Gurudwara Rakab Ganj Sahib

Gurudwara Rakab Ganj Sahib is dedicated to the revered ninth Sikh Guru Tegh Bahadur after his martyrdom in 1695. The holy place of worship for the Sikhs is located near the Parliament House in Delhi.

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About Guru Tegh Bahadur

The ninth Sikh Guru stood for peace and freedom to practice of religion of choice. A cause which was challenged by the austere Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. The emperor shifted from the harmonious religious tolerance policies of his predecessors to persecution of non-Muslims. The Hindus from Kashmir were being forced to convert to Islam or face execution under Aurangzeb’s orders. A large group of Kashmiris approached Guru Tegh Bahadur for help and protection from the emperor’s decree. The ninth Sikh Guru rose to the occasion and decided to confront Aurangzeb. The Guru and his followers were brought to Delhi where they were asked to convert to Islam against death penalty. An unrelenting Guru Tegh Bahadur, preferred death over his freedom, faith and belief over forceful conversion. In 1965, on Aurangzeb’s order, Guru Tegh Bahadur was beheaded in broad daylight in public place. His followers Bhai Mati Das, Bhai Dyal Das and Bhai Sati Das were brutally tortured and killed alive.

A miraculous dust storm averted Mughal soldiers’ attention from the Guru’s slain body. Taking advantage of this opportunity, Bhai Lakhi Shah and his son immediately rescued the Guru’s headless body, cleverly concealed it in their cart and drove to their home in Rakab Ganj in Raisina village. They placed the Guru’s body inside their house and set the place on fire and cremated the Guru Tegh Bahadur.

About Gurudwara Rakab Ganj Sahib

Bhai Lakhi lived in the colony of rakab or horse stirrup makers. The Mughal had godown for stocking stirrups here, hence the name Rakab Ganj. In 1783, Bhai Baghel Singh built Gurudwara Rakab Ganj after conquering Mughal Emperor Shah Alam-II in Delhi. The valiant Sikh military leader constructed shrines at historically significant Sikh locations.

Typical of Sikh shrine architecture, the Gurudwara Rakab Ganj Sahib has entrances from four directions signifying religious tolerance, acceptance without discrimination for all.

Written by IAS POINT

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