27.12.1903: Khalsa Diwan Malaysia roots in Taiping

KDM was formed in response to 'unanimous clamour to form a formal registered society in Malaya to cater for the religious, cultural, education and other needs of the community', writes KDM President Santokh Singh Randhawa

| Letter | Ipoh, Malaysia | 11 Nov 2016 Asia Samachar |
The logo for the centenary celebration of the setting up of Sri Guru Singh Sabha Taiping
The logo for the centenary celebration of the setting up of Sri Guru Singh Sabha Taiping

Congratulations to the Sri Guru Singh Sabah, Taiping (SGSS Taiping), on the 100th Anniversary of its existence during which time they have served dedicatedly the community.

The President, Sardar Balraaj Singh Ji, has rightly pointed out that the present Gurdwara Sahib Taiping was established by the SGSS Taiping in the 1920s.

He also rightly pointed out that there was a Gurdwara prior to that at the Malay State Guides premises at Taiping.

I would like to throw some little light on the Malay State Guides Gurdwara at Taiping. It was there that the first ever Sikh association of Malaya [then] was formed: THE KHALSA DIWAN MALAYSIA (KDM).

It was the birthday of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji on 26.12 1903. The Malay State Guides, comprising of Sikhs, at Taiping decided to celebrate the event at the national level. Invitations were sent all over Malaya. Sanggat came especially from Kinta (Perak), Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Pahang. It was a first ever Sikh congregation and the Sanggat was estimated at about 800. It was a big number considering the circumstances then.

The Akhand Path had ended on the Amrit Vela on the morning of 26.12.1903 and was followed by Asa Ki Vaar kirtan and later by lectures and kathaas (religious discourses).

At 3 pm the same day, there was another diwan of kirtan and kethaas and lecturers. There was a unanimous clamour to form a formal registered society in Malaya to cater for the religious, cultural, education and other needs of the community.

That night, the Gurdwara at Taiping was lighted up to continue celebrating the Birthday of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji.

On the morning of 27.12.1903, after Assa Ki Vaar and ketha kirtan, a meeting was held. With strong and loud jaikaaras of ‘Boley-so-nihal, sat sri akal’, was born the ‘Khalsa Diwan Muluk Malaya’, later known as Khalsa Diwan Malaysia.

The officials chosen were:

President: S Gurdit Singh Ji (Subehdaar Major from Taiping)
Vice President: Dr Sunder Singh Ji (Penang)
Vice President: S Bahaal Singh Ji (Jemaadaar from Kulim)
Secretary: S Thakar Singh Ji Subehdaar (Taiping)
Ass. Secretary: Bhai Moola Singh Ji (Ipoh)
Treasurer: Munshi Khajaan Singh Ji (Taiping)
and 20 others as committee members from Taiping, Penang, Kedah, Batu Gajah, Ipoh, Kuala Kangsar, Kuala Lumpur and Kampar.

So, we in Khalsa Diwan Malaysia are proud to be associated with Gurdwara Sahib Taiping as our roots were in Taiping. Even today, we are connected through our Punjabi Education Centre (PEC) in Taiping.

Khalsa Diwan Malaysia would like to convey its heartiest congratulations to the Sri Guru Singh Sabah and its members and the Sanggat of Taping on the 100th anniversary. We join you in your joyous and Dharmek celebrations.

Santokh Singh Randhawa, 
President ,
Khalsa Diwan Malaysia.


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