Two beautifully carved wooden doors, more than 200 years old at the Golden Temple have been removed for renovations. The old, huge gates of Darshani Deori which is entrance tothe Golden Temple have been removed to be repaired and preserved from degeneration. The doors are being subjected to repair and preservation work for the first […]
Two beautifully carved wooden doors, more than 200 years old at the Golden Temple have been removed for renovations. The old, huge gates of Darshani Deori which is entrance tothe Golden Temple have been removed to be repaired and preserved from degeneration.
The doors are being subjected to repair and preservation work for the first time since they were installed in 1800.
The two gates having a sandalwood base were installed by Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1800 AD and are believed to have been originally belonging to Somnath Temple near Veraval in Saurashtra region of Gujarat. The gates were looted from the Somnath Temple in 12th century by Afghan traders, but later the Sikhs captured them from the Afghans and since then these historic gates have been a part of the Golden Temple in Amritsar.
However the aforesaid belief has been rejected by many top Sikh religious leaders. According to them, the Darshini Deori doors were carved by a Muslim craftsman, Yaar Mohammed Khan for an order by a Sikh family of Sursingh village, who presented the doors to Maharaja Ranjit Singh. Also the Golden Temple has a century old tradition that no used artifact or article can be presented to the temple.
With the sandalwood base of the doors crumbling and its silver and ivory carving and golden screws damaged with time, preservation of the doors has become a necessity. Under the hands of an expert panel the doors are undergoing repair and preservation work in a glass cabin which is open for the view of visiting devotees. The work is being further supervised by a five member committee of top Sikh religious leaders. Since these doors are sacred, preservation work will be carried out within the Golden Temple premises only. The doors will not be taken out of the complex at all. The aim is just to restore it to its former glory.
While the matter is totally religious, based on the belief that the doors originally belonged to Somnath Temple, some political and religious leaders are trying to make an issue out of the matter by proclaiming that the doors are being sent back to the Somnath Temple.
Golden Temple in Amritsar is one of the most religious places for the Sikh community and is also one of the important tourist destinations in India.