|Died||18 May 2012 (115/116)|
|Philosophy||Sant mat (Surat Shabd Yog Saadhna)|
|Guru||Pandit Ghure Lal Sharma|
|Honors||Certified Indian Freedom Fighter|
JaiGuruDev was the name used by Tulsidas Maharaj, a religious leader in northern India. He was imprisoned for 20 months during a period of political unrest in 1975 and led the Doordarshi political party in the 1980s and 1990s, unsuccessfully campaigning for election to the Indian national parliament. He died in 2012 at an unconfirmed age of 116.
No firm information is available on Baba JaiGuruDev’s birth date or early life. A hagiography has grown around him including stories that hold special meaning to his devotees and are considered evidence of his divine nature. JaiGuruDev is said to have been born in a Yadav family in Khitora, a small village in the Etawah district in Uttar Pradesh, India. His father was a landlord. When he was a child he lost his parents. As she died his mother is said to have asked him to find Lord Krishna and avoid being ensnared in transient worldly pleasures.
On 29 June 1975, during the Emergency, he was imprisoned. He was first kept in Agra central prison and later on moved to Bareilly Central Jail. Due to the crowds of followers he attracted, he was moved to Bangalore Central Jail then Tihar prison near New Delhi. He was released at 3:00pm on 23 March 1977. Every year his followers celebrate this day as Mukti Divas, fasting until 3:00pm.
Baba JaiGuruDev led a non-profit organization named JaiGuruDev Dharm Pracharak Sanstha that operates from his ashram in Mathura, with a mission to spread the messages of the Sant Mat doctrine.There are more than 20 crore followers of baba jaigurudev from around the world who believe and follow the way of sant mat.
After death, his assets were estimated at 120 billion Indian Rupees (approximately US$2.15 billion), including 250 luxury cars. His trust owns hundreds of acres of land beside the Delhi-Agra national highway.
JaiGuruDev's ashram and his followers have had confrontations with local farmers, landowners, with the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and the Uttar Pradesh State Industrial Development Corporation (UPSIDC).
- Archaeological Survey of India: The ASI stated that JaiGuruDev's disciples damaged 14 mounds of historical importance by digging in search of ancient artifacts or constructing the ashram, and have not handed over any artifacts found to the ASI.
- UPSIDC: The UPSIDC filed 16 cases in the Mathura court accusing the ashram of encroaching on hundreds of acres of industrial land.
- Farmers: The Mathura district magistrate received 23 complaints from farmers, alleging that their land had been taken over forcefully by the ashram.
A report from the Sub-Divisional Magistrate indicates that the JaiGuruDev ashram is spread over 33 hectares, of which more than 13 hectares do not belong to them. Of this encroached land, 11 hectares belongs to the UPSIDC and the rest are common land owned by the local village council (gram samaj).
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- "Baba Jai Gurudev, 116, passes away". Newstrack India. Indo Asian News Service. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
- "Spiritual guru Baba Jai Gurudev passes away". 19 May 2012.
- "Mathura godman's treasure-hunt becomes ASI's nightmare". Indian Express. Archived from the original on 22 December 2013. Retrieved 26 September 2016.