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Panchayati Hall (Devoted to Temple of Goddess Durga & Lord Shiva)

Author : Rtn. Gangaram Shamdas Purswani(P.H.F)

In 1948, Shri Jhamandas Fatumal  Purswani and Shri Tikamdas Bhojraj Purswani came to know that there was a Nawab Moassam Ali Khan’s stable for his horses, in Nawab Ki Haveli at Vidhyadhar ka Rasta (Jaipur) which was being used by a local person who had started operating a small flour mill there, when the Nawab fled to Pakistan, immediately after partition. Although, the whole property including the stable was taken over by then Deputy Custodian of Evacuee Property, Jaipur and the said Nawab was declared “Evacuee”, yet his relations were harassing the flour mill operator. Shri Jhamandas Fatumal Purswani and Shri Tikamdas Bhojraj Purswani contacted the flour mill operator, gave him five hundred rupees (a very huge amount at that time) from their own pockets and got the vacant possession of the premise. They shifted the ten Khudabadi Sonara families from refugee camp to the stable and afterwards, they acquired the whole stable through Dept. of Custodian Evacuees Properties, legally, to avoid any harassment. In fact, ground floor of the Haveli was a stable comprising of about thirty rooms of comfortable area and a huge open ground in the center. Steadily, Khudabadi Sonara Community families of weaker section started occupying the rooms one by one until all the rooms were in possession of the community. In the year 1950, the Department of Custodian Evacuees Properties fixed the rent ranging from 0.25 paisa to Rs. 1 per month, which the refugees, who were living there, started paying after obtaining the official receipt of the payments. All of a sudden, the whole property including this stable was released from the Dept. of Custodian Evacuee’s possession in the year 1957-58 and the said Nawab again became the full owner of this stable on the pretext that he  had given his property to his adopted son Abdul Kader around January 11, 1961. Again, the refugee residents of the stable through the President of Puj Khudabadi Sonara Panchayat (Jaipur), Shri Manghoomal Kimatrai Ganvani and leaders of the community like Shri Jhamandas Fatumal  Purswani and Shri Tikamdas Bhojraj Purswani submitted their petition to The Minister, Relief and Rehabilitation, Govt. of Rajasthan, on January 07, 1963 arguing that the whole property of the Nawab was gifted to Nawab Mumtaz Uddolah through a convent  of the Ruler of the erstwhile Jaipur State in lieu of his services rendered to the Ruler of erstwhile Jaipur for his residence only (this stable being part of this residence) and non-transferability was one of the pre-requisite conditions. The residents won the case and lived there peacefully since then.

In the meantime, Shri Jhamandas Fatumal  Purswani, Shri Tikamdas Bhojraj Purswani and Shri Parmanand Menghraj Vasnani started thinking about the construction of a Panchayati Hall. In 1951, they started sending messages for this to the community members who were living in overseas. The response was very positive but they had been facing problems in sending the funds due to foreign exchange restrictions in their countries and they advised to discuss the matter with the embassies of their countries in New Delhi. Shri Jhamandas Fatumal Purswani went to New Delhi and approached the Sindhi leader Dr. Choithram Gidwani, who knew him very well since the days of freedom movements, in Hyderabad, Sindh. Dr. Choithram Gidwani solved the problem with the assistance of Ministry of External Affairs of India. Khudabadi Sonara Community members who were living in overseas gave their contributions to Indian Embassies in their countries and Shri Jhamandas Fatumal  Purswani collected the funds from the Ministry of External Affairs of India , New Delhi. Rupees Three thousand came from Indonesia and about two thousand came from various other countries. Out of these funds, some amount was spent in construction of the Panchayati Hall and a Temple of Goddess Durga and Lord Shiva at the center of open ground of Navab ki Haveli, Vidhyadhar ka Rasta (Jaipur), where the deities of Lord Shiva and Goddess Durga were placed with the efforts of Late Shri Fatumal Lalchand Vasnani. The Curved Shade and Plate form made of marble for the Deity of Goddess Durga was arranged through the courtesy of Late Shri Chuharmal Udharam Asnani. Balance of funds was kept for helping widows and weaker section of the community. Then, Shri Jhamandas Fatumal Purswani, Shri Tikamdas Bhojraj Purswani and Shri Parmanand Menghraj Vasnani handed over the Panchayat Hall and the Temple of Goddess Durga and Lord Shiva to Dr. Udharam Jhamandas Purswani, the President of Puj Khudabadi Sonara Panchayat, Jaipur for the activities of Puj Panchayat and other Community Social Functions & Gatherings. Earlier Gursahib Jealal and after his demise, his son Gursahib Devidas used to perform Navratra Jagran and Havan in the temple of Goddess Durga, in the Panchayati Hall. This Panchayat Hall and the Temples are still in existence at Navab ki Haveli, Vidhyadhar ka Rasta, Jaipur. Khudabadi Sonara Community looks at the Panchayati Hall with reverence and respects it as a Hindu Temple devoted to Goddess Durga and Lord Shiva. The Panchayat Hall, a Hindu Temple, devoted to Goddess Durga and Lord Shiva is a Heritage and a Memorable Treasure of Khudabadi Sonara Community.