Shaheed Sardar Darshan Singh Pheruman | 27 October 1969 | 74th day of Hunger Strike


Sardar Darshan Singh Pheruman
darshan-sg
Birth
ReligionSikh
Date of birth1 August 1885
(1469-10-20)
Place of birthVillage – Pheruman , District Amritsar
Date of Martyrdom27 October 1969(aged 84)
Place of  MartyrdomAmritsar (Jail)
Family
Parents :Sardar Chanda Singh and  Mata Raj Kaur.
Brother/Sisters :
Spouse :—-
Children :——–
Other Details
AffiliationShiromani Gurdwara parbandhak Committee
Known forWhile in jail, he went on a fast in protest against the orders forbidding the wearing of kachha or drawers, one of the five symbols of Khalsa discipline.

he joined the civil disobedience movement and went to jail three times

he led the 14th Shaheedi jatha to Jaito, and was jailed for ten months

Darshan Singh joined the Civil Disobedience movement and courted imprisonment thrice.

He took part in the Quit India campaign during the Second World War.

Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman Memorial College for Women and Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman Public School were established in 1974 and 1981 respectively in his memory by the Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman Memorial Trust. A Sikh Gurdwara in Dholewal is also named after him.

ShaheediThese days a new trend of hunger strike till death is going on. In same context, I would like to share the story of a Sikh, Sardar Darshan Singh Pheruman, who did couple of genuine hunger strikes and his last hunger strike went for 74 days and he attained martyrdom on 74th day of Hunger Strike.

Birth And Family

Darshan Singh Pheruman was a political leader and a martyr. He was was born at the village of Pheruman in present-day Amritsar district, on 1 August 1885. His father’s name was Chanda Singh and his mother’s Raj Kaur. After passing his high school examination, he joined in 1912 the Indian army as a Sepoy.In 1914, he left the Army and started his own construction business in Hissar. He was doing well as a contractor, when a taunt from his mother, who was deeply religious, led him to give up his business and plunge into the Akali movement for the reform of Gurdwara management.

Pre-Independence activism

Later, Pheruman gave up his business and joined the Gurdwara Reform Movement. In 1921, he was arrested and jailed for one year during an agitation launched to recover the keys of the Golden Temple treasury from the British deputy commissioner of Amritsar. In December 1924, as a part of the Gurdwara Reform Movement, he led a group of Sikhs referred to as Shahidi jatha (14th of total 16 groups) into the Jaito agitation. He was arrested and jailed for ten months. The agitation ended with the enactment of the Sikh Gurdwaras Act, 1925. In 1926, he took part in the Non-cooperation movement launched by the Indian National Congress and went to jail for 14 months. In 1926, he visited Malaya and was arrested because of his past record in India. In jail, he was not allowed to wear Kacchera, one the five articles of Sikh faith, which a Sikh must wear all the time. As a protest, he went on hunger strike for over three weeks. Upon his return from Malaya, he joined the civil disobedience movement and went to jail three times. He favored the Akali Dal participation in Quit India Movement and himself took part in it.

Post-Independence / Returning Home

After the Indian independence, Pheruman became a member of Rajya Sabha until 1964. In 1959, he left the Indian National Congress and joined the newly formed Swatantra Party of which he was one of the founders.

Fast unto Death

After the creation of Punjab, India on linguistic lines in 1966, Akali Dal demanded that Chandigarh and certain other Punjabi speaking areas which were not part of Punjab should be transferred to Punjab. On 17 December 1966, Akali Dal leader Sant Fateh Singh went into a fast and threatened to self-immolate himself 10 days later on 27 December 1966. However, Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi promised to arbitrate the dispute and Fateh Singh ended his fast on 27 December 1966. However, no action was taken. In August 1969, Pheruman accused Fatesh Singh of lowering the dignity of Sikhism by breaking his ardas (pledge). He announced he would fast until death for the disputed areas and to uphold to dignity of ardas. He was arrested on 12 August in Amritsar and on 15 August started a fast inside the jail. On 27 August he was admitted into hospital but refused all forms of feeding. He died on 27 October 1969, the 74th day of his hunger strike. After his death, his supporters floated a new Akali Dal named after him.

Legacy

Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman Memorial College for Women and Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman Public School were established in 1974 and 1981 respectively in his memory by the Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman Memorial Trust. A Sikh Gurdwara in Dholewal is also named after him.

Read in Punjabi

Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman

Shaheed Darshan Singh Pheruman