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Chatka Gatka

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Gur Fateh!

I recall 5 years ago, this being the phrase of choice for the non-jahir Gatka format prior to the adoption of ShastarVidiya (which of course was subsequently adopted by all Gatka schools and tournaments).

What is the origin of this term and are there are textual references to this?

Also, why the sudden change to Sanatan Sikh Shastar Vidiya?

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Fateh Jee

i dont think youll get any replies to that question, this is just on e of many inconsistencies of the great nidar cult, others include.

1) why did Sir Nidar wear a blue kashera in his early years? A practice which he has since forgotten. At the time he used to say it was a old tradition. Changed and Forgotten by his non critical somewhat blind followers.

2) Initially there was 5 samprdaas, as taught by his ustaad. Then all of a sudden it fell to 4. Strange but true.

I dont expect any replies that explain this stance. I understand that people are not prone to criticise the god like jhatka gatka ustaad prone to wearing blue underwear.

Laters yowl.

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Another potent question is the actual changing of the title of Budha Dal

Check out www.Budhadal.com

The Original Title of Budha Dal "Shromani Panth Akali Budha Dal Panjva Takht 96 Karor Chalda Vaheer Panjaab (Hindustan)

The New and Improved Sanatan title of Budha dal "Panjvah Takht Shromani Sanatan Kyshatriya Panth Akali Nihang Singh Khalsa 96 Crore Budha Dal Chalda Vaheer"

Which firstly is in the wrong order and secondly has added the word Sanatan and Kyshatriya in their somewhere...

Just sat back and watch the tamasha...

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thats wat i was sayin in my other post that new budhadal website seems to be SANATANified, i beleive 'teja singh' runs the site, i v never met or seen this geezer but he luvs bringing snatan into everythin, surpirsed he aint changed his name to 'teja sanatan singh' he'll probs set up guerdwareh with names like 'Sanatan guru nanak gurdwara'

i dunno, seems ppl luv creatin more n more n more n more n more divisions

im actually thinking of setting up a completely new division

the Britainatan sikhs, we do paat, and perform kirtan with a uk garage/jungle style. we also insist that every birtainatan sikh attends weekly football matches and chant abuse at opposition

Come on u britainatans!!

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nirajana..just curious..which edition of the book have you got.

there are several versions, many with incorrect spellings and details.

you shouldnt take everything you read from it as gospel..as it was written initially for the students, with the help of many students typing the booklet, it was designed for the students of the shastervidya akhara, to give them a basic understanding.

it was also a tool to filter out the idiots who believed everything they were told or read, without questioning anything or even asking for proof.

i could go on to more detail...so if u want private message me, and i'll give you the bigger picture.

but the best apprach would be to just ask Nidar Singh in class on saterday in cranford.

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Gurfateh Jee

We are actually getting away from a very serious topic. Distortion of a subjective reality. Mr N Singh sells or markets his stance as "sanatan" ( "snatan" ) , ie eternal , not open to change. It is this advert stance towards change that distinguishes "Snatan" from mainstream.

As jungee states "the idiots who believed everything they were told or read", these people rule sanatism in the diaspora. Spoon fed devi worshiping fools who place a well skilled martial artist above Jugo Jug Atal Satguru Sri Guru Granth Sahib Jee.

Know your Enemy

Worship Your Satguru


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There is only one thing which is truely snatan one thing which truely never changes, and that is truth itself everything which is manifest is going to change

you go on about mr N singh and his underwear, Bhao Ji, Veer Ji, Paa Ji. notice that a language can vary over time and through social environment everything changes with influence or with development..

Sant Jarnail Singh for example, was shaheed then immortal then never died hiding with bruce lee and tupac and now he is shaheed again.

Maharajs saroops were once handwritten with no spell checker and no specific unified contents and hence regional variations came into existance, and now with the creation of printing press and computerised bani all saroops have printed uniform contents.

I am not justifying Niddar singhs teachings or dress sense, however I am saying that he is doing research and all writers provide revised editions to their work as they gain more knowledge and influence. So maybe he changed the name as he read more stuff or maybe as junglee said he presents one argument but means another, I think it may be a mix of both.

Also when a new approach is presented how it is refered by the casual person and how it is named in a more professional or official means will usually result in different terms being used, such as when bruce lee first started teaching it was called kung fu, then from that he developed his art and called it jeet kun do (i think) , in the same way if you going to join the cops we say exactly that cops or pig or five O, however you wouldnt see a police badge with the words Metropolitan Five O..

So in the same way if Niddar singh started out calling it chatka gatka in its unofficial sense officially or through development it has been labelled snatan shastarvidya whatever whatever, its too long to remember and why its named in such a context well that is explained on their website with justification of how the terminology is used and it what context it relates to the vidya.

If u want to know your enemy then know your mind

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"Maharajs saroops were once handwritten with no spell checker and no specific unified contents and hence regional variations came into existance"

very dubious comment, 10've patshah gave the gur gaddi to the damdami bir, the spell checker was the vidya guru jee passed on to 40 singh (Damdami Taksal) who were given santhia themselves from guru jee. In order to prevent "regional variations" springing up.

To say in front of a wolrd audience that Maharaajs saroops had no unified contents is a massive missapropiation.

The entire panth have for three centuries have been completly unified in the finality and validity of the Damdami Bir. Anyone who thinks anything else is simply misinformed.

You do command an excellent use of the english language, however your knowledge regarding Sikhi is rather patchy. This assumption is based on the quote taken from your post at the beggining of this reply.

It amazes me how even educated, intellectual people have been robbed of their objective critical analysis. Placing a firmer belief in a Skilled yet Mixed up "make it up as you go along" martial artist, rather than Gian Saroop Pavitr Gurbani.

Man Tu Joot Saroop Ho

My Mind, you form the very essence.

Know You Enemy. If your enemy is your mind then you are forever trapped

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The fourth line of my previous post should read :-

The entire panth has for three centuries been completely unified in the finality and validity of the Damdami Bir. Anyone who thinks anything else is simply misinformed.


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Well then I thank you for informing me that I am misinformed.

Im glad however that the rest of the post helped you to understand the change in terminology from Chatka Gatka to Snatan.

Overcome and subdue this mind; your mind wanders around continually, like a falcon.

(Guru Ram Das Raag Sohee 776)

and also if that isnt clear enough then refer to (Guru Nanak Raag Dhanasaree 689) in this shabad maharaj informs that by repeating Naam we can fufil the task set by Akaal Purakh and defeat self and defeat the mind

The Primal Lord has ordained the tasks to be done; self-conceit is overcome, and the mind is defeated.

The only time the mind is not an enemy is when it is unified with God by the grace of god.. and if thats the case then who cares about labels and blue kashere.. lol in that state its all pure anand.


Also Dalli Yaara you can edit your post look in the top right corner of your post and click the edit button that way you dont need to repost ..

Gurfateh Ji

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i also remember it being referred to as chatka gatka... not sure why there was the change & whether both terms are interchangeable... but regarding dalli's post...

Fateh Jee

i dont think youll get any replies to that question, this is just on e of many inconsistencies of the great nidar cult, others include.

1) why did Sir Nidar wear a blue kashera in his early years? A practice which he has since forgotten. At the time he used to say it was a old tradition. Changed and Forgotten by his non critical somewhat blind followers.

2) Initially there was 5 samprdaas, as taught by his ustaad. Then all of a sudden it fell to 4. Strange but true.

I dont expect any replies that explain this stance. I understand that people are not prone to criticise the god like jhatka gatka ustaad prone to wearing blue underwear.

Laters yowl.

1. he still accepts that maryada.

2. true... & something he admits he changed his mind about after doing his research. what's wrong with that? (personally i'm undecided on the matter, because i've come across references, admittedly secondary sources, talking about giani samparda)

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people all this maryada stuff are Guidelines they are not Gospel written in blood, which you follow to the letter.

as they are not applicable in all situations.

ask any Akali Nihang living in dal.

or actually ask the Budha dal Panj Piare

just my interpretation...dont get ur White/blue/Pink kashere in a twist.

Question:do u actually believe a colour is the soul tool that decides if u get nirvana!!! Please!!! ?

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Khalsa Bir-Ras Shastar Vidiya

Institute of Sikh Martial Heritage



An Introduction To Sikh Shaster Vidiya

Shaster (weapon) Vidiya (knowledge or science) was

essential military training for the Sikh warrior - the Akali

Nihung Singh Khalsa. The present day descendants of

the Akali Nihungs, the Budha Dal, trace the origins of

Sikh Shaster Vidiya to the founder of the religion, Guru

Nanak himself. According to their oral tradition, Guru

Nanak was summoned to the divine court of God

where, alongside receiving the holy Gur mantra, Vah

Guru, he also received Shaster Vidiya.

Guru Nanak passed this martial knowledge on to his

trusted Sikh, Baba Budha Ji, with the stated intention of

claiming it back in his sixth form. It was the sixth Guru,

Guru Hargobind, who received Shaster Vidiya from

Baba Budha Ji at an early age. Baba Budha Ji also

trained an army of twenty two hundred Sikh warriors

who were the soldiers of the Akal Boongah (the

Immortal Fort, built in 1606), and known as the Akalis


The Akali army was called the Akal Sena or Akal Fauj

but was informally known as the Budha Dal or army of

Baba Budha Ji. It's primary function was to defend

Sikhism and all who sought the protection of the Sikhs

from the then oppressive Mogul empire which had tor-tured

and executed the fifth Guru, Arjandev. It was his

son, Akali Guru Hargobind with his army of Akalis

engaged the Mogul forces in four battles and gained

four successes.

With successive Gurus after Guru Hargobind, the Akal

Sena was maintained in its original form until time of

the tenth Guru, Akali Gobind Singh Ji. At some time

before creation of the Khalsa in 1699, he altered the

structure of the Akal Sena with the effect that, from

then on, only a high ranking soldier of the Akali Sena

was to be known as an Akali. A low ranking soldier was

designated Nihung, or one who is not attached to life

nor fears death.

He quickly realised that in order to defend Sikhism it

would not be enough just to rely on the Akal Sena so

he decided to make the whole of the Sikh nation (with

exception of certain Sikh groups such as the Udasis,

Sewa Panthis and the Nirmalas) into a martial nation.

Thus, in 1699, the Akali Nihung Singh Khalsa came

into being.

After Guru Gobind Singh, it was a successful Khalsa,

led by the Akali Nihung Singhs,

who fought a life and death

struggle for nearly a hundred

years against both the Mogul

Empire and the invading

Afghans hordes. They forged

out independent kingdoms in

the far-reaching region of the Punjab in the late 18th


Even when the great Sikh kingdom of Maharaja Ranjit

Singh fell to the British Empire in the hard-fought Anglo

Sikh wars (1845-46 and 1848-49), the majority of

Sikhs, to this day, know it was not their ancestors' mar-tial

prowess which let them down. The historic evi-dence

strongly points to the fact that they actually won

on the fields of battle but lost the wars due to betrayal

of their treacherous Dogra Generals.

Following the annexation of the Punjab in 1849 and the

establishment of the British Raj, the traditional Sikh

martial traditions and practitioners suffered greatly. In

order that the British authorities could establish their

Raj in the Punjab, they adopted several severe meas-

ures, the most significant of which was the effective

disarmament of the whole of the Sikh population. Even

every-day tools and farming implements which could

be used as weapons were banned. A few, such as the

Akali Nihungs , who refused to surrender their weapons

were hunted down and killed or driven into hiding by

the British authorities. It was at this critical juncture that

the traditional martial knowledge, Shaster Vidiya, previ-ously

maintained to a high standard by the Sikhs,

almost ceased to exist in the Punjab.

In 1857, the Indian Mutiny erupted. By that time, the

British had significantly crushed all resistance to their

Raj in the Punjab. Sikhs who had collaborated with the

British had been fully established as the leaders of the

"new" Sikh nation. Thus, in 1857, the Sikhs on whole

greatly assisted the British in crushing the mutiny.

As a consequence of the martial assistance provided

by the Sikhs, restrictions on martial practices were

relaxed in the Punjab but tightened in North Eastern

provinces of India where the

mutiny had been strongest.

However, the Shaster Vidiya

which re-emerged after 1857 in

the Punjab had changed. This

new form of Shaster Vidiya was

a product of the changing times which had also seen

the general Sikh populace of that period begin to

accommodate the British Raj by divorcing itself from

the sanatni boh-Panthi (traditional pluralistic) Sikhism of

the pre-British period. There was a stark contrast

between this pluralistic Sikhism (consisting in the main

of Udassis, Seva Panthis, Nirmalas and Akali Nihung

Singhs) and the British Raj-accommodating Sikhism,

or Angrej Sikhi, which was later developed and encour-aged

by the Tat Khalsa Singh Sabhias.

The new Shaster Vidiya was no longer the lethal art

designed to produce soldiers to defend the Sikh nation.

Instead, during the 1860s, it had evolved into an inof-fensive

and ritualistic martial art popularly known as

Gatka (derived from the name of the main weapon

used, the sword training stick). Gatka was mainly practised in the barracks of the British Indian army and was

diligently taken up by Sikh and other Indian soldiers.

Later, as Sikh colleges opened in the Punjab during the

1880s, European rules of fencing began to be applied

to Gatka. This innovation led to two forms of Gatka

developing, namely rasmi (ritualistic) and khel (sport)


After first speaking of the great

Shaster Vidiya of the past, the

historian, Giani Gian Singh,

lamented the state of the

Vidiya in the 1890s:

"There was talk of such a science of archery and stick

fighting only a few years ago in the Punjab that hearing

about it, the English-educated young (Sikh) men will

consider it astonishing… In sincerity, I believe that the

young men of today might just consider these skills and

Shaster Vidiya generally an impossibility because they

have not even seen those bows, never mind having

strung them. Similarly, many sciences and skills have

declined after attaining their heights. Before 1857, many

quivers full of arrows, matchlocks, flintlock guns, swords,

lances, spears, sang (long metal lance), katars (punch

daggers), peshkabj(Afghan armour-piercing dagger), pis-tols,

shields and other weapons, armour and many

types of chain mail were found in every house. All the

people in theirhomes both learnt and taught Shaster

Vidiya and became complete soldiers.

"Now no one even speaks of these skills and the sons of

brave warriors are becoming engrossed in making

money. Even to those of us who have employed Shaster

Vidiya, it is becoming as if it were a dream. In another

fifty years or so this Vidiya will have dried up and people

will say it was but all lies."

('Twarikh Guru Khalsa' , Vol.1 , pgs 36-37)

Apart from putting the date of the decline of Shashter

Vidiya a decade or so after the annexation of the

Punjab (so as not to offend the British-backed patron,

the king of Patiala), all that Giani Gian Singh writes is

correct. The main ingredient that Gatka lacked (which

made Shaster Vidiya a true battlefield art) was chatka

(to kill with a single decisive cut, shot, blow or wrench-

ing motion).

A veteran of the Anglo-Sikh wars, Akali Nihung Baba

Sawan Singh Bangroo of the Budha Dal, has been

credited to have single-handily kept alive the original

traditions and principles of chatka. To distinguish his

Vidiya from the then popular sport and ritualised forms

of Gatka, he termed his Shashter

Vidiya, Chatka Gatka, which he

passed on to his select shigirds


This Chatka Gatka (also known as

Chatka Vidiya) is not merely an amalgamation of

ancient Indian or Sikh fighting techniques and strata-gems.

It is a complete military scientific system which

traces it's origins back to Sat Yuga (the first of the clas-sical

Indian ages or eras) through it's khat-ang pentra

(the six forms of battle strategy). It took years of dedi-cation

to master under the tutelage of a good Ustad


Chatka Vidiya is composed of the following three ele-ments

(shown in order of importance and priority):

1. Bbeck-abbeck dee katha - The paradoxical philosophy

which grants mokhsh (salvation).

2. Ithaasak shatria maryada - Historical martial traditions

which harness martial spirit and give the context to battle

(before fighting it is important to know what to fight for).

3. Dao pech - Traditional Sikh martial techniques com-prising

both platha-baji (unarmed combat) and ayudh

vidiya (hand-to-hand weapon combat).

As mentioned above, Giani Gian Singh had predicted

that Shashter Vidiya would become extinct by the

1940s. His prediction has almost come true. At present,

the ritualistic and sport forms of Gatka flourish (in a

manner of speaking) within the Sikh community, both in

India and in the diaspora. Being dismissive of Shaster

Vidiya/Chatka Gatka, some have begun to refurbish

their Gatka repertoire with techniques from other mar-tial

arts, including Japanese, Chinese, Filipino systems,

in an attempt to create an effective fighting art. This

will ultimately only serve to undermine the uniqueness

of Shaster Vidiya and associated Khalsa warrior tradi-tions

(e.g. the study and worship of the knowledge

contained in the Dasam Gur Granth and Sarbloh Gur

Granth of Guru Gobind Singh, which teach the princi-ples

of Shaster Vidiya).

The original Chatka form of Shashter Vidiya, the mili-tary

system to which Giani Gian Singh referred to, is

now almost extinct and its knowledge is known to pos-sibly

only a handful of Akali Nihung Singhs and even

fewer Udassis. However, with the sanction of the 13th

Jathedar of the Budha Dal, Akali Nihung Baba Santa

Singh, a resurgence of this traditional Sikh combat sys-tem

has recently begun in England.

Chatka Gatka Ustad Nihung Nidar Singh Das Shironmi

Akali Nihung Singh Khalsa Panth Budha Dal

(Taken from a Adobe Acrobat File named Education of a Sikh Warrior)

If you can tell me a way to add a adobe file to the message board I will.

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