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Visit Patiala to get a hang of Punjabi culture and a hang-on of Patiala peg
Located in the South-East of the Punjab, Patiala, is a historical tourist city that got developed around the Qila Mubarak - the fort constructed by the royals in the 18th century.

"In the popular culture, the city is known for five traditional things of the place, namely, shahiburban - a typical turban type head gear; prananda - a typical braid-type hairdo of women; Patiala salwar - typical female pyjamas; jutti - a typical foot wear; and Patiala peg - an extra-large measure of liquor popularised by one of the kings of Patiala," informed my host Vargeese from the defence.

The royal city of Patiala was founded in 1763 and curently has the folowing sightseeing places: Darshani Gate, Quila Mubarak, Bahadurgarh Fort, Shri Kali Temple, Baradari Garden, Sheesh Mahal, and a few famous Gurudwaras. I had a quick round of the these places on the second day of the conference at Thapar Institute of Engineering and Technology in the city.

Besides the places of historical importance, two Gurudwaras are most visited, these being the Dukh Niwaran  Sahib and the Moti Bag Sahib. I visited the former which has sacred tank of water believed have curative properties. The devotees have different problems come have a holy dip for relief from their sufferings. In the morning and even the two Gurudwaras are are crowed by the local visitors.

On the advice of my ex-Raist student, Sarita Gangwal and her husband Awadesh Singh, I visited the Dukh Niwaran Sahib Gurudwara in th the morning to get a feel of the religious serenity of the place with the devotees streaming in and participating in the Shabad Kirtan. Every day, some devotees volunteer themselves to receive your shoes and give you your token with reverence by both the hands. Also, some devotees can be seen serving the community meal called langar.

One day is enough for the sightseeing in Patiala and doing some shopping. And, one could see some folk performances and cultural show or a festival to add charm to the visit.

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