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International Conference on Food Security

Date: 07-08 December 2018
Location: TIET, Patiala, Punjab, India

Patiala

Patiala is a city in southeastern Punjab, northwest of India. It is the fourth largest city in the state of Punjab and is the administrative capital of Patiala district. Patiala is the erstwhile princely state of Punjab, which is situated in the Malwa region. The city covers a total area of 365 km. It is a judicious synthesis of a brilliant spectrum of Rajput, Mughal and Punjabi cultures and a fine blend of modernity and tradition.

History of Patiala

The history of Patiala dates back to 1721 when two friends namely Ala Singh Sidhu and Ali Dogar established the state of Patiala with 24 villages. The two friends had an oral pact that ruler of the state will be a Singh Sidhu and commander in chief of the army will be a Dogar. Later the Jat ruler Maharaj Narendra Singh ruled from 1845- 1862, who built ten gates around the city to fortify it from intruders. During the rule of Maharaj Bhupinder Singh from 1900-1930, Patiala became a prominent princely state politically and for its sports achievements on an international level. The culture and heritage of this city are still enticing to the modern world due to its ageless appeal.

Patiala Culture & Heritage

The citizens of Patiala boastfully consider themselves the torchbearers of Punjabi culture and heritage. The intricate and beautiful artwork of Phulkari, the bright colors of Patiala Pagadi, Parandi and Jutti, the largeness of the Patiala peg and the comfort of Patiala salwar, form the essence of the city of Patiala. The handicrafts of Patiala are intricate and beautiful like the Phulkari embroidery. Also, Juttis, a traditional footwear, the Patiala Turban and the Patiala salwar are known for their comfort and style statement.

Patiala is known as the ‘City of Forts and Gardens’. These classically designed forts have a unique architecture that amalgamates local style with Rajput architecture. The Qila Mubarak located in the heart of the city was the resident of the royals of Patiala before Old Moti Bagh Palace. The Baradari Gardens is another attraction for its colorful array of flowers and house of royal resident, cricket stadium, and a skating ground. The Sheesh Mahal is a work of art, famous for its mirror work and the lake nearby adds to its beauty. The Gurdwara Dukh Nivaran Sahib and the Gurdwara Moti Bagh Sahib are important religious destinations dedicated to the Sikh Guru - Guru Teg Bahadur. The food in the local joints is a delight to the taste buds. The memoirs of this city represent the colorful culture and add joy to the tourists’ memories.

Patiala, was the first town in this region to own a degree college. Patiala is the proud seat of the Mohindra College, the first degree college of Northern India and also the first institution in Punjab to receive A+ grade from NAAC. This college was established in the year 1870. Adding to this, Patiala is also a home to a number of premier educational institutes of the state such as Punjabi University, Mohindra College, Thapar University, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Government Medical College, and many others.

Patiala Festivals

The two unique festivals celebrated only in Patiala are Patiala Heritage Festival and Craft Mela.

  • Patiala Heritage Festival, commenced from the year 2003 by the Patiala Heritage Society is celebrated in the month of February every year. This is a cultural festival of Patiala that provides a platform for showcasing the various perspectives of art, music and culture of the erstwhile Patiala state. This Heritage festival of Patiala continues for 10 days. Art lovers, knowledge seekers as well as fun enthusiasts from far and wide find their way to Patiala at the time of this Heritage Festival.
  • Craft Mela, the integral part of the Patiala Heritage Festival exhibits and sells the handicraft items and artifacts gathered from every part of the country. The markets of Patiala are thronged with traditional Patiali items such as Juttis, Juttis with Zari work, Phulkaris, Silk, Jewelry, Colorful Parandis, Patiala Salwars, Punjabi Suits, Pagri, Handloom and Handcrafts, Lacquered Woodwork, Hand-Woven Carpets, Blankets, Woolen Garments, Shawls, Curios, House-Linen and Beaded Rings.

How to Reach Patiala

Patiala is well connected with other major cities and New Delhi by road and rail routes. Airport nearest to Patiala is Chandigarh.

  • From Delhi: One can reach Patiala from Delhi Airport by Road and by Train. The best option to reach Patiala from IGI, Delhi is by road. It will take about 5-7 hours from airport to Thapar Institute by road. Trains are available but one has to look for suitable timings and book train ticket in advance
  • From Chandigarh: Patiala is about 60 km from Chandigarh airport and it takes about 90 minutes to reach TIET, Patiala by road. Limited trains are available from Chandigarh to Patiala and therefore it is recommended to travel by road to Patiala.

Weather in Patiala during Conference

December is one of the best periods to visit Patiala, because the climate is pleasant and very comfortable. The average temperature expected is 22oC during day and 8oC during night. Participants are requested to carry light woolen clothes for day and medium woolen clothes like jackets for night.

Patiala Nearby Places

Amritsar 233 kms Manali 341 kms
Chandigarh 70 kms Dharamshala 278 kms
Ludhiana 93 kms Dalhousie 357 kms
Jalandhar 154 kms Jammu 371 kms
Shimla 154 kms Delhi 227 kms

Places to visit

Qila Mubarak: : Built in 1764, by Maharaja Amar Singh, the fort has two portions. Qila Androon is the inner fort and Qila Mubarak, the outer. The gate of Qila Androon is done in lime plaster with geometrical and floral designs on it. Inside the fort are two painted chambers illustrating scenes from Hindu mythology and portraits of Sikh Gurus in Patiala style. Also a part of the fort is a museum of chandeliers and famous weapons.

Moti Bagh Palace: Started during the reign of Maharaja Narinder Singh, it was completed under Maharaja Bhupinder Singh in the early 20th century. The Old Moti Bagh Palace now houses the National Institute for Sports. The facade has Rajasthan-style jharokas and chhatris, and the palace is set in a beautiful garden with terraces, water channels and a Sheesh Mahal.

Sheesh Mahal: The Sheesh Mahal was built behind the main Moti Bagh Palace to serve as a pleasure complex.The paintings in two of its well maintained, mirror-worked chambers are of Kangra and Rajasthaniqalam, depicting the poetic visions of Keshav, Surdas and Bihari. The Sheesh Mahal now houses a museum, an art gallery, the famed medal gallery and also the North Zone Cultural Centre.

Gurudwara Dukhniwaran Sahib: The villagers of Lehal donated land for the modest Gurudwara built on this elevated site, said to have been visited by Guru TegBahadur. The legend is that anyone who prays at this Gurudwara is relieved of his suffering (‘dukhniwaran’). A new bigger building is now being constructed.

Lachman Jhoola: Across the small Lake in front of Sheesh Mahal is a magnificent suspension bridge which being a replica of the famous Lakshman Jhoola at Rishikesh, is also named as LachmanJhoola. It links the Sheesh Mahal with the BanasarGhar on the other side of the lake. The BanasarGhar now houses the North Zone Cultural Center and a hall for setting up exhibitions.