Khalsa College Darolli Kallan (Jalandhar.) 9. Trai-Shatabdi Guru Gobind Singh Khalsa College, Amritsar. 10. Guru Nanak College, Moga. 11. Guru Nanak College For Girls, Mukatsar. 12. Babbar Akali Memorial Khalsa College, Garshankar (Hoshiarpur). 13. Khalsa College Gardhiwala (Hoshiarpur). 14. Mata Ganga Khalsa College For Girls Kottan (Ludhiana). 15. Guru Gobind Singh Khalsa College (For Women) Jhaar Sahib (Ludhiana). 16. Mata Damodri Kanya Mahavidyala, Darolli Bhai, (Moga). 17. Mata Sundri Tri-Shatabdi Khalsa College for Women, Karnal (Haryana) 18. Guru Nank College Batala (Gurdaspur) 19. Mata Sahib Kaur Girls College, Talwandi Sabho, (Firozpur) 20. Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Khalsa College, Vill. Aakar, Patiala 21. Guru Nanak Girls Intermediate College, Kankarkhera, Meerut Cantt, U.P. 22. Sikh Intermediate College Narangpur, Joya, J.P.Nagar, (U.P.)
18 Sr.No. Table-5.4 Public Schools Run by the SGPC Name of Schools 1. Sri Guru Ramdas Public School, Sultanwind Road, Amritsar. 2. Maharaja Ranjit Singh Public School, Tarantarn (Amritsar). 3. Maharaja Ranjit Singh Public School, Rattoke, Via Khemkarn, Tehsil Patti (Amritsar). 4. Maharaja Ranjit Singh Public School, Diyalpura, Tehsil Patti (Amritsar). 5. Baba Budha Ji Public School, Beer Sahib, Thatha, Via Jhabal (Amritsar). 6. Sri Guru Hargobind Sr. Secondary Public School, Ramdas, Tehsil Ajanala (Amritsar). 7. Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Khalsa Girls High School, Chheharta Sahib (Amritsar). 8. Guru Nanak Dev Academy, Jalandhar Road, Batala (Gurdaspur). 9. Guru Arjun Dev Public School, Barath Laarhi, Dr.Sarna, Tehsil Pathankot (Gurdaspur). 10. Sahibjada Ajit Singh Public School, Mahalpur, Ladhewal (Hoshiarpur). 11. Baba Makhan Shah Public School, Tanda Ram Sarai, Mukkerian (Hoshiarpur). 12. Sri Guru Teg Bahadur Khalsa High School, Garh Shankar (Hoshiarpur). 13. Bhai Nand Lal Public School, Sri Anandpur Sahib (Ropar). 14. Parivaar Vishoda Public School, Sirsa, Nangal Ropar). 15. Khalsa Public School, Hafizabad, Guru Beer Jhand Sahib (Ropar). 16. Dashmesh Public School, Tahliana Sahib, Raikot (Ludhiana). 17. Guru Gobind Singh Public School, Khanna (Ludhiana). 18. Dashmesh Sr. Secondary School, Kapal Mochan, Distt. Yumnanagar (Haryana). 19. Baba Gurditta Ji Public School, Jindvari (Ropar) 20. Bibi Rajni Public School, Sen. Sec. School, Patti (Tarn Taran) 21. Bibi Rajni Public Sec. Sec. School, Patti (Tarn Taran) 22. Guru Gobind Singh Public School, Maluka, Teh. Rampura Phool, Distt. Bathinda 23. Guru Gobind Singh Public School, Gangsar-Jaiton, Distt. Faridkot 24. Mata Gurjri Public School, Therhi Sahib, Teh. Giddarbaha, Distt. Mukatsar 25. Mata Sundri Public School, Kot Shameer, Distt. Bathinda 26. Sahibzada Ajit Singh Public School, Bazidpur, Distt Firozpur 27. Sahibzada Jujhar Singh Public School, Kot Dharmu, Teh. & Distt. Mansa 28. Sant Mohan Singh Matwala Public School, Tirlokewala, The. Kallianwali Mandi, Distt. Sirsa, (Haryana) 29. Sahibzada Baba Fateh Singh Public School, Guru ka Bagh, Teh. Ajnala, Distt. Amritsar 30. Sahibzada Jorawar Singh Public School, Nadala, Distt. Kapurthalla Table-5.5 Senior Secondary Schools & High Schools (95% Grant In-Aid) Run by the SGPC Sr.No. Name of Schools 1. Sri Guru Ram Das Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Sri Amritsar. 2. Sri Guru Nanak Girls Senior Secondary School, Sri Amritsar. 3. Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Beer Sahib, Thatha (Sri Amritar). 4. Bhupinder Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Moga. 5. Guru Gobind Singh Senior Secondary School, Khanna. 6. Kallar Khalsa Senior Secondary School, Haryana (Hoshiarpur). 7. Guru Nanak High School Takhtupura (Moga). 8. Sri Mata Ganga Girls High School Baba Bakala (Sri Amritar). 9. Sri Guru Teg Bahadur Khalsa High School Baba Bakala (Sri Amritsar). 10. Khalsa High School, Guru Ka Bagh, Sri Amritsar
19 Income and Expenditure related with the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee The main source of income of the SGPC is offerings by the pilgrims for Kadah Parsad, Golak and Langar. In the same way, the main expenditure by the SGPC is on langar, dharma parchar, employee s salary, educational institutes, religious literature and books and Kadah Parsad. Section-3 Mata Chintpurni and Jwalaji A large number of pilgrimage places are there in Himachal Pradesh. Mata Chintpurni and Jwalaji situated in Una and Kangra districts respectively are among these places. The temple of Chintpurni Devi is situated on Shivalik Mountain Range of Himalayas. The goddess Chinnimastika Devi- the goddess without head is worshipped here. The original pindi of the devi in a headless form is worshiped at Chintpurni Temple. This place is managed by Mata Chintpurni Devi Trust. Jwalaji Devi Temple situated around 35 kms from Chintpurni is a famous temple of goddess Jawalamukhi- the deity of flaming mouth. The temple is built over natural jets of combustible gas. The temple lies in the lap of Shivalik Range of Kangra valley called Kalidhar. This place is managed by Mata Jwalaji Devi Trust. Places around Chintpurni and Jwalaji Some other places having tourist interest around Mata chintpurni and Jwalaji are Dharamsala, Macleodganj, Chamunda Devi, Bajreshwari Devi and Baijnath. Details of these places are as under:
20 Chamunda Devi Chamunda Devi Temple is an abode of Shiva Shakti since the saga of Purans. According to a legend, the Goddess Chamunda was enshrined as chief goddess with the title of Rudra in the battle between demon Jalandhar and Lord Shiva which made this place famous as Rudra Chamunda. Brajesvari Devi Brajesvari Devi Temple popularly known as Nagarkot Dham or Kot Kangra, is dedicated to Goddess Brajeswari. It was one of the most renowned shrines of Northern India. However, the main temple was ravaged by foreign invaders and completely destroyed by the 1905 earthquake. It was rebuilt by the temple restoration committee in the existing form in Dharamshala The high snow clad Dhauladhar Ranges of the Himalayas form a magnificent backdrop to the hill resort of Dharamshala. This is the principal township of Kangra and overlooks wide spread plains. With dense pine and deodar forests, numerous streams, cool healthy air, attractive surroundings and the nearby snowline, Dharamshala has everything for a perfect holiday. Further, the headquarters of Dalai Lama is also here. Covering a wide area in the form of a twin settlement, Lower Dharamshala (1380 m) is a busy commercial centre, while Upper Dharamshala (1830m) with the suburbs of McLeodganj and Forsythganj, retains a British flavour and colonial lifestyle. McLeodganj often called the' Little Lhasa' at 1770 mts., is the residence of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
21 Baijnath This place is among 12 Jyotilings in the country. This temple was built in 804 AD on Dhauldhar Range of Himalayas and dedicated to Lord Shiva. Every year during shivaratri fair a large number of pilgrims visit this place. Management of the Temples of Mata Chintpurni Devi and Jwalaji Mata Chintpurni Devi Trust came into existence on 12 th June Before establishment of the trust, till 1961 it was the District Board Hoshiarpur which organized all the festivals in Chintpurni Temple. But from August, 1962 the Panchayat Samiti Amb took over the management of the temple. But now all affairs are managed by the Chintpurni Devi Trust with Deputy Commissioner Una and SDM Amb as Commissioner and Assistant Commissioner respectively. Further, all rituals in the temple are performed by Kalia Brahmans and the reason is that this temple is founded by Mai Dass Kalia. About 200 Kalia families are there in Chintpurni and are divided into 4 tolas. All these Brahmans belong to Bhardwaz Gotra. These are the baaridars of the temple and perform pooja according to their turn. Earlier these people got certain percentage of the offerings for their services but now these people are the members of the trust. Similarly Mata Jwalaji Devi Trust came into existence on 7 th March Before this the management of the temple was in the hands of brahmans of Bhojakvansh. But after establishment of the trust all the affairs of the temple are managed by Deputy Commissioner as Chairman and Assistant Commissioner. To assist these people 3
22 Government Employees, 72 Regular Trust Members, 4 Daily Wage Employees, 6 Builders and 9 Part Time Employees are there in the trust. Above all both these trusts are semi-government and come under The Himachal Pradesh Hindu Public Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments (Amendments) Act This act came into existence on 31 st May 2007 after amendment in The Himachal Pradesh Hindu Public Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Act Main points related with the Act are 1. The term Hindu Public Religious Institution includes a math, temple, smadh, smadhi and dera established with a religious object and under the direct control of the state government. 2. Any offering which in kind or cash, made by any pilgrim or by any other person in any Hindu public religious institution shall be deemed to be the property of such religious institution. 3. The principal Secretary or Secretary (Language, Arts and Culture) to the State Government is the Chief Commissioner (Temple). Further, for performing pooja a Pujari is appointed by the Commissioner and the recruitment and promotion rules of service of the temple trusts employees are notified by the Chief Commissioner (Temple). 4. Subject to section 20 the Commissioner may constitute a managing committee of the trustees for superintendence and control of the temple, if deems proper. 5. The recruitment, purchase of vehicle or new construction work in any temple is subject to the prior approval of the Chief Commissioner (Temple).
23 6. The Commissioner shall exercise the financial powers up to fifty thousand rupees. Each scheme involving expenditure exceeding fifty thousand rupees shall have an approval from the Chief Commissioner (Temple). 7. The Commissioner shall appoint not exceeding twenty trustees including officials, non officials, hereditary and non-hereditary trustees which shall constitute the trust. 8. The quorum of the meeting of the trust shall be two-third of the total number of trustees. Further, the annual budget including audit and accounts statement shall be placed before the Management Committee for its approval. 9. The internal audit of the temple trusts shall be conducted by the Section Officer of the Language and Culture Department. Services/Facilities Available to the Tourists Accommodation Facility Hundreds of dharamshalas, guest houses and hotels of varying quality in and around Chintpurni are available for tourists/pilgrims. Yatri Niwas run by Himachal Tourism is also situated at a distance of 3 Kms from the Chintpurni. A yatri niwas run by HPTDC is also situated at Jwalaji. Transportation Facility Chintpurni and Jwalaji can be approached by road and train. People can visit here by bus or by their own vehicle. Regarding train facility the closest railheads are at Hoshiarpur (42 km) and Una (55 km). Frequent bus and taxi services to Chintpurni and Jwalaji are available from these towns.
24 Banking Facilities At Chintpurni only one ATM by the State Bank of India is situated. Further in Jwalaji, two ATMs (one each by the State Bank of India and Punjab National Bank) are situated. Income and Expenditure by Trust Mata Jwalaji and Chintpurni It is evident from the table that proposed income in the year 2000 was Rs which increased up to Rs in the year As against this, the actual income in the year 2000 was which increased up to Rs in the year Further, percentage share of actual income to proposed income varies between per cent during this period. However, the proposed expenditure in the year 2000 was Rs which increased up to Rs in the year The actual expenditure in the year 2000 was Rs which increased up to Rs in the year Further, percentage share of actual expenditure to proposed expenditure varies between per cent during this period. Table-5.6 Income and Expenditure by Mata Jwalaji and Chintpurni Trust Year Income (In Rupee) Expenditure (In Rupee) Proposed Actual Percentage to Proposed Proposed Actual Percentage to Proposed Source: Mata Jwalaji and Chintpurni Devi Trust
25 Section-4 Kurukshetra Kurukshetra is situated in Haryana State, Where the battle of Mahabharata took place. This place is also known as the land of Bhagwatgeeta because at this place Lord Krishna delivered the words of wisdom known as Bhagwatgeeta to Arjun. Total area where the battle of Mahabharata took place is 48 kosas or about 100 miles equal in length and breadth. At present this area also covers part of districts Panipat, Kaithal, Jind and Karnal. The four corners of this area are protected by four Yaksha s namely Kapil Yaksh, Rantuk Yaksh, Arnak Yaksh and Machkaruk Yaksh. Though, around 360 pilgrimage sites are there in Kurukshetra, but only 134 are easily accessible. Further, two most popular events namely Sun Eclipses and Geeta Jyanti Samaroh are celebrated in Kurukshetra. During the Sun Eclipses a large number of pilgrims from all over India and abroad visit here and it is believed that a holy dip in Braham Sarovar and Sanhit Sarovar during the Sun Eclipses give the merit of performing thousand Ashawamedha Yajnas. Another event held here is Geeta Jyanti Samaroh to celebrate the birth of Srimad Bhagwat Geeta. This event is held in the month of November/December every year. Deep daan and moving arti are most popular things performed during this event. Places In and Around Kurukshetra A large number of important pilgrimage places are there in and around Kurukshetra. The details of these places are as under:
26 Braham Sarovar This is the most sacred pond and during the Sun Eclipses a large number of pilgrims take dip in the holy water of it. According to Vaman Puran the creator Brahma himself conceptualized the site of the pond. This ancient pond is one of the largest man made pond in Asia, having a dimension of 1800 mt in length and 1400 mt in breadth. Sanhit Sarovar Sanhit Sarovar is about 500 yards in length and 150 yards in breadth. It is believed that the pond was filled with water which came directly from the navel of Brahma and is believed to be the permanent abode of Lord Vishnu. According to another belief, all the tirthas assemble here on Amavas. Further, during the Sun Eclipse the importance of this place increases manifold. It is believed that any person taking bath and performing sharaad, gets the fruit of 1000 Ashwamedh sacrifices. Shri Krishna Museum This place has been set up by Kurukshetra Development Board and is situated near the Braham Sarovar. This meueum is based on the life of Lord Krishna and has wide variety of sculptures, paintings of the Kangra and Madhubani styles, pattachitra-folk paintings of Orissa depicting scenes from Mahabharata, wood carvings, metal castings, ivory carvings, miniature paintings, palm leaf etches, illustrated manuscripts etc. Collection from Pallava, Chola and Nayaka periods have also been kept here.
27 Panorma Panorma is situated near the Shri Krishan Meuseum and forms one of the main centres of attraction among people visiting Kurukshetra. The main attraction of this place is life like panorama of the 18 days long battle of Mahabharta and science centre. Bhisham Kund, Narkatari At this place Bhisham Pitahma laid on bed of arrows for watching the battle of Mahabharta. A temple and water tank (Bhisham Kund) is situated here. The tank resulted when Arjun shot an arrow in the ground to arrange water for Bhishmma Pitahma when he laid on the arrow-bed. Jyotisar Jyotisar is a combination of two words Jyoti and Sar. Jyoti means light and sar means tank and essence. In Jyotisar, Lord Krishna delivered the message of Bhagwat Geeta to Arjun under a Banyan tree. So, one can feel essence of enlightenment here. A sound and light show is performed here which gives special emphasis on the teachings of Bhagwad Geeta. Thanesar It is believed that the name of this place is after Staneswar Temple (a Shiv Temple). Second important place situated here is Bhadarkali Temple. This place is among one of the Shakti Pithas situated all over India. It is believed that the lower limb of Mata Sati fell here.
28 Pehowa Pehowa is 27 kms from Thanesar and one of the well known places for pind daan (part of last rituals). Pehowa is also famous for temples related with Shiva and his son Kartikya. The temple dedicated to Shiva has no Shiv linga instead it has five faced idol of Lord Shiva which is one of its kinds. Management of Tourist places in Kurukshetra Among these places, some of the places like Braham Sarovar, Sanhit Sarovar, Panorma, Shri Krishna Meusium, Bhisam Kund and Jyotisar are managed by the Kurukshetra Development Board and others are managed by their trusts. Kurukshetra Development Board Haryana came into existence on 1st Nov, 1966 after partition from Punjab. With few industries and lack of resources, Haryana was considered an underdeveloped state having no tourism potential. But Haryana Government found a lot of tourism potential in the state and decided to develop places having religious and tourist importance and Kurukshetra was among these places. For integrated development of Kurukshetra a high powered Kurukshetra Development Board was formulated on 1st August, 1968 which got registered under the Societies Registration Act XXI of 1980, at the instance of Gulzari Lal Nanda, former home minister. The board is autonomous by nature and its main function is development of the region. The jurisdiction of board is not limited to Kurukshetra alone but it spreads over a vast area of about 100 miles in which 134 places of pilgrimage/tourists interest are situated. Presently, Shri Jagannath Pahadi, Governor of Haryana is the
29 Chairman of Kurukshetra Development Board. The main functions of the board are as follow: 1. The overall development of the place including its landscaping, renovation of historical places and sacred religious tanks and provision of facilities to pilgrims and tourists. 2. Building of roads and drains, rest houses and sarais lying out of parks and orchards, provision of transport and sanitary facilities etc. 3. Renovation of the Kurukshetra tank (Braham Sarovar) and providing a few basic amenities to the local public in general and the pilgrims in particular. The Board was established for the comprehensive and overall development of Kurukshetra region. For the achievement of this objective several projects were undertaken and the board has been rigorously trying to fulfill the expectations of the people. The major achievements of the board are as follow: 1. The largest man made water body called Braham Sarovar which is one of the important centres of pilgrimage visited by lacs of pilgrims during the solar eclipse has been constructed. 2. The other tirthas developed by the Board includes Sanehit Sarover and Jyotisar the place where the holy Gita was delivered by Lord Krishna. Bhishmakund at Narkatari, Banganga at Dayalpur, Shalihotra Tirthas at Sarsa where Yaksha Yudhishiter dialogue was held and Saraswati Tirtha at Pehowa have already been developed.
30 3. Some other Tirthas such as Kapilmuni Tirtha at Kalayat, Kapisthal Tirtha at Kaithal, Rinmochan Tirtha at Rasina, Sarpadaman tirtha at Safindon have been taken up by the Board for a comprehensive development. 4. The Board has provided land to various organizations for the construction of Dharamshalas to provide cheaper accommodation to the visiting pilgrims/tourists. More than 800 rooms are available in these Dharamsalas for the stay of the pilgrims. 5. The Board has also provided modern civic amenities at various places. 6. The Board has also established the Srikrishna Museum and the Kurukshetra Panorama and Science Centre at Kurukshetra. Facilities Available at Kurukshetra Main services and facilities available to the tourists are as under: Transportation Facility Kurukshetra is well connected with Chandigarh and Delhi by Road, Train and Air. Train is the most commonly used mode of travel especially by the middle class. Medical Facility During festivals and Sun Eclipses special arrangements are made for providing medical aid to the pilgrims/tourists. Team of experienced doctors is appointed for the same. Further, ambulance facilities are also provided for the needy. The number of ambulances are increased or decreased as per the need of the occasion. Two main Government Hospitals in Kurukshetra are Shri Krishana Government Aurvadic College and LNJP Hospital.
31 Information Centre To provide adequate information about Kurukshetra, three tourist information centers have been established at Pipli, Braham Sarovar and Jyotisar. Banking Facilities Most of the banks have their branches at Kurukshetra. Branches of some banks providing ATM facilities are State Bank of India, HDFC, ICICI, Punjab National Bank, Axis Bank and Bank of Baroda. Accommodation A large number of accommodation facilities both private and government are there in Kurukshetra for pilgrims/tourists. Details of these are given in Table-5.7 Place Table-5.7 Places of Stay in Kurukshetra No. of Address Category Rooms Rent (Rs. per day) Parakeet G.T. Road, Pipli 1 10 VIP Double General 600 Dharmshala Aggrwal Railway Station Near Kurukshetra 16 General 10 Krishan Dham Railway road 20 Double General 50 Geeta Dham Near Sannihit Sarovar 43 General Free of cost Birla Mandir Near Thanesar 7 Rooms 51 Dharmshala Railway Station Geeta Bhawan Near Brhamasarovar 30 General Free of cost Jat Dharmshala Near Thanesar Railway station 400 General Free of Cost Ror Dharmshala Near Brhamasarovar 87 General Free of cost Brahaman Near Sannihit Sarovar 204 General Free of Cost Dharmshala & Hostel 18 VIP Free of Cost Jyotisar Tourist Complex 250 Jyotisar 1,1 Double bed Semi Deluxe Four bed Sleeping Room JaiRam Vidhyapith Near Brhamasarovar 60 Double bed Free of cost Gujjar Dharmshala Near Thanesar Railway station 50 Double bed Free of cost
32 Pal Gadria Near Sannihit Sarovar 50 Double bed Free of cost Dharmshala Maharana Partap Bhawan Near Thanesar Railway station 25 General Free of cost Saini Smaj Bhawan Near Thanesar 8 VIP 100 Railway station 200 General Free of Cost PWD Rest House Pipli G.T.Road Pipli 2 Double bed 100 official,150 Non-Official Youth Hostel Pipli G.T.Road Pipli 5 Double Bed bed Sleeping room 20 Official,40 Non Official Neelkanthi Krishan 6 VIP (AC) 500 Dham Yatri Niwas 12 Semi deluxe 350 double bed 4 General Deluxe Room 6 bed 75 per bed 4 Sleeping Room 6 bed University Guest 4 VIP 250 House 12 General 100 RECK Rest House 1 VIP 200 University 5 General 100 Section-5 Haridwar Haridwar is a religious city that has been remembered by different names in our scriptures and ancient historical epics. Sometimes it was Mayapuri and at other times Gangdwar. Haridwar is one of those four chief religious places where the festival of kumbh takes place in every twelve years. It is believed that if one takes bath in its sacred water, he is relieved of all sins and achieves supreme salvation. Places In and Around Haridwar Some of the important places in and around Haridwar are Har Ki Pori, Mata Mansa Devi Mandir, Chandi Devi Mandir, Dakshparjapati Mandir, Bilkeshwar Mahadev Mandir, Rishikesh and Neelkanth. Details of these places are as under:
33 Har Ki Pori This place is among the most sacred places situated in Haridwar. According to a legend few drops of amrit felt here when Samundar Manthan took place the Devils and the Devtas. The present ghat was constructed by Vikramaditya in memory of his brother Bhartrihari who meditated and died here. Mansa Devi Temple This temple is situated on Bilwa Parwat. As its name suggests Mansa which means wish. It is believed that all the wishes of the devotees are fulfilled here. The inner shrine has two deities, one with eight arms and the other one with three heads and five arms. one can reach this place either by trolley or on foot. Chandi Devi This temple is about 3 Kms from Chandighat and is situated on the top of the Neel Parvat. One can reach here by trolley or on foot. The main statue in the temple was originally built by Adi Shankracharya in the 8 th centuty A.D. Further, the temple was built by the king of Kashmir- Suchat Singh in It is belived that two devils Chanda- Munda were killed by the Goddess Chandi here. Daksh Mahadev Temple Daksh Mahadev temple is situated in Kankhal and dedicated to Lord Shiva. The ancient story about this place is that, Daksh Parjapati, father of Sati organized a yagya at this place. But he did not invite Lord Shiva and Sati. Mata Sati felt insulted and burnt herself in the yagya kund. This temple was built as a tribute to this legend. Rishikesh Rishikesh near Haridwar also has religious importance. This place is 24 kms away from Haridwar. Places worth visiting here are Ram Jhoola, Lakshman Jhoola, Santi Neekaitan and Dodhahari etc.