GUTKA, a small sized missal or breviary containing chosen hymns or barns from Sikh Scriptures. The etymology of the term gutka may be traced back to Sanskrit gud (to guard, preserve) or gunth (to enclose, envelop, surround, cover) through Pali gutii (keeping, guarding). A late eighteenth century scholar of UdasI sect spelt the word as gudhka. It is obligatory for Sikhs to recite certain texts and prayers as part of their daily devotions.This led to the practice of writing them down in gutkas or pothis (larger in size than gutkas).
PARTAP SINGH. GIANI (1855-1920), Sikh school-man and calligraphist, was born in 1855, the son of Bhai Bhag Singh Giani of Lahore. As a young boy, Partap Singh learnt Punjabi, Urdu and Sanskrit and studied Sikh Scriptures. In 1884, he accompanied Thakur Singh Sandhanvalia to England to read the Guru Granth Sahib to the deposed Sikh ruler of the Punjab, Maharaja Duleep Singh. Partap Singh remained in England for six months. On return to India, he worked as a granthi, scripturereader, at Gurdwara Kaulsar in Amritsar.