Haridwar (also known as Hardwar) is a holy city and municipal board in the Haridwar District in the state of Uttaranchal in northern India. Literally meaning Gateway to God, Haridwar is considered one of the seven holiest places according to Hindus, as the devas are said to have left their footprints there.
The spot where the immortal nectar fell when it was carried in a Kumba after the famed churning of the oceans at the creation of the universe is known as Brahma Kund. Hindus all over the world flock to this place to have a holy dip to attain salvation from their sins of birth. The dusk arathi performed at Hari-Ki-Pairi (known for a footprint of Vishnu on a stone in a wall) is a spectacular sight full of sound and colour. This is the second most holy pilgrimage site after Varanasi for Hindus all over the globe. Here pilgrims float diyas on the Ganges, to commemorate their deceased ancestors. The city also stands as a gateway to three other important pilgrimage destinations: Rishikesh, Badrinath, and Kedarnath. In Haridwar there is a big statue of Shiva at the fork of the river.
Haridwar has a rich ancient religious and cultural heritage. In the ancient scriptures of India, this place is well known by the name of Mayapur. This city is also well known for many other things apart from the holy river Ganges. IIT at Roorkee, formerly known as University of Roorkee, founded in 1847 as a first technical institute of India, is located near Haridwar. The city has one of the "navratna PSUs of India" i.e BHEL (Bharat Heavy Electricals India Ltd.). The tomb of Piran Kaliar of Shabir Shahib in Roorkee is a living example of religious harmony in India which is visited by the people of all religious sects from all over the world.
There is another University in the city called Gurukul Kangri Vishva Vidyalaya apart from the head quarter of Uttaranchal State Public Service Commission also being established at Haridwar. The major cast in the district is rajput (chauhan), saini, gujjar. Rajput major occupation is farming the land.
Besides this, Kumbh mela (fair) is held here every 12 years in this city, when one of the largest gatherings of people on the earth occurs, during which about 1 crore pilgrims from all over the world participate.
Haridwar : In scriptures and today
A paradise for nature-lovers, Haridwar presents kaleidoscope of Indian culture and civilisation. Haridwar also termed as 'Gateway to Gods' is known as Mayapuri, Kapila, Gangadwar as well. The followers of Lord Shiva (Har) and the followers of Lord Vishnu (Hari) pronounce this place Hardwar and Haridwar respectively as told by some. It is also a point of entry to Dev Bhoomi and Char Dham (Four main centers of pilgrimage in Uttaranchal) Viz. Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri.
Archaeological findings have proven that a terracotta culture dating between 1700 BCE and 1200 BCE existed in this region.
Legendary king Bhagirath is said to have brought the river Ganga from heaven to earth in order to provide salvation to his ancestors. It is also said that Haridwar has been sanctified by the presence of three Gods; Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh. Lord Vishnu is said to have his foot print on the stone that is set in the upper wall of Har-Ki-Pauri where the Holy Ganga touches it all the times. Devout believers feel that they can go to heaven by getting their salvation after a dip in the sacred Ganga at Haridwar.
Haridwar is also one of the four places where the Kumbh Mela occurs after a rotation of every twelve Years and the Ardh Kumbh after every six years. The other places are Allahabad (also known as Prayag), Ujjain and Nasik. Kumbh, 1998 was the last Maha Kumbh of this century. Being one of the oldest living cities, it finds its mention in the ancient Hindu scriptures as it waves through the life and time stretching from the period of the Buddha to the more recent British advent.
Haridwar has been an abode of the weary in body, mind and spirit, and has also been a centre of attraction for learning various arts, science and culture. The city has a long standing position as a great source for ayurvedic medicines and herbal remedies and is home to the unique Gurukul school of traditional education.
Haridwar is one of the first towns where the Ganga emerges from the mountains to touch the plains. The water in the river Ganges is thus mostly clear and cool, except in the rainy season, during which a lot of soil from the upper regions is carried along in the current. A large part of the district is forested. A part of the Rajaji National Park is within the bounds of the district. Its an ideal destination for wild life and adventure lovers.
Today Haridwar has not only religious importance but it has another temple of modern civilization i.e. BHEL, a'navratna PSU' to its credit. The Roorkee University at Roorkee (Now IIT, Roorkee.) is one of the oldest and most prestigious institutes of learning in the fields of science and engineering. Another university of the district the Gurukul Kangri, which has a vast campus, gives traditional education of its own kind.
Haridwar district, covering an area of about 2360 km². is in the western part of Uttaranchal state of India. It's latitude and longitude are 29.58 degree north and 78.13 degree east respectively. The height from the sea level is 249.7 metres. Since the district came into existence on 28th Dec. 1988, Haridwar has rapidly become a major destination for new industrial development in the new state. Many Government administration offices such as the Lok Sewa Ayog and Sanskrit Academy are located here.
Prior to its inclusion in the newly created state of Uttaranchal, this district was a part of Saharanpur Divisional Commissionary. The district is ringed by Saharanpur in the west, Dehradun in the north and east, Pauri Garhwal in the east, Muzaffarnagar and Bijnor in the south. The district headquarters is situated in the Roshnabad, at a distance of about 12 km from railway station. The Collectorate, Vikas Bhawan, District Judiciary, S.S.P. Office, Police line, District Jail, District sports stadium, Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya are some of the prime establishments of this area. The district is administratively subdivided into three tehsils; Haridwar, Roorkee and Laksar and the six special development blocks of Bhagwanpur, Roorkee, Narsan, Bahadrabad, Laksar and Khanpur. As per the 2001 census, the population of the district is 14,44,213. Due to Haridwar's location on the bank of river Ganga and its abundance of water resources, almost every type of food grain is produced here in abundance.
As of 2001 India censusGRIndia, Hardwar had a population of 175,010. Males constitute 54% of the population and females 46%. Hardwar has an average literacy rate of 70%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 75%, and female literacy is 64%. In Hardwar, 12% of the population is under 6 years of age.
PLACES OF INTEREST
CHANDI DEVI- 6 km.
The temple of Chandi Devi atop the Neel Parvat on the other bank of river Ganga was constructed in 1929 A.D. by the king of Kashmir- Suchat Singh . It is a 3 km trek from Chandighat . Legend has it that the army chief Chanda-Munda of a local demon King Shumbh- Nishumbha was killed by goddess Chandi here after which the place got the name Chandi Devi . It is believed that the main statue was established by the Adi Shankracharya in 8th century A.D. One can reach here by Trolley through ropeway or on foot. Ph. no. of 'Udan Khatola' (Ropeway) is 01334-220324, Time-8.30 AM to 6 PM.
MANSA DEVI TEMPLE - 0.5 km.
This is an ancient temple of Mansa Devi the Adhisthatri deity of Haridwar, known as one of the Siddhpeethas. Said to be the place where the heart and navel of goddess Sati had fallen.
Situated at the top of Bilwa Parwat. Here one statue of the Goddess has three mouths and five arms while the other statue has eight arms. The beautiful view of the city can be seen from this place. The temple can be reached by trolley through ropeway or on foot.
Ph. no. of 'Udan Khatola' (Ropeway) is 01334-227745
HAR-KI-PAIRI -1.5 km. View of Hari-ki-pairi. View of Hari-ki-pairi.
This sacred Ghat was constructed by King Vikramaditya in memory of his brother Bhartrihari. It is believed that Bhartrihari eventually came to Haridwar to meditate by the banks of holy Ganga. When he died, his brother constructed a Ghat in his name which later came to be known as Hari-Ki-Pari. This sacred bathing ghat is also known as Brahmakund. The reflection of golden hues of floral diyas in the river Ganga during the Ganga Arti ceremony is a very enchanting experience.
GURUKUL KANGRI UNIVERSITY -4 km.
It is situated on the Haridwar-Jwalapur bypass road. It is an old institution known for following a unique system of education in India. The Ved Mandir Museum with archaeological exhibits in display can also be seen.
DAKSHA MAHADEV TEMPLE -4 km.
The ancient temple of Daksha Mahadev is situated in the south Kankhal town. The mythological story about this place is that King Daksha Prajapati, father of Sati (Lord Shiva 's first wife ) performed yagya at this place. Daksha Prajapati did not invite Lord Shiva and Sati felt insulted . Therefore she burnt herself in the yagya Kund . This incident provoked the disciples and followers of Mahadev who killed King Daksha, but later on Lord Mahadev brought him back to life. Daksha Mahadev temple is thus a tribute to this legend .
SATI KUND - 4 km.
Sati Kund, another well-known mythological heritage worth visit is situated in the Kankhal region. Legend has it that Sati laid down her life in this kund. Pilgrims from all over India visit this place and feel blessed.
GURDWARA GURU AMAR DAS JI SATI GHAT,KANKHAL - 4 km.
This is historic Gurdwara on bank of Ganges at Sati Ghat in Kankhal where Guru Amar das ji visited number of times on pilgrimage of Ganges prior to attaining sikhi.He also encouraged the people to erdicate Sati Pratha prevalent at those times at these Ghats.
This tank is at a distance of about 1 km from Harki Pairi. It is said that while Pandavas were going to Himalayas through Haridwar, Bhim made this tank with the blow of his knee.
SAPT RISHI ASHRAM & SAPT SAROVAR - 7 km
It is said that Ganga had split herself in seven currents at this place so that the Sapt(seven) Rishis worshipping there would not be disturbed.
PARAD SHIVLING - 2 km
Situated in Harihar Ashram, Kankhal. Shivling weighing about 150 kg and Rudraksha tree are the main attractions here.
The tomb Piran Kaliar of Shabir Shahib in Roorkee is a living example of religious harmony in India which is visited by the people of all religious sects from all over the world. 'URS' festival is organised every year on the holy dargah in summer.
Pavan Dham (means Sacred place) has a magnificent display of art work completely made up of Glass.
BHARAT MATA MANDIR
The only temple of its kind, inaugurated by Late PM Smt Indira Gandhi. A multi-story temple, each floor covering an era of Indian History, from the days of Ramayan till India's independence.
It is one of the crowded markets of haridwar where you can find anything. The sight of the entrance of the market makes you feel like you are in a different city. Despite haridwar being a hindu city jwalapur is mostly inhabited by Muslims.
It consists of two divisions: The Heavy Electricals Equipment Plant (HEEP) located in Haridwar, is one of the major manufacturing plants of BHEL. The core business of HEEP includes design and manufacture of large steam and gas turbines, turbo generators, hydro turbines and generators, hydro turbines and generators, large AC/DC motors and so on. Central Foundry Forge Plant (CFFP) is engaged in manufacture of Steel Castings: Up to 50 Tons Per Piece Wt & Steel Forgings: Up to 55 Tons Per Piece Wt. An important Gurdwara in the area of Panchpuri known as GURU NANK DARBAR GURDWARA has been established in BHEL township by local sikh Sangat. HEEP & CFFP have been awarded ISO-9001 and ISO-9002 certificates respectively. HEEP & CFFP units of BHEL, Haridwar have also been awarded ISO-14001.
SIDCUL - 5 km.
State Industrial Development Corporation Uttranchal Limited is government body which is established for industrial promotion. Big enterprises are investing. Dabur, Mahindra & Mahindra, Havells, HLL etc have started production. Sidcul is located near Bahadrabad coming towards haridwar from Delhi.
|JOURNEY SHRI HEMKUNT SAHIB|
ROUTE 1 - Haridwar ROUTE 2 - Paonta Sahib