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Gurdwara Rakab Ganj in New Delhi’s Pant Road




In the heart of New Delhi, on Pant Road, facing Parliament and North Block, there is a beautiful white marble Gurudwara, with entrances on all 4 sides (symbolizing the fact that the Gurudwara and the religion does not support any kind of separation of humanity based on caste or creed). It has a beautiful garden surrounding it. This is the Rakab Ganj Gurdwara, built in 1732 by a devotee (Lakhi Banjara) of the 9th Sikh Guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur.
It was the year 1675, and the Guru Tegh Bahadur was in rebellion against the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. Aurangzeb was a zealot who wanted to convert people to Islam, and Guru Tegh Bahadur was approached by Kashmiri Pandits for their defence. The Guru proceeded to reach Delhi so as to try to negotiate with Aurangzeb (although he knew that his death could happen). He was arrested and then eventually beheaded.
It is rumored that after he was beheaded, there was a massive dust storm and in that storm, his body was rescued by his disciple and taken to the disciple’s home where to hide any special attempts to cremate the body, the disciple Lakhi Shah Vanjara kept the body in his own home and burnt down the home in order to do the last rites (the head was taken away separately to Anandpur Sahib where it was cremated).
It was this very spot where the body was cremated that is the site of the present Rakab Ganj Gurudwara.




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