Bibi Amro was the daughter of Guru Angad devji, the Second Guru. She was born in 1532 in the village of Khadur Sahib, District Amritsar. She received her early education and training directly from her parents Guru Angad Dev ji and Mata Khivi. Guru Angad spent a lot of time with his children. He taught them the Gurmukhi script that he had revised and simplified which is used in Guru Granth Sahib. When she came of age she was married to Bhai Jasoo son of Manak Chand of Basarke village.
As was the custom of the day she was sent to live with her husband's family. Her father encouraged her to continue doing kirtan and to preach Sikhism to all that she came in contact with. Amar Das who was her husband's uncle was quite taken by her sweet melodious voice when he heard her singing shabads (holy hymns). It was she who first introduced him to the teachings of Sikhism. As his interest grew it was she who sent him to her father to learn more about these teachings. Amar Das was so deeply influenced by Guru Angad Dev ji that he became a devout Sikh, so much that Guru Angad Dev ji announced him as his Successor. Thus Guru Amar Das ji, the third Guru got to his destiny of becoming a Guru through Bibi Amro ji.
Years laters when Guru Amar Das ji gave structure to the Sikh Nation and organised his preachers into 22 teaching districts he put Bibi Amro ji in-charge of one of these districts that he callcd Manji. What Manji meant was that a person who was leading a Kirtan to be sit on the Manji while whole sangat in front of him.
The person occupying Manji was the Sikh preacher appointed by Guru Amardas. This appointmcet can best be compared to the position of Bishop in thc Christian Church today. It was an administrative position, with full responsibility for the equality and content of the preaching. She also would have the responsibility of collecting revenues and making decisions for the welfare of her diocese. Her manji or diocese included Basarke, her husband's village, where they made their home. It is the direct result of the efforts of Bibi Amro and other Sikh preaches that Amritsar today is synonomous with Sikhism. Today, close to the village of Basarke, there is a tank (man made pond) bearing the name Bibi Amro da Talab (Tank of Bibi Amro) in her memory.
1] Copyright © Alice Basarke "The Champion of Women."