Baba Harbhajan Singh-The Hero of the Nathula Pass
During the Flag meeting between the two armies, the officer of the Indian Army reached the spot and looked at the vacant chair kept by the Chinese soldiers. He bowed before the chair in reverence, fondly remembering Baba Harbhajan Singh, the immortal soldier who even after 38 years of his death, doing his duty of guarding the Chinese border on the Indian side.
In 1968, this great soul from the 23rd Battalion of the Punjab Regiment died while escorting a mule column in Sikkim. He was crossing a fast flowing stream when he slipped and was drowned . When his body was not found even after a long search, he came in the dream of one of his comrades and told where his body could be found. Once again a thorough search was conducted and at last, his body was recovered from the same place. His last rites were performed with full military honour. This incident raised faith in the hearts of the soldiers about his presence and his bunker was converted into a temple.
Slowly, when the people of the neighbouring villages also came to know of his miracles, the number of devotees increased manifold and a new temple was built at a place between Nathula and Jelepla Pass.
It is strongly believed that even today, Baba Harbhajan Singh protects the soldiers of the Nasthula brigade who guard the 14,000 feet high border point with China. He always try to keep them alert and even sometimes slaps a solider if at all he gets sleepy. Not only that, the soldiers strongly believe that in case of any major movement from opposite the border, he would surely give them a warning three days in advance.
Even the Chinese soldiers seem to believe his existence and keeps a vacant chair for him to attend the Flag meeting.
Although the officer is free from any superstition but still, he loves to believe his story and in the heart of his hearts salutes the great patriot.