The Damdami Taksal (Punjabi: ਦਮਦਮੀ ਟਕਸਾਲ; [Damadamī ṭakasāl]) is a Sikh educational organization in India. Its headquarters are located in the town of Chowk Mehta, approximately 25 miles north of the city of Amritsar.
In 1706, after the Battle of Muktsar, Guru Gobind Singh camped at Sabo Ki Talwandi. The place became known as Damdama i.e. a halting place (or breathing place), this place is now referred to as Damdama Sahib (In 1737, Damdama Sahib was considered to be the highest seat of learning for the Sikhs). Damdami Taksal claims to be over 300 years old and names Guru Gobind Singh as its founder == Even today Damdami Taksal is the highest seat of learning for the Sikhs to learn
The word taksal (literally 'mint') refers to an education institute or community of students who associate themselves to a particular Sant or prominent spiritual leader. "In 1706..... Gobind Singh...... is said to have founded a distinguished school of exegesis". It was later headed up by Baba Deep Singh According to the Damdami Taksal, it was entrusted with the responsibility of teaching the reading (santhyia), analysis (vichar) and recitation of the Sikh scriptures by Guru Gobind Singh.
Jatha Bhindran Mehta or Bhindran Taksal is considered the current Damdami Taksal.
In 1975, a large event to commemorate the 300th anniversary martyrdom of Guru Tegh Bahadur was attended by Indira Gandhi and the then leader of the Damdami Taksal (Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale). This was the starting point of tensions between Damdami Taksal and the Indian Congress Government. The dispute[note 1] was about who was the leader and who had the upmost authority over the Sikh people, the Guru Granth Sahib or Indira Gandhi. Jarnail Singh was declared terrorist by Govt. of India which lead to operation Bluestar to elimiate terroristes occupying Golden Temple with Arms.
During British Colonial rule, Sunder Singh Bhindranwale[note 2] set about purging diversity in Sikh doctrine, ritual and practice, hoping to have a uniform Sikh community. Part of this strategy was to have a standardized code of conduct (Rehat Maryada). Gurbachan Singh (successor of Sunder singh)established Gurdwara Gurdarshan Parkash at Mehta, Amritsar district, which now is the headquarters of today's Damdami Taksal.
Sunder Singh was succeeded by Gurbachan Singh Bhindranwale in 1930, after whom Kartar Singh Bhindranwale continued his work in 1961. In 1977, after the death of Kartar Singh, Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale became the head of Damdami Taksal. Baba Thakur Singh Bhinderwale took over Damdami Taksal in the absent of Sant Baba Jarnail Singh in 1984.  Sant Baba Thakur Singh always used to say that he is not the head of Damdami Taksal but is acting as head and that Sant Baba Jarnail Singh is the head of Damdami Taksal. Baba Thakur Singh died in 2004. Sant Baba Harnam Singh Ji Khalsa Bhindranwale is the current and 16th Jathedar of Damdami Taksal. In 2004 the key figures in the Sikh nation flocked to Gurdwara Gurdarshan Parkash to give the leadership of Taksal over to Baba Harnam Singh Ji who has now become an influential figure in the Sikh nation.
The Damdami Taksal have their own version of the Sikh Code of Conduct, the Gurmat Rehat Maryada, which differs from the Rehat Maryada published by the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee. Some differences include the reading of the full Anand Sahib in the morning Nitnem and not eating meat, fish, and eggs.
- When Indira Gandhi came onto the stage in the presence of Guru Granth Sahib, while all those on the stage arose to welcome and respect her, but it was only Kartar Singh Bhindranwale remained seated. On the stage Kartar Singh spoke saying no one is more powerful than our Guru and we are not required to get up and pay respect to her, he was applauded by the people.
- Sunder Singh was from the Bhindran village and thus was referred to as Bhindranwale, "the one from Bhindran"
- Baba Thakur Singh of Damdami Taksal dead
- Mahmood 1997, p. Page 75
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In 1706, when Gobind Singh...he is said to have founded a distinguished school of exegesis.
- H. S. Singha (2000). The Encyclopedia of Sikhism. Hemkunt Press. p. 57. ISBN 9788170103011.
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- Marty, Martin (1996). Fundamentalisms and the State: Remaking Polities, Economies, and Militance, Volume 3. University of Chicago Press. p. 267. ISBN 9780226508849.
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- Congressional Record, V. 151, Pt. 10, June 20 to June 27, 2005, Volume 151 of Congressional Record. United States of America, Government Printing Office. 2009. p. 13511.
|last1=in Authors list (help)
- "Gurmat Rehat Maryada". Damdamitaksaal.org. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- McLeod, W. H. (2009). The A to Z of Sikhism. Scarecrow Press. p. 14. ISBN 9780810863446.
- Poy, Buddy (2011). Vegetarianism Unmasked. AuthorHouse. p. 83. ISBN 9781463408756.
1. Dr Harjinder Singh Dilgeer, Sikh History in 10 Volumes, The Sikh University Press, 2012.
2. Dr Harjinder Singh Dilgeer, Damdami Taksaal Te Hor Lekh, The Sikh University Press, December 2014.