JHAṆḌĀ RĀMDĀS, popularly called Ramdās, a village in Amritsar district of the Punjab, celebrates Bābā Buḍḍhā of revered memory in the Sikh tradition. His son, Bhāī Bhānā, founded this village and named it after his own grandson, Jhaṇḍā, and the family shifted here from their ancestral village of Katthū Naṅgal. The long-lived Bābā Buḍḍhā himself had spent most of his time at the feet of the Gurūs, from Gurū Nānak to Gurū Hargobind, but he would occasionally come to visit his family at Jhaṇḍā Rāmdās. The last few months of his life were spent in this village. As the end came near, he longed to have a glimpse of the Gurū. Gurū Hargobind did arrive at Jhaṇḍā Rāmdās before Bābā Buḍḍhā died, on Maghar sudī 4, 1688 Bk/16 November 1631. The Gurū himself performed the last rites. Three gurdwārās now commemorate the Gurū's visit and the passing away of Bābā Buḍḍhā.
GURDWĀRĀ BUṄGA SĀHIB, 200 metres east of the village, marks the site where Gurū Hargobind had encamped. From here he, according to the local tradition, went barefoot to see Bābā Buḍḍhā..
GURDWĀRĀ SAMĀDHĀṄ, about one kilometre northeast of Jhaṇḍā Ramdās, was built on the site of the cremation of Bābā Buḍḍhā. Gurū Hargobind gave his shoulder to the bier, put the flame to the pyre and collected the ashes on the fourth day after the cremation.
GURDWĀRĀ TAP ASTHĀN BĀBĀ BUḌḌHĀ JĪ, on the southern edge of the village, stands where the venerable family had once lived and where Bābā Buḍḍhā had died. It is said that the Lahore troops sacked Jhaṇḍā Rāmdās in 1824 and destroyed the house of Bābā Buḍḍhā's descendants. When Mahārājā Raṇjīt Siṅgh heard of this, he was filled with remorse. He then had this gurdwārā built on the site of the demolished house. The Gurdwārā stands on a raised plinth in the middle of a walled compound which is below the street level. It comprises a square sanctum, with a verandah all around. The floor is of white marble and the walls are lined with marble slabs. The interior surface of the walls as well as the ceiling is decorated with stucco work inset with reflecting glass pieces and painted artistically in gold, red and blue. The Gurū Granth Sāhib is seated on a canopied throne of white marble.
The Gurdwārā is managed by the Shiromaṇī Gurdwārā Parbandhak Committee. It owns 2,200 acres of land. Besides the daily prayers and the usual Sikh anniversaries, largely attended gatherings take place on the fifth day of the dark half of each lunar month.
Major Gurmukh Siṅgh (Retd.)