A travellers’ wish is to visit a new place which he or she has always been eager. My wish is always been like that and one of such place is Jalandhar. I have heard about Jalandhar since childhood but had no opportunity to visit, finally we made the plan to visit Jalandhar city after long hiatus and hectic schedules and I was certainly very excited.
On 9th March 2018, we all woke up at early hours in morning and got fresh & ready to depart for Jalandhar at 0800 hours, hiring a taxi for the tour. The driver told us that it will take atleast 6 hours to reach Jalandhar if there is no traffic on highways. The journey through the roadways is most enjoyable as travellers’ get to see the greeneries along roadsides and villages surrounded by green meadows and plants. We entered Sonipat by 0935 hours through NH-1 and crossed through ‘Singhu Border’, ‘Kundli’. Afterwards we entered ‘Gharunda’, ‘Nilkhauri’ in Karnal district. Then at 1125 hours we made halt at a Punjabi Dhaba named ‘Zhilmil Punjabi Dhaba’ at Kurukshetra district for a healthy breakfast. After having the breakfast, at 1155 hours, we departed from dhaba to proceed for our journey and then at 1230 hours at noon we entered in Punjab. Here we saw lush green farms, agricultural lands, trees, etc. Finally at 1500 hours we reached at ‘Dr. B R Ambedkar National Institute of Technology’, Jalandhar, and moved to the guest house. This institute, a classic place of Engineering education, was spread across 160 acres located at ‘Suranesi’. This campus of the pioneer institute is really eye catching, it is surrounded with lush greens, beautiful flowers, gardens and huge variety of plants etc. that gives a feeling of nature’s touch. At 1645 hours we departed to visit some places of tourist interest.
Jalandhar is an important city as well as an education hub in the state. Jalandhar lies alongside the Grand Trunk Road and is a well-connected rail and road junction.Jalandhar is 146 kms northwest of Chandigarh, the state capital of Punjab and Haryana. It was spelled 'Jullundur' during the British period.The city may be named after Jalandhara, a demon king, who is named in the Puranas and Mahabharata. Other possibilities include that it was the capital of the kingdom of Lava, son of Rama or that the name derives from the vernacular term Jalandhar, meaning area inside the water, i.e., tract lying between the two rivers Satluj and Beas. The whole of Punjab and the area of present Jalandhar District was part of the Indus Valley Civilization. Harappa and Mohenjo-daro are the sites where remains of the Indus Valley Civilization have been found extensively. The archaeological explorations made during recent years have pushed the ancient times of Jalandhar District of Harappa period. Jalandhar was ruled by King Arjan Singh. Jalandhar was conquered by the Ghaznavids during the reign of Ibrahim of Ghazni between 1058 - 1089. It later formed as the part of the province of Lahore during the Delhi Sultanate and Mughal Empire. The 18th century saw upheaval in Jalandhar amidst an anarchy caused by the disintegration of the Mughals and the power struggles involving Persians, Afghans and Sikhs. It was captured by the Faizullahpuria Misl in 1766, and in 1811, Ranjit Singh incorporated it within the Sikh Empire. In 1849, following the annexation of Punjab by the East India Company, the city of Jalandhar, now spelt Jullundur, became the headquarters of the Division as well as the District. In the mid-19th century, British officials regarded Jalandhar as densely populated and farmed to capacity. This led to the district being a chief recruitment area for settlers to colonise the newly irrigated Punjab Canal Colonies in western Punjab.
Devi Talab Mandir -
Devi Talab Mandir is said to be 200 years old and one of the 51 Shakti Peeths of “Maa Sati”. The famous Devi Talab Temple is situated in the heart of Jalandhar city, just 1 km from the railway station. This is an ancient temple is located in the centre of the city which is believed to be more than 200 years old and also has 200 years old pond. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Durga and is one of the ‘51 Shakthi Peeths’ in India. The image of Lord Shiva that was enshrined herein; is also known as Bhisan Bhairav. Devi Talab Temple has been renovated recently and a big facelift was given to the old structure. Also, a new temple has been constructed within the temple premises. Even a model of Amarnath Yatra was constructed sometime back only.There is an old temple of Goddess Kali besides the main Devi Talab Mandir which we have visited too.
The puranas state that Maa Sati immolated herself after her father Daksha insulted her husband Lord Shiva. This enraged Lord Shiva who opened his terrifying third eye and danced a fierce tandava across the earth with the body of his beloved Sati in his arms. The gods afraid that the Lord’s anger would destroy the universe sought the assistance of Lord Vishnu who dispatched his all-powerful discus – ‘Sudarshan Chakra’ – to cut Sati’s body into pieces. Every spot that received a portion of Maa Sati’s body became a holy spot in the ages and that followed a place of worship for devotees of the Goddess. Each of these spots is honoured as a ‘Shakti Peeth’ by devotees of the Goddess who are also referred to as Shaktas. The Devi Talab Mandir has the distinction of being one of the 51 prominent Shakti Peeths on the subcontinent. The temple marks the spot that was blessed with Maa Sati’s right breast. One of the prime attractions of the temple is an old tank, which is considered to be sacred by the Hindu devotees. The temple has a structure resembling the Amarnath Cave temple and cave of Maa Vaishno Devi in Jammu and Kashmir. The temple is very famous for the "Harballabh Sangeet Sammelan”, which is organized every year in the month of December. The best time to visit the temple is in the month of December, when one can also be the part of the fair. Famous classical music exponents - both instrumental and vocal - come together and perform in this fair.
Jalandhar city has some other attractions too. A few temples are also worth to visit. Lovely Professional University is also a place of attraction in the city where one can have a glimpse of various tourist spots including holy places in Punjab. No one should miss few locations in the city while visiting the principle spots.
- Sattanurupa Saha