PANDHER, village 25 km south of Barnala (30Â° 22`N, 75Â° 32`E) in Sangrur district of the Punjab, has a historical shrine commemorating the visit of Guru Tegh Bahadur. It is said that as Guru Tegh Bahadur arrived here late in the afternoon and asked for a site for his camp, one of the villagers pointed in jest to the potter`s house saying, “That is the place where travellers stay.” The Guru`s followers remarked, These are thick headed people.” The Guru immediately turned his horse and proceeded towards `All Sher village. Khumari, the headman of Pandher, said, “This is a very proud man.” Later, when they learnt who he was, they repented their impudence.
The village elders followed the Guru to `All Sher to ask for forgiveness. They collected a few lumps of gur, or jaggery, and some money which they carried as an offering. On the way they met a person who was returning after a visit to the Guru. They asked him what offering would the Guru expect to grant them a reprieve for their misdemeanour. “None,” replied the stranger. “The Guru is compassionate and overlooks the faults of others.” The elders of Pandher thereupon distributed the offering among themselves and went fo the Guru emptyhanded. The Guru received them unmindful of their past conduct and instructed them in the path of virtuous living.
The remorseful residents of Pandher constructed a memorial on the spot where the Guru had briefly halted. It was developed into a gurudwara, called Gurdwara Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur Sahib during the Sikh rule when Pandher became a part of Nabha state. The rulers of Nabha made an endowment in land for its maintenance. A line of mahants served it until after 1956 when it was taken over by the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee. The Gurdwara comprises a rectangular hall, with the Guru Granth Sahib seated on a canopied platform at one end of it. Besides daily worship, special divans take place on full moon days and on major religious anniversaries on the Sikh calendar. The Gurdwara owns 50 acres of land.
1. Gian Singh, Giani, Twarikh Gurduarian. Amritsar, n.d.
2. Narotam, Tara Singh, Sri Guru Tirath Sangrahi. Kankhal, 1975