Paonta Sahib was built on the bank of the Yamuna River and began its life as a fortlike home built for the Guru and his family and ended up being a fortress with a Gurdwara in its interior.
History of Gurudwara Paonta Sahib
Guru Gobind Singh had visited the city on the invitation of Raja Maidini Prakash of Sirmour after he left Anandpur Sahib at the age of 16 years. In these beautiful surroundings the Guru engaged himself not only in hunting and training his warrior Sikhs in the martial arts, but he also spent a great deal of his time in literary activities, composing many works of religious, as well as heroic poetry including Jap Sahib, Sawayyas Patshahi Dasvin the and Chandi-di-Var. He filled his Darbar (court) with as many as 52 of India's most talented poets and writers, many of them came from the ancient city of Benaras. He put most of them to work translating the ancient classics of India's literature from the Sanskrit of the Priests and Khatris scholars into the then common languages of Braj or Punjabi, the vernacular languages of the people. The guru had left the city of Paonta Sahib after a period of four years on defeating Raja Fateh Shah in a 30 days battle. According to historical accounts it is said that the Guru had written a significant portion of the Dasam Granth while his stay in Gurudwara Paonta Sahib. During the time of the guru, poetry sessions and conferences were common events in the Paonta Sahib Gurdwara.
Architecture of Gurdwara Complex
Apart from the Gurdwara and the Fort the sanctified city of Paonta Sahib also houses two Hindu temples known by the name Dei-ki-mandir dedicated to Lord Ram and was built by a princess. The second is a temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. As a result the holy city of Paonta Sahib attracts a large number of tourists throughout the year. The Gurudwara have a palanquin "Palki" made of pure gold, donated by devotees. In the three acres the Gurdwara complex includes the Darbar Sahib (main sanctum), the Guru ka Langar, which serves free meals to some 2,000 to 5,000 visitors every day, the Talab Asthan, where pay was disbursed; the Kavi Darbar Asthan, where literary works were written, recited and discussed, the Dastar Astha, where robes of honour were given out and where Dastar tying contests were also held, a memorial to Rishi Kalpi, whom the Guru had brought from his hermitage to stay here and Gobind Ghat, the landing that leads into the river's waters.
Dehradun is the nearest railway station located about 45 km from Paonta Sahib. Trains from several cities like New Delhi, Lucknow and Mumbai halt at the station. Taxi services are available from the station to get to Paonta Sahib. Also Paonta Sahib is well connected by road. Situated on NH-72, the town is well connected with Dehradun and Chandigarh. State-run buses ply regularly from several cities of Himachal Pradesh.