Swami Omananda Sarswati



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Fast Facts
OMA.jpg
Other Names and Nicknames: 
Bhagwan Singh, Swami Omanand Sarswati
Function: 
Holy Leader
Traditions: 
Hinduism
Main Countries of Activity: 
India
Date of Birth: 
1910
Place of Birth: 
Narela, Delhi,India
In His/Her Body ("alive"): 
No
Date Left His/Her Body: 
23 March, 2003

Biography

Swami Omanand Sarswati was a freedom fighter, educator, historian and a social worker from Haryana in India. He was born in March 1910 in Narela near Delhi. He was the only son of his father, Chaudhari Kanak Singh, a Khatri clan Jat. He was a zamindar and numberdar of villages Pana, Mamoorpura, and Narela owning 350 bighas of land. He died at Jaipur Golden Hospital, Delhi on Sunday 23 March 2003 at the age of 93.

Education

Swami Omanand got his primary education in his village Narela in Musaddi Lal High School. He received his higher education from Saint Stephen's College, Delhi. After the sacrifice of Shahid Bhagat Singh, he left his B.A. midway and joined the Indian freedom struggle. He studied Vedas and Puranas at Gurukul Dayanand Ved Vidyalaya Delhi, Gurukul Chittor and Gurukul Pothodar, Rawalpindi. He knew 19 languages including Hindi, Urdu and Punjabi, as well as ancient languages like Sanskrit, and Pali.

Freedom Movement

The parents of Swami Omanand wanted him to finish his college education and get married. They wanted to see him settled down as a rich Jat landlord. But this young boy was inspired by freedom fighters Shahid Bhagat Singh and Sir Chhotu Ram. Swami Omanand left his higher education incomplete and joined the Indian freedom movement. Swami Omanand was sent to jail in 1939 for taking part in Nizam Hyderabad Satyagrah. He went to jail many times during the freedom struggle.

Consecrated in Brahmcharya

Swami Omanand’s real name was Bhagwan Singh. He decided not to marry and got consecrated in the principles of Brahmacharya. He was named Brahmchari Bhagwan Dev in 1939. He performed hard self-mortification and left the use of salt, sweets, spices etc. He started wearing clothes made of khadi only. He sacrificed almost everything for the betterment of the rural Jats. He had his own values and principles and always lived by them.

Social Service

Swami Omanand left home in 1942 and accepted the post of Acharya and Mukhya Adhishthata of Gurukul Jhajjar on the occasion of Diwali on a special request of the Arya Samaj. He had started and managed 55 Gurukuls in Haryana and all over India. In 1947, he did great service to the refugees who came from Pakistan on the division of India. He was always at the service of human kind during famines, floods, earthquakes etc. He started the cancer hospital at Jhajjar and started the practice of giving away free medicines to all.

Sources: 
WIKI & Tankara Information

Teachings

Swami Omanand struggled a lot for the eradication of social evils like dowry, intoxication and extravaganza on social occasions etc. He believed that social evils could be eliminated through the democratic Panchayat System. He started many social movements like "Nasha Mukti Andolan", "Goraksha Andolan", Anti-dowry Movement & "Sudhi Andolan". He visited a number of countries in Europe to spread Vedic education. He was engaged in a number of social organizations and held positions such as Chief of Arya Pratinidhi Sabha Haryana, Advisor of All India History Council, Vice Chancellor of Gurukul Jhajjar University, member of the senate of Maharishi Dayanand University Rohtak and Gurukul Kangra University etc. He was the president of World Arya Samaj Propkarini Sabha, Ajmer. He was the founder of Kanya Gurukul, Narela and donated his 70 acres (280,000 m2) of land at village Narela to the Kanya Gurukul. He was also the founder of Jhajjar Gurukul University. There are many books that he wrote on the topic of Jats and one can find these in the Gurukul's library.