SRĪ GURŪ UPKĀR PRACHĀRNĪ SABHĀ i.e. an association for the propagation of the Gurū's deeds of compassion and charity was formed by a group of Sikh youth at Amritsar during the opening years of the twentieth century, with Bhāī (also known as Paṇḍit, being a learned scholar of religion) Gaṇḍā Siṅgh as president. The aims and objects of the society were, like those of the Siṅgh Sabhās in general, to propagate gurmat or the principles of Sikh religion and culture and to restore to the Sikh people their religious identity. More specifically, the Sabhā concerned itself with counteracting the attacks of the Ārya Kumār Sabhā of Amritsar against the Sikh religion. Death successively of some of its top leaders during the closing years of the nineteenth century had weakened the Lahore Khālsā Dīwān. The severest blow came with the passing away on 6 September 1901 of Giānī Ditt Siṅgh. Srī Gurū Upkār Prachārnī Sabhā attempted to fill the gap and joined polemic with the Ārya Kumār Sabhā. It had two separate cells --a debating club and a publicity department. Lectures and discourses by eminent Sikh scholars were arranged, and challenges of Ārya Kumār Sabhā for public debates readily accepted. A monthly Punjabi journal, Upkārī, was launched in 1902 under the editorship of Paṇḍit Gaṇḍā Siṅgh. Gaṇḍā Siṅgh also wrote a 256 page tract in Urdu, Nuskhah-i-Khabt-i-Dayānandīāṅ or Prescription for the insanity of the followers of Dayānand, in refutation of an essay by Lālā Sāhib Dayāl, llāj-i-Vahamāt-i-Ditt Siṅghīāṅ or Remedy for the fancies of the followers of Ditt Siṅgh. Gaṇḍā Siṅgh was in fact the moving spirit behind the Srī Gurū Upkār Prachārnī Sabhā, and his death, by plague, on 11 February 1910, signalled the end of its brief career.


  1. Dukhī, Munshā Siṅgh, Jīvan Bhāī Sāhib Bhāī Mohan Siṅgh Jī Vaid. Lahore, 1931
  2. Jagjit Siṅgh, Siṅgh Sabhā Lahir. Ludhiana, 1974

Jagjīt Siṅgh