Amritsar is a city in Punjab and at the center of its walled old town, the gilded Golden Temple is the holiest religious complex of the Sikh religion. It’s at the end of a causeway, surrounded by the sacred Amrit Sarovar.
Sri Harmandir Sahib
It is informally referred to as the “Golden Temple” is the holiest Gurdwara of Sikhism, founded in 1577 by the fourth Sikh guru, Guru Ram Das. The fifth Sikh Guru, Guru Arjan, designed the Harmandir Sahib to be built in the centre of this holy tank, and upon its construction, installed the Adi Granth, the holy scripture of Sikhism, inside the Harmandir Sahib.
The Harmandir Sahib complex is also home to the Akal Takht constituted by the Sixth Guru, Guru Hargobind. While the Harmandir Sahib is regarded as the abode of God’s spiritual attribute, the Akal Takht is the seat of God’s temporal authority.
The construction of Harmandir Sahib was intended to build a place of worship for men and women from all walks of life and all religions to come and worship God equally. Accordingly Muslim Sufi saint, Hazrat Mian Mir laid the foundation stone of the Harmandir Sahib as per the special invitation of Guru Arjan.
The four entrances to get into the Harmandir Sahib also symbolise the openness of the Sikhs towards all people and religions. Over 100,000 people visit the holy shrine daily for worship and also partake in community kitchen and meal regardless of any distinctions, a tradition that is a hallmark of all Sikh Gurdwaras.
The present-day gurdwara was renovated in 1764 by Jassa Singh Ahluwalia with the help of other Sikh Misls.
It is a public garden that houses a memorial of national importance, established in 1951 by the Government of India, to commemorate the massacre of peaceful celebrators including unarmed women and children by British occupying forces, on the occasion of the Punjabi New Year on April 13, 1919 in the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre.
The 6.5-acre garden site of the massacre is located in the vicinity of Golden Temple complex. The memorial is managed by the Jallianwala Bagh National Memorial Trust.
It is also as Lakshmi Narayan Temple, Durga Tirath and Sitla Mandir and it is considered as a premier Hindu temple of Punjab. Its architecture is similar to the Golden Temple of Sikh religion. This temple derives its name from the Goddess Durga, the chief Goddess deified and worshipped here. Idols of Goddess Laksmi (goddess of wealth) and Vishnu (the protector of the world) are also deified here and worshipped.
The temple is situated near the Lohgarh gate at the site of a small lake known as Durgiana. The original temple is to have been built in the 16th century. It was rebuilt in 1921 by Guru Harsai Mal Kapoor in the architectural style of the Sikh Golden Temple
The temple is built in the middle of a sacred lake. Its dome and canopies are similar to that of the Golden temple of Sikh religion. A bridge provides the
approach to the temple. The dome of the temple is gilded. Marble is used extensively in the temple’s features. The dome is illuminated with colourful lights.
The temple is sometimes called Silver temple because of its large exquisitely designed silver doors. It has a rich collection of Hindu scriptures. The temple complex also has some historic subsidiary temples such as Sita Mata and Bara Hanuman. Major Hindu festivals celebrated in the temple are Dusserah,
Janmashtami, Rama Navami, and Diwali.