Bhai Kalyana was one of the few Sikhs who were assigned by Guru Arjan Dev Ji the great responsibility of going out to various places, educating people about Gurmat, and making collections for building Harimandar Sahib at Amritsar.
Bhai Sahib was sent to the hill areas of the Mandi state in the north of Punjab. Whenever he went there, he would associate some local people with him, discuss with them the principles of the Sikh faith and sing Gurbani kirtan to them. People looked forward to his visits because they loved to sit with him and listen to Gurbani recitations from him.
Once it was Janam-Ashtmi day, when Bhai Sahib was preaching Gurmat in the town of Mandi. The local ruler announced with the beat of a drum the significance of this Hindu religious day and ordered all people to keep fast on that day. In addition, people were required to worship Thakur, a special type of stone, on that day. This was a technique adopted by the Brahmans to collect money from the innocent people of the city.
Bhai Kalyana did not bother about it. He cooked his food as usual and shared it with local people. The matter was brought to the notice of the ruler, Hari Sain. He ordered Bhai Kalyana to appear before him and explain his position for disobeying the instructions of the ruler. In response, Bhai Sahib recited Gurbani quotations which meant that to please God, we should love and respect people instead of worshipping stones. Further, fasting has no religious value.
Hari Sain could give no arguments to challenge the statements of Bhai Ji, however, he observed, "I agree with you in principle, but you must be punished for disobeying my orders." Bhai Kalyana replied, "You have disrespected the wishes of God, who provides food for everyone to eat. Against this, you are instructing people not to eat food. Therefore, you are guilty of a bigger wrong by disobeying the mighty Lord who is the ruler of the whole world."
Hari Sain, who was suffering under the yolk of Brahmans and was practicing meaningless rituals, was awakened. He decided to become a Sikh. He accompanied Bhai Kalyana Ji to Amritsar and got the blessings of Guru Arjan Dev.