CHAKWAL, PAKISTAN – Katas Raj Temples is a Hindu temple complex connecting several Hindu temples. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and it exists since the days of Mahabaharta. The temple complex surrounds a pound named katas which Hindus regard as ”Sacred”.
Katas means ”Crying Eyes”. They say that Shiva cried in grief when his consort died and He formed a lake with Shiv tears. The lake is called ”Amrit kund (Holy water)”.
Where are the Katas Raj Temples?
The katas Raj Temple complex is located near Kallar Kahar and at an altitude of 2,000 feet. Shri Katas Raj is located near the interchange for the town of kallar kahar off the M2 Motorway which links lslamabad to Lahore. The complex is located alongside the road that connects Kallar Kahar to Choa Saidan Shah near the village of Dulmial. Katas Raj Complex has further temples:
- Shiv Temple
- Ram Temple
- Hari Singh Nalva Haveli
- Sat-Ghara Temple
Shiva is a Hindu deity and his worshippers are called Shaivaities .Shiva Mandir consists the Shivling on which devotees offer milk and coconuts. The temple consists Shiva, Parvati and lord Genesha. This temple is considered the Second holiest in Hinduism, because the Shivling here is historic and it is considered to be 2500 to 5000 years old.
The exotic Ram temple has seven rooms as Ram was the 7th incarnation of Vishnu. There are five stories and on the rooftop have a snake temple. All the buildings and rooftops consist stones and limestones in their structure. Every room has a place for the idols.
Hari Singh Nalva Haveli
In 1800’s a General of Raj, Ranjit Singh came here and he built it for himself. It has two big halls inside. The general is Hari Singh Nalva, who is the namesake for Haripur city. The Government of Punjab is making it a museum as well.
Sat means ”Seven” and Ghara means ”Together”. A battle took place between Kauravya and Pandu in Mahabharata. When Kauravya lost everything in gambling, he spent 14 years here and made 7 temples, 4 of which are still in their shape.
Pilgrims from India come to Katas Raj temples twice a year in March and December from all over Pakistan to wash their sins away. Pilgrims from India came around about 120 to 200 and from Pakistan around about 3500 to 4000.