Pragpur Heritage Village
Pragpur is a village situated in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh. Lying in the shadows of Dhauladhar range, and developed about 3 centuries ago, the village of Pragpur along with the nearby village of Garli, is notified as a “Heritage Village” by a State Government notification dated 9 December 1997. As per the constitution of India and Panchyati Raaj Act, Pragpur village is administrated by the sarpanch, who is the elected representative of the village.
Pragpur was founded in the late 16th century by the Patials in memory of Princess Prag Dei of the Jaswan Royal family. The area of Pragpur was part of the principality of Jaswan whose chief, in the late 16th or early 17th century, charged a band of learned men, led by a Kuthiala Sood, to find a suitable place to commemorate Princess ‘Prag’ of his royal lineage.
Pragpur is an ornamental village with unchanged shops, cobblestone streets, old water tanks, mud-plastered walls and slate-roofed houses. The narrow streets, lined with fort-like houses, havelis and villas, are indicative of the area’s aged charisma. Due to its unique architecture and pristine beauty, the state government of Himachal Pradesh declared Pragpur as the country’s first Heritage Village in December 1997.
Prag means “pollen” in Sanskrit and pur means “full of”, so Prag-pur means “full of pollen”, which rightly describes the area when it is ablaze with blossoms in spring. Along with Pragpur, the nearby village of Garli is a part of the Heritage Zone. The Judges Court is a resort built in a typical Anglo-Indian style of architecture. It stands in 12 acres of greens, and is just a short walk from the village core and the Taal. Apart from the Judges Court, which was built in 1918, Mr Lal has restored his 300-year-old ancestral house.
The places of interest within the Heritage Village Pragpur are the Lala Rerumal Haveli built in 1931 by a Rais of Pragpur, which has a Mughal style garden, pleasure terrace and a large water reservoir. Butail Mandir, Chaujjar Mansion, courtyards of the Sood Clans, an ancient Shakti Mandir and atiyalas or public platforms are the pride of this heritage village. There are many silversmiths in the market selling traditional trinkets and curios. The village is known for its cottage industry. The inhabitants in the area are mostly craftspeople, weavers, basket makers, silversmiths, painters, musicians and tailors. One can purchase hand-woven blankets, shawls and hand-block printed clothes.
Haripur is a township in Kangra district in the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. Haripur Guler are twin townships carrying the heritage of Guler Riyasat. A river separates the two towns which further makes Pong wetland, a Ramsar Wetalnd Site, home to a large number of migratory birds in winters because of marshes and the presence of irrigated private land. On the other side of Haripur town, is Guler which has a narrow gauge railway station connected from Pathankot station to Jogindernagar station.
Guler State was a historical princely state in district Kangra between 1405, when the state was founded, and 1813 when it was annexed by Punjab. Guler State was famous as the cradle of the Kangra paintings. Guler painting is the early phase of Kangra Kalam. About the middle of the eighteenth century some Hindu artists trained in Mughal style sought the patronage of the Rajas of Guler in the Kangra Valley. There they developed a style of painting which has a delicacy and a spirituality of feeling. The Guler artists had the colors of the dawn and the rainbow on their palette. On the hills of Haripur, there is a ruined fort which was built by Raja Hari Chand, which is the second fort built by him after Kangra (Nagarkot) Fort. The caves and some temples built by the king are still there, of great heritage and cultural importance.
Kangra Valley Railway
The Kangra Valley Railway lies in the sub-Himalayan region of Kangra Valley and covers a distance of 164 km (101.9 mi) from Pathankot to Jogindernagar in Himachal Pradesh. The Kangra valley railway comes under the Firozpur division of Northern Railway. The highest point on this line is at Ahju station at an elevation of 1,290 meters (4,230 ft).
The railway line was planned in May 1926 and commissioned in 1929. The line has two tunnels, one of which is 250 ft (76 m) and the other 1,000 ft (300 m) in length. Trains on this narrow gauge line are pulled by small and less powerful engines than on a broad gauge main line, therefore steep ascents had to be avoided. But instead of expensively boring through the mountains on a straight way, a much longer right-of-way further south was chosen that allowed gentle slopes. From 1942 to 1954 there was no train service east of Nagrota.
When the Maharana Pratap Sagar was constructed, the line had to be diverted between Jawanwala Shahr and Guler into higher grounds along the eastern shore of the new reservoir. In 1973, the section between these two stations, along with Anur, Jagatpur and Mangwal stations was abandoned, and the new alignment with several new stations opened three years later.
If the Kangra fort can be termed the crown of Kangra district, the superb Taragarh Palace between Palampur and Baijnath can be called jewel in the crown. Sprawling in 15 acres, Taragarh is fabulous in its architectural grandeur and artistic taste. It was the personal summer resort of the Nawab of Bahawalpur Sir Sadiq Muhammad Khan Abbasi V. It was Built in 1931. The original name of the estate was AI Hilal meaning “The Cresent Moon” but later it was changed to Taragarh when Maharani Tara Devi, the wife of Raja Hari Singh of Kashmir acquired it in 1950. Dr. Karan Singh, who inherited the property after the demise of his mother Maharani Tara Devi in 1967 converted it into a heritage hotel in 1971.
The interior is gorgeously decorated with family photographs and other artifacts. Here you can see Maharaja Hari Singh of Kashmir, his father and other family, Maharani Tara Devi’s supervising presence and Dr. Karan Singh as a little boy. It is rather interesting to re-live history of the region in the company of this illustrious family looking at you from the walls. The old flower-vases, pieces of heritage furniture, and family heirlooms give the place a distinctly royal look.
It may be of interest to note that in days of yore Taragarh attracted the film people from Bombay and Jugal Kishore’s Lal Bangla was filmed in this palace. The Palace has an attractive blend of opulence and homeliness, perhaps because it has been a summer resort, and never a seat of power.
Nurpur Fort is as beautiful as its name. It is a jewel of Himachal Pradesh and the most treasured antiquity. The well-known Brij Maharaj temple, within the fort, is devoted to Lord Krishna and it has a gorgeous black stone idol of the Lord Krishna. It was fetched from Rajasthan during reign of Raja Jagat Singh. The walls are adorned with lovely paintings from Indian mythology. All the paintings, beautiful figures, and rundown condition of the fort, but yet magnificent in itself; gives a nostalgic and mystic experience to tourists. The fort was previously known as Dhameri fort. In 1672, Moghal Emperor, Jahangir named the fort, Nurpur Fort after his beloved wife Nurjahan. Jahangir was one of the most powerful rulers and son of Jala-Ud-Din Mohamad Akbar. Nurpur fort is near Pathankot which is about 24 kilometers and also near Dharamshala which is 66 kilometer away. Nurpur Fort constructed by the Pathania Rajputs. The fort was built more than 900 years ago. It was broken due to the huge earthquake which affected this region in early 1905 A.D. the fort is very popular and the temple in its vicinity is the main attraction.
The Baijnath temple has been continuously under worship ever since its construction in 1204 A.D. by two local merchants named Ahuka and Manyuka. The two long inscriptions in the porch of the temple indicate that a temple of Siva existed on the spot even before the present one was constructed. The present temple is a beautiful example of the early medieval north Indian temple architecture known as Nagara style of temples. The Svayambhu form of Sivalinga is enshrined in the sanctum of the temple that has five projections on each side and is surmounted with a tall curvilinear Shikhara. The entrance to sanctum is through a vestibule that has a large square Mandapa in front with two massive balconies one each in north and south. There is a small porch in front of the mandapa hall that rests on four pillars in the front preceded by an idol of Nandi, the bull, in a small pillared shrine.
For more visit Baijnath Temple Website.
The Masroor one Rock Cut Temple or Himalayan Pyramid is a complex of temples located in Masroor (or Masrur) in Kangra Valley, which is 40 kilometres from Kangra city in Kangra district of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh.It is now known as ’Thakurwada’, meaning “Vaishnavite temples.It is a complex of monolithic rock cut temples, in shikhara (raising tower) style of classical Indian architectural style, dated by art historians to 6–8th centuries. Such an architectural temple is unique to the northern part of India while there are many places in western and southern India where such rock-cut structures exist at number of locations. There is a lake or pond called Masroor lake in front of this edifice which shows partial reflection the temples.The temple complex is located in the rolling topography of the Kangra Valley in the Dehra Gopipur tehsil, in the backdrop of the Dhauladar Range and Beas River valley with geographical coordinates of 30.00°N 76.16°E. It is located at the highest point of a local hill feature. It is close to Dharmashala, which is about 35 kilometres away.
The land of Himachal Pradesh is called Devbhoomi. A lot of faith centers exist here. In the Indora sub-division of Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh, the temple of Kathgarh Mahadev is situated. It is the only temple in the world where Shivling exists in such a form which are divided into two parts, ie, two different forms of mother Parvati and Lord Shiva, according to the change of planets and constellations, the difference between the two parts of it continues to dwindle is. In summer it splits into two parts and again forms a form in the winter season.
When World Winner Sikander arrived in Punjab 326 years ago, he advised five thousand soldiers to rest in the open ground in the village named Meerthal before the entry. At this place he saw that the worship of a fakir Shivaling was busy. He said to Faqir- ‘You go to Greece with me. I will give you all the riches of the world. “Fakir, while ignoring the story of Alexander, said,” Let’s go a little back and let the light of the sun come to me. “Impressed by this fact, Alexander influenced Kathgarh Mahadev’s To make the temple leveled up the ground and made the boundary wall Make octagonal pots on this wall of Beas river, which are still here today.
It is said that when Maharaja Ranjit Singh took over the throne, he visited the religious places of the entire state. When he reached Kathgarh, he was so happy that he built a beautiful temple on Adi Shivaling, and proceeded after worshiping there. He liked the water of a well built near the temple so that he would send water from there for every goodwill.