Sangrur

Places to Visit

(a) Introduction

The district in general is rural region in the southern part of the State. Situated west of Patiala, it is virtually isolated from urban centre of the State. The most populous from the district is Malerkotla which too has population less than 1 lakh (65,759 persons).

The district can hardly boast of any place of tourist interest, although there are a few places of some historical or religious import ance. The people by and large are Godfearing and have maintained guru-dwaras and mandirs of historical importance. Given in the following pages are the places/villages, which according to local sources are known to have some historical, religious or even superstitious importance. Apart from these places, there are a few others which are developing as agricultural, marketing, industrial or trading nucleus of the district.

Ahmedgarh

Falling in the Malerkotla Tehsil, Ahmedgarh is a sub-tehsil. It was founded by Nawab Ahmed Ali Khan of Malerkotla in 1905. It lies about 18 km north of Malerkotla on the Sangrur-Ludhiana road. It is 50 km from Sangrur, the district headquarters, 26 km from Ludhiana and 98 km from Chandigarh. It is a railway station on the Ludhiana-Jakhal railway line.

Ahmedgarh is an important agricultural market. The main crops brought to this market are paddy and wheeat. Being close to two industrial towns of Malerkotla and Ludhiana, a number of small-scale industries are being set up in and aroung this town too. khurpas, kahis and daties and a few modern agricultural implements manufactured here are well known in the area.

There are a M.G.M.N. Higher Secondary School for boys, two high schools for girls, a civil dispensary, a Zimindara Rest House and a post and telegraph office at Ahmedgarh.

A class III municipal committee has been functioning in the town since 1924

Akoi

Situated in the Sangrur Tehsil on the Malerkotla-Sangrur road, village Akoi lies about 5 km north of Sangrur, the district headquarters.

In the village, there is a gurudwara said to be associated -with the visits of Guru Nanak Dev, Guru Hargobind and Guru Tegh Bahadur, the first, sixth and ninth Sikh Gurus respectively. It is said that Guru Nanak Dev visited this place after visiting Nankiana. The sixth Guru, Guru Hargobind also stayed here about seven months. He blessed the place that milk will be available here in abundance, and his words are proving true. Guru Tegh Bahadur, the ninth Sikh Guru is also said to have visited this place on the way to Delhi.

Maharaja Hira Singh of erstwhile princely state of Nabha, constructed the building of the gurudwara. This old building is being demolished and the new one is coming up. Three hundred and twenty-five bighas of land in Khilrian, Badrukhan and Akoi villages belongs to the garudwara.

The village has a primary school, a primary health centre and a veterinary dispensary. A Government poultry farm is also functioning in the village.

The inhabitants of the village are mostly Khangoora Jats.

Badrukhan

Badrukhan is about 5 km from Sangrur, the district heaquarters, on Sangrur-Barnala road. There are two versions about the nomenclature of the village. One is that it was named after Badru, a pandit of this village, by Raja Gajpat Singh. Another version, which is more believable is that when Raja Gajpat Singh took control of these villges,(Vada Agwarh, Vichla Agwarh, Dalamwal, Dhaliwas and Thagan wali Patti) at that time very big trees Rukh were standing here on the basis of which it came to be called Badrukhan Bade rukhan

The present village Badrukhan consists of five small villages, which, daring the times of Raja Gajpat Singh, were amalgamated and came to be known as Badrukhan. Prior to it, these villages were in Badbar thana and were being ruled by Nawab of Malerkotla. The residents of these villages were feeling insecure on account of the dacoities committed by Muslims. The leaders of these five villages, under the leadership of Pandit Badru, approached Gajpat Singh, the Maharaja of Jind, for their security and gave him 1700 bighas of land. Maharaja Gajpat Singh amalgamated these villages and named it Badrukhan. In 1763, when Gajpat Singh captured the town of Jind, Badrukhan was made the capital of Jind State. He also built the fort here.

Badrukhan is believed to be the birth place of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. Raj Kaur,daughter of Gajpat Singh gave birth of Maharaja Ranjit Singh on 13 November 1780 here. Maharaja Hira Singh of Nabha was also born here, Lieutenant General (Retd.) Harbaksh Singh (Vir Chakra). Major General Gurbaksh Singh (DSO and OBE)-and Major Rajnit Singh also belong to this

In the village, there exists a smadh of Baba Guddar Shah who is said to have taken out the body of Raj Kaur, daughter of Maharaja Gajpat Singh buried in the large earthen vessel. Maharaja Gajpat Singh distributed large sweet thick cake of bread. Every year on the anniversary of Baba Guddar Shah, large sweet thick bread is baked and distributed as prasad.

The village has a Government high school, a 4-bedded subsidiary health centre and a post office.

Bagrian

Situated on the Malerkotla-Nabha road, Bagrian lies about 18 km south-east of Malerkotla, Though now in Malerkotla. Tehsil, it was not a part of the Malerkotla Princely State but was being ruled by the British. Bagrian was given to Bhais of the village by Bhikhan Khan, the Raw of Materkotla State, but it was captured by Britishers as the Sikhs of Bagrian were not in favour of the British

There is a fort at Bagrian which was built by S. Arjan Singh in the begining of the 20th-century. The Bhais still run langar (free kitchen) hen daily; This tradition of langer was started from the time of Sri Hargobind the sixth Guru. For the preparation of langar wet fuel is used. It is said that the sixth Guru blessed that even wet fuel would work.

ln the fort a gurudwara has been built whose design and size is that of Golden Temple.

At Bagrian, an industrial unit, namely 'Bagrian Shoes' for the manu facture of shoes is being set up, in the large-scale sector.

Bhawanigarh

Situated at a distance of 19 km east of Sangrur, the district headquarters, on the Patiala-Sangrur road, Bhawanigarh is a sub-tehsil of the Sangrur Tehsil. It is also connected by road with Chandigarh (102 km), Patiala (37 km), Nabha (16 km) and Sunam {28 km).

Bhawanigarh was originally known as Dhodan, the name having been lent to it by Jats of Dhodan, a sub-clan of Bajha clan or got. Prior to independence, it was tehsil headquarters of Karamgarh Nizamat of Patiala Princely State.

As tradition has it, a sheep at the shrine of goddess Bhawani defended itself against two wolves, during the days of Baba Ala Singh who was prevailed upon by a sadhu to build on the spot a fort and name it Bhawanigarh. The fort was constructed in 1754.

There are a government higher secondary school for girls, a government high school for boys. A degree college and 4-bedded primary health centre at Bhawanigarh.

A class III Municipal Committee is functioning in the town since 1945.

Cheema

Situated at distance of 7 km west of Sunam, Cheema falls in Sangrur Tehsil and is 20 km south-west of Sangrur. It is the birth place of Sant Baba Attar Singh, who is revered equally by all sections of

people in the area Janam Asthan Gurudwara at Cheema has been constructed in his memory by his follower, Baba Teja Singh. This gurudwara has been constructed on the pattern of gurudwara Attal of Amritsar. It is a nine-storey building constructed after demolishing the old ancestral house of Sant Biba Attar Singh. A tank has also been constructed where people take bath. A fair is held at this place in the month of chet on the amavas (new moon) day, which is attended by a large number of his follow-wers from far and near. Another gurudwara Nanaksar also exists here, which is said to have been constructed by Baba Attar Singh. Cheema has a government high school and a 25 bedded rural hospital

Dhadogal

This village lies in the Malerkotla Tehsil and is 11 km from Dhuri on the Dhuri-Nabha road.

A fair is held at this place to commemorate the martyrdom of Bhagat Singh of this village. He was a co-worker of Sardar Sewa Singh of Thi-kriwala. He agitated for the freedom of the people and worked against the Britishers and then against the ruler of erstwhile Patiala State. He was jailed by the then Maharaja of Patiala and sent to Narnaul where he died. His dead body was brought to this village for funeral rites. This fair is held from the 24th of sawan (July-August) for three days and a large number of people attend this fair. Besides, a fair known as Gugga Naumi is also held on Bhadon Badi 9 (August-September) for one day at this place and about 20,000 people attend it.

The village has a government middle school and 4-bedded subsidiary health centre.

Durga Mela dedicated to goddess Durga, is also held in March-April and September-October for one day each. Some people perform the first hair-cutting of their children here.

In the memory of the pir whose tomb exist here , a fair is held in the Pir Khan da dera on the first Thrusday of Bhadon (August-September), Magher (November-December) and Phagan (Febrauary-March) for one day. A cattle fair is also held here.

Dhuri

Situated at a distance of 14 km from Sangrur, the district headquarters, it is a railway junction on the Ludhina-Jakhal and Bathinda-Ambala railway lines. It is also well connected by road with Ludhiana (61 km), Chandigarh (126 km), and Malerkotla (18 km). Dhuri is a sub-tehsil of the Malerkotla Tehsil.

Dhuri is fast developing town. A sugar mill in the co-operative sector is functioning here. A number of small-scale industrial units engaged in the manufacture of agricultural implements have been established here. It is also famous for the manufacture of steel furniture.

There are a private higher secondary school for boys, two government high schools, one each for boys and girls, two private high schools for boys.

one civil hospital with 31 beds facility, one Northern Railway Health Unit with 5 beds facility, one Vardhman Mahavir Jain Charitable Eye Hosptial, with 18 beds, one Zimindara Rest House and a Warehousing Godown at Dhuri.

Constituted as small town committee in 1945, it is now a class II municipal committee since 1954.

Gharachon

Situated in Sangrur Tehsil on the Sunam-Patiala road, it is 11 km east of Sangrur and 10 km south-west of Bhawanigarh.

A fair known as mela kuti is held on Phagan Sudi 3 (February-March) for three days. The legend goes that about 5,000 years ago there lived one Baba Faqiria. Once he was sitting on a wall and Emperor Shah Jahan riding on a horse happened to pass that way. Baba Faqiria by his spirituals powers made the wall to walk along with the Emperor's horse. Astonished at this miracle, the Emperor touched feet of the Baba and gave him 12 bighas of land in village Gharachon. The Baba constructed his kuti (hut) there where a mela is held every year.

A government high school for boys, 4 bedded subsidiary health centre and a post office are functioning in the village.

Jandali

Situated on the bank of Bathinda Branch of Sirhind Canal, Jandali Kalan lies 5 km south-east of Ahmedgarh. It falls in Materkotla Tehsil.

There exists a gurudwara called Damdama Sahib said to be associated with the visit of the Guru Hargobind, the sixth Sikh Guru who took rest here after hunting. He is said to have continuously visited this place for six months, for taking rest and that is why this place is known as Damdama Sahib. It is said that while fighting with the army of Ahmed Shah Abdali, a group of Sikhs led by Sardar Nahar Singh was killed at this place.

It is only after 1947 that a small building of the gurudwara was built. Now a more spacious building of the gurudwara is coming up. Its found-ation stone was laid down by Sant Ishar Singh Rarewale on 9 March 1966. A large number of people especially from Doaba area visit this place. A fair on the Dashmi of each month is held at this place and is attended by a large number of persons. An annual fair on the Dashmi of Magh (December-January) is also held here.

Kup

This village falls in Malerkotla Tehsil and is 8 km southeast of Ahmedgarh and 12 km north of Malerkotla, the tehsil headquarters on the Ludhiana-Jakhal railway line. A gurudwara exists here in the memory of 30,000 Sikhs who were killed while fighting with the army of AJhmed I Shah Abdali on 28 Maghar 1818 Bikrami (A.D. 1761), The Sikhs fought under the command of S. Jassa Singh Ahluwalia,S. Jassa Singh Ramgaria,S. Charat Singh Shukarchakia, S. Sham Singh, Baba Dip Singh Shahid, S. Baghel Singh Kroria etc. Ahmed Shah Abdali who was fed up with the Sikhs instructed his appointed Commissioners of Jalandhar, Sirhind, and Malerkotla to stop the Sikhs from advancing toward the Satluj. Thus stopped, the Sikhs were then attacked by Ahmed Shah Abdali with two lakh persons. When the Sikhs reached near Raipur (Ludhiana), the subedars of Sirhind, Jalandhar, and Nawab of Malerkotla etc. stopped the Sikhs from advancing further. As a result a large number of Sikhs were killed.

There are a private high school and a 10 bedded rural hospital at Kup.

A large fair is held here in the month of October.

Ladda

Situated in Dhuri Tehsil, it is about 6km south of Dhuri and 6 km north of Sangrur on the Sangrur-Malerkotla road.

A fair of Gugga Naumi is held at this place on Bhadon Badi 9 (August-September) for one day. The legend goes that somebody brought two bricks from the Gugga marhi of Bagar. He placed these bricks in his fields and the next morning when he came to lift these bricks he could not do it despite attempts. People regarded it as miracle and a fair began to be held at this place. The marhi was later on re-built by the Nawab of Malerkotla.

The village has a high school, a canal dispensary (4 bedded), a veterinary dispensary and a post office.

Lehragaga

Situated on the Ludhiana—Jakhal railway line, Lehragaga is a sub-tehsil of Sunam Tehsil. By road it is 26 km south of Sunam, 46 km from Sangrur, 90 km from Patiala and 155 km from Chandigarh. It is also linked by pucca road with Patran (14 km) and Jakhal (14 km).

Lehragaga consists of two villages, Lehra and Gaga. A gurudwara exists at Gaga which is associated with the visit of Guru Tegh Bahadur the ninth Sikh Guru, on his way to Delhi.

In Lehragaga, monkeys are found in abundance but they are not killed by the people. It is also called 'Lehra Bandran da'. The main crops in the area are wheat, cotton, groundnut and bajra Paddy is also grown but in less quantity.

Lehragaga is blocks headquarter. A class II municipal committee has been functioning here since 19 September 1956. There are two high schools here, one each for boys and girls. A dispensary and a veterinary dispensary are also functioning here, A P.W.D. rest house and a Zimindara Rest House has also been constructed here.

Known earlier as Lalgarh, lies 18 KM south-west of Sangrur on the Sangrur-Barnala road, It falls in the Sangrur Tehsil. This Town was founded by Baba Ala Singh, the founder of the Patiala Estate. Bhai Mani Singh, to secrifies his life by getting the joints of his body cut by the Muslim Rulers hailed from his place. A Gurudwara has been built here where a fair is held on Maghar 27th (November-December) for 3 days to commemorate the martyrdom of Bhai Mani Singh. Sr. Bhagwan Singh who was one of the founders of Praja Mandal, was the resident of Longowal. He sacrifices his life for liberation of oppressed people of the princely state. Longowal is also the birth place of Giani Gian Singh , A noted Sikh Historian. At Longowal, a class III municipal committee is functioning since September 1956.

Longowal

Known earlier as Lalgarh, lies 18 KM south-west of Sangrur on the Sangrur-Barnala road, It falls in the Sangrur Tehsil. This Town was founded by Baba Ala Singh, the founder of the Patiala Estate.

Bhai Mani Singh, to secrifies his life by getting the joints of his body cut by the Muslim Rulers hailed from his place. A Gurudwara has been built here where a fair is held on Maghar 27th (November-December) for 3 days to commemorate the martyrdom of Bhai Mani Singh.

Sr. Bhagwan Singh who was one of the founders of Praja Mandal, was the resident of Longowal. He sacrifices his life for liberation of oppressed people of the princely state. Longowal is also the birth place of Giani Gian Singh , A noted Sikh Historian.

At Longowal, a class III municipal committee is functioning since September 1956.

Mastuana

Situated at distance of 6 KM west of Sangrur on the Sangrur-Barnala Road, Mastuana was built by Sant Atar Singh a Pious man of Cheema. It is named after Mastu, a Jatt, to donated his forest land to the Saint. Sant Baba Atar Singh constructed a Gurdwara, Gur Sagar and a Tank hare. He also started a high school hare. Now a Degree College has also been functioning hare since 1920. a Jor Mela is held hare for 3 days on 29, 30 and 31 January every year. Sant Baba Atar Singh was cremated here a big congregation his held on 3rd July every year.

Malerkotla

Headquarter of the Tehsil/Sub Division of the same name, Malerkotla is situated on the Ludhiana-Sangrur Road at a distance of North of Sangrur, The District Headquarter. It is also connected by road with Ludhiana (43 KM) Chandigarh (123 KM) Nabha (36 KM) Patiala (62 Km) etc. It is a railway station on the Ludhiana-Jakhal railway line.

The town of Malerkotla was devided into two parts – Maler and Kotla. Maler has probably been named after Malher Singh who is said to have been ruling here. He is said to have constructed a Kaccha fort here which was called Malhergarh. It is also said that Malher (now Maler) was founded by Sadr-u-din in 1466 who was Sarwani afghan of Daraband. He was a very pious man and a disciple of Peer Rukha Alam of Multan (Pakistan). He left the Peer and settled at Bhumsi in the remains of the Malhergarh. Behlol Lodhi stayed here on way to Delhi and met Sadr-u-din and was so impressed with him that when he became the King of Delhi, he married his daughter Taj with Sadr-u-din along with 68 villages in dowry. Around the hut of Sadr-u-din he merged Basti. It was named Malher after the fort Malhergarh with later on came to be known as Maler.

The Kotla portion of Malerkotla was established by Bayazid Khan in 1656 in the south of Maler. It was a walled town with a number of gates. These gates were closed at night. The distance between Maler and Kotla has been linked by constructing Mod Bazar in 1901-02 by Nawab Ahmed Ali Khan. It was earlier named Kotla Maler and later on named Maler-Kotla.

Malerkotla town was capital of the erstwhile princely State of Malerkotla, prior to the formation of PEPSU on 1 September 1948 when it was made a tehsil of the Barnala District of PEPSU. Again in 1956, when PEPSU was merged with Punjab it was made a tehsil of Sangrur District and since then it has continued to be so.

There are a government college, two government high schools one each for boys and girls, 5 private high schools, 4 for boys and one for girls, a 50 bedded civil hospital, a 4 bedded urban slum area dispensary, one E.S.I. dispensary, one 5 bedded Dr. Daya Krishan Jain Janta Hospital, one P.W.D. and one Zamindara Rest House at Malerkotla.

A municipal committee has been functioning here since 1905

Malerkotla is the only industrial town of worth the name in the district. A large number of small-scale industrial units are functioning in the town. It is now well known for the manufacture of a few cycle parts, agricultural implements. Similarly in the field of agriculture, especially growing of vegetables, Malerkotla is a famous place. The cauliflower of this area is' marketed throughout Punjab, Methi of the area is also of high quality "and is famous for its taste and odour.

A fair is held on January 17 and 18 for two days every year to commemorate the martyrdom of 66 Namdharis during the anti-cow slaughter movement. Under the orders of the British authority, 49 Namdharis were blown away with canons and one cut down by sword on 17 January 1872 without trial. Another sixteen were blown away by canons after summary trial on 18 January 1872.

A fair known as Mela Hazrat Sheikh Sadr-u-Din is also held in May-June and September-October for one day each in the memory of Sheikh Sadr-u-Din who founded the Malerkotla State during the time of Behlol Lodhi, People belonging to all communities attend this fair. Visitors from other districts also come to attend this fair. Offerings of he-goats are also made,

The Other places worth seeing in Malerkotla town are:

Sheesh Mahal It was the residence of the Nawab of Malerkotla. In this palace, glass has been used extensively hence known as sheesh Mahal.

Jama Masjid The Masjid is an old building of the town built during the times of princely State. It is still very well maintained.

Moonak

Situated on the bank of Ghaghar River at a distance of 45 Km south of Sunam. Moonak lies on the Jhakhal-Patiala road. It is 5 km from Jhakhal (Haryana) by road. It is sub-tehsil of the Sunam Tehsil. Prior to the formation of PEPSU, it was in the erstwhile princely state of Patiala. It was also Akalgarh. In 1916, it was the headquarters of the court of appeal and continued to be so till 1946. Maharaja Karam Singh of Patiala was married at Moonak.

There is an old fort 'Qila Mubarik' said to have been built in the Muslim period. In the fort, there was a well whose water was not good for health Hardened prisoners of Patiala State were sent to this place where they died after a few days. Peacocks are found here in abundance, and they move about quite freely. They are neither caught nor killed by the people.

There is a gurudwara associated with the visit of Guru Teg Bahadur, the ninth Sikh Guru. A tank has also been built where people take bath.

Two high schools (one for boys and one for girls), a 30-bedded rural hospital, a veterinary dispensary, a sub-treasury, a post and telegraph office and a telephone exchange are functioning here.

Wheat, gram, oil seeds, cotton and paddy are the crops grown in the area.

Ranike

Situated at a distance of 8 km west of Dhuri, Ranike lies on the Dhuri-Barnala road. There exists an ancient Shiv Mandir in the village. It is said that Shivling appeared at this place. On the Shiv-ratri day, a large fair is held at this place. A large number of people from Haryana, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh also come here for worship and offer water to Shivling. About 50,000 people gather here on this day. It is said that childless women, if they stay for a pre-shivratri night at this place and worship Shiva, are blessed with a child.

Sangrur

Headquarters of the district and tahsil of the same name. Sangrur is situated on the Ludhiana-Jakhal railway line. By road, it is connected with Patiala (56 km) Ludhiana (52 km), Chandigarh (121 km),and Bathinda (112km). It remained capital of the erstwhile princely state of Jind till 1948, when the princely state was abolished.

The town of Sangrur is said to have been founded by one Sanghu, a jat, about 400 years ago and named after him. Formerly, a small village of mud houses, it was chosen as his capital in 1827 by Raja Sangat Singh, as it was close to Patiala and Nabha, the headquaters of the other two Phulkian States. After the fall of Sirhind in A.D. 1763 when Zain Khan, the Governor of Sirhind, a protege of Ahmed Shah Abdali, was defeated by the Sikhs, and the province of Sirhind was partitioned among the Phulkian Sardars, the town of Sangrur became a part of Nabha State. However, on the occasion of marriage of Sardar Mahan Singh Shukar-chakya, the father of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, with Raj Kaur, the daughter of Raja Gajpat Singh of Jind, a quarrel arose between the two Phulkian states of Jind and Nabha when some members of the marriage party passing through Nabha territory were insulted by some high officials of Nabha. Subsequently, the town of Sangrur was snatched by Raja Gajpat of Jind from Raja Hamir Singh of Nabha.

The town was later on developed into a beautiful city. Raja Raghbir Singh constructed a bazar on the lines of Jaipur town (Rajasthan) with pucca shops, gardens, tanks, temples and other public and religious buildings; a metalled road was also constructed around the city. He also constructed gurudwaras and mandirs on all the gates.

The city has four gates-the Sunami. Patiala, Dhuri, and Nabha gates, each named after the neighbouring town located in that direction. The city is surrounded by beautiful gardens and shops. The most attractive place in the city is the Banasar Garden with marble baradari in the centre of the swimming tanks.

The baradarihas a beautiful bridge and marble gate. The rulers of Jind State used to spend their summers here. It presents a splendid view during moonlit nights due to reflections in water surrounding it. These days Banasar Garden is, open to public and in the evenings many people have a stroll there just for relaxation. There is also a mini zoo in the Banasar Garden. Adjacent to Banasar, there is another important building known as Diwankhana. Here, Raja of Jind used to hold Darbar during the princely times. At present there is a beautiful museum wherein weapons and other important articles belonging to princely times have been displayed. The splendour of Diwankhana and Baradari convinces one of the high attainments in the field of art and architecture during princely times.

There are two degree colleges, two government higher secondary schools one each for boys and girls, two private high schools one each for boys and girls, one civil hospital with 100 beds, one urban slum area dispensary, one T.B. clinic with 18 beds, one school health clinic, one district jail hospital with 12 beds, one police line hospital with 16 beds, one sainik rest house, one P.W.D. rest-house and one Zimindara rest house at Sangrur.

About 5 km from Nabha Gate, Sangrur, is situated Gurudwara Nankiana Sahib. It is said that Shri Guru Nanak Dev, the first Sikh Guru and Shri Hargobind, the 6th Sikh Guru, visited this place. It is said that Shri Guru Nanak Dev wrote Aarti at this place. Further it is believed that Shri Guru Hargobind tied his horse with the karir tree plant. The karir tree/plant, now known as Karir Sahib is still there on the top of the gurudwara. A large number of people visit this place.

Sunam

Sunam is a tehsil and sub division of the Sangrar District. Situated on the Ludhiana-Hisar railway line, it is connected, by roadwith Patiala (64 km), Sangrur (19 km),Bathinda(114 km),Ludhiana (90 km), and Chandigarh (129 km).

The history of Sunam goes back to the Vedic period, when its name was Surajpur. The Saraswati River is believed to have flowed by it The modern town was built within the walls of an old fort into which its inhabitants were driven to take refuge. It is divided into two parts, one in the citadel of the fort and the other on the lowland around it. Though now of little importance, Sunam has played a significant part in the history of the Punjab after the Muhammdan invasion ; Al-Baruni mentions it as a famous place of that period. 'Sunam' in Sanskrit means auspicious name, but some say that it was named after Sona, a Gujari, who guided Muhammad of Ghor to conquer the fort of Bathinda and asked him to give Sunam as her reward. Others accepta derivation from Sunam, which in Arabic means the hump of a camel.When Qutb-ud-Din Aibak saw that the place had this shape he named it Sunam, but this etymology is untenable, as the town is said to have assumed its present shape only after Taimur's invasion (AD 1398).Sunam was held by Hindu Rajas till conquered by Muhammad of Ghor. Sultan Shams-ud-Din Altmash gave it to his page Sher Khan in Jagir. Ghais-ud-Din Balban gave it to Timar Khan, with Samana,(now in Patiala District), on the death of his cousin Sher Khan, andsubsequently conferred it on his own son Bughra Khan. Under Muhammad Shah Tughlaq, its dependent tribe revolted. Firoz Shah brought a canal through Sirhind and Mansurpur to the town in 1360, and in 1398 Taimur attacked it. It is an ancient site, and by digging 40 or 50 feet deep, statues, big bricks and bones are found. In the time of Akbar, it was a Pargana of Sirhind. During Muslim rule, Sunam was a centre I of politics like Samana and Sirhind (now in Patiala District).

Baba Ala Singh, the founder of the erstwhile Patiala State, had won this town from Muslim rulers.

Akbar's courtier Abul Fazal has recorded in his Ain-i-Akbari that Emperor Akbar often came to Sunam on hunting expeditions.

The town was famous for its seat of learning Dar-ul-Uloom where theology was taught to Muslims drawn from far and near. The important and ancient places in the town are described below:

Sita Sar It is ancient tank spread over 80 bighas. It is said that Sita, wife of Rama, washed her hair in this tank when she was turned out of the house by Rama. Even now the widows of the surrounding area come here and wash their hair. It is also said that at one time kumb fair of the Punjab was held here. This tank, it is said, was filled with the water of River Saraswati. The tank is, now, not in good condition. Shiv Mandirs have been built in the south west and north of the tank. A small Shitla Mata Mandir has also been built in the south of the tank in which an ancient idol of Mata has been installed.

Suraj Kund This building is situated in the east of the town at a distance of about 1 1/2 km. The theh of Surajpur of Sunam is also very near. At one time it was spread over a large area. At this place, a large Mandir of Sun god existed but, it is said Mahmood Ghaznvi or Taimur demolished it. It is also said that River Saraswati was flowing near the Suraj Kund.

There are, now, three small temples at this place. The Suraj Kund is now in a dilapidated condition.

Khangah Pir Bana Banoi It is an old building in the city and a monument of the Muslims. A mosque has been built in the building in the north-west of the grave of Pir Bana Banoi. Pir Bana Banoi whose real name is said to be Mohmood or Khawaja Mahmood was a Sayyad by caste. Before the partition of the country, a big fair used to be held here in the month of Chet (March-April) in which people from Peshawar, Multan, Rawalpindi and Lahore (now in Pakistan) used to attend. Professional dancers used to dance and qawwalis were sung at the fair.

This place is revered by all sections of people of the area. It is said that Pir Bana Banoi killed the then ruler of the Surajpur Fort who was in the habit of keeping the newly wedded brides of the town for first three nights.

It is also believed that people visited by evil spirits are cured when they put their head in a hole in the west of the outer-gate of the Khangah.

Samadh Bhai Mool Chand This samadh is situated in the Suth-east of the town. This place is equally revered by the Hindus and Sikhs of the town. They pray for the fulfilment of their desires, which it is said, are fulfilled.

Bhai Mool Chand was a Khatri (Duggal) by caste. His father was a shopkeeper at Bathinda. He wanted his son to join the same trade but Bhai Mool Chand was least interested as from the very childhood he remained occupied in meditation. It is also said that he was born with a long grey bodi (hair knot). He was the disciple of Pandit Ganga Ram who was of saintly nature. Bhai Mool Chand also became a saint by nature. Big sardars of the area started revering him. Even Baba Ala Singh, the founder of Patiala State, held him in high esteem and made frequent visits to his place. Gurditta, a chaudhary of Sangrur also gave him due respect.

Bhai Mool Chand was well-known in the area for his spiritual attainments. Guru Teg Bahadur too recognized his intense spirituality even when the Bhai was a child.

Sunam is the birth place of the great martyr Udham Singh who shot dead Sir Michael O' Dyer on 13 March 1940 in London and took revenge from him of the 1919 Jalianwala Bagh massacre at Amritsar. Later on, Udham Singh was hanged on death by British authorities on 31 July 1940 on which date every year a Shaheedi Mela is held at Sunam with great enthusiasm to pay homage to the great Indian martyr. In the memory of Shaheed Udham Singh, his statue has been installed in the town. A stadium has also been built in the memory of the martyr-There are a degree college, a government higher secondary school for girls, a government high school for boys, two private high schools, one 50 bedded hospital and a Zimindara rest house at Sunam.

There is a class II municipal committee at Sunam.

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