PANOTA SAHIB GURUDWARA
Paonta Sahib is situated on the bank of the river Yamuna. There is a Gurudwara dedicated to the tenth Sikh guru, Gobind Sigh, who spent five years here. It is a bustling town. The story goes that the place aquired its name after the Guru has lost an ornament that he wore on his foot, known as Paonta. The second in the triangle is Paonta Sahib, a city sacred to the memory of Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of the Sikhs. Paonta to Renuka is one arm of the triangle. The road passes through Sataun and follows the Giri River along with the beautiful scenery.
Situated on the Yamuna River, Paonta Sahib is a bustling township with growing industries. It is one of the important places for the Sikhs. It retains tangible memories of Guru Gobind Singh in the form of his weapons and a majestic Gurudwara. It recalls his presence even in the name of the city which is derived from Paonta meaning “foot”, either because he set foot on this place or, according to an alternate story, he lost an ornament which he wore on his foot called “Paonta” while bathing in the Yamuna river.
Legend surrounds the ruins of the old capital of the Raja. Sirmouri Tal, not very far from Paonta Sahib was destroyed by the curse of a court dancer when the Raja went back on an oath to give half of this kingdom in case she crossed a narrow gorge on a rope. This, she did but the wily Raja the offered her the entire kingdom if she could dance her way back. She started back but as she was halfway across, he cut the rope hurling the helpless girl into the stream. Floods followed which swept away the city, the Raja and the royal house, as a result of dancer’s curse. Vishwakarma temple and few other Hindu temples are also located in Paonta Sahib. The water of river Yamuna is being dammed downstream of Paonta which will soon have a water reservoir where water sports will be organized.
Main Attraction :
Sahstra Dhara :
At this place, there is a confluence of river Yamuna and Tong ( Tamsa ). This is a beautiful place and a paradise for tourists. Nearby is village Kalsi ( now in Uttar Pradesh ) 25 km. from Paonta, which was the old capital of Sirmaur. At this place, there is ‘Ashokan Rock Edict’ which is worth a visit. The Ashoka pillar which stood here was removed to Delhi by one of the Muslim Rulers of the Sultanate period.
Khodri Dak Pathar :
It is a beautiful picnic spot just 25 km. from Paonta. There is a beautiful park, a swimming pool, and a tourist Bungalow. At this place, the torrential river Yamuna has been tamed into an artificial lake by constructing a barrage. From here one can get a fantastic view of the lake and the park nearby. While going from Paonta to Khodri one will be delighted to have the canal side drive. Chhibran powerhouse is a unique sight to see as the entire structure has been built underground.
At Paonta Sahib, to the right of Yamuna bridge, stands the Dei-Ka-Mandir, constructed about a century ago by the sister of the then Raja of Sirmaur to propitiate Lord Ram, the family deity of the Suryavanshi Sirmauri Rulers.