Gurudwara Banda Ghat

Gurudwara Banda Ghat Sahib is situated about 400 mtrs., upstream from Nagina Ghat. This is where Madho Das, a hot headed and headstrong Bairagi Sadhu had his abode. Guru Gobind Singh had heard about him from Mahant Jait Ram of Singh Dadu Dwara. His original name was Lachhman Das. He was native of Rajauri in Jammu and Kashmir. A Rajput by birth he had been trained in the martial arts and had been fond of hunting.

A chance killing of a pregnant doe at his hands had transformed him into a remorseful sinner in search of redemption. Having acquired some occult powers through austerities and single minded devotion to learning of such arts, he had become an arrogant recluse impatient with lesser mortals.

Guru Gobind Singh, within a few days of his arrival at Nanded, came to see him here, according to Bhatt Vahi sources, on 3rd September 1708. Madho Das was not in his hermitage then, and the Guru decided to wait for him. It is said that in order to test the Bairagi’s mettle, Guru Gobind Singh ji deliberatly provoked him by having some of the former’s goats slaughtered.

On returning to his hermitage he found out about the sacrilege and he at once invoked his occult powers to bring the trespasser to his knees, but finding them ineffective, he himself took little time to realise and acknowledge the spiritual superiority of the Guru. Realising he at once surrendered at his Guru’s feet.

The chroniclers narrate their brief introductory conversation thus :

The Guru  : "Who are you"
Madho Das : "I am a banda (man as well as a slave)"
The Guru  : "Whose Banda"
Madho Das : "Your’s my Lord"

The guru blessed him and raised him to his feet. He later administered ‘Khande di pahul’ to Madho Das and renamed him Banda Singh. During the next four weeks, the Guru instructed him in the essentials of Sikh faith, assessed his potential as a leader and briefed him about impending mission.

It was this great hero who in the next seven years (1709-1715) gave a sharp turn to the history of Sikhs by shaking the foundation of Mughal Empire in the North-west and paved the way for the liberation of the Punjab in 1764-65.

Gurudwara Banda Ghat is housed in a single square room with a covered circumabulatory passage around it.

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