UK Namdhari Sangat - BASANT PANCHMI MELA in Southall - 5 Feburary 2006

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LISTEN to a selection of the 
kirtan & diwan on the day

05:30-07:30am asa di var
07:30am-08:00am path de bhog
08:00-08:30 morning langar
08:30-13:00pm mela samagham

On Sunday. 5 Feburary 2006, Namdhari Sikh Sangat from all corners of the UK converged to Southall to celebrate basant panchmi. However the real significance of basant panchmi for namdharis is the avtar diwas of Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji. The sadh sangat, in the hundreds, gathered in the SPCC community hall from early hours of Sunday and the mela samagham went into late afternoon. Representatives of Singh Sabaha gurdwara, Ramgardia gurdwara and SPCC were among the guests in the congregation.

Ustad Harbhajan Singh & jatha - asa di var

The celebrations of the birth anniversary of Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji started off at 2 am by the customary naam-simran ardaas, led by Suba Jagtar Singh. A havan was performed by the sangat. Meanwhile Ustad Harbhajan Singh along with jathas from Birmingham, London and Southall recited the hymns of Asa Di var in a melodious presentation. The morning session concluded with numerous Paatha de Bhog and the session finished on a high note. The sangat enjoyed a short break as langar was served in the downstairs kitchen hall. Meanwhile the preparations for the mela were in full swing in the upper main hall.

paath de bhogs

sangat at mela

First on stage was Bibi Narinder Kaur and Jatha with the composition Saun yaar hamar saajan.This jatha is trained by ragis Surjit Singh and Ranbir Singh. UK secretary Bibi Daljit Kaur, after reading a kavita, welcomed the congregation to Southall and asked blessings of Sri Satguru Jagjit Singh Ji to guide the sangat during the mela. Next on stage was Sant Ajit Singh Engineer. His spoke on the historical aspects of basant panchmi and its relevance to the Sikh Religion.

Southall's young childrens group, from ages 3-12 yrs, led by Satwant Chana, narrated the sanagt the happenings in Sri Bhaini Sahib during the birth of Satguru Ram Singh Ji. During this performance other young children showered flower petals on Satguru Ji's assan.

southall childrens group

children shower petals on aasan

Students of Ragi Surjit Singh (sarangiwale), who learn at the Namdhari Sikh Center in Southall followed with their performances. Nineteen pupils with a array of instruments (sitars, sarahgis, tarshahnais. tanpuras, taus and tabla) performed a spell bounding classical composition which captured the attention of the entire congregation. Student Avter Singh followed this with a vocal recital of the shabad subh dekhye dekhye ji.

students of surjit singh

avtar singh and accompanying artists shaam kaur

9 year old Shaam Kaur was the next child on stage. She started with the kavita Jassa singh da dulara in punjabi, followed in english by a very inspired speech on Satguru Ram Singh Ji's passion and hukams for equality of women in the community. The trend of young girls on stage carried on with three students of Ustad Gurdev Singh, performing the next three short items.

gurdev singh and students


Bibi Anoop & Balbir Kaur and jatha (Birmingham) spoke about the times and life of Sri Satguru Ram Singh Ji, concluding with a shabad. The high caliber of gurmat sangeet carried on with dekh phool phool phooley sung by Bibi Pawan Kaur (daughter of Ustad Harbhajan Singh Ji) & Bibi Mann Kaur's presentation of Vari vari jayaun gurgopala. Both were accompanied on tabla by Southall's Kulwant Singh Klutch.

Sant Dyal Singh's half hour diwan & katha enthralled the sangat before the final performance of the mela by Gurdev Singh's students Byant Singh and Harman Kaur.


Closing Speechs:

UK Treasurer Narinder Singh Ryatt in his maiden speech to the sangat informed that the tsanumi releif appeal collected 13,900-00. This effort by the sangat was put to a very good cause - with the help of Thakaer Uday Singh Ji, 200 homes were build in the Tamil Nadu coastal region for poverty stricken and homeless people.

Pradhan Sulkhan Singh thanked the sadh sangat for attending the mela and all the sevadars for running the mela. Special tribute was paid to two members of the sangat for their seva to the sangat - Ustad Harbhajan Singh & Kirpal Singh Chana. Both were presented with plaques from the sangat for their outstanding acheivements.

Ustad Ji receive plaque from Mr SianUstad Harbhajan Singh was honoured for his unaccountable contribution to promote Gurmat Sangeet in India and especially the UK. Virtually every namdhari music artist has passed under his wings including Baljit Singh, Mohan Singh, Sukhdev Singh, Kula, Balwant Singh from Sri Bhaini Sahib. The present crop of all ragis and music artists in the UK have had training from Ustad Ji.

He has the distinction of having been bestowed the title 'ustad' by His Holiness Sri Satguru Jagjit Singh Ji - as Satguru Ji said " Harbhajan is like the tree (ustad) from which many fruits (music students) will come forth".

Ustad Ji started his musical journey at the age of 8ys. He took his early music training in the Dilruba & Vocal from Ustad Tara Singh, the eminent Sikh musician. He furthered his knowledge in Gurbani Dhrupad Dhamar vocals and Dhrupad, Dhamar and Thumri under the guidance of Shri Chandarhans, Maharaj Bir Singh and maestro of Jaipur, Pandit Mahadev Prashad (Kathak) respectively. With the blessing of Sri Satguru Jagjit Singh Ji, Harbhajan Singh became the disciple of the world renowned Sarod maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan, to learn the art of Sitar playing.

Today he is one of the most prominent musicians to have combined the classical music of North India and the devotional gurbani singing unique to Sikhism. 

Ustad Ji is putting on paper all ragas in notation form so that Gurmat Sangeet is preserved for generations to come.

kirpal singh receives plaque from bachan singh bhuller Although settled in Delhi, Ustad Ji has been teaching and training Namdhari musicians all over the world, including Sri Bhaini Sahib's music school, from which have emerged many 'fruits' as mentioned by Satguru Ji and at the Leeds School of Music in the UK.


Kirpal Singh Chana: alias the 'CD' man, has spend his entire free time in collecting, recording and digitizing vocal and visual information on Namdhari gurmat sangeet. His passion and dedication is the strength of his devotion (and the weakness of his critics) to this immense program of preserving Satguru Jis Pavan Pravitar updesh, and a unparallel discography of Sangeet, kirtan, kathas and kavitas. His recent passion is to create DVDs whereby the sangat can almost virtually be present in Sri Bhaini Sahib, Malerkolta etc right from the living rooms. His vast collection can be seen on his web site

The role of stage secretary was performed by Sant Gurtejpal Singh Chana and Daljit Kaur Ryatt. All performances can be heard on the

LISTEN to a selection of the  kirtan & diwan on the day
Streaming Audio from

paath de bhog and morning ardas  
Bibi Narinder Kaur and Jatha (Students of Surjit Singh) Saun yaar hamar saajan
UK Secretary Bibi Daljit Kaur kavita and introduction
Ajit Singh Engineer katha and vikhyan
Southall's young childrens group katha
Students of Ragi Surjit Singh (sarangiwale) Nineteen pupils with a array of instruments (sitars, sarahgis, tarshahnais. tanpuras, taus and tabla) perform a classical composition
Student Avter Singh vocal recital of the shabad - subh dekhye dekhye ji.
Shaam Kaur kavita and speech
students of Ustad Gurdev Singh listen
Bibi Anoop Kaur and jatha (Birmingham) atha and vikhyan
Bibi Pawan Kaur shabad - dekh phool phool phooley
Bibi Maan Kaur shabad - Vari vari jayaun gurgopala
Sant Dyal Singh diwan & katha
Gurdev Singh's students Byant Singh and Harman Kaur classical composition
Pradhan Sulkhan Singh closing speech and tributes to Ustad Harbhajan Singh and Kirpal Singh Chana