spring which is in Verinag town issues from a high scarp of a mountain spur, and is considered the source of the river Jhelum. It is situated at the bottom of a hill covered by pine trees and evergreen plants. The Mughal Emperor Jehangir constructed an octagonal tank of sculptured stones around the spring for which carvers for were brought from Iran
A garden was also built by Jahangir next to this natural spring which is of pre-Islamic religious significance. The construction date of the octagonal tank and the garden is 1029 Hijri or 1620 A.D. is duly inscribed on a stone slab built into the southern wall of the spring. The water is collected in a pool surrounded by arched recesses, and then flows down a 300-yard canal to the Bihat river.
Jahangir wished to be buried at Verinag gardens, but his wife, Nur Jahan, disobeyed his wishes. Today nothing remains of the pavilions which once decorated the area. According to a legend, goddess Vitasta (Jhelum) wanted to take rise from this place, but it happened that when she came, Shiva was staying here, whereupon she had to go back and then she took her rise from Veravurthur, a spring about a mile to the north-west of this place. Virah in Sanskrit means to 'go back' and 'nag' means a water spring and, as Vitasta had to go back from this place, it came to be called Virahnag or "Vernag".
Verinag spring was originally an irregular and shapeless pond, and water, oozing out from different places in it and spread about and formed a little marsh.The emperor Jahangir, whose artistic taste for polishing the beauty of nature is well known, saw this and at once determined to improve it. He built the octagonal tank of sculptured stones round it, so that all water was collected therein.
The construction of water garden and the octagonal tank around the spring at Verinag was completed in the year 1620 A.D. or 1029 Hijri during the 15th year of the Jahangir's reign. Seven years later, Jahangir's son Shah Jahan, who was no less a lover of natural beauty, constructed cascades and aqueducts in straight lines through and around the fine garden which he, in order to enhance further the beauty of the place laid out in front of the spring. He also built hot and cold baths to the east of this garden, just outside of it, of which little trace is now left.The spring is the main source of the mighty river Jhelum. The water contained in an octagonal spring has crystal blue water in which a variety of big fishes live. History and the carvings on stones in Persian on the walls surrounding the spring tell about how this great source of underwater spring is contained without revealing its architecture.
The spring is at the exact centre almost 50 feet (as the locals tell about the depth) under water from where the water continuously comes up and flows into the gardens facing the spring. It is also a sacred place for Hindus as there is a Lord Shiva shivling in one of the arcs (the very first on the left of the entry of the spring). The historical garden also has an old temple with some ancient idols of Hindu goddesses.Some 2 km away is Veravurthur, supposed to be the source of the Jhelum. The waters of the many nearby springs, called collectively, Sapta Rishi, have their confluence at Sangam, where people bathe on festival days. The birth of the river is celebrated annually with a fair.
There are two stone slabs built into the western and southern walls of Verinag spring, on which prose in Persian language, in praise of the spring, and the dates of construction of the tank and aqueduct, are inscribed.
The translation of prose in Persian language written on stone slab built into the southern wall of spring is as follows:-