name of Haryana instantly conjures up the image
of a State which astonishingly combines both-antiquity
and plenty. The Vedic land of Haryana has been
a cradle of Indian culture and civilization. Indian
traditions regard this region as the matrix of
creation of northern altar’ where Brahma
performed the pristine sacrifice and created the
universe. This theory of creation has been confirmed
to a large extent by archaeological investigations
carried out by Guy E. Pilgrim in 1915, who has
established that 15 million years ago, early man
lived in the Haryana Shivaliks. The Vamana Purana
states that King Kuru ploughed the field of Kurukshetra
with a golden ploughshare drawn by the Nandi of
Lord Shiva and reclaimed an area of seven Kosas.
Replete with myths, legends and vedic references,
Haryana's past is steeped in glory. It was on
this soil that saint Ved Vyas wrote Mahabharata.
It was here, 5,000 long years ago that Lord Krishna
preached the gospel of duty to Arjuna at the on
set of the great battle of Mahabharata:"Your
right is to do your duty and not to bother about
the fruits (Outcome) thereof !" Since then,
this philosophy of the supremacy of duty has become
a beacon to succeeding generations.
The Mahabharata knows Haryana as the land of plentiful
grains (Bahudhanyaka) and immense riches (Bahudhana).
Before the Mahabharata war, a battle of ten kings
took place in the Kurukshetra region. But it was
the Mahabharata fought for the highest values
of righteousness which gave to the region world-wide
fame because of the profound and sophisticated
thought expounded in the holy Bhagavadgita by
Lord Krishna recited to the quivering Arjuna.
The region has been the scene
of many a war because of its being ‘A Gateway
to North India’. As years rolled by, successive
streams of the Huns, the Turks and the Tughlaqs
invaded India and decisive battles were fought
on this land. At the end of the 14 century, Tamur
led an army through this area to Delhi. Later,
the Mughals defeated the Lodhis in the historic
battle of Panipat in the year 1526. Another decisive
battle was fought in the year 1556 at this very
site, establishing the supremacy of the Mughals
for centuries to come.
Towards the middle of the 18th
century, the Marathas had established their sway
over Haryana. The intrusion of Ahmed Shah Durrani
into India, culminating Maratha ascendancy and
the rapid decline of the Mughal empire, leading
ultimately to the advent of the British rule.
Indeed, the history of Haryana
is the saga of the struggle of a virile, righteous,
forthright and proud people. From ancient times,
the people of Haryana have borne the main brunt
of invaders and foreign hordes with their known
traits if bravery and valour. They have survived
many an upheaval, upholding the traditional glory
and greatness of the land to this day. The epoch-making
events of yore, the martyrdom in the First War
of Indian Independence in 1857, the great sacrifices
in the freedom struggle, and the display of outstanding
valour, unflinching courage, and heroism in recent
years are all in keeping with the character of
this land of action. Bold in spirit and action,
the people of Haryana have formed a bulwark against
forces of aggression and anti-nationalism.
Haryana has always remained a
rendezvous for diverse races, cultures and faiths.
It is on this soil that they met, fused and crystallized
into something truly Indian. Hindu Saints and
Sikh Gurus have traversed the land of Haryana
spreading their message of universal love and
brotherhood. Sihi in Faridabad, the birth place
of great Hindi poet Surdas, is another nucleus
of culture in Haryana while the legend of Lord
Krishna is very evident in the lives of the people.
The love for cattle and the abundance of milk
in the diet of Haryanavis persists to this day
which gave to the region world-wide fame.
Haryana emerged as a separate
State in the federal galaxy of the Indian Republic
on November 1,1966. With just 1.37% of the total
geographical area and less than 2% of India’s
population, Haryana has carved a place of distinction
for itself during the past three decades. Whether
it is agriculture or industry, canal irrigation
or rural electrification, Haryana has marched
towards modernity with leaps and bounds. Today,
it enjoys the unique distinction in India of having
provided electricity, metalled roads and potable
drinking water to all its villages within record
time. Haryana is among the most prosperous states
in India, having one of the highest per-capita
income in the country.