Baba Gurbaksh Singh ji was a very well
known and respected Singh, who had
the honor of being martyred while
defending Sri Darbaar Sahib.
Baba ji was Born in village Leel near Shri Amritsar in
1688 A.D. His Father was Bhai Dasaundha Singh ji and
mother Mata Lachmee Kaur ji. Baba ji’s parents
served Satguru Gobind Singh ji and Baba ji received
amrit at the age of 11, due to the inspiration of Bhai
Mani Singh ji. He spent time with Baba Deep Singh ji
and Bhai Mani Singh ji and became a very good
scholar and warrior.
Baba Gurbaksh Singh ji was always dressed in blue baaNaa and kept a very
strong Rehit He would awake at Amrit-vela and do ishnaan.Then, while reciting
Gurbaani, Baba ji would tie his tall dastaar. Baba ji loved Sarbloh he would offer
his respect to his sarbloh shastars i.e. kirpans, chakars, toRaas, Karas, etc and
then put them on.
He would finally put on a mala of sarbloh around
his neck and also many sarbloh kaRas and
simarnaas. Baba ji’s dastaar also had many toRaas
tied into it. He would also wear a sarbloh
armour.Baba ji wore a very long 1.5 yard kacherra
and always kept a long stick with him.
Whenever there was a battle ,Baba ji
would always go and confront the
enemy. He would be in the forefront
carrying the Nishaan Sahib and
advancing to the forward to the beat
of the nagaara.
In 1765, The Khalsa had scattered when Ahmed Shah Abdali brought his army through
the Punjab. At Sri Amritsar, the Sarbat Khalsa gathered one day and after the night
divaan, decided to abandon Sri Amritsar and leave together for Malwa.
Baba Gurbaksh Singh then rose and addressed the Singhs and said, “Is there any Singh
in the Panth today, who would fight with the Afghans and sacrifice his head”.
The Singhs listened to Baba Gurbaksh Singh and replied, “Baba ji, is there any Singh better for this than
you? No one else has the power to abandon their body and go to Dargah like you do.”
Baba ji then called out, “I want to be Shaheed! If there is any other Gurmukh who wishes to come with
me to Dargah, then let them also come. When there is a marriage, the groom goes with his Sarbaalha
and with a large baraat. I am going to marry the bride of Death. Are there Singhs who would be my
Hearing Baba ji’s call, many Singhs rose and stood with Baba ji. They said, “With your permission we
will be your Sarbaalhas.”
By this time, Ahmed Shah Abdali had arrived in Lahore. He was preparing to go to
Delhi when he heard about the gathering of the Khalsa at Sri Amritsar. He decided
that on the way to Delhi, he would stop at Sri Amritsar and slaughter all the Sikhs.
Many got afraid and ran away. The remaining Singhs were all chardee kala naam
abhyaasee Gursikhs. They gathered in front of Sri Akaal Takhat Sahib and eagerly
awaited the enemy.
The day the Afghans were expected to attack, the Singhs all rose at amrit vela. They
then bathed in Sri Amritsar Sahib and then gathered at Sri Akaal Takhat. After reading
5 pauRees of Anand Sahib and doing ardaas. The Singhs distributed Degh and then
as a group left for darshan of Sri Darbaar Sahib.
The group of Singhs was led by a Nishaan Sahib and nagaaras were beating. They
arrived at Sri Darbaar Sahib and did parkarma. Once inside, they showered Sri Guru
Granth Sahib with flowers and then did Ardaas.
The Afghans in the meantime had began to move towards Sri Amritsar. They had
prepared for a massive battle and brought a large army. They were wearing armour
and metal helmets. They had decided to do battle in such a way that the Singhs
would be killed but they themselves would incur minimal casualties. They had brought
long weapons which could kill from a distance such as large guns.
Baba ji, after offering ardaas at Sri Darbaar Sahib, returned with the Singhs to Sri Akaal
Takhat Sahib to listen to keertan and await the enemy. The keertanees began to
recite keertan and the Singhs would ask that certain shabads they wanted to hear be
sung. The GhoReeaa(n) shabads were again recited. In this way, the entire night
passed in listening to keertan. At day break, the enemy had arrived.
Baba ji called out to all the Singhs, “Singhs! Step forward and embrace martyrdom!
The Afghan forces of Ahmed Shah Abdali attacked the Sikhs and a vicious war
began. Das Hazari Khan and Baba ji were in battle, they simultaneously landed blows
upon each other and they were both decapitated.
Baba ji continued fighting without his head, seeing this the
enemy were horrified and were quick to retreat. Baba ji
continued killing off the tyrants and was relentless in his attacks,
a Muslim Saint advised the Afghan army said that the only way
to stop Baba ji, who wouldn’t retreat, was to beg for forgiveness
at the feet of the Sikhs Guru for all the atrocities they caused
and promise not to come back again. “Forgive us our misdeeds
and evil actions,” their General begged.
It was only then that Baba ji stopped and laid his body to rest.
Baba ji’s cremation took place behind Sri Akal Takhat Sahib
according to the rites of the death ceremony of Sikhi.
Gurdwara Shaheed Ganj (commemorates Baba ji’s Shaheedi.
Baba ji is remembered as one of the great Shaheeds of the
Panth and will forever be remembered as a true Saint-Soldier.