Kurukshetra - City of Karma

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Kurukshetra is a historic place in India where Lord Krishna delivered the message of Karma to Arjuna during the epic battle of Mahabharata. His teachings were written in the form of a book known as the Bhagwad Gita, which literally means divine songs of the Lord.

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Why should I be aware of this?

Kurukshetra is well on its way to become a heritage tourist destination as the Department of Tourism, Haryana, India, is making efforts to promote its rich cultural heritage on global scale. Plans are in the offing to develop the cultural landscape of Kurukshetra and adjoining regions around Krishna.

The Haryana department of tourism implemented a tourism policy in the beginning of the 2008, aimed at harnessing the direct and multiplier effects of tourism in employment generation, poverty alleviation and empowerment of women in an environmentally sustainable manner. This also paved the way for public private partnership in tourism sector in the state. Plans are afoot to carry out an integrated development of Kurukshetra as a pilgrim destination with infrastructure of international standards.

The Kurukshetra district comprises 360 places of pilgrimage related to the Mahabharata. The important holy places include the Brahmasarovar, Sannihit Tank, Jyotisar, Bhisam Kund (Narkatari) Chandrakupa, Saraswati Tirath Pehowa, Rantuk Yaksh Bir pipli and Karan Ka Tila. Lakhs of tourists visit Kurukshetra during the Geeta Jayanti Samaroh and throughout the year.

All about Kurukshetra

Kurukshetra is one of those holy towns that have borne the imprint of Lord Krishna's footsteps. Tradition holds that the great 18-day battle between the Pandavas and Kauravas in which Lord Krishna played his enigmatic part, as described in the pages of the epic Mahabharata, was fought on the plains of Kurukshetra. Kurukshetra lies on the Delhi-Ambala stretch of the National Highway number 1.

Development plans

Plans are under way to set up world-class infrastructure, Mahabharata Circuit, Sufi Circuit, Eco Tourism Circuit and Adventure tourism Circuit, in private-public partnership. A proposed Digital Gallery on Mahabharata and the Geeta will come up in the third phase of Sri Krishna Museum.

A spa at Kalesar and a theme park based on the gospel of the Geeta at Kurukshetra are among other projects to come up under the private-public partnership mode. With these upcoming projects the influx of tourists is expected to rise in the coming years.

Places of attraction

Brahm Sarovar

Believed to have been excavated by king Kuru long before the epic battle of Mahabharata, Brahm Sarovar is about 1,318.6 meters in length and 640 meters in breadth. The pilgrims take a holy dip in the sarovar on the occasion of solar eclipse and lunar eclipses and amavasya as well as other festivals.

Sannihit Tank

Considered one of the holiest places of Kurukshetra, it is believed to be a resort of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. It was here that sage Dadhichi gave up his life for the sake of Indra.

Sthaneshwar Mahadev Mandir

A temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, it was constructed by Raja Pushyamurty, an ancestor of emperor Harshvardhana.

Geeta Bhavan

Situated on the northern bank of Brahm Sarovar, Geeta Bhavan was constructed in 1921-22 by Maharaja Sir Venktraman Singh Bahadur of Rewa state of Madhya Pradesh. This building accommodates various religious books, including copies of Shrimad Bhagavadgita translated in various Indian and foreign languages.

Shri Devi Koop (Bhadrakali) Mandir

One of the 51 Shakti Peethas of India, it is believed that the right ankle of Bhadrakali (Sati) fell into a well located here.

Jyotisar

Jyotisar is where Lord Krishna is believed to have delivered the message of karma to Arjuna on the eve of the battle of Mahabharata.


Shri Krishna Museum

The museum, situated on the Pipli-Pehowa road, depicts the life of the Krishna and the Mahabharata episodes.


Ban Ganga

This is a place where, according to a local legend, Arjuna pierced the earth with his arrow, to quench the thirst of Bhishma who was lying on the bed of arrows. This place is about 4.8 km south of the Brahm Sarovar.

References:

  • Kurukshetra: North’s next tourism hub
  • Kurukshetra attractions