Gurdwara Shaheed Bhai Taru Singh

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Gurdwara Shaheed Bhai Taru Singh (Punjabi and Urdu: گوردوارہ شہید بھائی تارو سنگھ‎) or Gurdwara Shahidi Asthan Bhai Taru Singh ji is a Sikh Gurdwara at Naulakha Bazaar in Lahore, Pakistan, which commemorates the spot where Bhai Taru Singh was martyred. The shrine was built on the grounds of the Shaheed Ganj Mosque, leading to a legal dispute over ownership that began in 1850.[7] British, and later Pakistani, courts upheld the right of Sikhs to maintain a place of worship at the site. While a settlement was being negotiated by British authorities, a group of Sikhs demolished the mosque on 7–8 July 1935, triggering communal riots.

Quotes[edit]

  • The dispute over the Abdullah Khan Mosque, which was adjacent to the Shahid Gunj Gurdwara, flared up when the courts dismissed the Anjuman-i-Islamia’s claim to the site and confirmed the control of the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC). 89 Its intention to demolish the defunct mosque and build shops on the site led to widespread protests. When the Majlis-i-Ahrar-i-Islam stood aloof, in marked contrast to its activist role in the Kashmir movement, Maulana Zafar Ali Khan thundered against it on 14 July in a packed meeting at Mochi Gate, and afterwards founded the Majlis-i-Ittehad-i-Millat to lead the Shahid Gunj protests. 90 Public opposition to the Ahrars was so great that they found it virtually impossible to hold a meeting in Lahore for the best part of a year. 91 The Majlis-i-Ittehad-i-Millat held a series of public processions and meetings at Mochi Gate. 92 On 20 July a large crowd gathered there from across the Punjab in a bid to reach the disputed mosque to offer prayers. Despite these efforts at mobilisation, the dispute remained unresolved.
    • Colonial Lahore: A History of the City and Beyond by I. Talbot.
  • Massjid Shahid Ganj, in Lahore, was constructed as a mosque by one Falak Beg khan, in 1722. The Sikhs, however, claimed that the mosque had been built by demolishing a Gurdwara. Sometime around AD 1762 ,when Sikh power in the region was on the ascendant, they took possession of the building ... The land... became the site of a Sikh Gurdwara and the tomb of a Sikh leader, Bhai Taru Singh.
    • Decision in Lahore High Court , in 1938. quoted in Jain, M. (2013). Rama and Ayodhya., p 283 ff.
  • When a mosque is adversely possessed by non-Muslims, that is to say, by the Hindus, the Muslims lose all the rights in the land and the building, including the right to worship. The building cannot maintain the character of a mosque and no duty is cast upon the person in possession therof to maintain its original character or to maintain it even as a building.
    • Decision in Lahore High Court , in 1938. quoted in Jain, M. (2013). Rama and Ayodhya., p 284 ff.

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