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Sikh History Timeline

Today in Sikh History : 15th August

15th August


1923

The case of the Babbars was initiated.

1924

10th Shahidhi Jatha of 500 Akalis, led by Sardar Visakha Singh Daftur (Lahore), courted arrest on reaching Jaito.

==> WHERE IS JAITO? A village under Nabha, which falls on the Bathinda-Ferozpur railway line. It is 96 miles from Lahore and 17 miles from Bathinda.

WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF JAITO? On this place situated near a fort, is a historical Gurudwara of Guru Gobind Singh Patshah. Maharaja Hira Singh constructed the beautiful buildings of this Gurudwara. The sarowar is popularly known as Gangsar. About a mile and a half north of Jaito is Tibhi Sahib Gurudwara, where Guru Gobind Singh Patshah used to organize and participate in the evening recitation of Rehras. Both Gurudwaras have extensive land sanctioned to it by the Nabha rulers. Additionally, extensive financial resources are made available on an annual basis from the Nabha rulers and the surrounding villages. A maela celebration is held every 7th of Pooh month (Dec.-Jan.) and Katak (Oct.-Nov.) Puranmashi. Jaito’s markets are well renowned. People come from far distances to buy and sell their herds.

WHY AKALIS COURTED ARREST? The key issue involved was resoration of Maharaja Ripudaman Singh of Nabha. Maharaja of Nabha, well-known for his pro-Tat Khalsa Proclivities, had a dispute with Maharaja of Patiala, known for this pro-government role. Although Maharaja of Nabha had absolutely no dispute with the government, as a result of mediation, he was forced to abdicate in July 1923. Col. Michin, with the help of troops and armoured cars, took the Maharaja by surprise on July 8, 1923 and taunted him with the query, Where is that Akali? The news of deposition by the government raised a strom of protest against the Government’s interefernce in Nabha and was decsribed as a challenge to the Akali movement. As a result tensions mounted. The Akalis, in defiance of state orders, continued to hold diwan indefinitely. The Nabha police in order to arrest all the Akalis, including the one reading the holy Granth Sahib, was said to have disrupted the Akhand Path on Sept. 14, 1923. This dispute took such a tragic shape and got so inflames by Feb. 21, 1924 that several people lost their lives. After sixteen shaheedi jathas apart from one from Bengal and another from Canada, the agitation process was completed two years later, on August 6, 1925, after the concurrent bhog of 101 Akand Paaths.

-Ref. Mahan Kosh
The Sikhs in History, by Sangat Singh, 1995

1947

The Sikh Homeland handed over to the Hindus against the wishes of the Sikh nation and divided into East and West Punjab.

Punjab was divided into East and West Punjab. A major segment of the Sikh community was uprooted from their ancestoral land and forced to migrate to India. This day marks the Independence day for India. Though citizens of India, the Sikh coumminty encoutered organized and pre-meditated killings of their members, lootings of all their worldly possessions, and general human suffering and deprivation that is unparalleled in the history of humankind. Over two lakh Sikhs gave their lives in search of freedom while being forcibly migrated to East Punjab. However, untill today the independence promise remains unfulfilled for the Sikh community. The community itself continues to persists in petty internal squibled, allow others to dictate terms, and is unable to establish its own sovereign state where Sikhs may prosper without any restriction. More than the lost lives, dearer than homes and lands left behind, was the Holy Nankana Sahib, the birth place of Guru Nanak Dev. Numerous other historical gurudwaras were also left behind with their fates unknown. For more information refer to History section on page 29 of the September 1994, Volume 42:9, No. 489, issue of The Sikh Review.

Human Geography section, on page 33 of the September 1994, Volume 42:9, No. 489, issue of The Sikh Review.

1951

The Times of India reported that the Sikhs were opposed to Hindu-Congress because each and every demand of the Sikhs was opposed by the Congress.

1960

Sikhs observe Indian independence day as Ghulami (Slavery) day.

1960

Master Tara Singh begins fast unto death.

Master Tara Singh begins fast unto death to protest against the discriminatory attitude of the government in not forming a Punjabi Speaking State demanded by the Sikhs although the rest of India had been reorganised on linguistic basis. On Aug. 28th, Jawahar Lal Nehru, Prime Minister of India, made a statement in the Indian Parliament declaring:

It had repeatedly been said that there was discrimination against the Sikhs thhough instance of this had not been pointed out. I suggested, however, that if there was any such apprehension, a high level inquiry could be made into the matter to find out if there had been any such discrimination.

On the basis of this offer, Master Tara Singh was prevailed upon to break his fast on Oct. 1.

==> MASTER TARA SINGH: Master Tara Singh was born on 24 June, 1885, in Haryal in Rawalpindi district of North Western Province of undivided India. His mother, Moolan Devi, was a pious lady and his father, Bakshi Gopi Chand, was a patwari of the village and was a well known and respected person. Tara Singh’s original name was Nanak Chand. In 1902 Nanak Chand embraced Sikhism and came to be called Tara Singh.

Tara Singh had a bright educational career and was a scholarship holder almost at all stages of his education. In 1907 he passed his B. A. examination from Khalsa College, Amritsar. Later Tara Singh joined as headmaster of Khalsa High School, Lyallpur, at an honorarium of Rs. 15 per month. Since then he came to be known as Master Tara Singh. His career as a teacher ended in 1921, following the Nankana tragedy.

He also edited two Akali newspapers, Akali (Udru) and Akali te Pardesi (Grumukhi) in which he forcefully put forward the aims and objectives of the Akali Dal.

He took an active part in national politics till his death on 22 November 1967.

-Ref. Master Tara Singh, by Verinder Grover, Deep & Deep Publications Delhi, 1995.

1969

Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman launched his fast until death to force resolution of Punjab demands from Indian central government.

1980

Dal Khalsa hoisted Khalistan flag throughout the Sikh Homeland.

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