top of page

Hawl Village

Village Hawal is about 45kms away from the city of Srinagar on the

Mughal Road which comes after the village Nikas. Hawl is followed

by major villages: Gabarpora and Mughalpora the last villages of

Distt Pulwama and then Keegam , Tukur , Sharmal, Arihama in the

Distt Shopian which comes under the Pir Panjal range and signifies

the end of the Kashmir valley. Mughal road connects Shopian district

to Poonch and Rajouri.

Hawal of good old days in 1940’s used to be a very picturesque

village with beautiful view of snow-clad mountains and surrounded

by several streams originating from these mountains, which would

be at best 20 to 30 miles away. The village was inaccessible during

winters and when rivulets got flooded and washed away bridges in

summer. It had no medical facility and no toilets in homes or

electricity. The village was inhabited mainly by forty families of

Pandits and around 10 Muslim families. Pandits owned the entire

agricultural land while the Muslim neighbours were either artisan,

washermen, potters, barbers and landless agricultural peasants who

were hired for land tilling by the Pandits. Some of them also worked

as domestic servants for Pandit’s. There was a primary school there

with just one teacher from the village. After primary school students

had to go to Pulwama which had a middle school. Those few

students who had to study further had either to a high school in

Shopian run by Pandit teachers or go to Srinagar, which was

preferred if they had some relations in the city. Very few children

would study beyond middle and high school.

The village was surrounded by paddy fields and apple orchards. It

had 2 temples, Bidabal the temple of Goddess Durga and a separate

Ganesh temple. There was one mosque, near the washermen’s area

near a stream and a Sufi place of worship called Siminie where

Pandits and Muslims of the village used to go on specific days linked

to a Sufi saint. The nearest gurudwara was in Shajimarag a

predominantly Sikh village about 3 kms away very close to the

forests of Yarwan. Hawl thus had a world of its own.

Pandit Prasad Joo Khan is a name which is known to everybody in

Hawl even today. He came from a family of Patwari’s for three

generations and was a member of the Land settlement committee of

Sir Walter Lawrence in 1889 – 1894 during Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s

regimen. The surname Khan was acquired by his fore fathers who

were working for Pathans in the regimen of Afghan rule in Kashmir

(1747-1819). He later left this job and chose to run a store. This store

would sell everything from hardware, cloth, tea leaves, herbs,

common medicines, Kashmiri bread, household goods, stationary etc.

It was a supermarket of the present days. Shopkeepers from

neighbouring villages would also come to buy things from this shop.

Prasad joo, however handed over the shop to his sons and took a

retirement at the age of 50 years and it continued to grow till 1990.

Eminent personalities from Hawl and neighbouring areas besides

Prasad Joo Khan were Pandit Janaki Nath Bhat (Maqdam), Justice

Moti Lal Bhat, Prem Nath Hali, Abdul Khaliq Bhat, Educationists:

Master Ram Chand and Suraj Prakash, and Prof Roop Kishan Bhat.

Politicians Ghulam Mohd Mir Rajpori of Rajpura a Minister and then

speaker of Kashmir assembly, Abdul Sattar Ranjoor a well-known

leftist from Keegam and Shamim Ahmad Shamim a famous journalist

and politician from Shopian.

Area around this village in the Pulwama district is the rice bowl and

the milk supplier of the valley. People of Hawl were quite prosperous

till 1990, when militancy in the valley ruined the ethos of the village.

There was exodus of Hindus to Jammu and other areas in India. The

village and its buildings got fossilized and the temple complex of

Bidabal was taken over by armed forces to curb militancy in the area.

Today it gives a very sad and desolate look. According to the present

system it is located in the Rajpora Tehsil of Pulwama district. It has a

gram panchayat. The total geographical area of village is 97.5

hectares. Hawl has a total population of 416 peoples with 66 houses.

Gauri Kaul Foundation has acquired a small area of land (230 Sq

Metres) belonging to Prof Upendra Kaul on the main Mughal Road

for making the Prasad Joo Khan Memorial Health Centre which will

have Tele medicine facility. The foundation stone of this project was

laid on 14 th July 2021, by the son of Late Prasad Joo Khan, Sh. Prem

Nath Kaul. The construction work was completed by the end OF May

2022. It would be linked to the Community Health Centre, Rajpora

for patients needing hospitalization. This smart hospital has good

facilities to care for patients who need urgent attention and is very

close to the village. An ambulance will be a part of this centre. The

centre will have tele medicine facility to connect to other villages of

Pulwama district and districts of Shopian and Kulgam. Gauri Kaul

Foundation will be running and operating this facility, with the help

of people of the village.

Oil and Natural Gas commission (ONGC) will provide the financial

support to equip this health centre from its CSR fund. Mrs Alka

Mittal, Director (HR) and Chairman and MD ONGC has agreed to

inaugurate the centre and dedicate it to the people of South Kashmir

in July 2022.

 Hawl Village
 Hawl Village
bottom of page