Gaddar Party was started in 19071908 first in Canada. Because of difficulties encountered there in organizing the party and publishing any news the center of activities was gradually shifted to San Francisco area.
Sikh Temple of Stockton was the headquarter of activities. In the basement of present main building all the meetings were held. The main objective of Gaddar party was to achieve independence for India. Party members included Muslims, Sikhs and Hindu’s, majority of them were Punjabis. Their contribution in the struggle for freedom of India has no match. Congress party to date never gave them their deserved recognition. Last weekend on 5/12/85 Gaddar party day was celebrated at Sikh Temple Stockton by Sangat of this area.
Baba Makhan Singh Ji Sandhu and Baba Charan Singh (Imperial Valley) are the only two living members of Gaddar Party in California according to Baba Makhan Singh Ji. Baba Makhan Singh Ji lives near Stockton in Ripon. He was born on March 4th 1898. He was only one year old when he left India and was in Hong Kong till 1920. It is Hong Kong where he met S. Sham Singh Sandhu, a Gaddar party member. Baba Makhan Singh Ji became so impressed and interested in Gaddar party that he came with them to United States, the land of freedom, and became very active in Gaddar party.
Baba Ji arrived in San Francisco in 1920. He went to school in Fresno, Kerman and Berkeley. In 1925 he graduated from University of California in San Francisco in Bachelor of Pharmacy and in 1926 as a Pharmaceutical Chemist. He worked in a San Francisco pharmacy after that and spent all his time of work in the service of Gaddar Party. He was Secretary of Gaddar party for 6 years and treasurer for 2 years. He was also the member of commission of Gaddar party and a manager for press for several years which published the “Gaddar’’ (newspaper started in 1913), Baba Ji also stayed in Santa Barbara area for 3 years and 1 year in Phoenix. In 1932 he gave up his regular job and started working full time for Gaddar party without any salary on a minimum allowance to maintain his personal needs. Baba Ji continued that selfless work from 1932 to 1947. In 1947 when India became _ independent Gaddar party was dissolved. Several of its members went back to India; however Baba Makhan Singh Ji decided to stay here in California. He worked in his ranch for 25 years about 60 miles from Fresno and retired because of health reasons. Baba Ji has only one daughter and now lives with her in Ripon. He comes to Stockton Sikh Temple on every Sunday and attends the Services. He is an inspiration to all the young men of the area
Even though Baba Ji has never returned to India but he still feels very much concerned about what goes on there. He feels after independence Muslims got Pakistan and Hindu’s got the Hindustan to rule but Sikhs were left without anything mainly because of the incapable leadership.
When asked how he feels about the present situation in Punjab and about the operation Blue Star and its after-math. Baba Ji says that Brahamins have been against Sikhism right from the beginning. He feels Sikhs can only survive by uniting together and having one voice. Baba Ji also feels that Sikhs in America and Canada should unite and must help their brothers in this struggle. He also emphasized that without unity nothing can be achieved and people who are only for Kursi should be removed. He also feels that Sikh leaders in Punjab, the ones who have been unable to deliver the goods so far and have let us down, should give the younger generation a chance and give them full cooperation. It is unfortunate that freedom fighters like Baba Makhan Singh Ji were never given any recognition by Govt. of India. Not only that the country and the government they considered their own have betrayed them once but have betrayed them again and have struck at the basic faith they lived for. The Sikh community should be proud that great men are there to advise us and guide us. We can never pay them for what they have done for us but we should at least give them all the honor they deserve and take inspiration from them.
Article extracted from this publication >> May 24, 1985