Giani Gurbachan Singh
ਗਿਆਨੀ ਗੁਰਬਚਨ ਸਿੰਘ
|30th Jathedar of Akal Takht|
6 August 2008 – 18 October 2018
|Preceded by||Joginder Singh Vedanti|
|Succeeded by||Jagtar Singh Hawara|
6 April 1948
Chakk Baja, Muktsar, Punjab
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Elevation as Jathedar of Akal Takht
Singh joined Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) as a Sewadar at Muktsar. He served 36 years at SGPC beginning in 1972 and became head priest at Amritsar before becoming Jathedar on 6 August 2008.
On 5 December 2011, Jathedars of all five Takhts including Jathedar of Akal Takht, Giani Gurbachan Singh awarded Panth Rattan Fakhr-e-Qaum (literally "Jewel of the community, pride of the nation") to Chief Minister of Punjab, Parkash Singh Badal. He was awarded this title at Akal Takht for his service towards the Sikh Nation by creating many memorials pertaining to Sikhi such as Virasat-e-Khalsa, besides being imprisoned for long time and having faced atrocities during various Akali movements. A Sarbat Khalsa held by Sikh organisations on 10 November 2015 stated that it was withdrawing the award due to allegations of Civil Rights Violations and failure to recognize the oppression faced by the Sikhs of Punjab.
In October 2015, the Panj Pyare of Akal Takht (Bhai Satnam Singh Khanda, Bhai Mangal Singh, Bhai Tarlok Singh, Bhai Satnam Singh and Bhai Major Singh) issued a summon to the Jathedars of the five Takhats (Giani Gurbachan Singh, Giani Mal Singh, Giani Gurmukh Singh, Giani Iqbal Singh, Giani Ram Singh) to clarify their position on the pardoning of Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh for imitation of the 10th Sikh Guru. After the Jathedars refused to recognize the summon, the Panj Pyare of Akal Takht directed the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) to relieve the Jathedars from their duties. The SGPC ignored the Gurmata and suspended the Panj Pyare from Akal Takht.
A Sarbat Khalsa convened by radical Sikh organisations appointed Jagtar Singh Hawara as the jathedar of Akal Takht. SGPC President Avtar Singh Makkar however stated that its convening was against the principles of Sikhism and its decisions were null and void. He added that the removal of jathedars came under Sikh Gurdwaras Act, 1925 and no one could challenge the SGPC's authority.
On 18 October 2018, Gurbachan Singh resigned from his post and the search for the next Jathedar was underway.
- Correspondent, Tribune India. "At Sarbat Khalsa, hardliners appoint Beant-killer Hawara Akal Takht chief" (11 November 2015). Tribune India. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
- About Jathedar Gurbachan Singh
- Why a road-safety rule has upset some Sikhs
- Correspondent, HT. "Sarbat Khalsa appoints Jagtar Singh Hawara as Akal Takht jathedar" (10 November 2015). Hindustan Times. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
- "kal Takht Sahib Punj Piare Summon Appointed Jathedars". Sikh24 News & Updates. 21 October 2015. Retrieved 15 October 2016.
- "231015 Sikh Channel News: Panj Pyare issue Gurmata regarding Panj Takht Jathedars". Sikh Channel. 24 October 2015. Retrieved 15 October 2016.
- "SGPC President's decision to suspend Akal Takht 'Panj Piare' draws flak". The Times of India. 22 October 2015. Retrieved 16 October 2016.
- At Sarbat Khalsa, hardliners appoint Hawara Akal Takht Jathedar
- "SGPC emergency meet on Monday to take call on new Takht jathedar". Hindustan Times. 20 October 2018. Retrieved 30 December 2018.
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