Shiv Chander Sharma
IN the Mubarak Mandi Royal Dogra Palace, situated in the walled Jammu city, there is an ancient Samadhi at just entrance of the main palace. What is interesting is that this Samadhi is attributed to a ‘‘ghost’’.
Many of the people in the city, especially those whose family members, elders and friends once close to the royal circles believe, still talk about a ghost who had come in the dowry when Dogra king Maharaja Pratap Singh (1885 to 1925 AD) when he got married with Rani Charak at this palace. He is believed to have appeared before the king who was convinced about his presence and got built a big marble Samadhi on the name of that ghost which is still there.
The ghost-Ragho Baba-is believed to be haunting the palace which is being renovated and Jammu Festival is organised by the state government here every year in the month of April. He has not harmed anybody since his coming to this palace except to the security personnel who used to sleep during their duty at the palace in royal times and even after that.
Till recent decades a person used to serve a plate full of meals at the Samadhi two times a day and is believed to had been engaged by the members of RoyAl family for this purpose. But the person is no more now and the time has also changed.
As per legends when Pratap Singh got married the ghost Ragho Baba came in the dowry as Kahar (Planquin lifter). He remained unnoticed until he started appearing toa various persons in the palace, said Jagdish Raj, who lived in the room of a palace till few days ago when the room was vacated as part of renovation process of the palace.
Always wearing white Kurta Pyjama and white turban on his head, Ragho Baba used to appear frequently before many when he had just come in the palace but he never harmed anybody. However, after his Samdhi was built in the palace his appearance was became rare. But stil there are many who claim that they have seen Ragho Baba on several occasions, some times in day light also.
Krishan Lal, 72, a retired state government employee who used to work in a office which was situated in the palace and also lived in Pacci Dhakki locality just adjoining the palace, said that not only he, but many of his colleagues had seen Ragho Baba in the palace at different places, some times in the stair cases and some times taking rest on his Samadhi. He would appear all of a sudden anywhere but just pass away without harming or saying anything.
Krishan Lal further said that every body working in the palace building, which, till September 2006 housed several government offices with Divisional Commissioner Office still functioning in the complex, knew about the existence of ghost Ragho Baba. But they also knew that he was a pious soul who never harmed anybody.
Some say that he is not seen now a days but some believe that he is still sometimes seen wandering in the palace. Whatevery may be the truth but this is a fact that a <PI>Samadhi<P> of a ghost Ragho Baba still exist in the Dogra Royal Palace.