.

Temples » Jain Temple:- Pakistan

JAIN TEMPLES IN PAKISTAN

LOCATION : SINDH PRADESH, THARPARKAR, DISTRICT - NAGARPARKAR CITY, PAKISTAN
TRAVEL : BY AIR TO KARANCHI AND THEN BY TRAIN.

IN VIKRAM SAMVAT 1432, ACHARYA ABHAYDEO SOORI NAMED THE IDOL AS ' ABIDHAN GODIA PARSHWANATH' AT ANHEELPUR PATAN NOW IN PAKISTAN. SHAH KHETSINGH PRESERVED THE ABOVE IDOL IN HIS HOUSE FOR 13 YEARS AND IN 1445 IT WAS KEPT IN BASEMENT OF HIS HOUSE AND LEFT ANEELPUR. IN THE MEANTIME MUSLIM RULER HUSSAIN KHAN DEMOLISHED THE HOUSE OF SHRI KHETSINGH AND CHOSE THE PLACE FOR THE PURPOSE OF STABLE. SOMEHOW IN THE YEAR 1465 THE IDOL WAS EXCAVATED FROM THE DERBIS BY MANITA BEGAM WHO KEPT THE IDOL IN HER PALACE. LATER ON KING UDAIPAL DONATED 40 BEEGHA LAND AND GAVE PERMISSION TO RAISE THE TEMPLE. MEGHAJI GOT THE TEMPLE CONSTRUCTED ON THURSDAY, MAGH SHUKLA POORNIMA IN VIKRAM SAMVAT 1494. MEGHAJI WAS AWARDED THE TITLE OF SANGHPATI.

TODAY THIS PLACE IS IN THE TERRITORY OF NAGAR PARKAR. THE TEMPLE IS IN RUINED CONDITION.

LIST OF JAIN TEMPLES IN PAKISTAN
Punjab Province

S. NO.

TOWN

LOCATION OF TEMPLE

PRESIDING DEITY

REMARKS

1. 

LAHORE

a)

Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikhar

Thari Bhabrian Lahore City

 

 

b)

Jain Digamber Temple with Shikhar

Thari Bhabrian Lahore City

 

 

c)

Jain Shwetamber Dada Bari (Mini Temple)

Guru Mangat in Lahore Cantt.

Foot Prints in stone

 

d)

Jain Digambar Temple with Shikhar

Old Anarkali

 

 

2.

KASUR( (District Lahore, distance 50, K.M. from Lahore)

Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikar

Kot Rukun Din

Lord Rishabh Dev

 

3.

GUJRANWALA (Distance 70 K.M. from Lahore)

a)

Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikhar

Bazar Bhabrian

Lord Chintamani Parshva Nath

 

b)

jain Shwetamber Ghar Mandir Samadhi of Jain Acharya Atamaramji Maharaj with a large Dome

Opposite Camping Ground i.e. PARARO, G. T. Road

Lord Vasupujya & Foot Prints of Acharya Atma Ramji

Images & Foot Prints & Wood Work since removed to Lahore Museum.

c)

Jain Shwetamber (Ghar Mandir)

Precincts of S.A. Jain Gurukul (School) G. T. Road, Near Village Kangniawaka

 

 

4.

PAPNAKHA (District Gujranwala, Distance 20 K.M. from Gujaranwala)

Jain Shwetamber Ghar Mandir

Village Proper

Lord Suvidha Nath

 

5.

RAM NAGAR (District Gujranwala, Distance 50 K.M. from Gujaranwala)

Jain Shwetambar Temple with Shikhar

Gali Bhabrian

Lord Chintamani Parshva Nath

 

6.

SIALKOT (Distance 115 K.M. from Lahore

a)

Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikhar

Near Namak Mandi in City

 

 

b)

Jain Digamber Temple

Cantonment

 

 

7.

NORWAL (District Sialkot, distance 40 K.M. from Sialkot)

Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikhar

 

 

 

8.

SANKHATRA (District Sialkot, Distance 50 K.M. from Sialkot)

Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikhar

 

 

 

9.

JHELUM CITY (Distance 160 K.M. from Lahore on G. T. Road)

Jain Shwetamber Ghar Mandir

Bagh Mohalla

Lord Chandra Prabhu

 

10.

PINID DADAN KHAN (District Jhelum via Lala Moosa, distance 160 K.M.)

Jain Shwetamber Tempe

Town Proper

Lords Sumati Nath, Rishabh Dev & Shanti Nath

 

11.

BHERA (District Sargodha, via Lala Moosa, distance 150 K.M. from Lahore

Jain Shwetamber Temple

Gali Bhabrian

Lord Chandra Prabhu

About 500 years old

12.

KHANGA DOGRAN (District Sheikhupura, Distance 70 K.M. from Lahore)

Jain Shwetamber Temple With Shikhar

 

Lord Shantinath & Lord Parshva Nath

 

13.

MULTAN (Distance 250 K.M. from Lahore enroute to Karachi)

a)

Jain Shwetamber Tempe with Shikhar

Mohalla Choori Sarai

 

Images shifted to Mumbai

b)

Jain Shwetamber Dadawari

Jain Bhawan Near Ram Kila Ground Mohalla Choori Sarai

Foot Prints in stone

 

c)

Jain Digambar Tempe with Shikhar

Mohalla Choori Sarai

 

Images shifted to Jaipur

d)

Jain Digambar Tempe with Shikhar

Cantonment

 

 

Sindh Province

S. NO. TOWN LOCATION OF TEMPLE PRESIDING DEITY REMARKS
1. KARACHI 
a) Jain Shwetamber Temple with Shikhar Ranchod Line Lord Parshva Nath  
b) Jain Digamber Temple      
2. VILLAGE DERAWER (Tehsil Dera Nawab, Bhahawlpur State)
Jain Shwetamber Dadawari     Crimination site of Jain Samadhi Dada Guru Jin Kushal Suriji on a sand and an Inn.
3. HYDERABAD
Jain Shwetamber Temple Town Proper    
4. NEW HALLA (Mirpur Khas Road)
a) Jain Shwetamber Temple Town Proper    
b) Jain Dadawari (Mini Temple) 2 K.M. from Halla Town Foot Prints in Stone  
5.  GAURI PARSHVANATH VILLAGE

Jain Shwetamber Temple

Village Proper

Lord Gauri Parshvanath  

North West Frontier Province

S.NO.

TOWN

LOCATION OF TEMPLE

1.

DERA GHAZI KHAN

Jain Digambar Temple

Block No. 2, Jain Mohalla

2.

KALA BAGH (District Mainwali)

Jain Shwetamber Temple

 

3.

LATAMBER (District Bannu)

Jain Shwetamber Temple

 

4.

BANNU

Jain Swetamber Temple

Bannu City

5.

RAWAL PINDI (Distance 300 K.M. from Lahore)

Jain Shwetamber Temple

Cantonment

----------------------------------------------------------------
Information Courtesy: Mr. Rajkumar Jain, SJM Tirth Raksha Trust, Northern Region, Delhi
----------------------------------------------------------------

INFORMATION FROM READERS
Subject: Jain Temples in Pakistan
Email From: Mr. Vinod Kapashi, London vkapashi@ntlworld.com

There were many Jain Temples in Pakistan. After all North West frontier area right upto Kandahar (in Afghanistan ) were the strongholds of Indian religions. Gandhari- the famous woman in Mahabharata came from Kandahar or Gandhar as it was known before. Kingdom of Gandhar has been mentioned in Jain, Buddhist and Hindu books. The famous ruins of a Buddhist's University are not very far from Islamabad. This University was called Taxila University. (This one and the one near Bodhi-gaya in Bihar, Nalanda, were two very large Buddhist universities). Both were plundered and destroyed by Muslims.

Coming to Jain temples:- Taxila was the place where famous Laghu Shanti Stotra and a book Tattavartha Sutra were composed.
A place called Bhera (not far from Peshavar) had a Jain temple.
Siyalkot- There was a jain temple here.
Khanka Dogra near Lahore:- A Jain temple was built here in 1926
A Ramnagar near Akalgadh (Probably the name has been changed now): Old Jain temple has been listed here.
Bhera:- Near Makval Junction: had a Jain temple.
Multan:- Had a beautiful Jain temple of Parshvanath. The Shikharbandhi Derasar also had patta of Plitana and Girnar.
There were Jain temples in Deragazikhan,Kalabag and Bannu and Jira

Only a few years before partition , a temple was built in Lahore. Panjab Kesari Atmanand Maharaj left that area after partition.
Finally I have a copy of a magazine published in 1926. It has an advertisement, with photograph, of Atmanand Jain Gurukul in Gujranwala (in Pakistan?). The Jain Boarding had 75 students at that time. More details are available with me. 

Vinod Kapashi . London

Subject: Restoration of selected Jain temples in Nagar Parkar
Email from: Mr. Yashwant Malaiya ymalaiya@yahoo.com

Recently there was an enquiry about Jain temples in Pakistan. Here let me suggest an idea for Jain organizations: restoration of  one or two selected Jain temples in Nagar Parkar in Pakistan.

It should be noted that Nagar Parkar region is just across the border from Kutch, in fact culturally it is a continuation of Kutch. Also it should be noted that Nagar Parkar is one part of Pakistan with still substantial number of Hindus. Nagar Parkar city is only 20 km from the border. It will perhaps seem like a crazy idea. However I think 

- it is very feasible
- it will greatly benefit Jainism
- this project will significantly promote peace between Indian and  Pakistan.

When I was a PhD student, I knew many Pakistanis, in fact some were my roommates. I know how Pakistanis think and I think there is an very good chance that this project can be accomplished.

For your consideration, I will present some thoughts on political and financial feasibility, benefits to the Jains, implications for Indo-pak relations, and some potential risks. But before that, let me add some information about the temples of 
Nagar Parkar: 

1. www.sindh.iucnp.org/pdf/ch.PDF 

Status Paper on Cultural Heritage in Sindh, October 2002, by Mr. Anwer Pirzado

The remnants of Jain sites are visible only in Sindh's Nagar Parkar taluka of Thar where ruins of half a dozen major temples depict the past glory of Jain architecture. Among them Gori temple near Islamkot (Slamkot) is the magnificent structure. Though a shambles, due to the old age, damaged by fire during military campaign by Colonel Tyrwitt and, also jolted by the earthquake of January 26, 2001, the architectural structures of Gori temple portray the grandeur of affluent Jain community and their places of worship.

No check has ever been witnessed at most of the archaeological sites in Sindh to restrict the theft of bricks, artifacts and other objects of history. Except for Gori temple, no other heritage site of Thar (having at least 14 sites) is looked after by any watchman of the federal department of Archaeology. A team of journalists found a decomposed body of a dog lying inside an ancient Jain temple in Nagarparkar town of Thar desert.


2. A Story and Report by Aziz Sanghur Friday June 13,2003
The practice of Jain religion has become a part of history in Pakistan as all the followers of Jainism had been migrated to India. According to visit of this scribe at Tharparkar district, about half of dozen Jain temples are in poor conditions. The remnants of Jain sites are visible only in Nagarparkar taluka where ruins of temples depict the past glory of Jain architecture. Among them Gori temple near Islamkot is the magnificent structure. Though a shambles, due to the old age, damaged by fire during military campaign by Colonel Tyrwitt and, also jolted by the earthquake of January 26, 2001, the architectural structures of Gori temple portray the grandeur of affluent Jain community and their places of worship.

The Jains' love for nature is exemplary. They can not imagine killing an insect even involuntarily. They keep their mounts covered with a piece of cloth so that any insect may not enter into their mouths and die. The same philosophy keeps them barefooted. Out of the five most famous Jain Temples in our part of the world, there are in Bodhesar and one each in Gori and Virawah. 

Gori, some 23 Kms north -west from Virawah, contains a very fine old lain temple measuring 38 meters by 15 and built of marble. It was for several times plundered due to its popularity for abundances in wealth. It is a symbol of unique ancient construction.

Virawah is situated in north about 24 kilometers from the town of  Nagarparkar. Which is interesting only on account of the number of Jain ruins contained in the remaining of the old town of Pari Nagar adjacent. There are different traditions about Pari Nagar which is said to have been founded in the fifth or sixth century and to have been destroyed in the twelfth. It was a very populous and flourishing town. It is now a brick heap and only one small Jain temple remains standing. 

About six kilometer north-west from Nagar Parkar there are the remains of three ancient Jain Structures supposed to have been built in A.D., 1375 and 1449. Two of them were previously used as stalls for cattle and the third, the interior of which was very beautiful and interesting, had large holes in the back wall and was in a very neglected state.

3. http://tourism.sohnapakistan.com/deserts/thar.html 
On the main track to Nagar Parkar, about 45 kilometres (28 miles)  from Islamkot, is the Jain Temple of Gori, said to date from 1376. The pillared porch with its carved ceiling leads into a multi-domed chamber, divided into little cubicles; crumbling stone statues decorate the walls. The Jains are followers Mahavira, a contemporary of the Buddha, and though no Jains live in Pakistan today and the temple is abandoned there is still a festival here on 20-25 March honour of the Jain god Parasnath.

A Lost World By Zulfiqar Syed
Email from: Mr. Yashwant Malaiya ymalaiya@yahoo.com

The Karunjhar hills are a repository of ancient culture. Nagarparkar has great historical significance, boasting such famous sites as Karoonjhar, Bodhesar mosque and Jain temples. Situated on south-eastern border of Sindh, Karoonjhar is a 16-mile range of big and small sand-hills that surround the Nagarparkar town. This mountain range of the Thar desert is popular for its old Jain temples, granite deposits and rare flora and fauna. The songs of peacocks echoing in the vales and ancient sites like Bodhesar talao (water tank) add to its scenic as well as historical importance. Its highest peak is 1,000 feet above sea level and is known as the Tarwat's peak. In ancient times Karoonjhar was also known as Kinro. Today it is a mountain of myth and reality.

At Bodhesar, 5km north-west of Nagarparkar town, and by the side of the talao at the foothill of the Karoonjhar, lies a beautiful, shining white mosque. This mosque, though small in size, is said to have been built by Sultan Mahmood Begra, the ruler of Gujarat. An inscription on the mosque reads the name of Mahmood Shah Bin Muzaffar Shah Bin Ghiyasuddin, and the year H-880/1505.

Prior to describing the temples of Jain scattered throughout Nagarparkar taluka or subdivision, some light should be thrown on their religion. Along with Buddhism, Jainism was the most important reform movement that established an independent unit from Hinduism. The word is derived from Jina, meaning victor or conqueror, implying final victory over bondage to life's misery. Jainism has a universal message of nonviolence.

Jainism denies creator-god. However, human teachers Tirthankaras (ford-makers) are worshipped once they reached liberation. It was founded by Rishabha and attained a major status in India at the time of Mahavira, who was born in about 599 BC in northern India in a royal family. When he was about 30 years' old, after he had been a householder, Mahavira decided to abandon his aristocratic surroundings in favour of an ascetic life. He caste aside his fine raiment, gave away his treasures, and embarked upon a severe regimen. For twelve years, he underwent castigation, enduring bodily and spiritual injury and emerged a teacher of many monks, a renowned preacher and a propounder of a new religion.

Chief among the tenets of Jainism is the deification of Mahavira. The Agamas (precepts) and Siddhantas (treatises) declared him to incarnate and preeminent, a venerable savior of men, and the last of 24 Tirthankaras. Jainism also preaches that karma is knowable, ineffable and a cosmic power which directs retribution in the hereafter.

In line with the founder's austerity, a Jain is admonished to follow a ethical programme of exacting discipline. The distinctive principle of Jainism is 'ahimsa' or nonviolence towards all living creatures in both thought and action. Jainism distinguishes between Digambara (sky clad or unclothed) and Svetambara (white clad) sects. The line of difference is drawn between Digambara going naked and Svetambara in white, otherwise both agree on cosmology, ethics and philosophy.

The spread and prosperity of its followers is marked by the presence of temples in Thar and Parkar. Gorri, Viravah, Bodhesar and Nagaparkar are famous for Jain temples. A temple located in Nagarparkar bazaar is remarkable for its grace and elegance. It is richly decorated with sculptures and paintings. An exquisite carving done on pillars and on entrance of the temple is magnificent.

Apart from this fabulously carved temple, there exist a cluster of three temples at Bodhesar -- supposed to have been built in 1375 AD and 1449 AD. Two temples with corbelled domes are built of kanjur and redstone, and are finely carved. Third temple which is raised on a platform is most inspiring and imposing -- though in a pathetic condition.

Twenty-four kilometers north of Nagarparkar at Viravah stands a Jain temple in neglected and desolate state. It is built in white marble and consists of an open group of pillars with carved capitals. Captain S.N. Raikes while travelling through this area in 1856 found the remains of five or six Jain temples mostly made of white marble. At present, only one temple survives.

There is another Jain temple at Gorri, some 20km north-west of Viravah. The temple is in fairly good condition and is believed to have been built during the heydays of Sodhas around 1376 A.D. It has exquisitely decorated interiors reflecting the aesthetic sensibility of those who made it. It is very similar to the one at Bodhesar but far more superior in craftsmanship and finish, bearing architectural influence from adjacent Rajasthan from where the followers of the faith infiltrated into Nagarparkar and brought a new style of temple architecture.

Email From: Mr. Kishor H. Parekh jkparekh24@hotmail.com

There was a Jain Temple in Karachi. At one time there were lot of Gujarati Jain businessmen living in Karachi. Second place in Pakistan is Multan where there was a large concentration of Jains prior to partition. It used to be called "Jainokan Gadh" in former undivided Punjab. Please contact me if you have any questions and I can be of any help to you.

Kishor H. Parekh, 877 Daffodil Court, Simi Valley, California USA, Phone: 805-582-0603

---------------------------------------------------------------
Above email information is received by Ahimsa Foundation in response to its email circulated to the members of yahoo groups on behalf of eminent research scholar on Jainism Dr. Noel Q. King of United States, who was visiting Pakistan in October, 2003 to trace the present status of Jain centers in Pakistan
---------------------------------------------------------------

Additional Information About Jain Temples in Pakistan - Received from Shri Atul Bafna

There are several Jain relics spread across Pakistan. Professor Emeritus of History & Comparative Religion of University of California Santa Cruz had visited Pakistan briefly late last year and has kindly forwarded details of his finds of Jain relics. He had made a detailed visit several years ago but had to leave in a hurry due to bad health. Last year's visit was very brief and details given are a little scanty nevertheless interesting.

Taxila is one of the most important archeological sites of Asia located along the Silk route in Punjab Province of Pakistan. It flourished during the 1st to 5th century AD when it became famous as a major seat of learning of Buddhism. The Stupa shown above is located near the city of Sirkap (severed head) along side many other Buddhist relics. A request has been made to find out why it is called the Jaina Stupa but no information has been forthcoming.

The Lahore Museum has a fine collection of Jain relics mainly of the material collected from the city of Gujranwala and Darkhana. It is believed that Mr Raghavji Virchand Gandhi, the first person to represent Jainism abroad and who attended the first Parliament of World Religions in 1893 in Chicago was supported by the Jain center from this area.

The following murtis are all on display at the Lahore Museum, unfortunately the quality of photographs is not very good and it is difficult to identify the symbol (lancchan) on any of the murtis. Photos: Courtesy Pakistan Tourist Development Corporation

On the road from Rawalpindi to Lahore in the Pothohar area, there are so-called 'Kafir Kots', ruins of old temples. No details of these temples are available but the architecture seems to be Jain.

On a near by hill top about 2000 ft high there is a small lake called Shiva Tears for Sati. There are ruins along the hill side up to the top and sorrounding the lake. Many of the building look like monasteries. There is a Shiva statue in the temple in the photograph below but Prof King suspects that the statue may have been of a tirthankar and that a Jain temple was converted to a Hindu temple. For more information please contact: Mr. Atul Bafna, E-Mail : abafna@yahoo.com

Dotted with temples Nagarparkar is a land of old Jain temples that are neglected and in desolate condition
Article By Zulfiqar Ali Kalhoro ( Pakistan )
E-mail: zulfi04@hotmail.com 

Nagarparkar has great historical significance, boasting such famous sites as Karoonjhar, Bodhesar mosque and Jain temples. Situated on south-eastern border of Sindh, Karoonjhar is a 16-mile range of big and small sand-hills that surround the Nagarparkar town. This mountain range of the Thar desert is popular for its old Jain temples, granite deposits and rare flora and fauna. The songs of peacocks echoing in the vales and ancient sites like Bodhesar talao (water tank) add to its scenic as well as historical importance. Its highest peak is 1,000 feet above sea level and is known as the Tarwat's peak. In ancient times Karoonjhar was also known as Kinro. Today it is a mountain of myth and reality.

At Bodhesar, 5km north-west of Nagarparkar town, and by the side of the talao at the foothill of the Karoonjhar, lies a beautiful, shining white mosque. This mosque, though small in size, is said to have been built by Sultan Mahmood Begra, the ruler of Gujarat. An inscription on the mosque reads the name of Mahmood Shah Bin Muzaffar Shah Bin Ghiyasuddin, and the year H-880/1505.

Prior to describing the temples of Jain scattered throughout Nagarparkar taluka or subdivision, some light should be thrown on their religion. Along with Buddhism, Jainism was the most important reform movement that established an independent unit from Hinduism. The word is derived from Jina, meaning victor or conqueror, implying final victory over bondage to life's misery. Jainism has a universal message of nonviolence.

Jainism denies creator-god. However, human teachers Tirthankaras (ford-makers) are worshipped once they reached liberation. It was founded by Rishabha and attained a major status in India at the time of Mahavira, who was born in about 599 BC in northern India in a royal family. When he was about 30 years' old, after he had been a householder, Mahavira decided to abandon his aristocratic surroundings in favour of an ascetic life. He caste aside his fine raiment, gave away his treasures, and embarked upon a severe regimen. For twelve years, he underwent castigation, enduring bodily and spiritual injury and emerged a teacher of many monks, a renowned preacher and a propounder of a new religion.

Chief among the tenets of Jainism is the deification of Mahavira. The Agamas (precepts) and Siddhantas (treatises) declared him to incarnate and preeminent, a venerable savior of men, and the last of 24 Tirthankaras. Jainism also preaches that karma is knowable, ineffable and a cosmic power which directs retribution in the hereafter.

In line with the founder's austerity, a Jain is admonished to follow a ethical programme of exacting discipline. The distinctive principle of Jainism is 'ahimsa' or nonviolence towards all living creatures in both thought and action. Jainism distinguishes between Digambara (sky clad or unclothed) and Svetambara (white clad) sects. The line of difference is drawn between Digambara going naked and Svetambara in white, otherwise both agree on cosmology, ethics and philosophy.

The spread and prosperity of its followers is marked by the presence of temples in Thar and Parkar. Gorri, Viravah, Bodhesar and Nagaparkar are famous for Jain temples. A temple located in Nagarparkar bazaar is remarkable for its grace and elegance. It is richly decorated with sculptures and paintings. An exquisite carving done on pillars and on entrance of the temple is magnificent.

Apart from this fabulously carved temple, there exist a cluster of three temples at Bodhesar -- supposed to have been built in 1375 AD and 1449 AD. Two temples with corbelled domes are built of kanjur and redstone, and are finely carved. Third temple which is raised on a platform is most inspiring and imposing -- though in a pathetic condition.

Twenty-four kilometers north of Nagarparkar at Viravah stands a Jain temple in neglected and desolate state. It is built in white marble and consists of an open group of pillars with carved capitals. Captain S.N. Raikes while travelling through this area in 1856 found the remains of five or six Jain temples mostly made of white marble. At present, only one temple survives.

There is another Jain temple at Gorri, some 20km north-west of Viravah. The temple is in fairly good condition and is believed to have been built during the heydays of Sodhas around 1376 A.D. It has exquisitely decorated interiors reflecting the aesthetic sensibility of those who made it. It is very similar to the one at Bodhesar but far more superior in craftsmanship and finish, bearing architectural influence from adjacent Rajasthan from where the followers of the faith infiltrated into Nagarparkar and brought a new style of temple architecture.

-------------------------------------
Mail to : Ahimsa Foundation
www.jainsamaj.org

R271003

       

 

 

 

 

Home | Site Map | About Us | Contact us
Ahimsa Foundation. 21, Skipper House, 9, Pusa Road, New Delhi -5
Phone : 91-11-2875-4012 & 13, E-Mail :
ahimsa@jainsamaj.org
Jodhpur Off.: 44, Sardar Club Scheme, Jodhpur, Rajasthan
Phone :0291-267-0382, Email :
ahimsatimes@jainsamaj.org