MATHURA (27°28`N, 77°40`E), an ancient city on the right bank of the River Yamuna, 150 km south south-east of Delhi, possesses three Sikh shrines commemorating the visits of Guru Nanak and Guru Tegh Bahadur. GURDWARA GAU GHAT is a small shrine on the riverbank controlled by the Udasis. The Guru Granth Sahib is seated in a small room. It is believed that at the time of their visits Guru Nanak and Guru Tegh Bahadur, while here, used this spot for their daily ablutions.

GURDWARA GURU NANAK BAGICHI, dedicated to Guru Nanak, is situated on the right bank of the Yamuna, outside the old town. It is said that when Guru Nanak visited the spot, he was told that the place was unsuitable for a halt, for the river water at that time of year was muddy and the well water in the area brackish. But, as water was drawn from the nearest well it was found to be sweet. Guru Nanak established a pidu (drinkingwater stand) there and himself served fresh water to the pilgrims to the town. He 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.

There is a belief still prevalent in the locality that if a person observed a chdHsd here, i.e. prayed at the shrine regularly for forty days, his heart\’s desire would be fulfilled. The shrine was established and preserved by Udasi sadhus but in the 1950`s, the managing committee of Gurdwara Guru Tegh Bahadur took charge of it. In 1975, itwas handed over for further development to Sant Sadhu Singh Mauni of Guru kaTal, Sikandra (Agra). GURDWARA GURU TEGH BAHADUR SRI GURU SINGH SABHA is the main gurrfwara of Mathura.

The site is referred to in older accounts as Karis Tilla, i.e.. Mound of Karis. Guru Tegh Bahadur, on his way from Delhi to the eastern provinces in 1665, 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 sadhus until the early nineteen forties when Sikh residents in Mathura acquired the site. A new doublestoreyed building was constructed, with the Sikh troops of 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 doublestoreyed rooms around a paved courtyard.

The rectangular rfnyanhall, 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.

References :

1. Gian Singh, Giani, Twarikh Curduarian. Amritsar, n.d.
2. Narotam, Tara Singh, .Sri; Guru Tirath Sangrahi. Kankhal, 1975
3. Sahi, joginder Singh, Sikh Shrinesi in India and Abroad. Faridabad, 1975