Mandi

Not match is known about the early history of Mandi before the formation of Suket in 765 AD. The area had been under the control of Ranas or the Thakurs. The only place that has an early mention in literature is Rewalsar and it is mentioned in the Skanda Purana as a sacred place of pilgrimage. Karnpur, a small village is said to have been founded by Karan, a hero of the Mahabharata. A temple at Gumma point to the locality where the Pandavas sheltered themselves when the attempt to burn them failed. Beyond this not much of the erstwhile state's existence can be found in classical literature. According to the Tibetan tradition, Padam Sambhav (750-800 AD), the great Buddhist Patriarch, who was summoned by king Tisong-De-Tsen of Tibet for preaching Buddhism, hailed from Zahor, which represents the country round about Rewalsar. On the basis of this it is concludes that Mandi must have been a great place of Buddhist learning about this time.

The present District of Mandi was formed with the merger of two princely states Mandi and Suket on 15th April 1948, when the state of Himachal Pradesh came into existence. Ever since the formation of the district, it has not witnessed any changes i its jurisdiction. The chiefs of Mandi and Suket are said to be from a common ancestor to the Chandravanshi line of Rajputs Sena dynasty of Bengal and they claim their descent from the Pandavas of the Mahabharata. The ancestors of the line believed to have ruled for over 1700 years in Inderprastha (Delhi), until one Khemraj was driven out by his Wazir, Bisarp, who then took over the throne. Khemraj, having lost his kingdom, fled eastward and settled in Bengal, where 13 of his successors are said to have ruled for 350 years. From there they had to flee to Ropar in Punjab, but here also the king, Rup Sen, was killed and one of his sons, Bir Sen, fled to the hills and reached Suket. The state of Suket is said to have been founded by Bir Sen, an ancestor of the Sena Dynasty of Bengal.

Mandi is situated on the banks of the river Beas. It has a rich culture and history which is represented by its temples which are a major tourist's attraction. Mandi is an important trading center situated on the Pathankot-Kullu road. The town is also the gateway to most famous valleys- Kullu, Manali, Lahaul and Spiti. Mandi is also an the Kullu-Shimla road via Bilaspur. It is the headquarter of the district

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