Shaheed Bhai Harbhajan Singh Ji was born on 17th April 1947 in the village of Bhattian in Gurdaspur. His father Sardar Jagat Singh was a Gursikh since 1923-24 to the present. Whenever I speak to him about Harbhajan Singh’s Shaheedi, he has an immediate shine in his eyes and tells me in a very cool and calm manner that his son has managed to achieve so much in his thirty-one years and has managed to get much further than us. He says with great humbleness that he is very proud that his son has given Shaheedi to protect the honour of the Khalsa Panth and against the disrespect shown to Guru Sahib.
Bhai Harbhajan Singh’s mother is also an Amritdhari Bibi. On her son’s Shaheedi she thanked Akal Purkh, as Guru Sahib’s Hukam is:
Jis kee basat this agay rakeh Prabh ki agay maneh matheh
She did not shed one tear and even tried to stop anybody else who was crying. His mother, Harbans Kaur has a very gentle personality and never even speaks loudly to anyone at home. Most of what Harbhajan Singh achieved was due to his Gurmukh mother and father.
Shaheed Bhai Harbhajan Singh Ji leaves behind his wife Joginder Kaur Ji who wears a Keski and three children, Baljinder Singh, Kulwant Kaur and Balkar Singh. His wife is living in Chardi Kala according to God’s Will. Bhai Harbhajan Singh has three brothers: Sardar Niranjan Singh who is a teacher in a government school, Sardar Gurmeet Singh who is with the BSF and Sardar Hardev Singh who is a farmer. He also has two sisters who are married. He was the only one who was Amritdhari out of his brothers and sisters.
Bhai Harbhajan Singh studied up to the tenth class in the government school of Kahnuwaan. After his this he began studying for some time in college, but then enrolled to do a course in Agriculture at Ludhiana University. After completing the course he started working as an Inspector in Gobindpur block. About three years ago he took Amrit with all his family at the Akhand Kirtani Jatha Smagam at Batala on Guru Nanak Ji’s Gurpurb. He used to enjoy wearing fashionable clothes. A little while after taking Amrit he started wearing the Khalsa Bana with Damala and blue Chola. He had a glowing face, a special shine in his eyes and was always in Chardi Kala.
Bhai Harbhajan Singh had the courage to always speak the truth to somebody’s face and would never agree to anything that wasn’t based on Gurmat. From the day he took Amrit he was a complete Bebeki, so much so that he only drank milk milked by the hands of an Amritdhari. He was admitted to hospital for a period of time, but he would not allow the doctors to touch his hair and left his fate in the hands of Akal Purakh. Guru Sahib healed him and made him well again quickly.
He would get up at Amrit Vela to do Naam Abyass according to Guru Sahib’s Hukkam. After Naam-Abyass he would recite the Banis of Japji, Jaap, Swaya, Chopai and Anand Sahib. Whenever he had more time he would also recite Asa Di Vaar, Sukhmani Sahib, Shabad Hazarai Pathshahi Dasvi and Shabad Hazarai Patshahi Panjmi. After Nitnem he would do Darshan of Guru Sahib and only then would he have something to eat.
He very much enjoyed performing and listening to Kirtan. He would sit the whole night, singing with the Kirtanis and doing Naam-Abyass. He would never sing a Shabad without first learning it by memory. Whenever he met another Gursikh, it would always be with great humbleness. He would go so far as to hold the other Gursikhs hand and start kissing it. He would always embrace Gursikhs and do Naam-Abyass with them and it would seem that they had not seen each other for ages. Whenever he met me, it was always in a very loving manner. Bhai Harbhajan Singh was also very close to Bhai Gurdial Singh Ladupur Ji, Bhai Joginder Singh Ji Nenokhot, Bhai Bakshish Singh Ji and Bhai Sarbjeet Singh Ji Udonangal. Once he met Bhai Surbjeet Singh who had his beard tied up at the time. Bhai Harbhajan Singh told him it was not becoming for a Gursikh to tie up his beard. Bhai Sarbjeet Singh immediately opened his beard and never tied it up again. This is an example of how other Singhs respected him.
Bhai Harbhajan Singh had great respect for Master Niranjan Singh Ji from Gurdaspur and greatly enjoyed his Kirtan.
Whenever he met Master Darshan Singh Ji Basrawa he would run to touch his feet and would never stop no matter how much Master Darshan Singh Ji tried. He had so much love for his fellow Gursikhs. Bhai Harbhajan Singh Ji gave so much to the Guru-Panth in his young age. According to the Guru’s Hukkam,’Thun Munn Sabh Sonp Gur Ko Hukam Munia Payai’, he gave everything to his Guru.