MAJLAS RAI, RAJA, a Brahman native of Lopoke in Amritsar district of the Punjab and a diwan or revenue minister at the court of Emperor Bahadur Shah I (1707-12), was a devotee of Guru Gobind Singh whom he frequently visited during journey to the Deccan in 1708. The Guru while stopping at Nanded was stabbed by an Afghan agent of the faujdar of Sirhind, and, as his wound was well on the way to recovery, a Sikh brought a present of two heavy bows. According to Kuir Singh, Gurbilas Patshahi 10, the Guru proceeded at once to string the bows and test them when Majlas Rai, who was then present in the sangat stood up and humbly warned him, “Listen, O cherisher of the poor! Your wound is still raw and might open up again if you strain yourself.” The Guru at first paid heed to the Raja\’s counsel and dropped the bows, but after some time he picked them both together and bent them with such force that they were both broken.

Majlas Rai\’s worst fears came out to be true; stitches of the Guru\’s wound snapped and it bled profusely. Majlas Rai hastened to the imperial camp and sent the same physician as had earlier treated the Guru, but it was of no avail. Guru Gobind Singh calmly sent for the Granth Sahib and formally installed it as the successor Guru in perpetuity. He passed away the following day, 7 October 1708.

In 1710, Raja Majlas Rai accompanied the emperor back to Delhi where he regularly attended upon Guru Gobind Singh\’s widows, Mata Sundari and Mata Sahib Devari. Kesar Singh Chhibbar, Bansavalinama, records that when it was proposed to appoint a day for a regular religious mela or festival for the Sikhs, Raja Majlas Rai was one of the prominent Sikhs consulted by Mata Sahib Devari. It was decided to hold the mela annually on the occasion of Divali at Amritsar as times were not favourable for large Sikh gatherings at the imperial capital.

References :

1. Kuir Singh, Gurbilas Patshahi 10. Patiala, 1968
2. Santokh Singh, Bhai, Sri Gur Pratap Suraj Granth. Amritsar, 1927-35
3. Jaggi, Rattan Singh, ed., Bansavalinama. Chandigarh 1972