GURDITTA, BABA (1613-1638), the eldest son of Guru Hargobind (1595-1644), was born on 15 November 1613 to Mata Damodari at Darauli Bhai in present day Faridkot district of the Punjab. He had his training in religious lore and in the martial arts under the supervision of his father. He was married on 17 April 1621 to Ananti alias Natti, daughter of Bhai Rama of Batala, an ancient town in Gurdaspur district. According to Gurbilds Chhevm Pdtshdhi, relations from Darauli, Mandiali, Goindval and Khadur Sahib accompanied the marriage party. Baba Buddha and Bhai Gurdas, however, stayed behind in Amritsar to look after the Harimandar and the Akal Takht.

On returning to Amritsar, the family and the guests offered thanksgiving ardas and prashad first at Akal Takht and then at Harimandar. From 1626-27, Baba Gurditta lived at Kartarpur in Jalandhar district as directed by his father. During this period he founded under his father`s instructions a habitation, the present Kiratpur Sahib, in the Sivalik foothills. He also look part in the battle at Kartarpur against Painda Khan who was supported by the Mughal a Maror garrison commander of Jalandhar. Baba Sri Chand, the aged son of Guru Nanak, appointed Baba Gurditta to succeed him as head of the Udasi sect he had founded.

Baba Gurditta proved worthy of the choice, and left a permanent mark on the history of the sect. He is best remembered for having reinvigorated missionary activity to which end he established four dhudns or Udasi preaching centres. Baba Gurditta died at Kiratpur on Chef sudi 10, 1695 Bk/15 March 1638. As the legend goes, he had resurrected earlier on that day a cow which he had inadvertently killed while out hunting. Guru Hargobind, it is said, admonished him for thus displaying a miracle.

Baba Gurditta, overtaken by remorse for causing annoyance to his father, quietly retired and betook himself to a lonely place outside Kiratpur where he quit the earthly frame. A dehrd or mausoleum now stands on the spot. Baba Gurditta had two sons Dhir Mall and Har Rai. The latter donned the spiritual mantle of his grandfather whom he succeeded as Guru Har Rai, Nanak VII, in 1644.

References :

1. Chhibbar, Kesar Singh, Bansavalinama Dasan Pdtshahian Kd. Chandigarh, 1972
2. Gurbilas Chhevm Patshahi. Patiala, 1970
3. Randhir Singh, Bhai, Udasi Sikhan di Vithia. Amrilsar, 1972
4. Khushwant Singh, A History of the Sikhs, vol. I. Princeton, 1963
5. Harbans Singh, The Heritage of the Sikhs. Delhi, 1983