Sant Jawala Singh, Scholar, Author and Theologian

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Sant Jawala Singh (26 Oct. 1878-1938) a pious and learned Sikh who also worked as a royal tutor for a time, was born at the village of DhamTari Kalari, in Hoshiarpur district of the Punjab. He learned to read Gurmukhi and Sikh Scripture at the hands of Giani Prem Das (a Udasi priest), continuing his religious studies under different scholars and theologians (including Sant Khaan Singh Virakat of Sukkho in the then Rawalpindi district of British India (now part of Pakistan).

The death register of the Municipal Committee of Patiala, where he died, shows him in the parentage column, as a chela or disciple of Sant Gulab Singh. Such was Sant Jawala Singh`s reputation as a scholar that in 1905, he was appointed to instruct Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala (1891-1938), then a young prince of 14, in Sikh texts and doctrine. Brought up in the austere way of a Nirmala sadhu, Sant Jawala Singh now adopted the attire of a courtier, though he remained at heart a deeply religious person.

The collection of rare articles became one of his hobbies. He also wrote humorous verse in Braj. However, only one of his many works, a sixpage Siharfi Veddnt Svarup Bodhm, published in 1892, has survived. It is an acrostic in Punjabi, in baint metre, based on letters of the Persian alphabet.

Sant Jawala Singh died at Patiala on 24 March 1938 in a stampede that occurred during the funeral procession of his most renowned pupil, Maharaja Bhupinder Singh.


Bibliography Ganesha Singh, Mahant, Nirmal Bliushcin nrthdl Itihfis Nirmal Jihfkh. Aniritsar, n.d. Gs.S.