Gurudwara Toka Sahib, Toka
Gurdwara Sri Toka Sahib is a wonderful Gurdwara in a scenic area which has been established in honour of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji, who stayed here for a few days in 1685 and again in 1688. This Gurdwara Sahib is situated in a peaceful area near the Toka village in the Sirmaur district of Himachal Pradesh (at the border of Himachal Pradesh and Haryana). A road connects Toka Sahib with the city of Narayangarh (Haryana). The natural surroundings of Gurdwara and the low population of the area make this a very peaceful and tranquil place. According to a slab (inscribed in 1968), Guru Gobind Singh came here with 2200 horsemen on 4 Baisakh 1742 Bikarmi/ 1 April 1685 to help Raja Medini Prakash of Nahan. The Raja of Nahan met Guru Gobind Singh here and together they went back to Nahan where Guru Sahib stayed for a while. Later, according to Gurushabad Ratanakar Mahan Kosh and Twarikh Guru Khalsa, Guru Gobind Singh stayed here on his way back from Paonta Sahib to Anandpur Sahib in 1688 after the Battle of Bhangani. The majority of the residents of the Toka village were 'Ranghars' (thieves). Some of the villagers entered the camp of Guru Gobind Singh's army and stole two camels. When the Sikh soldiers discovered that the camels were missing, they informed Guru Gobind Singh. The Guru asked the Ranghars of the village about the camels. The villagers denied stealing them and said, 'Other thieves must have stolen your camels. We have not seen your camels'. There is another village, by the name of 'Laha', located 7 km soutwest of Toka. The majority of its residents were poor people. Guru Gobind Singh invited a few of the villagers to his camp and asked them if they would go to the Ranghars village disguised as beggars to check if the Guru's camels were in the village. A poor resident of the Laha village went to Toka posing as a beggar. He found both of Guru Sahib's camels were there in the village. He came back to Guru Gobind Singh and informed him that both camels were at Toka. Guru Gobind Singh returned to Toka and confronted the Ranghars who were frightened because they had been found out. The Ranghars apologized to Guru Gobind Singh for their crime. Guru Gobind Singh said, 'The residents of village 'Laha' will always get 'Laha' (profit) and residents of 'Toka' will face 'Tota' (loss)'. As the Gurdwara is built on the Toka village's land, it is named as Gurdwara Sri Toka Sahib. Two Sikh soldiers who were wounded in the Battle of Bhangani, re-joined with God near Gurdwara Sri Toka Sahib. A small Gurdwara is built as memorial to these brave soldiers on the side of the Sarovar. There is also an old well here which, according to an inscription, was dug in 1823 'in memory of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Nawab Fateh Singh Ahluwalia.' There is a Bhora Sahib which marks where Guru Gobind Singh Ji stayed for few days. There is also an old Mango tree behind the Darbar Sahib complex. According to early sources, it was said, that, after eating a Mango, Guru Sahib threw away the seed which soon took root and grew into a small Mango plant. Today, there is a big Mango tree with branches laid down over the ground. Guru Gobind Singh tied his horses to a Blackberry tree. Today, there are 2 Blackberry trees that still exist here. When Guru Gobind Singh was brushing his teeth, the datan that was planted grew into a Neem tree. So there are a number of trees here relating to the visit of Guru Gobind Singh. Another smaller Gurdwara called 'Tap Asthan' is also built nearby where Guru Gobind Singh used to pray to God in a solitary and peaceful location near the main Gurdwara Sahib. This is situated on a peak of nearby (small) hill where one can visit by foot at a distance of 150 meters. Some time ago the Gurdwara Sahib consisted of a modest flat roofed building surrounded by a verandah. There was a hut of a Nihang which took care of the Gurdwara. Now the Gurdwara has been expanded. A Management trust controls the running of the Gurdwara. There is a large Sangat that attends on days relating to Guru Gobind Singh and other Gurus. The sangat visits here around the year from all around. To reach the Gurdwara one has to cross the Roon River.