GURDĀS, BHĀĪ, more precisely Bhāī Gurdās II, which description distinguishes him from his predecessor, Bhāī Gurdās who calligraphed Sikh Scripture, the Gurū Granth Sāhib, under the supervision of Gurū Arjan (1563-1606), was an eighteenth century poet famous for the vār, i.e. poem in folk form, in Hindized Punjabi, entitled Vār Srī Bhāgautī Jī Kī Pātshāhī Dasvīṅ Kī. The title of the poem was given as Vār Bhāī Gurdās Jī Kī in a manuscript (No. 1361) in the Sikh Reference Library, Amritsar. This poem is usually appended to the collection, Vārāṅ Bhāī Gurdās, which is the work of his predecessor. Another composition entitled Rāg Rāmkalī Kī Vār is also attributed to Gurdās II, but its subject matter, diction and style bear the closest affinity to the work of the senior Bhāī Gurdās to be categorically detached from it. This would confirm the assumption that the contribution of Bhāī Gurdās II amounts to the solitary composition which is generally anthologized as vār 41 in Vārāṅ Bhāī Gurdās. No biographical details are available about the poet.
Vār Srī Bhagautī Jī Kī is a composition comprising 28 pauṛīs or stanzas, 20 of the stanzas ending with the same line proclaiming the uniqueness of Gurū Gobind Siṅgh. A point especially seized by the poet is about Gurū Gobind Siṅgh having converted the saṅgat, fellowship of the Sikhs, into Khālsā. The entire poem is a panegyric to Gurū Gobind Siṅgh. Gurū Gobind Siṅgh is the upholder of goodness and vanquisher of evil. He is a valiant hero and his sword, symbolizing Kālikā, the power of the Almighty Lord, is the guarantee against evil. Stanza 22 refers to Gurū Gobind Siṅgh's predecessors Gurū Har Rāi, the Seventh Gurū, and Gurū Har Krishan, the Eighth Gurū. Stanza 23 alludes to Gurū Tegh Bahādur and his martyrdom. Concluding stanzas celebrate the glory of the Khālsā.
Rattan Siṅgh Jaggī