Gurudwara Khara Sahib, Bhaike Mattu
MATTU BHAI KE, village in Gujranwala district of Pakistan, is sacred to Guru Hargobind, who briefly halted here travelling back from Kashmir in 1620. He exhorted the people to follow the path shown by Guru Nanak, and preached especially against the use of tobacco. The shrine commemorating the Guru`s visit was called Khara Sahib or Gurdwara Chhevin Patshahl. It was affiliated to the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee until 1947 when it had to be abandoned in the wake of migrations caused by the partition of the Punjab.
The Village by the name Bhaike Mattu is located about two kilometers south-east of the Police Station Noshehra’ Virkan of tehsil Gujranwala. The Gurdwara is located just before the entrance to the Village.
When Sixth Patshah Guru HarGobind Ji was staying here a man came and sat close to Patshah after prostrating before him. His moustaches had turned yellow due to smoking. Guru Dev Ji asked his name. “HarGobind is my name”, he replied. Sat Guru Dev Ji said, “You carry this name yet you commit offense of smoking”. He quitted smoking, sought forgiveness for the past deeds and became a disciple of Guru Har Gobind Ji.
The building of the Gurdwara is very attractive, floors are done in black and white tiles and walls are decorated with paintings of flowers. The ceiling too is decorated in floral designs. Many plaques bearing the name of the people who helped in its repair and maintenance and which tell us that it was constructed in Samvat 1990.
A fair used to be held on the 7th of Saawan.
In and outside the gurdwara there is a large number of plaques, which give a lot of information about the gurdwara. These plaques not only give the names of those who contributed towards its construction but also the year in which these contributions were made. It gives a clear idea that the gurdwara was constructed from 1942 to 1945. It means that tragically this had to be abandoned in 1947, soon after its construction. Probably some parts like langar khana and guest house were still under construction. Fortunately, the plaques are still easily readable and shed light on the past of this gurdwara.
The buidling is in traditional square shape, with doors on all the four sides. Which is accoring to the philosophy of the Sikh religion that the doors of the house of God are open to each and everyone. And a person of any caste or regligion is welcome to gurdwara, literally house of Guru. It is strong building built with cement, concrete and marble. Some local people told me that prsons of the Sikh community still occasionly came to vist this holy place.