SIKANDARĀ is a township along the Grand Trunk Road, about 8 km north of Āgrā (27º-10'N, 78º'E). Gurdwārā Srī Gurū Tegh Bahādur Dūkh Nivarāṅ Gurū Kā Tāl, commonly known as Gurdwārā Gurū Kā Tāl, is about 2 km from Sikandarā towards Āgrā. Sikh chronicles have preserved the tradition that there lived a poor old shepherd named Hasan 'Alī, in the village of Kanakaretā, near Sikandarā. He had two daughters of marriageable age, but did not possess the means to get them married. This worried him constantly. One day he heard about the reward proclaimed under the Emperor's order for Gurū Tegh Bahādur's arrest and the thought flashed across his mind that if he could claim the money he would be enabled to arrange for his daughters' nuptials. He knelt down in prayer. It is said that Gurū Tegh Bahādur who then happened to be in Āgrā, rode on to Sikandarā and alighted where Hasan 'Alī was grazing his herd. The Gurū told Hasan 'Alī that he was hungry and gave him a bejewelled ring and a costly shawl and asked him to buy some sweets for him from the city in exchange for the ring. When Hasan 'Alī presented the ring at the confectionary and spread the shawl to receive the ordered provisions, the owner, noticing the contrast between his humble dress and the valuables in his possession, got suspicious and made a report o the city police. This led to the arrest of Gurū Tegh Bahādur, but, before parting from Hasan 'Alī, he reminded him to claim his reward and spend it for the marriage of his daughters.
A memorial platform was constructed on the spot where the Gurū was arrested, but it remained shrouded in obscurity until rediscovered in 1956 by the Sikhs of Āgrā who raised a small gurdwārā. In 1970 Sant Sādhū Siṅgh Maunī started reconstructing the building. Since then an entirely new and imposing building has arisen. A square hall has a canopied marble throne in the centre on which two volumes of the Gurū Granth Sāhib are placed side by side. Above the hall there is a lotus dome in the centre and four smaller domes, one at each corner, also with gold finials.
Major Gurmukh Siṅgh (Retd.)