Baba Dyal Singh

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Baba Dayal Singh (1783-1855) was a Sahajdhari Sikh whose main mission was to bring Sikhs back to the Adi Granth and simran. His successor Baba Darbara Singh established many centres beyond Rawalpindi and wrote about the essential teachings of Baba Dayal. The sect had grown considerably and the third successor, Sahib Rattaji (1870-1909) kept the Nirankaris in order via strict adherence to their rahit (Khalsa code of conduct). At this time they numbered in the thousands and some had taken interest in the Singh Sabha movements (see entries on Singh Sabhas), under the fourth successor Baba Gurdit Singh. The Nirankaris helped to bring the Anand Marriage Bill in 1908-9 to the attention of the Sikh populace. Their fifth Guru Sahib Hara Singh (1877-1971) started to reorganise the sangat and was succeeded by his eldest son Baba Gurbakh Singh. However because their emphasis was largely upon Guru Nanak's message, and the times were dominated by Singh Sabha Sikhs emphasising Guru Gobind Singh's Khalsa, their voices went unheard. This was exacerbated by the shift from Sahajdhari (shaven) to Keshdhari (unshaven) Sikhs. Finally with their inability to keep in step with the tumultuous social changes of the British Raj they were soon marginalised. In 1978 they were excommunicated by the orthodox Akal Takht for their belief in a living Guru after the Guru Granth Sahib.

Sahib Hara Singh's younger son, *, who retired as the principal of the Amritsar medical College, has continued popularizing...
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