Gurdwara Bangla Sahib in Delhi
Gurdwara Bangla Sahib is an important historical and religious place in India. Dedicated to the eighth Sikh Guru, Sri Harkishen Sahib, it is situated near Connaught Place Market in New Delhi. Its main hall is kept simple, except for the open central shrine, covered by a small golden dome sporting a sculpted bronze cupola. Devotional music is relayed throughout the complex continuously. There is a higher secondary school, Baba Baghel Singh Museum, a library and a hospital in the Gurdwara complex. Holy water of Bangla Sahib Gurudwara, known as ‘Amrit, is said to have miraculous powers of curing the sick.
Before entering the shrine, the devotees take a holy dip in the holy pond, known as ‘sarovar’. The birth of Guru Sri Harkrishan Sahib and death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singhji is celebrated here every year. ‘Langar’ or Community Kitchen Hall is organized on the east side of the complex. Here, free food is served to all the devotees, without any distinction of caste, creed or status. One can visit the main complex bare-footed only, covering one’s head and wearing conservative clothes, covering legs and shoulders.
According to the legend related to this Gurdwara, the seat of Guru Sahib was disputed and Ram Rai, brother of Harkishen, sought the help of Aurungzeb. Aurungzeb called Guru Harkishen to Delhi, where he was entertained royally by Mirza Raja Jai Singh in his own palace, along with Diwan Dargah Mull, Bhai Gurditta Ji, Bhai Mati Das Ji and the mother of the Guruji. Later, this fabulous mansion was converted into a Gurdwara in the memory of the Guru Sahib and was called as Gurdwara Bangla Sahib. This shrine has also had the honor of hosting sixth Guru Sri Hargobind Sahib, on his arrival in Delhi.
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