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BABA BAKALA GURUDWARA, AMRITSAR The historical shrine at Baba Bakala is associated with an important event in Sikh history. Here Makhan Shah Lubana declared from house top that he had found the true Guru. It may be recalled that before his death at Delhi on March30, 1664 Guru Harkrishan mumbled feebly 'Baba Bakala', thereby meaning that his successor was to be found at Bakala village in Amritsar. On that day, the only Baba at Bakala was Baba Tegh Bahadur and none else. But many imposters tried to grab the Guru Gaddi by posing themselves as the real Guru.

Credit goes to Makhan Shah Lubana, a banjara trader from Jhelum district, for discovering the Guru. It is said that a ship carrying his goods1was caught up in a storm. His life and goods were in great danger. Helplessly, he knelt down and prayed to God and Guru Nanak for safety. He vowed that if by the grace of Guru he landed at the nearest port safely, he would donate five hundred dinars to the Guru for charitable purposes. As good luck would have it, his ship steered safely of the wild storm. He felt that his life and goods were saved by the grace of the Guru. The first thing he did was t6 fulfill his vow.

But on reaching Baba Bakala he found several imposters, each posing as Guru. He decided to offer only two Dinars to every one posing to be Guru Harkrishan's successor. The true Guru would himself demand the exact amount he had vowed to give. According to him it would not be possible for the false and imposters to define the exact purpose of his visit. Thereby their ignorance, lack of spiritual insight and character would be exposed. As expected ,none of the imposters could recognise him.

But when he placed two Dinars before Guru Tegh Bahadur, the great sage at once remarked "God bless you, my man, why only two Dinars after pledging five hundred? The Guru is never in need of any thing but a Sikh is expected to keep his pledge to the Guru." Thus the issue was clinched and the real Guru was discovered. Since this historic event Bakala has become a place of pilgrimage. A beautiful Gurudwara stands at the spot where Guru Tegh Bahadur used to meditate in an underground cell.

This small village where Guru Tegh Bahadur revealed himself subsequently, came to be called Baba­Bakala. The Gurudwara has many beautiful paintings pertaining to the Sikh history. People gather in thousands on every amavas night. Besides an Annual Fair is held on rakshabandhan day when many people throng this holy place from all over the country. It is situated only 3 km away from Butari railway station and is well connected by roads to important towns of Punjab.

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