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|Elevation||228 m (748 ft)|
|• Official||Hindi, Punjabi|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Vehicle registration||HR 05 (domestic) HR 45 (Commercial)|
Karnal ( pronunciation (help·info) or the Rice Bowl of India); is a city located in the NCR (National Capital Region) and the headquarters of Karnal District in the Indian state of Haryana. It is one of the Counter-magnet cities. Karnal was also known as Karnaal, Kurnaul or Karnaul during the British Raj. Karnal is one of the Counter Magnet Areas. Karnal is said to have been founded by Karna, a key figure in the epic Mahabharata, who died at the hands of his brother and archrival, Arjuna.
Karnal is located at  It has an elevation of 235 to 252 meters (748 feet) above Sea Level. It is the mid point of Delhi and Chandigarh (125 Kms each side) on National Highway Number 1 Grand trunk Road (G.T. Road)..
The original name of Karnal city is Karnalaya (home of Karna). It has been a walled town as far as its history can be traced. Karnal sprang into prominence in 1739 when Persian emperor Nader Shah defeated the numerically superior, but inferior Mughal army in less than three hours and captured the Mughal ruler Muhammad Shah in the Battle of Karnal, laying the way open for his humiliating complete sack and looting of Delhi, the Mughal capital.
The city of Karnal, said to have been founded by Raja Karna, of the Mahabharta fame, spring into prominence in 1739 when Nader Shah defeated Muhammad Shah at Karnal. Raja Gopal Singh of Jind seized Karnal in 1863, and the Marhattas established themselves at Karnal in 1785. Skirmishes however, followed between the Marhattas and the Sikhs. In 1795 the Marhattas finally wrested it from Raja Bhag Singh of Jind and made it over to the George Thomas, who took part in the fight. Meanwhile Raja Gurdit Singh of Ladwa obtained possession of Karnal. It was captured by the British in 1805 and made over to Muhamdi Khan (Mandal). Karnal, on being formed into a British cantonment, the fort which had been built by Raja Gajpat singh of Jind, was taken over by the British and converted into a residence for Dost Mohd. Khan Amir of Kabul. The fort was used as a jail,as quarters for native cavalry and as poor house. In 1862, it was made over to the Education Department, when the district school was moved into it from the city.
- Kalander Shah's Tomb
Kalander Shah's tomb is situated just outside the town. The grave is made of marble and decorated with sculpture. The tomb was built by Ghias-ud-din, Emperor of Delhi, to the memory of Bo-Ali-Qualander Shah, a famous Muslim Savant and Sage, who influenced the thinking of his age and was very widely revered by all communities. Within the enclosure are mosque and a reservoir with fountains built by Emperor Alamgir and outside a Kettle Drum balcony.
- Devi Temple
A temple dedicated to a goddess exists on the bank of a large tank. A Shiva temple believed to have been built by Mubark Khan also exists there. An old Indian gun, some 8 feet long made of bars of iron bound together by iron hoops, and with its namke of ganj shikan or fort breaker cast on it stood in the fort but was later on removed and destroyed.
- Cantonment Church Tower
This is a big old massive tower and can be seen from a distance of several miles as it is 100 feet in height. The tower is surrounded by a large ornamental cross. The church itself named after St.James, was dismantled with the shifting of the Cantonment to Ambala in 1841 A.D.
- Bhara Mal's Sarai
Constructed by Bhara Mal, it is presently occupied by the office of the Deputy Assistant Director General (Medical Store), Govt. of India.
- Old Fort
Constructed by Raja Gajpat Singh of Jind in about 1764 A.D., it now provides accommodation for the office and residence of the Tehsildar.
- Miran Sahib's Tomb
This tomb stands to the memory of a saint, Sayad Mohd. alias Miran Sahib who died in 899 A.D. He was responsible for rescuing a Brahmin girl from the clutches of a Raja in a pitched battle. The tomb is situated towards the extreme south of the town and alongside it stand a small mosque and a cemetery of many members of the Mandal family
- Gurdwara Manji Sahib
This Gurdwara commemorates Guru Nanak's meeting with Bo Ali Shah Qalandar. It was also visited by Guru Tegh Bahadur on his way to Delhi where he was beheaded.
- Dargah Nuri
There is a Dargah Nuri at village Newal on Karnal- Kunjpura road. This Dargah was built in memory of Hazrat Sufi Shah Alama Nur Mohd. of.Delhi, and is managed by Managing Committee, village Newal.
- The Karna Tank
The Karna Tank, named after Raja Karna,son of Surya, ace archer, unrivalled warrior, terror of the Pandwas, an ardent supporter of the king Duryodhana in the Mahabharta war, donor par excellence and the founder of the city of Karnal, is now being renovated and converted into a tourist spot by Karnal municipality. It is said that Raja Karna, who was very philanthropic used to givegold in alms to the needy at the spot.
- Sita Mai Temple
Situated at a distance of 19 kilometers from Nilokheri, is a small village known as Sitamai. There is an old shrine of Sita Mai built in the ordinary form of a Hindu temple. It is made of bricks, but the feature is the elaborate ornamentation which covers the whole shrine, the pattern of which is formed by deep lines in the individual bricks which seems to have been made before the bricks were burnt, so that the forms they were to take must have been separately fixed for each brick. A large part of the shrine was pulled down and thrown into the tank by some Muslim Emperor but the bricks have been put together without any regard to the original pattern. The shrine is said to mark the spot where the earth swallowed Sita in answer to her appeal in proof of her purity.
Kunjpura, situated at a distance of six miles north east of Karnal was founded by a Pathan named Nijabat Khan, who had migrated from Kandhar and served as Risaldar under Wazir Khawaja Nasiruddin of Radaur, with headquarters at Taraori. He got the biswedari of Kunjpura from a Zamindar of Bidauli, in reward for his military assistance. After a clash with Rajputs, he settled at Kunjpura and built a fort in 1729 A.D. The fort was first called Nijabatnagar. On the incursion of Nader Shah, Nijabat Khan supplied him with provisions and tendered his obeissance. The Marthatta Bhao plundered Kunjpura and killed Nijabat khan in 1758 A.D. Ahmed Shah repulsed the Marhattas and entrusted Kunjpura to Daler Khan, Nijabat Khan's eldest son. The family in due course expanded their territorial jurisdiction to a major portion of Indri pargana. The palace of the Nawab now houses the Sainik School, Kunjpura. Kunjpura village now has a population of 5;811, a grain market and a High School. It has a Notified Area Committee.
The invading army of Mohd. Bin Sam was defeated at village Naraina, seven miles from Karnal and three from Taraori, in 1191 A.D. by united Hindu armies under Prithvi Raj, the Chauhan king of Delhi. Although in the following year, this defeat was reversed and turned into a victory for the Muslim invaders and the ruin of Rajput Supremacy for ever.
The village of historic interest is eleven miles north of Karnal. Prince Azam of Aurangzeb was born here and the place was renamed as Azamabad. Aurangzeb constructed a wall around the town, a mosque and a tank which exist to this day. The village being on the main highway of the Moghul times, also has a serai. The old royal serai appears to have been used by the Sikhs as a fort, now lying in a dilapidated condition. Because of the railway station nearby, the place has developed as an important assembling market chiefly for paddy grown in the surrounding area, and has some rice husking mills. Basmati rice grown here is the finest in the country and is exported to foreign countries.
It was at the village of Basthali 27 kilometers from Karnal that the sage vias lived who wrote the Vedas. The village bears his name; and legend has it that the sacred Ganges flowed underground into his well to save him the trouble of going to the river to bathe bringing with it his lota and loin cloth which he had left in the river to convince him that the water was really Ganges water.
- Gondar (Gautam Rishi)
At Gondar 26 kilometers from Karnal Gautam Rishi is said to have caused the spots in the moon and give Indra his 1000 eyes.
- Bahlolpur (Prashir tank)
It was in the Parasir tank at Bahlolpur that the warrior Duryodhana hide till Krishna's jeers brought him out to fight, and this is still the most celebrated of tirathas of this part.
There is a temple dedicated to Anjana, mother of Hanuman.
One Kirpal Singh got shamgarh from Raja Gurdit Singh of Ladwa in reward for the services rendered to the confederacy of Sikhs. The Sikh chief of Shamgarh exercised sovereign powers and had exclusive jurisdiction over their own subjects even for offences committed in British territory until the British assumed criminal and police jurisdiction in 1833 A.D.
The village lying 27 miles to the south-west of Karnal on the Karnal-Jind road, is said to be the capital of the kingdom of Jarsangha, one of the warriors mentioned in the Mahabharta. A Shahidi Smarak (martyrdom-memorial) commemorates the part played by the villagers of this place and of the surrounding area during the 1857 uprising when they revolted and were heavily punished by the Britishers.
- "XII Agricultural Science Congress".
- Karnal. District of Karnal http://www.karnal.gov.in/. Retrieved 26 November 2013. Missing or empty
- Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Karnal
- Later Mughal. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
- Territories and States of India. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
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