The haveli was the residence of one Ranjit Singh’s finest general in the own town of Ranjit Singh’s birth. Today an Islamic madrassa is being run in the haveli. There is an old Hindu temple complex at Katas, in Chakwal district of Punjab, which may probably date back to at least the 10 AD. Katas […]
The haveli was the residence of one Ranjit Singh’s finest general in the own town of Ranjit Singh’s birth. Today an Islamic madrassa is being run in the haveli.
There is an old Hindu temple complex at Katas, in Chakwal district of Punjab, which may probably date back to at least the 10 AD.
Katas is a very sacred place for the Hindus. It is located on a hill six kilometers from village Choa Saidan Shah of Chakwal district. The place is mentioned in the ‘Mahabharata’ and according to Hindu religious belief, both Katas and Paskar (Ajmer) are the eyes of Shiva. Paras Nath Jogi breathed his last here. The Founder of Sikhism Guru Nanak Ji also visited Katas and had set his foot here. This place thus also came to be known as ‘Nanaknawas’. It was the abode of contemplation for groups of mystics, ascetics and Jogis etc.
It also has great historical significance because it was the place where the Arab traveler and historian Al-Beruni attempted to measure the circumference of Earth, and where he studied and learnt Sanskrit, and eventually wrote his renowned “Kitab-ul-Hind”. Even today groups of Hindu pilgrims come from India to visit it regularly to worship.
At Katas, is also a small fortified mansion or traditional ‘haveli’ which goes by the name of ‘Hari Singh Nalwa di Haveli’ (the Haveli/Mansion of Hari Singh Nalwa). This Hari Singh was a famous Sikh general and administrator who served as governor in Kashmir and Hazara areas during Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s time, and one of the bulwarks of the Sikh regime in Punjab. He died in 18 at Jamrud, in the Pashtun tribal areas, and his death was a major set back or blow to Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Sikh power generally.
According to local information, this ‘haveli’ at Katas, named after Hari Singh, was probably made by this able commander sometime in the 19th century, some 10-12 years prior to his death. He also used to come and visit this holy site and stay here and it is presumed he built it for his own use as well as a sort of garrison to protect this holy site. Not much is known about this place now, local people dont seem to have much knowledge, and the government are equally clueless and disinterested. Despite being a place much-visited by Hindus, the temple complex and this fine old ‘haveli’ and other old buildings, are falling to rack and ruin.
~ Source: historyhpak.blogspot.in