Ram Singh (known by his followers as Satguru) (February 3, 1816) was a religious leader and social reformer and the first Indian to use non-cooperation and boycotting of British merchandise and services as a political weapon. He was the religious leader of the Namdhari (Kuka) sect of Sikhism. Ram Singh launched his revolt against the British on 12 April 1857 by hoisting a white flag of freedom and announced a programme of far reaching significance.
He called for the people to boycott government services, boycott British run educational institutions and law courts, boycott foreign made goods and defy British laws. He was the originator of the nonviolent and civil disobedience movement in Punjab in 1872.
Ram Singh's fight for independence was a turning point in world history for it eventually sounded the death-knell of colonial rule in the British empire. Mahatma Gandhi later used the concepts of non-cooperation and civil disobedience propounded by Ram Singh as political weapons against the British. His ideas played a key part in securing India's Independence from the British.