RAGHBIR SINGH DUGAL
RAGHBIR SINGH DUGAL (1897-1957), a medical practitioner and leader of the Sikh community in Burma, was born in 1897, the son of Sobha Singh, at the village of Sayyid Kasrari, in Rawalpindi district, now in Pakistan. He had his early education at his village and in Rawalpindi, and in 1911 accompanied his elder brother to Rangoon where he qualified as a physician. Along with his medical practice, Raghbir Singh took a great deal of interest in social work and became president of the Sikh temple at Rangoon and secretary of the Sikh Educational Committee of Burma. In December 1927, he was elected president of the Khalsa Diwan, Burma.
He had been a councillor of the Rangoon Municipal Corporation for a number of years and in 1932 became mayor of Rangoon the first Indian to be elected to the office. Dr Dugal also brought out a medical journal from Rangoon. He was a fellow of the Rangoon University as well as a member of the Burma Medical Council. He was honoured with the title of Sardar Bahadur by the Government of India for his services in the cause of eradication of tuberculosis and leprosy.
During World War II when Burma was invaded by the Japanese, Dr Dugal was co-opted a member of the executive council of the emigre government set up at Shimla in India. Dr Dugal was the author of Essentials of Sikhism, Philosophy of Guru Nanak and Divine Baba. He died on 20 January 1957 at New Delhi while on a visit to India. Gbch. S.G.