Farms of Punjab

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In March 2014 visited Anandpur Sahib in Punjab for the Hola Mohalla festival. Was staying a few kms away from the holy town. On day two of stay decided to visit farm just opposite to where I stayed. The lush green wheat fields made it difficult to resist a visit.

Close to the field was a canal with water flowing from the Bhakra Nangal Dam. This dam is the lifeline of Punjab. Water is green, so clean. Kms and kms of canal have also ensured that the ground water level has increased esp close to where the canal flows. Just walking along the canal is enjoyable. If Govt covers part of the canal with solar power panels, like what is done in Gujarat, would save water and generate power as well.

Another lifeline for the farm is the Tractor. Farm is owned by former army subedar Shri Sharma whom u shall see later. Also has a car ie parked on the farm.

Water is the next lifeline, this time ground water. Pressure with which water comes is enjoyable. The water table in Punjab and Haryana has been dropping at an alarming rate, brought about essentially by highly subsidized electricity, which has led to excessive pumping of groundwater and its consequent depletion. Sorry for a blurred pic. Last sentence is from article by Dr R K Pachauri in Tribune. To read What you can’t replenish, don’t finish Click here

Next important contributor to farm is this ferocious dog. At night he guards the fields to keep animals and people away. They usually stray into the field to destroy crop. On my request farmer Sharma had him tied to the tree - every time dog opened its mouth got a scare.

At Anandpur Sahib during Hola Mohalla festival - young man has a stick in hand with fire lit at top end. From a bottle he fills his mouth with Oil, then with full force throws out the oil on the flame to get what you see. Many many young boys did this and got wow looks from all who had gathered.

In the farm a man removes milk. Farmer Sharma lives in Anandpur Sahib and comes to the farm every morning to collect milk and review farm operations. During the day he works with a political party and relaxes. His son works for a Insurance company.

Close up of wheat grains.

In this collection showing a few pics of Hola Mohalla celebrations. U see the historic Shri Kesgarh Sahib Gurudwara on Hola Mohalla day 18th March 2014. It was here that KHALSA was founded by Guru Gobind Singhji. Anandpur Sahib was founded in 1665 by 9th Guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur. To know about Kesgarh Sahib Click here

Back to the farm a calf drinking milk from Mother.

This elder Sardar was amongst the most popular persons during Hola Mohalla. He had the second biggest turban. Wonder how he managed to tie this and balance heavy weight on an aging slender frame. Best part he was unfazed by all the attention he got.

Amongst the best things about Hola Mohalla is eating at a langar. By one estimate there were atleast 500 langars. No restaurant served food - they said go to langar. Here food is cooked by devotees, treated as prasada and fed to devotees (free of cost) virtually round the clock. Food is very tasty. Small boys speak over loudspeakers and invite devotees to visit their langar and have prasada (food). Admire the devotion with which food is cooked and served. A similar concept exists in the temples of Karnataka. To see pics Click here

20 kms away from Anandpur Sahib is Naina Devi Mandir, a Shaktipeeth. Guru Gobind Singhji meditated at this temple. We present photo collection of this mandir separately. To see pics of Naina Devi Mandir Click here

During Hola Mohalla saw number of kids doing this wow balancing act. Reminded me of old Bollywood movie scenes, todays movies do not show them.

Devotees after having a bath at one the canals close to Anandpur Sahib. Water is clean and cold. Put my feet in and loved it. To see pics of Children of Arunachal Pradesh Click here

Virasat-e-Khalsa is a museum of Sikh history in a modern and contemporary format and showcases Punjabi culture as well. It has become a visit for all those who visit Anandpur Sahib. To visit their site Click here

Sarovar overlooking Shri Kesgarh Sahib Gurudwara. Devotees coming to Anandpur Sahib must have a dip at this sarovar, something similar to dip at Hari Mandir, Amritsar. To see pics of Golden Temple Amritsar Click here

After we finished the photo shoot at farm and walking around farmer Sharma insisted we have tea. U see local guide and friend Krishna (left) with Sharmaji in the backdrop of his lovely wheat fields. To see pics of Durgiana Mandir Amritsar Click here

Hola Mohalla is also about showing how masculine you are. On Hola Mohalla day Nihangs display their prowess at the Sri Kesgarh Sahib Gurudwara. U see an example. It is worth a watch - loved every minute of it. To see pics of Attari Wagah border Click here

U see me at Sharmaji fields. Loved the whole experience. Reminded me of visit to my Nanaji hometown, Abohar also in Punjab. To see pics of fields of Abohar Click here

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