RAM TIRATH, SVAMI
RAM TIRATH, SVAMI (1897-1977), also known as Dandi Sannyasi (different from Rama Tirtha, Svami), was a recluse who after a prolonged spiritual quest turned to the Guru Granth Sahib. Born on 31 August 1897 to Pandit Balak Ram and Hari Devi, a Gaur Brahman family of the village of Tauhra, in the then princely state of Nabha, he received the name of Ram Pratap but was rechristened Svami Ram Tirath by Svami Narayan Tirath, an ex-principal of Queens College at Calcutta, who initiated him into sannydsm 1937. For his early education. Ram Tirath was apprenticed to a Pandit in Nabha from where he moved to Patiala to study Sanskrit grammar with Pandit Ram Basant Singh, his cousin and a famous Nirmala scholar, who later took him to the Nirmala akhdrd at Nankana Sahib, the birthplace of Guru Nanak, and taught him the Sikh texts.
When he came of age, he joined the Patiala state army (Risala No. 2) and served for three years. He then quit the army and travelled extensively, consorting with saints and sadhus. It was during this odyssey that he met Svami Narayan Tirath at Haridvar.During the following four years he travelled through Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, and it was during this tour that he met a Dandi Sannyasi at Visvesvar Asram, in `Aligarh, who taught him Upanisads and Vedant Sastras.
In 1941, he moved into Sonia Temple, at Ludhiana. Now began the most productive period of his life during which he wrote eighteen books and tracts in Sanskrit, Hindi and Punjabi. In Punjabi were his Sarvotam Granth Adi Sri Guru Granth Sahib and Sarvotam Dharma Khalsd Panth the former on Sikh Scripture declaring it to be the supreme religious text and the latter on the Sikhs, followers of this Scripture whom he describes as the very salt of the earth. Swami Ram Tirath died at Haridvar on 12 May 1977.