• Facebook icon
  • Twitter icon
  • You Tube icon


Gurdwara Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Bhai Rupa

Location - Bhai Rupa, Bathinda, Punjab, India

Associated with - Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji

Sikh Artifacts - Yes

Sarovar - None

Sarai - unknown

Bhai Rupa (also known as Roop Chand, 1614–1709) was the son of Bhai Sadhu.

Baba Akal Ji had a daughter named Bibi Soorti, both lived in village Wadda Ghar. Baba Akal arranged his daughter's wedding with the grandson of Bhai Sultania Sadey, from village Tuklani, who was named Bhai Sadhu.

After the marriage Bibi Soorti took her husband Bhai Sadhu to Daroli Bhai Ki to meet and receive blessings from Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji. Thereafter, Bhai Sadhu became a Gursikh.

In 1614, Bibi Soorti gave birth to a son. Bhai Sadhu and Bibi Soorti took their son to meet and receive blessings from Guru Hargobind. Guru Sahib named the baby as 'Roop Chand' who became Bhai Rupa.

When Bhai Rupa was young he would often help his father Bhai Sadhu work the land. One day Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu went outside the village to do some work. They took goatskin carrying water which was hung on the branch of a tree. As it was a hot day, after working for some time Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu felt thirsty.

Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu stopped for a break to drink the water. They found that the water was refreshingly cold. Moved with devotion they decide to save the water thinking they would offer it to Guru Hargobind.

Unfortunately, after continuing to work Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu were overcome with dehydration and collapsed. Guru Hargobind who was at Daroli Bhai Ki felt something was wrong, Guru Ji immeadiately left and travelled 51 km's to where Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu were unconscious.

Guru Hargobind revived the fallen Sikhs by sprinkling water on them. Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu offered their water to Guru Ji as they had intended and then also drank some. Guru Hargobind was pleased with the devotion of his Sikhs. The site is now marked by Gurdwara Sri Jand Sahib Kotha Guru.

Afterwards, Guru Hargobind instructed Bhai Rupa to help spread the message of Sikhi. Bhai Sadhu told Guru Hargobind that the villagers of Tuklani village were jealous of them. Guru Ji told father and son to establish a new village, at a distance, and name it 'Bhai Rupa'. Bhai Rupa and Bhai Sadhu found a nice location and subsquently advised Guru Hargobind.

In 1630-31, Guru Hargobind laid the foundation of the village by installing a wooden pillar and named the village 'Bhai Rupa Ka' which is now known as Bhai Rupa. The wooden pillar still exists and can still be seen at the Gurdwara Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Bhai Rupa. Guru Hargobind stayed here for 6 months and 9 days helping establish the new village.

Guru Hargobind in recognition of devotion, honoured Roop Chand with the title of 'Bhai' (own brother) and put him in charge of the spiritual welfare of the new region of Malwa and the country south of Sutlej. With his own hands Guru Ji made Bhai Roop Chand the masand of the area and put on his forehead the tilak, (saffron mark of leadership) and gave a karchha, a long spoon, asking him to run langar to feed the poor and the needy. This karchha is a symbol of veneration for the family. Guru Hargobind also remarked that even fresh cut wood would burn like dry wood in the langar fire. Later, Guru Hargobind stopped here with the Sikh army.

The sons of Bhai Rupa, Bhai Dharam Singh and Bhai Param Singh received Amrit from Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji and travelled to Nanded. Bhai Dharam Singh returned with news of Guru Gobind Singh's joti jot. When Bhai Rupa heard this, he too re-joined with God. The place where Bhai Rupa left his body is Bhai Ki Samadh. Indeed, this is a very special family that has strong roots with its links to Sikh ithihaas.

Next to Bhai Rupa's house, a Gurdwara was built in Guru Hargobind's honour. The present Gurdwara Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Bhai Rupa, a two-storey domed building, marks that site inside the village. Guru ka Langar is across a narrow lane. In the same direction is the pavilion, raised recently to accommodate larger diwans. The Gurdwara, though affiliated to the Gurdwara Local Committee, Bhai Rupa, is managed by the descendants of Bhai Rupa.

Close to Gurdwara Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Bhai Rupa, in a private house belonging to one of the descendants of Bhai Rupa, where there is preserved an old rath or chariot. The rath, see pictures, is said to have been brought from Dera Ram Rai at Dehradun by Bhai Gian Chand, a grandson of Bhai Rupa. According to local tradition, the rath was a gift to Sri Guru Ram Das by the Sangat of Kashmir. The rath was used by Sri Guru Arjan Sahib Ji, Sri Guru Hargobind Sahib Ji and Sri Guru Har Rai Sahib Ji.

It is said that Mata Ganja Ji went to seek blessings from Baba Budha on this rath. Ram Rai Ji on the instructions of Guru Har Rai went to Delhi to meet mughal emperor Aurangzeb on this rath Sahib. But he disobeyed Guru Har Rai's orders and distorted Gurbani. As a result, Guru Har Rai excommunicated Ram Rai. Ram Rai went to Dehradun and stayed there for his rest of life. The rath remained with him until the end of his life. Later Ram Rai's wife, Mata Punjab Kaur spread news that whoever would be willing to remove the rath without a horse or ox can take it. Bhai Gian Chand retrieved the rath himself by pulling it all the way from Dehradun.

Back Back to Historic Sikh Gurdwaras list

Guide To Discover Sikhism |   Guide To Becoming A Pure Sikh|   Guide To Carrying Out Nitnem