Shaheed Bhai Satpal Singh Dhillon

Sikh Student Federation/ Khalistan Liberation Force

Bhai Satpal Singh Dhillon was born from the womb of Mata Kartar Kaur and in the house of Sardar Karam Singh on 3rd April 1961 in the village of Dalewal, district Nawashaher. Bhai Sahib was the youngest of 2 brothers, Bhai Nirmal Singh, Bhai Ravinder Singh and 3 sisters Bibi Mahinder Kaur, Bibi Jageer Kaur and Bibi Joginder Kaur. As Bhai Sahib was the youngest child, he was loved by all family members. In March 1967 Bhai Sahib was only six years old, he took admission onto the local primary school of Dalewal. Then in 1973, Bhai Sahib enrolled in the secondary school in village of Atta and passed his exams of 10th class. Bhai Sahib was a great sportsman in the long jump sport. In 1979, Bhai Sahib took admission in to the Ramgharia Arts College from which Bhai Sahib passed his BA exams in 1982 and then took admission in to Randhir College of Kapurthala to do his MA.

1982 was the year when the 20th century Sikh army would be made to defend the Sikh faith. On 19th July 1982, Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale started a protest to free fellow singhs from the Indian jails, who were being illegally detained. The Sikh nation became united and named these protests, Dharam Yudh Morcha. Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale was walking up Sikhs in masses, whoever listened to the speeches of Sant Ji was made aware of the slavery the Sikhs lived in within the borders of India. In January 1983, the Sikh Student Federation came to the colleges of Kapurthala and after many lectures, a unit of Sikh Student Federation was formed in Kapurthala. Bhai Sahib and Bhai Rajbir Singh were elected to lead the Sikh Student Federation of Kapurthala du to their love for Sikhi. Bhai Sahib and fellow singhs from Kapurthala gave their arrests at Dharam Yudh Morcha and this was the first time Bhai Sahib had met Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale. After spending 2 days in jail, Bhai Sahib was released and started making a strong foundation for Sikh Student Federation in Phagwara. Within three months Bhai Sahib and fellow singhs had abolished the comrade unions form the colleges of Phagwara. The red flags with stars of the comrade unions were replaced with orange flags of Sikh Student Federation. To create units of Sikh Student Federation in the colleges of Phagwara, Bhai Sahib and fellow singhs had faced many difficulties. Bhai Manjit Singh Bamb of Rasulpur, Bhai Sher Singh Sher of Pandori, Bhai Jagjit Singh Gill of Dalewal, Bhai Paramjit Singh Gandasa, Bhai Jarnail Singh of Lakhpur, Bhai Jodh Singh, Bhai Amarjit Singh, Bhai Charanjit Singh, Bhai Loveshinder Singh of Dalewal, Bhai Harmander Singh Dhillon Lala, Bhai Kulwinder Singh Poli, Bhai Balwinder Singh Kaka and many more singhs had many encounters with the comrades. From 25th June 1983 to 30th June 1983, Bhai Sahib attended a gurmat camp held at Sri Paonta Sahib and then Bhai Sahib attended a gurmat camp held for the youth of Sikh Student Federation at Sri Harimandir Sahib by Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale. At this gurmat camp Bhai Sahib had joined the 20th century Khalsa army, after Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale had fully explained the meanings of Sri Jaap Sahib. After this gurmat camp of Sri Harimandir Sahib, many Singh youth including Bhai Sahib took amrit from the Panj Pyare at the Dam Dami Taksal headquarters, Gurudwara Gurdarshan Parkash, Chownk Mehta.

In June 1984, the Indian army attacked Sri Harimandir Sahib and 38 surrounding historical gurudwaras. Many innocent Sikh pilgrims were killed by the brutal Indian army. Many Sikh youth were left devastated and wanting justice. On 14th August 1984 Bhai Sahib, Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal, Bhai Harmander Singh Dhillon Lala, Bhai Kulwinder Singh Poli, Bhai Jagjit Singh Gill and Bhai Jasvir Singh burnt 17 government schools around the Jalandhar area. The following day the freedom fighting group, Dasmesh Regiment took the responsibility of this action. The inspector of Jalandhar’s CIA by the name of Sucha Singh was informed of Bhai Sahib’s involvement and assigned two black cats to gather information and keep an eye on Bhai Sahib. Sucha Singh was given the information that Bhai Sahib played volleyball every evening in his village with local friends. After getting full information, on 25th February 1985 the police came to the village of Dalewal, Bhai Sahib and Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal saw the police jeeps and before the police could get to Bhai Sahib’s house, Bhai Sahib and Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal escaped. The police were not happy to find out that Bhai Sahib had escaped and arrested his mother and sister. The following day Bhai Jagjit Singh Gill came to the village and found out that the Congressi dog, Master Sukhdev and his brother had made a list on the members of Sikh Student Federation and had been informing the police about the singhs. On the morning of 28th February 1985, Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal, Bhai Jagjit Singh Gill and Bhai Harminder Singh Dhillon Lala went to Master Sukhdev’s house and after killing the informant, all singhs escaped. The district police of Jalandhar had now been fully shaken. The soon after the police of Gorayian, Phillaur, Nawashaher, Nakodar and Bunga had sealed of the village of Dalewal and arrested five youth that played volleyball with Bhai Sahib from which, Bhai Balwinder Singh Kaka was the main man.

Bhai Sahib, Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal and Bhai Harminder Singh Dhillon Lala left their areas and started living together in a rented room in the Jammu Colony of Ludhiana. Here the singhs also started to establish Sikh Student Federation. Bhai Sahib was slowly making a strong unit of Sikh Student Federation in the Guru Nanak Engineering College of Ludhiana. Many singhs from this unit had attained shaheedi in the Sikh Freedom Movement, singhs such as Bhai Gurjit Singh Kaka, Bhai Gurmeet Singh Meeta, Bhai Nirmal Singh Nurha and Bhai Amar Singh Maan were amongst many shaheeds from this unit of Ludhiana.

On 14th April 1985, the guvnor of Punjab removed the ban of Sikh Student Federation. Then Bhai Sahib, Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal and Bhai Harmander Singh Dhillon Lala started running Sikh Student Federation offices at Sri Harimandir Sahib. Bhai Charanjit Singh Talwandi was elected to lead Sikh Student Federation from these offices. From these offices Sikh Student Federation spread all over Punjab and started holding conferences in colleges. On 22nd September 1985, Bhai Sahib was on his way to Kapurthala to hold a conference, but the Kapurthala police arrested Bhai Sahib. For 18 days Bhai Sahib was brutally tortured by the police and after Bhai Sahib was charged with many cases and locked up in Kapurthala jail. When Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal and Bhai Harmander Singh Dhillon Lala were arrested they were locked up in Jalandhar jail, Bhai Sahib appealed to be moved to Jalandhar jail for other reasons and the judge accepted the appeal. Now Bhai Sahib, Bhai Loveshinder Singh Dalewal and Bhai Harmander Singh Dhillon Lala were together in Jalandhar jail. Whenever these singhs were taken to the courts for their hearings, the singhs would shout “Khalistan Zindabaad, Sant Bhindranwale Amar Rahe, and Sikh Student Federation Zindabaad.” Soon the cases against Bhai Sahib such as killing of sub inspector Hardial Singh, Kapurthala bank robbery were dropped and on remaining cases Bhai Sahib was granted bail. Bhai Sahib came out of jail on 7th April 1986.

On 10th September 1987, the police arrested Bhai Sahib and fellow singh, Bhai Surinder Singh Kishanpura in Chandigarh, as they were on their way to give a press note to the newspapers. At that time Bhai Sahib was handling all the general secretary duties of Sikh Student Federation. A month before Bhai Sahib had asked Professor Darshan Singh 10 questions, as the professor tried to disgrace Bhai Gurjit Singh Harihar Jhok. After the inhumane torture of the police, Bhai Sahib was put in Chandigarh’s Burail jail under the terrorist act and National Security Act. Bhai Sahib’s bail for previous cases had been cancelled and Bhai Sahib was now sent to Nabha jail. The singhs were trailed in the courts specially built inside the prison. Bhai Sahib was in Burail jail till 8th January 1990. Soon as Bhai Sahib came out of jail, he upped his links with the freedom fighters of Khalistan Liberation Force. Bhai Sahib joined Bhai Gurdeep Singh Deepa Heranwala’s group and did many actions within the Sikh Freedom Movement. Bhai Sahib also played a big part of bringing the five freedom fighting groups onto one platform.

On 14th September 1990 Bhai Sahib and a friend, Advocate Balbir Singh Cheema were on their way to Jalandhar, when the CID spotted them ad started following Bhai Sahib. Later the CID got the black cats to follow Bhai Sahib. The black cats were Sukhwinder Singh and group. As Bhai Sahib reached Nakodar Chownk, the black cat Sukhwinder Singh shot Bhai Sahib from behind and made him a martyr of the Sikh struggle. The police was also on Nakodar Chownk and arrested Advocate Balbir Singh Cheema. The police took Bhai Sahib’s body for post-mortem and later the Akali government pressurized the police to hand the body to the family of Bhai Sahib. The following day, on 15th September 1985, the locals cremated Bhai Sahib’s body, the cremation was attended by thousands of Sikhs. The locals of Dalewal were upset and cried the tears of pain and separation. Before Bhai Sahib’s shaheedi, he had told the singhs of his group to fully secure the areas they are going to live in and also the people the singhs are defending must be protected at all costs, as this is the duty of every Gursikh. This duty was fulfilled by Shaheed Bhai Satpal Singh Dhillon.

Jo Laray Deen Ke Het – Charanjit Singh Sujjon