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Sikh Reform Movement (Nirankaris and Namdharis)
Among the Sikhs of Punjab too there were attempts to reform. Baba Dayal Das, founder of the Nirankari Movement, stressed the worship of god as Nirankar (formless). Rejection of idols, rejection of rituals associated with idolatry, reverence for the authority of Guru Nanak and of the Adi Granth formed the essence of his teachings. He reiterated the prohibition on meat-eating, and liquor consumption.
The Namdhari Movement, founded by Baba Ram Singh, was another socio-religious movement among the Sikhs. The Namdharis insisted on wearing the symbols of Sikhism except the kirpan (sword). Instead Baba Ram Singh wanted his followers to carry a lathi. It considered both men and women equal and accepted widow remarriage. It prohibited the dowry system and child marriage.
In the wake of the gathering influence of Arya Samaj and the Christian missionaries, the Singh Sabha of Amritsar was established. Its main objective was to restore the purity of Sikhism. With the support of British, it established Khalsa College for the Sikhs in Amritsar. Singh Sabha was a forerunner of Akali Movement.
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