Jaito

Moga – Jaito is 55km by road. Jaito is on the Bathinda- Ferozpur railway line. It is 96 miles from Lahore and 17 miles from Bathinda.

Jaito was founded by Bhai Jaita of the Sidhu clan. On this place situated near a fort, is the Gurdwara Gangsara built in memory of Guru Gobind Singh who visited here in 1705.

Maharaja Hira Singh constructed the Gurdwara whose sarovar or tank is popularly known as “Gangsar”. About a mile and a half north of Jaito is Gurdwara Tibbi Sahib where Guru Gobind Singh used to organize and participate in the evening recitation of Rehras. Both Gurdwaras have extensive land sanctioned to it by the Nabha rulers. Jaito’s cattle markets are well renowned. People come from far distances to buy and sell their herds.

After the deposition of Maharaja Ripudaman Singh of Nabha, the Sikhs protested and on 14 Jan. 1923, started the Akhand Path at Gurdwara Gangsar for his re-installation. The British interrupted the Akhand Path to suppress the agitation and started jailing the protestors at the Jaito Thana.To vindicate their right to pray for the rehabilitation of the Maharaja of Nabha and to redeem the impiety committed in interrupting the ceremonial continuous reading of the Holy Book at Gurdwara Gangsar, batches of Akalis began to issue daily from Akal Takht to march on foot to Jaito, 150 miles from Amritsar.Before they reached Jaito, these jathas were held by the police, beaten and taken to a remote desert some 300 miles away, and were abandoned to their fate without food or money. The second Jatha of 500 Akalis, led by Sardar Inder Singh of Village Mirza of Sialkot, was arrested at Jaito on 14th March, 1924. A Jatha of 500 people were machine gunned on 21 February 1924 when they raised their religious flags at Gurdwara Tibbi Sahib and about 150 of them were killed. Dr. Saifuddin Kitchlew, a leader of the freedom movement was an eye-witness to this incident. The Gurdwara Angitha Sahib has been built at the site where the bodies of the martyrs were cremated. The Congress declared its full sympathy with the Jaito Morcha and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, K. Santhanam and A.T. Gidwani joined a Jatha from where they were arrested. The Old Jaito Thana where he was detained still exists. Jaito has an annual fair which celebrates this non-violent and tragic agitation of the Akali volunteers in 1924 against the British government. The protest at Jaito was a key event in India’s freedom struggle.

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