CHANDĀ SIṄGH (d. 1930), better known as Chandā Siṅgh Vakīl or lawyer, was born at Kāliāṅvālī, district Sirsā, in the present Haryāṇā state, in a Sikh farming family of moderate means. He was the eldest of the three sons of Diāl Siṅgh. An attack of smallpox in his childhood had deprived him of his eyesight, but this did not deter him from carving his way in life. He passed his primary classes from the village school and went to Amritsar for his middle school course. He took his Matriculation at Government High School, Delhi. He was gifted with a phenomenal memory and excelled at studies. Throughout his school career, he held a merit scholarship. He passed the qualifying examination in law from Lahore and started legal practice at Sirsā, where he soon made a name for himself as a lawyer.

         In April 1889, Chandā Siṅgh was married to Ved Kaur daughter of Bhāī Uttam Siṅgh of the village of Būṛā Ḍallā, in Gurdāspur district. The marriage was a significant one at that period of time. It was solemnized strictly in accordance with the Sikh rites, for the bride's father was an enthusiastic member of the Siṅgh Sabhā. He had selected Chandā Siṅgh from among seven likely young men by casting lots in front of the Gurū Granth Sāhib. He cheerfully accepted the choice thus made even though the bridegroom was blind. Chandā Siṅgh was administered amrit, i. e. the vows of the Khālsā, before the nuptials.

         Marriage into a Siṅgh Sabhā family brought Chandā Siṅgh into prominence in the Sikh community. He shifted from Sirsā to Fīrozpur, where he started taking active interest in the Siṅgh Sabhā. He was co- opted a member of the Khālsā Dīwān, Lahore. He and Giānī Ditt Siṅgh provided personal assistance to Dharam Siṅgh of Gharjākh, then working president of the Khālsā Dīwān. In 1890, he was appointed a member of the Khālsā College Establishment Committee and two years later he became a member of the working committee of the Khālsā Dīwān, Lahore, as well as of the Khālsā College Council. He also remained president of the Fīrozpur Siṅgh Sabhā for many years. He participated as a delegate in the annual session of the Indian National Congress at Lahore in December 1893, defying a resolution of the Khālsā Dīwān, Lahore, forbidding its members to attend the conference. Later, he figured prominently in two new Sikh societies - the Chief Khālsā Dīwān and the Sikh Educational Conference. During the Jaito campaign, he led out a jathā of Akālī volunteers from Fīrozpur and courted arrest. Chandā Siṅgh died on 4 May 1930. He had no sons, and his only daughter had predeceased him. He bequeathed his house, land and property to Srī Gurū Siṅgh Sabhā, Fīrozpur. As willed by him, his house was converted into a gurdwārā which is now known as Gurdwārā Akālgaṛh.


  1. Jagjit Siṅgh, Siṅgh Sabha Lahir. Ludhiana, 1974
  2. Dhillon, Gurdarshan Singh, "Character and Impact of the Singh Sabha Movement on the History of the Punjab. " Ph. D. thesis submitted in 1973 to the Punjabi University, Patiala.

Jagjīt Siṅgh