Mathura is a historic town in the State of Uttar Pradesh.
Mathura was a center of Buddhism and contained up to twenty Buddhist monasteries. Caste based hindus succeeded in pushing Buddhism out of the area.
The city was sacked and looted, with many of its temples destroyed by Mahmud of Ghazni in 1018 and again by Sikandar Lodhi, who ruled the Sultanate of Delhi from 1489 to 1517. Sikander Lodhi earned the epithet of 'Butt Shikan', the 'Destroyer of hindu deities'.
Mathura was visited by the first, sixth, ninth and (possibly) the tenth Sikh Guru.
There are 3 Historic Sikh Gurdwaras in Mathura, one dedicated to Sri Guru Nanak Sahib Ji and the others to Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji.
Bagichi literally means small garden. Gurdwara Sri Guru Nanak Sahib Bagichi is dedicated to Guru Nanak who visited Mathura and Vrindavan during the month long Sawan fair held in (July-August). As the water of the Yamuna river is muddy during Sawan and not fit to drink, Guru Nanak was told that the place was unsuitable for stopping. The well water in the area was brackish (unfit to drink).
However, Guru Nanak asked Mardana to draw water from the nearest well and it was found to be sweet. Guru Nanak established a piau (drinking water stall) there and himself served fresh water to the pilgrims to the town. Guru Nanak is believed to have stayed here for three months. A childless couple, Mohan and his wife Sita Bai, served him, and were blessed with a son.
A commemorative Gurdwara was established here, on the bank of Yamuna river near the Masani railway crossing between Mathura and Vrindavan, and maintained by a long line of udasi's was taken over by the Mathura Singh Sabha during the 1950s. Bhai Sadhu Singh Mauni reconstructed the Gurdwara in 1975. It now has a rectangular hall with vaulted roof and a verandah in front, besides several rooms for staff and pilgrims. A water tank with taps on the roadside represents Guru Nanak's piau.
Gurdwara Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Sahib Mathura is situated outside Tilak Dwar of the old city on Guru Tegh Bahadur Marg opposite the General Post Office. The site is referred to in older accounts as Karis Tilla, ie. Mound of Karis. Guru Tegh Bahadur stayed here for three days. A small platform in a modest hut existed here as a memorial to the Guru`s visit. It was maintained by udasi's until the early nineteen forties when Sikh residents in Mathura acquired the site. A new double storey building was constructed, with the Sikh troops of the Mathura garrison contributing liberally in money and labour.
More buildings have been added since, and at present the Gurdwara is a compact block of numerous double storey rooms around a paved courtyard. The rectangular hall, with verandahs in front and rear, is on the first floor approached by a wide staircase covered with white marble slabs. Guru Tegh Bahadur Adarsh Vidyalaya, with classes from Montessori to the eighth standard is also housed on the premises. A museum containing pictures depicting scenes from Sikh history was set up in one of the rooms during August 1977. The Gurdwara, registered as Sri Guru Singh Sabha, is managed by a local committee.
Gurdwara Sri Gau Ghat Sahib Mathura is situated near the river bank, where Guru Tegh Bahadur is said to have had his morning bath, is still maintained by udasi Sikhs. Another Gurdwara used to be there, according to Bhai Kahn Singh in the Mahan Kosh, in memory of Guru Harbobind's visit. It is said have been located in the residential house of a Chaube (a brahman), which is no longer traceable.
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