Charari Sharief

Charari Sharief

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Charari Sharief (variously spelled Chrar-e-Sharif, Charar i Shareef etc.) is a town and a notified area committee in Badgam district
Badgam district
Badgam is a district in the state of Jammu and Kashmir in India. Its headquarters is Badgam.-Demographics:According to the 2011 census Badgam district has a population of 735,753, roughly equal to the nation of Guyana or the US state of Alaska. This gives it a ranking of 494th in India . The...

  in the state of Jammu & Kashmir, India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

.

Geography


Charari Sharief is located at 33.87°N 74.77°E. It has an average elevation of 1,933 metres (6,345 feet).

Demographics


India census
Census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

, Charari Sharief had a population of 7378. Males constitute 53% of the population and females 47%. Charari Sharief has an average literacy rate of 48%, lower than the national average of 59.5%; with male literacy of 56% and female literacy of 39%. 12% of the population is under 6 years of age.

The town is divided into 10 Wards. Each ward has a municipal councillor.
The famous mohallas of Charar-i-Sharief are: Talab-e-Kalan or Bada Talab, Trajibal,coat road, Gulshanabad, Nowhar, Jabl-e-Noor, Wazabagh, alamdar colony, zaloosa etc.

History


This historical town is famous for the tomb of Hazrat Sheikh Noor-u-din Noorani
Sheikh Noor-ud-din Wali
Sheikh Noor-ud-din, also known as Nund Rishi, was a famous Kashmiri saint who belonged to the Rishi order. He belonged to a Rajput lineage of Kisthwar. He was born in 1377 CE, corresponding to 779 Hijri and he died at the age of 63 years in the year of 1440 CE or 842 Hijri...

, who preached Islam through his poetry. Every year Urs
Urs
Urs is the death anniversary of a Sufi saint in South Asia, usually held at the saint's dargah . South Asian Sufis being mainly Chishtiyya, refer to their saints as lovers and God as beloved...

 is celebrated at Charar-i-Sharief. Thousands of people from all faiths visit the shrine.
This is the only town in valley which was to be developed as a Model Town. The initiative was taken by the then governor of Jammu & Kashmir Jagmohan
Jagmohan
Jag Mohan Malhotra is an Indian politician. He was born on 25 September 1927 in Hafizabad, Punjab in British India.*He is a former Governor of Jammu and Kashmir state in India.*He was in government service for many years....

. But due to onset of terrorism sponsored by Pakistan, this project remained unfulfilled.
The whole town of Charar-i-sharief was burnt in 1995 during the fierce encounter between Indian troops and terrorists (Including Major Mast Gul). An estimated 1500 residential (mainly Muslim) houses were gutted in this fire. The town has since been rehabilitated. Haji Jalal-ud-Din & Ahmadullah Wani were the famous personalities in the town, they were prominent landlords who owned huge areas of farmland in the town of Charari Sharief.

Hazrat Sheikh Noor-u-din Wali
Sheikh Noor-ud-din Wali
Sheikh Noor-ud-din, also known as Nund Rishi, was a famous Kashmiri saint who belonged to the Rishi order. He belonged to a Rajput lineage of Kisthwar. He was born in 1377 CE, corresponding to 779 Hijri and he died at the age of 63 years in the year of 1440 CE or 842 Hijri...


The tomb of Sheikh Noor-ud-Din Noorani (RA)
Sheikh Noor-ud-din Wali
Sheikh Noor-ud-din, also known as Nund Rishi, was a famous Kashmiri saint who belonged to the Rishi order. He belonged to a Rajput lineage of Kisthwar. He was born in 1377 CE, corresponding to 779 Hijri and he died at the age of 63 years in the year of 1440 CE or 842 Hijri...

, popularly known as Alamdar-e-Kashmir (flag-bearer of Kashmir), is situated 28 km in the southwest of Srinagar at Charar-i-Sharief. The land where the shrine is situated belonged to Sangram Dar, a disciple of Alamdar-e-Kashmir, who had constructed a mosque there. It was here where Sheikh
Noor-ud-din Noorani (RA) would say his Friday prayers. According to a legend, following the death of Alamdar-e-Kashmir, his coffin, after flying some distance, descended at the site where the shrine lies and where the great Sufi saint has been laid to rest.

Charar-i-Sharief is considered one of the most sacrosanct Muslim shrines in India. It is situated approximately 28 km from Srinagar, en route to Yusmarg. The Shrine of Charar-i-Sharief is approximately 600 years old. Popularly known as the Hazrat Sheikh Noor-ud-Din Wali, (also known as Nund Rishi) the shrine was built to commemorate Sheikh Noor-ud-Din Noorani, a Sufi saint. The life of the Sheikh is full of legends and tales. He was born as Nund Reshi or Sahazanand to Salar Sanz in 1377. It is said that he refused to drink milk till the third day after his birth, when a Yogini
Yogini
Yogini is the complete form source word of the masculine yogi- and neutral/plural "yogin." Far from being merely a gender tag to the all things yogi, "Yogini" represents both a female master practitioner of Yoga, and a formal term of respect for a category of modern female spiritual teachers in...

 (female saint), Lal Ded fed him with her own milk. Later, she left the house after saying that the child would be her spiritual heir.

Sheikh Noor-ud-Din Noorani or Nund Rishi was the first one to start Rishism in the valley. Later, this Rishism got renowned as Rishi Mat, a Vishnav Mat. The saint preached communal
Communalism (South Asia)
This article deals with the use of the word communalism in South Asia, as a name for a force separating different communities based on some form of social or sectarian discrimination...

 harmony, non-violence, vegetarianism
Vegetarianism
Vegetarianism encompasses the practice of following plant-based diets , with or without the inclusion of dairy products or eggs, and with the exclusion of meat...

 and tolerance to the people. He gathered many followers who called him by different names. Some of the names conferred on the saint are Sheikh-ul-Alam, Sheikh Noor-ud-Din Noorani, Alamdar-e-Kashmir, Sarkhel-e-Rishiya, etc. Apart from preaching, the Sheikh made numerous contributions in the field of philosophy also, in the form of verses and poetry.

The saint led a very simple life throughout. It is said that nine lakh
Lakh
A lakh is a unit in the Indian numbering system equal to one hundred thousand . It is widely used both in official and other contexts in Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and is often used in Indian English.-Usage:...

 people gathered at the Shrine of Charari Sharief within two days of his death, in 1438. The King Sultan Zain-ul-Abidin
Zain-ul-Abidin
Sultan Ghiyas-ud-Din Zain-ul-Abidin was a sultan of Kashmir in the present day Jammu and Kashmir state of India. Mohibbul Hasan has said that "Of all the Sultans who sat on the throne of Kashmir, Zain-ul-Abidin was undoubtedly the greatest .....

also took part in his funeral procession. Charar-i-Sharief served as his final resting place, where his mortal remains were buried. The Charar-i-Sharief of Kashmir, India, has been destroyed twice. The first time, the shrine and its surroundings suffered ruination was when a battle took place between the Indian Army and the Pakistani Army. However, the shrine was reconstructed on the lines of central Asian architecture. In 1995 the shrine was once more destroyed in a fire. Despite this, the shrine continues to be revered and respected by both Hindus and Muslims.

External links

  1. Holy Places
  2. Holy Places in Kashmir