Captain Baba Harbhajan Singh is one of the most revered soldiers of the Indian army who is also worshipped and known as the “Hero of Nathula” by the Indian Army soldiers.
His soldiers even built a shrine to honor him. According to a legend, soldiers in that area believe that his spirit still protects all the soldiers who have their duties in the difficult terrain of Eastern Himalayas.
While he was alive, many gave him the status of a Saint or Baba and is believed to be protecting the country even after his death.
Baba Harbhajan Singh was born in a family of Sikhs in 1946, and he enrolled himself in the Indian army in 1965. He joined the Punjab Regiment. He was killed in the eastern Sikkim region of India.
There are two stories associated with his death. According to the official version, he died as a result of the battle in Nathu La which is a mountain pass in between Sikkim and Tibet.
However, according to the legend, he was drowned in a glacier while he was taking a group of mules with the supplies to a remote outpost of the Indian Army.
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His body was found three days after the incident. But the legend says that baba’s spirit helped the soldiers to find his body. Some also believe that Baba’s spirit still protects the army by informing about Chinese planned attacks three days in advance. He also slaps and punishes soldiers who do not follow cleanliness and hygiene.
The Legacy of Baba Harbhajan Singh Foji
He is known as the “saint Baba” in that region. There is a shrine dedicated to him as well. Also, a jeep departs every year with some of his personal belongings on the date of September 11 to the nearest railway station in New Jalpaiguri.
From there, his belongings are sent by train to a place called Kuka that is in Kapurthala district in Punjab. It is said that Baba’s spirit also travels on the train.
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His belongings are sent with three soldiers and also with some money contributed by the fellow soldiers that are given to his mother in the village every year.
It is interesting that one seat is reserved every year for this purpose and not allocated to anyone even if he/she is on the waiting list.
The story of this mysterious baba has also received a lot of attention from the media. A Malayalam writer M. K. Ramachandran published a travelogue in 2012 that features his visit to Baba’s shrine that he made in 2010. The travelogue is known as Devabhoomiyiloode.
There was another short Hindi film made by Jyoti Kapur Das and was released on September 14, 2018. It has Bhuvan Bham who has taken the role of Baba Harbhajan Singh as well as the Bollywood actress Divya Dutta.
A story in the Story Mirror was also published recently which was authored by Commander Mohinder Singh. It was like a biography of Baba Harbhajan Singh.
The story of Baba Harbhajan Singh is an interesting one because he died at the age of 22 but is still revered by his fellow commanders. He died in the year 1968, but the rituals related to him are still followed with full vigor.
There is no evidence to prove the legends of Baba Harbhajan Singh, but it still holds a lot of interest amongst people who visit his shrines.
Also, if the legend has continued to live for this long, there has to be some secret behind the interesting story of Baba Harbhajan Singh.