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The Multifarious Faces of Sikhism throughout Sikh History
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Panch Khalsa Diwan cont'd

Teja Singh Bhasauria also wished to substitute the term ‘Karah Parshad’ (term used to refer to the sanctified pudding made with flour, sugar and water), with that of ‘Maha Parshad’.

Karah Parshad
An Akali Nihang gives out 'Karah Parshad' at Baba Bkala, Amritsar District, Punjab, circa 1998

He felt that this change was justified and substantiated by works of Bhai Gurdas and claimed that ‘Maha Parshad’ was being incorrectly utilized to refer to ‘Chatka’ meat. Indeed, this belief has trickled down and some Sikhs today incorrectly believe that the term ‘Maha Parshad’ does indeed refer to ‘Karah Parshad’.

Maha Parshad
A Nihang Singh disembowels a lamb that has been killed by 'Chakta'

In 1911, Teja Singh Bhasauria produced a ‘Rehitnama’ (code of conduct) for his followers entitled ‘The Khalsa Rehit Parkash’. Baba Gurbachan Singh Khalsa ‘Bhindrawaley’ states that the British gave Teja Singh Bhasauria a printing press, which he utilized to produce copies of Adi Guru Durbar. However, these copies lacked the portions that Teja Singh objected to.

Folio of Adi Guru Durbar dated Samat 1832 (AD 1775), depicting
the 'Raagmala', one of the portions that Teja Singh Bhasuaria objected to

This despicable act earned him the rancor of the Sanatan and Tat Khalsa Singh Sabhia Sikhs. In 1928, the S.G.P.C. themselves excommunicated Teja Singh Bhasauria from the Sikh faith. Akali Nihang Baba Santa Singh, the present head of the Akali Nihangs made the following comment with regards to Teja Singh Bhasauria and the modern remnants of his legacy, the Akhand Kirtani Jatha (click here for more information on the Akhand Kirtani Jatha):

These ‘Bhasuria’ (followers of Teja Singh Bhasauria), who now are called ‘Akhand Kirtania’. There was a person called Teja Singh Bhasauria. Bhasaur village - if we come from Malerkotla to Ludihana is there on one side. There he built his Gurdwara. He adorned his turban like us (ie. like the Akali Nihangs). What is proper or improper conduct (meaning made his own rules) - he initiated people his own way. Boys or girls. He would have two Singhs put their lips to initiate’s ears another Singh to initiate’s lips and chant “Vah Guru Vah Guru”. What were they doing? They say, “We are putting in them, Vah Guru”. These are them --- He [Teja Singh] cut out ‘Raagmala’, excluded ‘Bhagta Bani’, instead of, ‘Pritham Bhagauti Simar Keh’, he began to use, ‘Pritham Satnam Simar Keh Guru Nanak Lee Dhiaeh’. All this he did, Teja Singh Bhasuria, now they call themselves ‘Akhand Kirtania’. That Randhir Singh was from Narangwal (a village near Ludhiana). I know all this. I lived near them in Ludhiana. Their traditions are some other (meaning they have no lineage). Their traditions are distinct from Sikh traditions.------ What deeds haven’t these traitors done this is the truth. They denied scripture, criticised scripture. Such are their evil deeds.’
Akali Nihang Baba Santa Singh, transcript of interview on 27-10-1999

AKhand Kirtani Jatha

Members of the 'Bhai Randhir Singh da Jatha', also known as the Akhand Kirtani Jatha, circa mid 20th century

The sentiments expressed above by Akali Nihang Baba Santa Singh are mild in comparison to what he may state on other occasions with regards to the Akhand Kirtani Jatha , or Teja Singh Bhasauria.

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