Holi is said to have originated in Multan, Pakistan, one of the world’s oldest cities. The Holi festival is said to have started at Multan’s famous “Prahladpuri” temple, according to Puranic legend. Holi is synonymous with Prahlad and Holika, as we all know. According to the Puranas, this is the same place where Holika was burnt to death. Prahlada, son of Hiranyakashipu, king of Multan (Kasyapa-pura), is said to have established the initial Prahladpuri temple in honor of Narsimha Deva (fourth incarnation of Lord Vishnu), who appeared from the pillar to save Prahlada.
Kasyapa-Pura (known to greeks as kaspapyros) was the previous name for Multan, which meant “city of Kashyapa.” Kashyapa, the father of Hiranya Kasyapa, is said to have founded it, and Kasyapapura is named after him. Present-day Multan’s name is derived from the Sanskrit word Mool Sthana, which means native place, and it once resided in India’s grand Sun Temple.
The Mughal emperor Aurangzeb is credited with the complete annihilation of the Sun temple in the 17th century.
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This magnificent temple was located on a raised ledge within Multan Fort and was a well-known attraction in Multan prior to 1992. Legend dictates, however, that the primary temple had been a columnar structure with absolute gold roofs and columns supporting it.
Devotees and believers from all over the Indian subcontinent used to visit this Prahladpuri temple. During the pre-Islamic era, it was a well-known pilgrimage site.
But with Mughals came destruction. They played a major role in the destruction of Hindu civilization, history, and heritage. And indeed they did the same with this magnificent Prahladpuri temple. During the Ghaznavid Islamic invasions in the 11th century, this temple was destroyed for the first time. In the thirteenth century, a part of the temple was transformed into the Hazrat Baha-ud-din Zakariya mosque.
When the Sikhs invaded Multan in the 19th century, they found no trace of the archaeological site, so they converted the tomb of Shams-i-Tabrizi into a place where the Granth could be read. Most Hindus migrated to India after Pakistan’s independence, and the temple’s matters were run by the city’s minority Hindus. At the time of independence in 1947, Baba Narayan Das Batra took the initial idols of Lord Narsimha from Multan to India. They are now housed in a Haridwar shrine.
However, in the aftermath of the Babri demolition, Islamist mobs completely desecrated this temple in 1992. After being demolished by an Islamist mob in 1992, the historic Prahladpuri Temple’s ruins are still visible.
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Since its demolition by a militant Muslim mob in 1992, this temple has been in ruins. It hurts my heart to see one of the most important Hindu temples in such horrible condition; today, the temple site is used as a polluted dumpsite and an open toilet by the locals.
This temple is now under the administration of the Hazrat Baha-ud-din Zakariya mosque, and no one is permitted to enter.
By- Khushi Bisht