Gurdwara Pardesi Khalsa Dharmak Diwan
Gurdwara Pardesi Khalsa Dharmak Diwan
No.9 Lor.29 Geylang, Singapore 388078
Tel : 6741 7207
The Diwan was founded Sikhs originating from the Doaba region of the Punjab. Doaba, the land in the Punjab between the two rivers, the Sutlej and Bias. Sometime in 1927, about fifty of these Sikhs from Doaba got together and banded themselves into an association. Their financial position did not enable them to purchase a premises for the Gurdwara. So they rented a premises which they used as their ‘club-house’ were they could meet and gather from time to time. As years went by, the membership increased.
On the 11th of May 1934, the Sri Guru Granth Sahib was installed into their club-house which at that time was a rented premises at 63 Queens Street. From then on, gurdwara shifted to Terrace.near Newton and then to along Norfolk Road for various reasons. However, in 1991, the temple bought one and half floors (3 units) of a seven storey building which houses associations at Lorong 29, Geylang Road for about S$1.2 million. The new temple premises boasts a large prayer hall.
By the mid 1920’s there was a split between the Sikh communities in Singapore, most of whom used to patronise the Central Sikh Gurdwara Sahib in Queen Street. The Sikhs who originated from the Doab region of Punjab, known as the Doabias, established the Pardesi Khalsa Dharmak Sabha. This Sabha was registered with the Singapore Government on 11th August 1926.
The pro-tern committee of this Sabha, consisting of seven members, was formed on 8th January 1927. The first Annual General Meeting was held on 16th January 1929 at which 15 members were elected to the Management Committee.
On 22nd November 1930, this Sabha set up their office at Number 24 Queen Street. This Diwan was more popularly known as a club at this time. On 4th April 1931, the office of this Diwan was shifted to Number 63B Queen Street, which was rented for Straits Settlements $23.00 per month. On 13th May 1933, the Holy Book, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji, was placed at Number 63B Queen Street which had been converted into a Gurdwara Sahib. Giani Bhagat Singh was appointed the first Granthi at this Gurdwara Sahib.
On 25th February 1934, this Diwan purchased the property known as Number 2 Kirk Terrace for Straits Settlement $3,100.00. The Gurdwara Sahib was also moved to this new location. In 1950, the adjoining property known as Number 3 Kirk Terrace was also acquired to serve the needs of the growing Sangat. In the late 1940’s, the management committee decided to build a new Gurdwara Sahib building in Kirk Terrace. Sardar Ghandar Singh Uecha laid the foundation stone on 13th April 1952. The cost of this new Gurdwara Sahib building came to M$130,000.00. His Excellency, Rt Honourable Malcolm Macdonald, Commissioner – General for the United Kingdom in South East Asia, officiated at the opening ceremony of this Gurdwara Sahib on 12th November 1952.
In 1959, the third adjoining property was purchased. The Darbar Sahib was extended by removing the partition wall without making any other alterations to the basic structure. Some time later, the fourth adjoining property was also purchased to cater for future needs. In 1979, the Government acquired all the property belonging to the Pardesi Khalsa Diwan at Kirk Road for its urban development programme. The compensation received by this Diwan was used to purchase two bungalows in Norfolk Road. Plans to construct a Gurdwara Sahib on this property were unsuccessful as the Government required this land for redevelopment.
The Management Committee decided to rent its former property at Kirk Terrace to be used as their Gurdwara Sahib on a temporary basis until new suitable premises could be found.
In 1991, the management committee purchased one and a half floors consisting of three units of a seven-storey association building at No 9, Lorong 29 Geylang for approximately S$1,300,000.00. These premises were converted into their Gurdwara Sahib building.
The new Gurdwara Sahib has a larger Darbar Sahib, which is 4,340 square feet and located at level two. The langgar hall and kitchen occupy an area of 2,310 square feet on level three.
This Gurdwara Sahib is located close to the Aljunied MRT Station. The Sikh sangat from Paya Lebar, Katong, Tampines and other nearby vicinities attend the various religious programmes held at this Gurdwara Sahib.
Reference: "Ithas Khalsa Dharmak Sabha, Singapore by Sardar Tara Singh Hathesi, Gujaranwalia, Singapore Page 220 – 221 (Published by Khalsa Dharmak Sabha, Singapore – April 1985)