|ਤਰਨ ਤਾਰਨ ਸਾਹਿਬ
Tarn Taran Sahib
|— city —
|31.44 N, 74.92 E
|130,587 as at 2001
|Population Density :
|Telephone code :
|+91 (0) 1852
|Postal code :
|Vehicle code :
In 1947, the year of the Partition of India, Tarn Taran was the only tehsil (district) in Punjab with a majority Sikh population. The city was a center of the Sikh insurgency during the 1980s and early 1990s when Tarn Taran Sahib was suggested as the capital of Khalistan (the proposed Sikh independent nation). Farming and the agro-industry is the main occupation in the area. However, a few other industries are developing.
Tarn Taran district was formed in 2006. The declaration to this effect was made by Captain Amarinder Singh, Ex-Chief Minister of Punjab, during celebrations marking the martyrdom day of Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji. With this, it became the 19th district of Punjab.
As of 2001 Indian census, Tarn Taran Sahib had a population of 130,587. Males constitute 51% of the population and females 49%. Tarn Taran has an average literacy rate of 70%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 60%, and female literacy is 40%. In Tarn Taran Sahib, 12% of the population is under 6 years of age and 15% is elderly. 3% of its residents have settled abroad.
Politics and civic administration
Tarn Taran Sahib is situated near the Amritsar district. It sends one elected representative to the Lok Sabha (the Indian parliament), one member to the State Legislative Assembly and two members to the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee (SGPC) at Amritsar. Tarn Taran is a municipal council with 19 wards. The district borders Doaba, Malwa Belt and Pakistan.
Hub of Sikh Culture
The city has many historical Gurudwaras, including Darbar Sahib Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji, Gurdwara Guru Ka Khuh (Gurdwara of the Guru's Well), Gurdwara Bibi Bhani Da Khuh, Gurdwara Takkar Sahib, Gurdwara Lakeer Sahib, Gurdwara Baba Garja Singh Baba Bota Singh, Gurdwara Jhulna Mahal, and Thatti Khara. With so many Gurwaras of historic importance, the Majha belt has long been a Sikh centre of pilgrimage and tourism.
The main religious hub at Tarn Taran Sahib is Sri Darbar Sahib Tarn Taran, built by Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji. The Gurdwara Sri Darbar Sahib Tarn Taran has the largest Sarovar (holy tank) in the world.
Gurdwara Darbar Sahib (Tarn Taran) is an elegant three storeyed structure at the southeastern corner of the sarovar. Approached through a double - storeyed arched gateway, it stands in the middle of a marble - floored platform. The upper portion of the edifice is covered with glittering gold plated sheets. The lotus dome, damaged in an earthquake (4 April 1905) and subsequently reconstructed has an ornamental gold pinnacle with an umbrella shaped gold finial. Exquisitely executed stucco work in intricate designs, inset with reflecting glass pieces, decorate the interior walls and the ceiling. The Guru Granth Sahib is seated on a platform under an elongated dome covered with goldplated metal sheets. This throne was an offering from Kanvar Nau Nihal Singh. A relay recital of Kirtan goes on from early morning till late in the evening.
Har Ki Pauri A flight of marbled steps behind the Darbar Sahib descending into the sacred pool, marks the spot where, according to tradition, Guru Arjan made the first cut as the digging started in 1590. Pilgrims go down these steps to take Charanamrit or fill their palms with holy water to sip.
The Sarovar The largest of the Sikh holy tanks, the Sarovar is an approximate rectangle in shape. Its northern and southern sides are 289 metres and 283 metres, respectively, and eastern and western sides 230 metres and 233 metres, respectively. The sarovar was originally fed by rain water that flowed in from the surrounding lands. In 1833, Maharaja Raghubir Singh of Jmd had a water channel dug, connecting the tank with the Lower Kasur Branch of the Upper Ban Doab Canal at Rasulpur watermills, 5 km to the southeast. The channel was cemented and covered (1927-28) by Sant Gurmukh Singh and Sant Sadhu Singh. They also supervised karseva of the tank (complete desilting of the tank through voluntary service) in 1931. The operation was repeated in 1970 under Sant Jivan Singh. Most of the bungas around the sarovar have now been demolished and a verandah constructed instead along the periphery. The name Tarn Taran, since appropriated by the town itself, originally belonged to the sarovar, so called by Guru Arjan. Literally it means, "the boat that ferries one across (the ocean of existence)". (Tarana in Sanskrit is a raft or a boat).
According to Sikh tradition, the water of the old pond was found to possess medicinal properties, especially efficacious for curing leprosy. For this reason the sarovar was first known as Dukh Nivaran, the eradicator of affliction. The Akaal Bunga (The Hall of the Everlasting (God), a four storeyed building near the Nishan Sahib (Sikh flagpole), was constructed in 1841 by Kanvar Nau Nihal Singh. Maharaja Sher Singh provided the finishing touches. The Guru Granth Sahib, after a procession around the sarovar amid chanting of hymns in the late evening, is, brought here for the night's rest. The ManJi Sahib, a small domed shrine in the eastern part of the circumambulatory pavement, marks the spot from where Guru Arjan supervised the excavation of the sarovar. A divan hall, a vast pavilion of reinforced concrete, has now been raised close to it.
The Tower The only completed column of the four planned by Kanvar Nau Nihal Singh, for the beautification of the sarovar, stands at its northeastern corner. The three storeyed tower, 34 metres high, was erected during the Kanvar's lifetime. The dome on top of it was added later.
Baba Deep Singh's line in the sand
- Gurudwara Lakeer Sahib is situated at the place where a line on the ground was marked by Baba Deep Singh Ji before entering into war against the Mughal Empire in 1757.
- Gurudwara Bibi Bhani da Khuh, situated near Sri Darbar Sahib Tarn Taran, is named after Bibi Bhani Ji. She was the daughter of Guru Amar Das, the wife of Guru Ram Das, and the mother of Guru Arjan Dev Ji.
This religio-historic khuh (well) was dug by Guru Arjan Dev Ji in memory of his mother at the place where she used to serve food, water, and medicine to the needy and visiting pilgrims. Locals preserved the place with the help of Dera Kar Sewa Tarn Taran, and constructed a Gurudwara.
Gurdwara Guru Ka Khuh is also situated in Tarn Taran City. This well belonged to Guru Arjan Dev Ji, and a historic Gurdwara has been built at this place.
Other Gurdwaras in the District of Tarn Taran are at Goindwal Sahib, namely Gurdwara Baoli Sahib, at Khadoor Sahib, at Baba Buddha Sahib (Bir Sĝhib) and those at Amritsar. Goindwal Sahib Goindwal Sahib, situated along the River Beas, is 23 kilometres from Tarn Taran Sahib. It is an important center of Sikhism, as Guru Arjan Dev ji was born there.
Maharaja Ranjit Singh's and Kanvar Nau Nihal Singh's Contributions
Maharaja Ranjit Singh had the steps on the two sides of the sarovar, left unfinished by Budh Singh and Jassa Singh, completed and its circumambulatory passage paved. The Darbar Sahib was also reconstructed. Maharaja Ranjit Singh and his grandson Kanvar Nau Nihal Singh, donated large quantities of gold to have the exterior plated with the metal, but the work made little progress in the troubled times that followed Ranjit Singh's death. It was in the last quarter of the nineteenth century that part of the exterior was covered with goldleaf by Sant Sham Singh, of Amritsar. Only one of the four towers planned by Kanvar Nau Nihal Singh for the four corners of the tank was erected during this time. Under Maharaja Ranjit Singh's orders, the town of Tarn Taran was enclosed by a wall. A few other shrines such as the Mahji Sahib, the Akal Bunga and the Guru ka Khuh were developed and several bungas added.
Tarn Taran and the British Raj
After the annexation of the Punjab to the British dominions, the management of the shrines at Tarn Taran, along with those at Amritsar, was entrusted to a Sarbarah or manager appointed by the deputy commissioner of Amritsar. The role of the manager was, however, confined to general supervision, the priests being autonomous in the conduct of religious affairs. They divided the offerings among themselves and gradually appropriated most of the lands endowed to the Darbar Sahib during Sikh rule. They neglected their religious duties and cared little for the sanctity of the holy shnnes and the sarovar. The traditional monthly congregation on every amavasya day, the last day of the dark half of the month, was reduced to a gay carnival. Reforms introduced by the Siugh Sabha, Tarn Taran, established in 1885, were disapproved and resisted by the clergy. Efforts of the Khalsa Diwan Majha and the Central Majha Khalsa Diwan to cleanse the administration met with only partial success.
Gurdwara Reform Movement
As the Gurdwara reform movement got under way, the control of the sacred shrines passed to a representative body of the Sikhs, the Shiromam Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, on 27 January 1921. A leper asylum established by Guru Arjan, (it was thought that minerals in the water were helpful in treating Leprosy) but completely ignored by the clergy after the abrogation of Sikh sovereignty was taken over in 1858 by Christian missionaries.
Bir Baba Budha Sahib ji
Harike Wetland also known as "Hari-ke-Pattan", with the Harike Lake in the deeper part of it, is the largest wetland in Asia in the Tarn Taran district of the Punjab. The wetland and the lake were formed by constructing the head works across the Sutlej river, in 1953. The headworks is located downstream of the confluence of the Beas and Sutlej rivers. The rich biodiversity of the wetland which plays a vital role in maintaining the precious hydrological balance in the catchment with its vast concentration of migratory fauna of waterfowls including a number of globally threatened species (stated to be next only to the Keoladeo National Park near Bharatpur) has been responsible for the recognition accorded to this wetland in 1990, by the Ramsar Convention, as one of the Ramasar sites in India, for conservation, development and preservation of the ecosystem.
The wetland was declared a bird sanctuary in 1982 and named as Harike Pattan Bird Sanctuary with an extended area of 8600 ha. Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) carried out research and a bird ringing programme during the period 1980–85. An Ornithological field laboratory was proposed to be established by BNHS. 200 species of birds visit the wetland during winter season of which some of the well known species (some are pictured in the gallery) are the 1) Cotton Pygmy Goose (genus Nettapus), 2) Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula), 3) Yellow-crowned Woodpecker (Dendrocopos mahrattensis), 4) Yellow-eyed Pigeon or Pale-backed Pigeon, 5) Water Cock (Gallicrex cinerea), 6) Pallas's Gull or Great Black-headed Gull (Ichthyaetus ichthyaetus), 7) Brown-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus brunnicephalus), 8) Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus), 9) Yellow-footed Gull (Larus michahellis), 10) Indian Skimmer (Rynchops albicollis), 11) White-winged Tern (Chlidonias leucopterus), 12) White-romped Vulture, 13) Hen Harrier (Circus cyaneus), 14) Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus), 15) Hawk (subfamily Accipitrinae), 16) Eurasian Hobby (Falco subbuteo), 17) Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus), 18) Black-necked Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis), 19) Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus), 20) White-browed Fantail (Rhipidura aureola), 21) Brown Shrike (Lanius cristatus), 22) Common Woodshrike (Tephrodornis pondicerianus), 23) White-tailed Stonechat (Saxicola leucurus), 24) White-crowned Penduline-tit (Remiz coronatus), 25) Rufous-vented Prinia (Prinia burnesii), 26) Striated Grassbird (Megalurus palustris), 27)Cetti's Warbler(Cettia cetti) , 28) Sulphur-bellied Warbler (Phylloscopus griseolus) and 29) Diving duck (pochards).
Indo-Pak war 1965
The tank battles of 1965 form part of military history as the most intense armored battles between the end of World War II and the 1991 Gulf War. Close to a thousand tanks, on both sides, took part in the pitched battles and offensives. At the start of the war, Indian strength was limited to one armored division and one independent armored brigade, along with six armored regiments supporting infantry divisions. Pakistan had two armored divisions, with the then very modern M-48 Patton tanks. India had an equivalent tank in the Centurion, but their strength was limited to only four armored.
97 tanks captured at Assal Uttar
The Indian Army managed to capture 97 Pakistani Tanks as a result of the botched assault by the 1 Armoured Division of the Pakistan Army at the Battle of Assal Uttar on 10 September 1965. Six Pakistani Armoured Regiments took part in the battle, namely the 19 Lancers (Patton), 12 Cavalry (Chafee), 24 Cavalry (Patton) 4 Cavalry (Patton), 5 Horse (Patton) and 6 Lancers (Patton). The Indian forces in the field that day consisted of three Armoured regiments with inferior tanks, the Deccan Horse (Shermans), 3 Cavalry (Centurion) and the 8 Cavalry (AMX-13). The battle was so fierce and intense that at the end of the war, the Fourth Indian Division a.k.a. "The Fighting Fourth" had captured about 97 tanks in destroyed/damaged or intact condition. This included 72 Patton tanks and 25 Chafees and Shermans. 32 of the 97 tanks, including 28 Pattons, were in running condition. The Indian forces lost 32 tanks. Fifteen of them were captured by the Pakistan Army, mostly Sherman tanks.
Near the Bhikhiwind village in the Khemkaran area, a strip of land was called Patton Nagar for a short while in 1965. It was here that more than 60 tanks of the Pakistani army were displayed at the end of the September India-Pakistan conflict. The Pakistan Army tanks were captured at the Battle of Asal Uttar by India's 4 Mountain Division and it became a memorial to the Pakistani tanks being bogged down in the marshes during the 1965 War. The tanks were displayed for some time after which they were shipped to various cantonments and army establishments for display as war trophies.
Nearest Airport is at Amritsar. At a distance approx. 30km.Amritsar's international airport has more than 200 domestic and international flights during the week with daily connections to Delhi, Chandigarh and Jammu.
Tarn Taran is well connected with near by Cities and villages with Rail Network.
Tarn Taran station is on the way on Amritsar to Khemkaran line.
A new project of rail from Tran Taran to Goindwal Sahib is under construction and from Patti to Ferozpur is also under construction.
Tarn Taran has a well mesh of roads to many sides like:
Tarn Taran is located on Historic Royal Highway (Sher Shah Suri Marg) of Mugal Empire from Delhi to Lahore.NH-15 (National Highway No. 15) also passes through Tarn Taran.Tarn Taran has a fast bus service to Amritsar with a daily route of about 450 buses daily.
AC coach buses of many transports have routes of Tarn Taran.Like PUNBUS,PRTC,RAJ,NEW DEEP etc.
Weekly Bus Service to Ponta Sahib
The City has an inadequate health care and fire brigade system. The City has one civil hospital and six private hospitals including a Guru Nanak Dev charitable hospital run by Kar Sewa.
- 1 Guru Arjun Dev Khalsa College
- 2 Sewa Devi College
- 3 Mata Ganga College for women
- 4 Majha College for women
- 5 Kalian Homeopathic College
- 6 Mai Bhago Institute of Nursing
- 7 Shiv Shankar Institute of Engg and Tech (Patti)
- 8 Shaheed Bhagat Singh Pharmacy (Patti)
- 9 Shaheed Bhagat Singh Polytechnic College
- 10 Shaheed Bhagat Singh B.Ed College
- 11 International School of Nursing
- 1 Maharaja Ranjit Singh Public School
- 2 Guru Harkrishan Public School
- 3 St. Franics Convent School
- 4 Mamta Niketan Convent School
- 5 St. Jhomas Convent School
- 6 Guru Arjun Dev Khalsa School
- 7 Punjab Children Academy
- 8 Cupid's School
- 9 Mata Ganga Girls School
- 10 SD Public School
- 11 Sant Singh Sukha Singh Public School
- 12 SSS Public School
- 13 Arya Girls School
- 14 Govt. Sen Sec School
- 15 Police DAV Public School
- 16 Guru Nanak Dev Academy
Tarn Taran have many smaller scale to large scale industries:
- Rana Sugar Distilliries (Village Lokha)
- Cooperative sugar mill (Village Sheron)
- World Famous Fish Market(Village Harike)
- Asia Largest Poltary Farm(VillageGagobuha)
- Ambition Poltary Farm(VillageRure Asal)
- Tarn Taran Grain Market (one of the India's Biggest Grain markets)
- Tarn Taran district have about 58 Rice Shellers
- Spinnig Mills Goindwal Sahib
- Thread Mills Goindwal Sahib
- Centre Govt. has plan for setting up a special economic zone (SEZ) at Sri Goindwal Sahib
- See Wikipedia article on Tarn Taran for more information