Rai Bhoi di Talwandi to Nankana Sahib


Nankana Sahib Gurudwara

Sikh history originates from Nankana Sahib. Guru Nanak Dev ji, was born here in 1469. The name of the place at that time was Rai Bhoi di Talwandi. But if we step back in history this town was called Talwandi. it was the centre of the Punjab or Panjab as it was called then.
 It is said to have been originally built by a Hindu king called Raja Virat and Talwandi was totally ransacked and destroyed by wave after wave of invaders and marauders. The earliest historical reference to the city of Talwandi is found in ballads. It is mentioned in the context of the first siege of Jaisalmer which occurred during the reign of Alla-ud-din Khilji (1295-1315). These were the tumultuous time in history, and perhaps to create a bulwark, the self-crowned heads of Delhi Sultanate bundled out Punjab to Muslim warrior chiefs in exchange for peace. One of these chiefs was Rai Bhoi Bhatti, a Muslim of the Bhatti Rajput tribe…..
This is another story that I can follow up in my next posting.

Rai Bhoi along with his son salvaged Talwandi from ruins, and as a part of the restoration built a fortification on a high ground in which he lived safe, secure and a just ruler of over 100, 000 acres land . Talwandi came to be known as Raipur and subsequently as Rai-Bhoi-Di-Talwandi.
After Rai Bhoi's death, his only son Rai Bular Bhatti inherited the legacy. Rai Bular governed the land and town at the birth and during the youth of Nanak. Rai Bular, himself became a devotee of the Guru….

After Bibi Nanaki, we could say that he was his most committed and dedicated disciple,

Rai Bular’s estate had several thousand acres of cultivated land and a boundless wilderness surrounded by a deep and lonely Bar or raised forest. … with jal  predominates, which but there are also found the phulahi  and the jand .....khejri. It was called Nilianwali Bar…. forest where nilgais abound in the 1400s A.D. The wild deer roamed freely in the forest with only occasional travelers to disturb the solitude of its domain. The  hare and the partridges used to cower cautiously along the thickets around the town.

This was the haven where Rai Bular ruled and people of Rai Bhoi di Talwandi lived in a cocoon free of turmoils of the world around them. Rai Bular was a 'gentle giant', towering in stature, but quiet and solitary. Talwandi became a reflection of his personality. It was an idyllic place for the Baby Nanak to grow up and be a Guru, who could lead his people to the sacred path of truth, and open their minds from the superstitions of ages.
Mata Tripta .....Birth of Nanak
Guru Nanak's birth took place on the third day of the light half of the month of Baisakh (April-May) in the year 1526 of the Vikramaditya era, corresponding to A.D. 1469.
It was renamed Nankana after the Guru. Nankana Sahib is in Sheikhupura. Nankana literally means Nanak da ana, or "the coming of Nanak".
Nankana Sahib is about 75 kilometres west-southwest of Lahore.

It was renamed Nankana after the Guru. Nankana Sahib is in Sheikhupura. Nankana literally means Nanak da ana, or "the coming of Nanak".


  1. Very interesting! I love your About Me page. I have been commissioned by a publishing house to write a graphic novel on Sikhism, and I came to this page looking for background information on Talwandi Sahib. This post has been very helpful. If I may ask, can you tell me what is your source for this post? Or is it a story you grew up with and didn't have to research for?


Post a Comment