The village Jhiri is located about 20 kms from Jammu, off the Jammu-Akhnoor highway. Every year during the Karthik Purnima (Late autumn full moon) falling during the last week of October and early November an annual mela (festival) is held here. This year the Mela (festival) would be held from 26th November to 5th December 2023.
Lacs of devotees throng the village to commemorate the martyrdom of Baba Jittoo, a farmer who gave up his life in protest against the oppressive demands of the zamindar about 500 years ago.
Legend has it that the zamindar demanded a major share of the wheat crop from Jit Mal a poor farmer. Since the peasant had toiled hard to cultivate the crop he did not want to yield to this unjust demand. Rather than parting with his crop, Jit Mal preferred to take the extreme step of ending his life over the heap of wheat.
He has ever since been venerated as Baba Jittoo and is revered for standing up against the injustice and unfair treatment meted out to the peasantry during the feudal times.
The festivities during the mela last for a week with the main day of the fair being held on Karthik Purnima.
People pay obeisance at the Baba Jittoo temple and seek his blessings and the blessings of his daughter Bua Kouri, who as per the legend also took her life by jumping on her father’s funeral pyre.
People also take a customary dip in the Baba-da-Talab (Pond), a natural pond four kms from the temple which is believed to have curative powers.
A huge market comes up at the site of the mela and shops and stalls selling food items and all sorts of wares are set up. Entertainment and rural sports like dangal (wrestling) also form an important feature of the fair.
At a distance 5 km from Jhiri are located ancient temples of Sui & Burj known for their exquisite and elaborate wall paintings and metal idols of Shri Ram & Sita.
How to Reach Jhiri - The state of J&K is well connected with the rest of India by air, rail and road. Jammu is the nearest city to reach Jhiri and is at a distance of about 20 kms.
By Air – The nearest Airport is Jammu Airport and is well linked with all the major airports of the country. Various airway companies provide regular flights to all the major cities in India from Jammu. Cabs and Taxis are available outside the Airport to reach Jhiri village.
By Road - Jammu is well linked by Road (NH1). It is connected to all the neighboring cities and one also avail Luxury or regular Bus Service to Jammu. By road one can easily reach Jhiri village.
By Rail - The nearest Railway Station is Jammu Tawi. Rail Service is available to almost all main cities of India. Cabs and Taxis are available outside the Railway Station to reach Jhiri village.