As the much-anticipated Pran Pratishta ceremony of the Ram Lalla idol approaches in Ayodhya on January 22, the air in the historic Gharram village, located 18 km from Patiala, is filled with excitement and anticipation.
Residents of this quaint village have long believed in their connection to Lord Rama, drawing from old books and literature that trace the roots of their association. The pages of “Patiala and its Historical Surroundings,” a publication from Punjabi University, Patiala, dating back to 1969, claim that “Patiala can lay some claim to Lord Rama.”
While no official recognition has come their way, the villagers express their hope that the Ayodhya ceremonies will shed light on the historical significance of their village. Gurmeet Singh, a 56-year-old ex-panchayat member, voices the sentiments of the villagers, saying, “Some historical remains are still here. We just want some credit as the village is historic and there is a lot linked to the ancient Hindu mythology.”
Generations in Gharram have grown up listening to stories of their village’s ties with Lord Rama, fostering a deep sense of connection to this historical narrative.
Dr. Param Bakhshish Singh, former Head of the Department of Punjab Historical Studies at Punjabi University, supports the villagers’ claims, stating that more research is needed to establish their connection with Lord Rama. A visit to Gharram reveals the presence of an ancient fort in ruins, where numerous excavations have taken place over the years to substantiate the village’s historical importance.
Another expert, Manmohan Kumar, former head of the Department of History at Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak, sheds light on the 1975-77 excavation in Gharram. Although direct links to the Ramayana could not be established, the discovery of centuries-old materials adds credence to the village’s historical significance.
Kumar notes, “There is some land which, as per records, is still in the name of Luv-Kush — sons of Lord Rama.” As Gharram eagerly awaits recognition during the Ayodhya ceremonies, the village stands as a living testament to the intertwining of myth and history, inviting further exploration into its ancient ties with Lord Rama.