Many interesting places in India have only developed on human beliefs and myths. Later people’s faith and respect turned that place into a unique one. Baba Mandir in Sikkim, India is such that kind of unique place. People believe that Baba Harbhajan Singh died while on duty. And his demise does not stop him to do his duties. Until Harbhajan Singh’s retirement age, the Indian army sent his salary to his family every month. Every year his belongings are sent to his family in Punjab when Army officers are on holiday.
If you can’t find peace in any place, head to Sikkim. It’s the place where you will truly believe in the goodness of nature and humanity. The state of Sikkim, nestled in the North-Eastern part of India, isn’t exactly on the tourist radar. But it should be. The state has so much to offer to visitors. You will fall short of words to describe its natural beauty.
Baba harbhajan Singh -Hero of Nathula
The temple of Baba Harbhajan Singh of East Sikkim has been built through various mysteries and stories. This temple located at an altitude of 13,123 ft in the conjunction of Nathula Pass and Jelepla Pass is just about 52 km from Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim.
Baba Harbhajan Singh is revered as the “Hero of Nathula” by soldiers of the Indian army. He born to a Sikh family on 30th August 1946 at Punjab, Harbhajan joined the Indian Army at the age of 20. He was posted at the border. On 4th October 1968, while escorting a mule column from his battalion headquarters at Tukla to Deng Chukla, he slipped and fell into a fast-flowing stream and got drowned. The army searched for his body for three days but didn’t found it. It is believed that one of his Sepoy friends was informed in his dream about the exact location of his body with his wish to be cremated there with full military honours. He was accorded the status of a saint(Baba) by the Indian Army. Later a memorial was built at the cremating spot which came to be known as Baba Harbhajan Singh Mandir.
Beliefs And myth About Baba Mandir
- The people of Sikkim and Indian Army officers still believe that even after the death of Baba Harbhajan Singh, his soul is still working in the border areas.
- Any army official not maintaining a clean and disciplined attire is punished with a slap by Baba himself. This shows how disciplined he was all his life.
- It is also believed that water kept at the Baba Harbhajan shrine becomes capable of curing ailing persons. Devotees, therefore, leave bottles of water in the name of ailing people and then give this blessed water to the sick.
- There is a belief in the army that Baba will warn them of an impending attack at least three days in advance.
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In honor of Baba Harbhajan Singh
- Every year on 11 September, a jeep departs with his personal belongings to the nearest railway station, New Jalpaiguri, from where it is then sent by train to the village of Kuka, in the Kapurthala district of Punjab. A small sum of money is contributed by soldiers posted in Nathula to be sent to his mother each month.
- The Army is on high alert when Baba is on leave.
- During flag meetings between the two nations at Nathu La, even the Chinese Army set a chair aside to honor him.
The End Story
Captain Harbhajan Singh retired from the army a few years back. Indian army hadn’t promoted him from Sepoy to the rank of a captain. One important thing is that his family never received a salary every month from the Indian Army directly. But the soldiers there created a fund in his honour which raises money for his family. In the year 2005, he was scheduled to retire but it postponed till the year 2006 based on his love for the duty.