Sadhu Singh Bhaura

From darkness to light

The Sikh missionary who rose to be The Jathedar of ‘Sri Akal Takhat Sahib’ the highest politico-temporal seat in the Sikh world and maintained the high esteem of it for 16 long years—the longest period in the history of Akal Takhat Sahib so far. He worked all his life for the cause of humanity to remove inequality in the society and for the up liftment of down trodden. He was a humble , down to earth, religious and pious person. He was a man of true principles, who stood firm and risked anything possible for this principles.

He was born as the elder son of Chaudary Ran Singh and mata Atam Kaur on 6th June 1905 at Chakk no. 7, a village in Lyallpur district ( now in Pakistan). After matriculation from khalsa high school Lyallpur (where Master Tara Singh, later a leading figure in Sikh politics was his Head master). He joined British Mounted police force at Quetta, which he soon left to take part in Akali agitations for Gurudawara reforms movement in 1925.

From 1926-1928 he studied at Shahid Sikh Missionary College Amritsar and there after dedicated his entire life as a missionary, for the cause of Sikh religion and humanity. From 1928-1955 he headed the Sikh missionary centers in Uttar Pradesh mainly at Aligarh and Hapur; where he is said to have initiated nearly half a million persons according to Sikh rites. He baptized over 50,000 Sikhs on one single occasion which is a landmark in Sikh history. Among these most were the Vanjara Sikhs of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. He was an undisputed leader of masses.

He was member of the Executive Committee and General Secretary of Shiromani Akali Dal from 1955-1960. He took part in several agitations and played pivotal role in the ‘Punjabi Suba’ movement and went to jail number of times. On these efforts in 1966 the ‘Punjabi Suba’ (the present linguistic based state of Punjab) was formed. He was also Executive Member of Shiromani Gurudawara Prabandak Committee from 1961-1978.

He was appointed ‘The Jathedar of Sri Kesgarh Sahib Anandpur Sahib from 1961-1964. He was elevated to the position of ‘The Jathedar of Sri Akal Takhat Sahib’ the highest seat of religious authority and legislation for the Sikhs from 1964-1980. He attracted wide public notice when, on 10 june 1978 he issued Hukamnama ( a religious order to the Sikhs ) calling upon alla the Sikhs to society boycott the neo-Nirankari sect. 1980. He, in an effort to avert a vertical spit in Akali Dal, formed a 7 member committee of senior party leaders under the leadership of Sant Harchand singh ji Longowal to function as a collegiate executive, which is the only example in history so far. But soon, he resigned from his post on health grounds and retired to live with his sons in Jalandhar where he passed away on 7 march 1984. He is survived by S. Harveil Singh & Dr Balbir Singh Bhaura.