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Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji and Freedom Movement of India - Book By Yogendra Bali


Table Of Contents For 'Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji and Freedom Movement of India' Book By Yogendra Bali



Farewells to Arms 13
Political Freedom is My Religion 17
Do not Cooperate with the Corrupt  Rulers 22
A Regiment of Saints 27
Night Drills and Straight Turbans 33
Girls are not for Sale 39
Empire Stoops to Strike 43
Parallel Government 48
Rise of the Down-Trodden 53
The Masters of the Country 60
Marriage for a Song 65
The Prisoner of Bhaini 71
The Iconoclasts 76
Messiah of Prince and Pauper 84
The Historic Satyagarh Anandpur 94
The Kashmir Connection 101
With and Without Weapons 110
A Maharaja's Dilemma 119
Prince and the Buffaloes 123
The Kooka Diplomatic Corps 132
The Right to Life 140
Martyrdom at Amritsar 148
The Raikot  Episode 153
The Marrtyrs of Malerkotla 158
The Later Gurus 161
Namdharis: Then and Now 171
2007: The 150th Anniversary of a Revolution 177
On the Yangon Trail 192
In Remembrance: First Call for freedom 202
Index 215


Preface To Book  'Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji and Freedom Movement of India'  By Yogendra Bali


'Kook' is a punjabi word. It has deep meaning for the lovers of the soil of their motherland. It has meaning and memories of great significance for the lovers of freedom. It is also cry for justice, human rights and preservation of the purity of man and his environment.

For the simple lover of nature and the great God who created all purity and beauty around us, the 'Kook' was also synonymous with the song of the blackbird-the Koel-which has the plaintive note of love, compassion, purity of soul and the Mystery of the sacred Name, the holy Naam as they call it in Punjabi. That was the reason that those who were honoured and known as the Kookas, the one's who gave the great call of  freedom, were also revered and honoured as the Namdharis, or those who had been initiated into the mystery and significance of the purest of the pure words for man's soul and body, the magic name of the Master of all Creation, administered by a true Guru, or the Satguru. 

The Kook also meant a cry of anguish and agony for the suffering and betrayed humanity. It symbolised a deep compassion for the wounded and injured humanity and the sacred soil uprooted. In simple words it meant a call or a message. The Kook was the message and the Kooka, the messenger.

The story of the Kookas of Punjab is also the story their Kook, or the early call of the bird of freedom against foreign colonial masters. It was a call to fight the onslaught of an alien culture-domination which had brought degradation and distress to the spiritual and traditional culture of the land of ours forefathers. During the swan-song years of the great Sikh empire, when the freedom fighters of the great war of Independence of free 1857 lay dead, injured, bleeding and defeated in the dust of the battle ground, it was the call for revival and rebirth, to carry on the struggle of man under the new triangular white flag of the warrior-saint, the founder of the Kooka sect and the first of the Namdhari Masters, Satguru Ram Singh Ji. The birth of the Kook and the Kookas took place amidst heat and dust of the pre 1857 War of Independence.

On April 12, 1857, Satguru Ram Singh, the saint-soldier who had founded the Kooka sect, raised the triangular white flag of the Kookas at Bhaini Sahib, near Ludhiana. Today, it is the international headquarters of the Namdhari Sikhs who are spread all over the world.

The white flag of the warriors in white was unfurled by the saint-soldier to revive the spirit of the Punjab. It was raised to keep alive the spirit of freedom.  It was to signal a long and almost never-ending war against the internal and external enemies of man. It had to be an external struggle against injustice, corruption, exploitation and tyranny. It had to be a struggle against man's own internal enemies, greed, lust, parasitism, narrowmindedness, prejudice, hatted, communalism and obscurantism for which the white-robed Kookas would have to pay a heavy price. Often they paid for their faith, cause and ideals with their very lives. Their sacrifices were to fill the golden pages of legend and folklore. But the truth was mostly burried in the secret files of the british rulers of india. Only a few historians and writers took the trouble of ferreting our some odds and ends, in bits and pieces, about the great saga of the Kookas.

True, the political dream of the great founder of the Kooka sect, Satguru Ram Singh, was fulfilled on August 15, 1947 when India won freedom. It was 90 years after he had unfurled the white flag at Bhaini Sahib. But there were new enemies to be fought on the social  and spiritual fields, on the fields of ethics and morality. The battle goes on with the white-robed Namdhari Sikhs undergoing a vital extension to their lifestyle, where tradition is tempered with modernity carefully under the kind and generous, yet strictly disciplinarian eye of the present Master, Satguru Jagjit Singh Ji. Therefore, the saga of the Kookas or the Namdhari Sikhs, needed to be retold for the Namdharis themselves as well as the rest of the mankind today to understand and know what the men and women in the white stand for and how humanity could learn of their very special ways to make life worth living, in honesty, dignity and harmony. For that is the way of the Namdhari.

The Kook or the call still echoes today in the hearts of the inheritors of the great Kooka tradition. But today the battle is against alien cultural work of ours to look into the glimpses of Kooka history, we have had to depend a lot on a few books and journals which were available in Punjabi  language mostly and less than half a dozen other works in Hindi and English, for which we are grateful to the original authors and writers like Dr.M.M. Ahluwalia.

We are specially greatful to Satguru Jagjit Singh himself, his close associates and many of the office bearers of the Namdhari organisation spread in different parts of the country who helped secure valuable material and clarifications and interviews for this work.

We would like to make it clear that this work, though a labour of love and dedication, cannot claim to be a work of deep and laboriously documented and historiography. Its more of a human and emotional presentation of a rediscovery of the past of the Kookas for the present day mankind. God willing, and with the blessings of Satguru Jagjit Singh himself, we are ardently wish and hope that it would several some useful  purpose in telling the English readers something about the Kooka movement and the Namdhari Sikhs. We have tried to adopt well researched and documented facts and oral evidence of the highest credibility, to the best of our knowledge. Any positive criticism or comments would be welcome as response for being woven into future editions.

In the year, 2009, as a greatful nation was busy in the year-long celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the 1857 War of Independence combined with the 60th anniversary of the freedom of India of 1947, it was indeed the time to look back at the seminal contribution to the agenda for political freedom and social, spiritual and political engineer given by Satguru Ram Singh Ji, the soldier saint of the 19th century, who also showed the way through the Namdhari Sikhs and their Kuka movement the real and practical significance of simple and clean living with high thinking and love for freedom and justice.

We express our gratitude and thanks to the publisher, Narendra Kumar, and several scholars and dedicated journalists, teachers and followers of Satguru Jagjit Singh ji Maharaj, without whose help and cooperation it would have been impossible for us to undertake this challenging task.


Introduction To Book  'Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji and Freedom Movement of India'  By Yogendra Bali

This book retells the modern world the fascinating story of India's white-robed warriors, the Kookas or the Namdhari Sikhs. Clad in white, Khadi handspun  Punjabi Kurta and Churidar Pyjama ensemble, the men wear straight white turbans and the women cover their heads with a white dupatta. They are warriors of a different kind, who would rather sacrifice their own lives than kill. By belief and practice, they would not kill an ant or an insect during their farming operations. But in their century-long struggle for the political, social, economic and spiritual emancipation of man under the wise guidance of their satgurus or the True Guides, they evolved a way of life which does offer solutions to several present-day problems and ailments of the tortured humanity.

The Kooka movement inspired the Indian Freedom struggle which became the inspiration for movements for freedom of colonial nations around the world, specially so in Asia.

The book is an attempt to provide some glimpses for Kooka history and the Namdhari way of thought and life for the modern mankind.


About The Author Of Book  'Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji and Freedom Movement of India'

Yogendra Bali, 79, is a well known Indian journalist and author. He served in senior positions which reputed newspapers and journals before devoting himself to serious book writing after retirement as the Roving Special Correspondent of the Times of India, reputed Indian English daily. He also served as special correspondent, political correspondent and bureau chief with reputed  newspapers and news-weeklies and journals including the Tribune, the Current Weekly, the Probe and the Hindi, Sunday Mail. At present he is associated with Asia Defence News International (ADNI), a news agency devoted to Security Affairs, its publications Asia Defence News, and Urdu monthly Mastana Jogi.

He is also associated with the English newsmagazine, the Day After, and was also a member of the General Council of the Lalit Kala Akademi, India's national academy of fine arts, and member of its Art Education, Publications and Triennele and Internnational Exhibitions Committees.

The books authored by him include The Communal Bogey with a foreword by Jawaharlal Nehru, Chandra Shekhar: A Political Biography and Pawan Chamling: Daring To Be Different.


Author Yogendra Bali
Pages 216
Cover Hardbound
Language English

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