Devotees throng Gurdwara Bir Baba Buddha Sahib for cleaning sarovar
The 18 feet deep pond was last cleaned in 2000.punjab Updated: Mar 31, 2018 20:52 IST
Thousands of devotees took part in kar sewa (voluntary service) for cleaning the sarovar (holy pond) of a historical Sikh shrine, Gurdwara Bir Baba Buddha Sahib, near Chabhal town in Tarn Taran district, 20km from Amritsar, on Saturday. And the job was done in a day, said the management.
The 18 feet deep pond spread over two acres was built by Baba Kharak Singh, the first president of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), in 1951, and was last cleaned in 2000. The shrine commemorates Baba Buddha, a venerable Sikh of the time of Guru Nanak who lived long enough to anoint five succeeding Sikh gurus. Baba Buddha spent many years here looking after the bir, literally a forest used for cattle grazing, said to have been offered to Guru Arjan Dev (the fifth Sikh master) by Chaudhari Langah of Patti. Legend says that in 1594, Mata Ganga, wife of Guru Arjan, received blessings for an illustrious son, who later was Guru Har Gobind (the sixth Sikh master) from Baba Buddha. Since then, Baba Buddha is also known as ‘puttaran de dani’ (the giver of sons).
The sarovar is attached with Upper Bari Doab Canal for water supply. Sant Baba Kashmir Singh Bhuriwale, who called for the sewa, said as the water comes directly from the canal, silt also ends up in the pond. He said more than a lakh people reached by Friday morning, from Punjab and other states including Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. The drying of the pond first took five days, and the fish in it were shifted to a smaller pond nearby.
From Sunday, painting and maintenance of the sarovar stairs would begin for a week, said officials.
At the site, people from across religions and castes were seen involved in the work. Teachers, policemen, farmers, masons, cobblers could be seen lending each other a hand. Tejbir Singh, a teacher, said, “Sikhism believes in equality, and this kar sewa is a perfect example of it.” Dilbagh Singh, a worker at the shrine, said devotees took away some of the silt as many consider it sacred.
At the start of the work, Akal Takht jathedar Giani Gurbachan Singh, Golden Temple head granthi Giani Jagtar Singh, Takth Damdama Sahib jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh, Gurdwara Bangla Sahib (Delhi) head granthi Giani Ranjit Singh, SGPC president Gobind Singh Longowal, and Gurdwara Bir Baba Buddha Sahib’s head granthi Giani Nishan Singh were also present.