200-year-old court building being used as cowshed

The palatial building with beautiful arches and architectural design belongs to the family of Sir Joginder Singh, who was one of the ‘purest gems’ of the British government and also remained Home Minister in erstwhile Patiala state and was honoured with the title of ‘Sir’ like Sir Chhotu Ram.

A visit to the site revealed that the new owner had given new look to the building with modern designs while the rest of the structure is crumbling. Mr Dev Dard, a heritage lover said that while the state government had earmarked big budget for infrastructure of Tarn Taran city to mark the 400th martyrdom anniversary of Guru Arjun Dev, it would be a great service to the mankind if its heritage buildings were preserved for the next generation. He said conservation of such sites was more important than the upgradation of the city as district headquarter since the site had great tourist potential

Colossal damage was done to the qila-type haveli and court building when Tubewell Corporation opened its office. The old well has dried up due to apathy, by all concerned.

The court was the property of Zaildar, who belonged to Shukarchakia Misl of legendary Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The new occupant of the building is Bibi Joginder Kaur, sarpanch of the village. Her son, Mr Satwinder Singh said his family had made all efforts to preserve a great portion of the building . However, it was difficult to conserve the monument of Rasulpuria Sardars, spread over two acres. He said gorgeous coloured glasses and wooden ventilators, doors etc had been removed from the court building and kept in a store . However, shockingly the court building is being used to store chaff and keep animals . A cutter has been installed inside the building.

However, descendants of Zaildars, including Gursharn Singh said that his grandfather used to tell him that the ‘Zail’ included revenue estates of 36 villages. The Zaildars would hold court in the building. Nobody has bothered to recognise the services of the family so far.

 

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