Kaithal is a city and a municipal council in the Kaithal district of the State of Haryana.
Kaithal was previously a part of Karnal District and later, Kurukshetra District until 1st November 1989, when it became the headquarters of the Kaithal District of Haryana. Kaithal shares common boundary with Patiala (Punjab), Kurukshetra, Jind and Karnal.
Kaithal district is situated in the northwest of the Haryana state. Its northwest boundaries which include Guhla-Cheeka is attached to Punjab State.
Kaithal was known as Kapisthal, meaning 'Abode of Kapi'.
Timur stopped here in 1398, before attacking Delhi. Later, the city became a muslim cultural centre, under the rule of the Delhi Sultanate. Tombs of several Sufis dating from the 13th century can be found in the city today.
In 1767, it fell into the hands of the Sikh leader, Bhai Desu Singh (d. 1781), who led a large Sikh force from his native village of Bhucho, in the Punjab. Bhai Desu's descendants, the Bhai's of Kaithal, ranked among the most powerful Cis-Sutlej states.
The Sikh Rajas of Kaithal, ruled from 1767 until its fall, in 1843. Bhai Udey Singh ruled over Kaithal as the last Raja. Bhai Udey Singh passed away on 14th March 1843.
The fort of the Bhai's is still exists, and their title Bhai became common with the primary Sikh rulers.
There are 2 Historic Sikh Gurdwaras in Kaithal.
Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji arrived at the site of Gurdwara Sri Manji Sahib Kaithal from Baher Sahib. Guru Tegh Bahadur asked a carpenter from Baher, named Malla, if there were any Sikhs at Kaithal. Malla replied that there were two houses belonging to Banias and one to a Sikh at Kaithal.
Malla accompanied Guru Tegh Bahadur to Kaithal and asked whose house Guru Sahib would like to visit. Guru Tegh Bahadur asked for the nearest one first. Malla took Guru Sahib to the house of a fellow carpenter, who was a Sikh also named Malla. Both Mallas served Guru Tegh Bahadur and the accompanying Sikhs with great respect and deviotion. Pleased with his devotion, Guru Tegh Bahadur said that Malla would be blessed with a son. As a result Malla donated his home to become a Gurdwara.
On the request of the Banias, Guru Sahib visted their house for lunch. Guru Tegh Bahadur sat under a Neem tree, prayed to God and held a diwan singing kirtan. A large congregation of people soon gathered. One of the Sangat was suffering from a high fever. Guru Tegh Bahadur gave the man leaves of the Neem tree and he was soon cured. Afterwards this site became known as Gurdwara Sri Neem Sahib.
Guru Tegh Bahadur predicted that Katha vichar and the singing of Kirtan would become the norm here. Guru Tegh Bahadur spent three days preaching the tenets of Sikhism here and then left for village Barne. Guru Tegh Bahadur was travelling towards Delhi from Anandpur Sahib making numerous stops on the way.
All Gurpurabs are celebrated at Gurdwara Sri Neem Sahib. A langar is organized every month on Sangrand (the first day of the month in the lunar calendar). A local committee appointed by the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabhandhak Committee looks after the management of the Gurdwara which owns 100 bighas of land.
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