Guru Nanak (1469 - 1539), the father of Sikhism, has been one of the world's greatest travel personalities . At that time there were no means of communication and transportation like today. For the first time, the spiritual leader of the world communicated the word with people to convey the message of one God . Guru ji swayed the ancient beliefs of race, prejudices , bigotry, shady customs, superstitions etc.  Guru Ji showed the path to misguided people with the existence of Akal Purakh and the message of human brotherhood .

The Guru made four Udasis  ( journeys ) east , south , north and west . Bhai Mardana, the Guru's companion, was also present during the Udasi of the West . This udasi is described in Bhai Bale Wali Janamsakhi. This Janamsakhi was written by Parahe Khatri in front of Guru Angad Sahib :

          “ ੧ਓ ਸਤਿ ਗੁਰ ਪ੍ਰਸਾਦਿ ਓਨਮ:
ਅਬ ਜਨਮਪਤ੍ਰੀ ਸੀ ਬਾਬੇ ਨਾਨਕ ਜੀ ਕੀ ਲਿਖੀ। ਸੰਮਤ ੧੫੯੨ ਮਿਤੀ ਵੈਸਾਖ ਸੁਦੀ ਪੰਚਮੀ ਨੂੰ ਪੋਥੀ ਲਿਖੀ।
        . ਪੈੜੇ ਖਤ੍ਰੇਟੇ ਅਰੁ ਗੁਰੁ ਅੰਗਦ ਜੀ ਲਿਖਾਈ । ”2

It is written in this ' Pothi Janamsakhi ' that when Indian people visited Arab countries King Lajvard used to be very cruel. The Guru received a khilka (robe of honour) from the sky. Guru Ji noticed that the letter of a nature like Arabic, Turkish, Persian, Hindi, Sanskrit were written on this khilka. The Guru sat down for two kos from the city wearing this khilka and seven days passed. People say 30 verses  of the Quran are seen on the khilke . The people said to King, "This is God like, not human being."

Baba Nanak's visit is also mentioned in the Vars of Bhai Gurdas. Kaaba circumambulation around Baba Nanak in Mecca. Everyone was amazed to see this power of Guru Ji. The details of these events are preserved in Arabic manuscripts like Sihayato Baba Nanak Fakir and Twarik e Arab. Punjabi literature also testifies Arabic kaaba Feria. The chief imams of the four sects of Islam, such as Imam Zafar , Imam Safi , Imam Kamaldin and Imam Jamal Din, and the king there, bowed at the Guru's power. There they pronounced Nanak, the last prophet of Madina as a manifestation. I believe that the khilka ( chola ) that Guru Sahib received in Mecca as an honor might have been given by all of them when Nanak  was pronounced the last prophet  in Madina . After their request, Guru ji bestowed a pair of sandals, a needle , an Assa(stick}, a hand written Gotka(small book) of Japji sahib in Arabic etc.

It is recorded in Arabic writings that when Guru ji prepared to go to Madina from Mecca, everyone expressed great shock . Baba Ji said that Khudawand Kream(Almighty God) had ordered him to just go there to enforce His order . On that silk robe which was presented to Baba Nanak some verses of the Quran Sharif and praised words of Allah are seen.

After Madina, Guru ji reached Baghdad via a small route of Faiz . In Baghdad, the  world's largest Islamic World University namely Darul Ilm Nizamia was running in very high spirits .

Guru Nanak Sahib and Bhai Mardana went outside to the cemetery . The Guru began to sing in a melodious and loud voice . When enough people gathered, Guru ji loudly took Azan in the opposite direction to  Mecca , putting fingers in both ears.

                         “ Allah Hu Akbar Asduhan La Ilaha Illa ;
                        Hi Allah Alfalah , Hal Salwah Khairun Minolanome . ”
          ( Sense: God is the greatest . I plead  that no more without a God . Let us come for prayers . Prayer is better than sleep).     

There was such an attraction in this Azan that one could have heard a pin drop. In Baghdad, Guru Ji had a discussion with Makhdoom at the tomb of Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani Dastgeer (1077 - 1168 AD ) . Makhdoom was also known as Peer Dastgeer. Peer was accompanied by his son Alam Fazal . Fakir Bahlol is sometimes called by the thoughtful Pir Bahlol Dana's Sujada Nisheen.  This is also mentioned by Bhai Gurdas 11 Ji . Where the Guru had discussion with Pir Dasatageer, a historic  platform 12 still exists . This inscription is in a mixed language of Arabic , Persian and Turkish.


The small Gurdwara building here is managed by the descendants of Bahlol ji's disciple Amar Raza . They also have a holy book which contains the text of Japji Sahib and a few words as well as the dialogues of Guru ji in Mecca and Baghdad . Also in Baghdad, when Islamic Scholars told Guru Nanak , how he coined the name of Muhammad through Elamey Abajad. Guru ji replied :

"Naam lo kis ehindse ka, kar lo chu gunna
  Do aur mela lo, fer kar lo panch gunna
  Bees se utha lo, baki kar lo panch gunna
  Iss me do aur bhi lo mella
  Nanak Iss bedi nam Muhammad lo bana
  Maine lowa lokuma chatpat samjha ja" 14

Other variants of these Couplet 15 are also popular .  When we see the number of Elime Abajad Meem has 40, Ha  8,  Meem 40 and Daal 4, thus the 92 form the name of Muhammad.

The author of Twarikh Guru Khalsa 16 is of the opinion that this robe was presented to the Guru by the Begum of Khalifa Bakr, the king of Baghdad .

Yak arz guftam pesh to dargosah Kuhn kartar .....  . These words were uttered by Guru in Mecca Madina, as testified by Arabic manuscripts

The Mahankos 17 has also mentioned this Chola to Satguru by a lover from Arabia , Persia or Egypt and the Guru who knows all the languages ​​like Sanskrit , Arabic etc. had accepted the Chola according to well wishers sentiments .

It is recorded in Sikh sources that Guru Nanak took off this robe at Kartarpur and presented it to Guru Angad. This robe has been given to the five Gurus during the Guruship. This robe was kept by Guru Arjan Devji . While serving the Sarovar in Amritsar, Guru Arjan Sahib presented this Chola to Bhai Tota Ram, a Sikh from Balkhbukhara. This robe remained with his family for many centuries. In the ninth generation of Guru Nanak , Kabli Mall Ji was brought to Dera Baba Nanak (Gurdaspur). This Chola was established by building a Gurdwara . This Chola was placed here on 20 Fagun 1884 Bk (1 March 1828 AD ) and every year on 21 - 23 Fagun the devotees have a glance of the Chola . There was also a langar and it became famous as 'Gurdwara Langar Chola Sahib . During the Akali movement (1920-25) when Gurdwara Darbar Sahib came under Panthic management, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee placed the site under its management and the right to keep 'Chola Sahib  was given to the Guru's descendants.



I myself took close-up photos of the Chola preserved in a glass box. I wanted to see the whole of Chola but the custodian denied the request . Arabic verses and round circles are drawn, in which numerals of all languages are written.  An embroidered handkerchief under Chola, said to be of Babe Nanaki and Chorr Sahib of  Guru Arjan Sahib is also seen. When S Hari Singh Nalva visited this Chola Sahib and presented two precious Romallas , which are adorned in another glass box . From the main Gurdwara fifty meters away, where three Bedi families reside , the Bir of Sri Guru Granth Sahib in a room alongside the Chola Sahib . In the premises of the Gurdwara itself is the Samadh of Baba Kabali Mall . There is also an octagonal well. 

This Arabic Chola has a unique sign.

“ਲਾਹਿ ਲਾਇਆ ਅਲਾਹ ਸੁਬਹਾਨ ਕਾਆਨੀਕੁਨ ਤੋ ਮਿਨ ਅਜ਼ ਜ਼ਾਲਮੀਨ"(ਭਾਵ:ਪੂਜਣਯੋਗ ਪ੍ਰਮਾਤਮਾ ਹੀ ਕੇਵਲ ਹੈ। ਮੇਰੇ ਵਰਗੇ ਜ਼ਾਲਮ ਤੇ ਬਖਸ਼ਿਸ਼ ਤੇ ਮਿਹਰ ਕਰਨ ਵਾਲਾ) ਲਿਖਿਆ ਹੈ।

It is made of cotton which is khaki in color and has some color on the edges. There are some verses of the Quran written on it . Many names of Allah are also written . Inside this Chola are many round shaped circles in which numbers of many languages ​​are written .


          Drawing1 in Sanskrit , Arabic , Persian , Urdu etc. numerals are seen. Similar numerals are also seen in Drawing no 2. The holy names of Allah are written in circles and many digits are found outside the circle .Quranic verses are seen on the outer circles as shown in sketches.
          The pen painting of this Arabic Chola was made by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadian (1835 - 1908) or one of his confidants . Ghulam Ahmad  saw this Chola and wrote a long poem in Urdu . This book contains Urdu and Persian poems of Qadian Sahib and edited by Mehraj u Din. Mirza also wrote a few verses  around this pen image . Such as :

1. ਕਹਾਂ ਹੇਂ ਜੋ ਬਰਤੇ ਹੇਂ ਉਲਫ਼ਤ ਕਾ ਦੰਮ
ਇਤਾਅਤ ਸੀ ਸ੍ਰ ਕੋ ਬਨਾ ਕਰ ਕਦਮ(ਚੋਲੇ ਦੇ ਉਪਰ)

2. ਦੇਖੋ ਅਪਣੇ ਦੀਨ ਕੋ ਕਿਸ ਸਿਦਕ ਸੇ ਵੋਹ ਦਿਖਲਾ ਗਿਆ
ਵੋਹ ਬਹਾਦੁਰ ਥਾ ਰਖੱਤਾ ਥਾ ਕਿਸੇ ਦੁਸ਼ਮਣ ਸੇ ਡਰ(ਹੇਠਾਂ)

3. ਦੋਰੇ ਜ਼ੋਰੇ ਸਦਾਕਤ ਖੂਬ ਦਿਖਾਇਆ ਅਸ਼ਰ
ਹੋ ਗਿਆ ਨਾਨਕ ਦੀਨ ਮੁਹੰਮਦ ਸਰਬਸਰ (ਸਜੇ ਪਾਸੇ)

4. ਜਬ ਨਜ਼ਰ ਪੜਤੀ ਹੈ ਉਸ ਚੋਲੇ ਕੇ ਹਰ ਹਰ ਲਫ਼ਜ ਪਰ
ਸਹਾਮਨੇ ਆਖੋਂ ਕੇ ਆ ਜਾਤਾ ਹੈ ਵੋਹ ਗੁਣੀਗਹਿਰ(ਖਬੇ ਹੱਥ)

Mirza Ghulam Ahmad's remarkable poem is seventeen pages long.      

In the end it becomes clear that Guru Nanak's Arabic Chola is present in Dera Baba Nanak . Baba Nanak's victory in Mecca, Medina and  Baghdad.




The statement that Guru Nanak was a Muslim is a perspective often shared by those who see resonance between his teachings and Islamic principles. It highlights the universality of his message, emphasizing unity among diverse religious traditions. Ultimately, interpretations may vary based on individual perspectives and scholarly analysis.

The Ahmadiyya sect, founded in the late 19th century by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, holds a unique perspective on Guru Nanak, considering him as a precursor to their own movement and regarding him with great respect. This view is based on their belief in the continuity of prophethood after Muhammad, seeing figures like Guru Nanak as reformers within the broader Islamic tradition. However, it's essential to recognize that this interpretation is specific to the Ahmadiyya community and may not be universally accepted within Islam or by scholars outside the sect.


1. Guru Nanak did four tours in 22 years, about a 25 thousand miles journey . First  south (1497 - 1508 AD .), Second  east (1510 - 1515 AD .), Third Utter khand (1516 - 1518 AD .), and the fourth to the west (1518 - 1,522 AD.)     
2. The copy of this book was copied from Khadoor Sahib Pothi and printed from Albad Diwan Buta Singh Malik Matbai Aftab Punjab , Lahore . Below is the signature of Bhai Tara Singh of Amritsar .        
3. “ਫਿਰਿ ਮਕੇ ਆਇਆ ਨੀਲ ਬਸਤ੍ਰ ਧਾਰੇ ਬਨਵਾਰੀ
ਆਸਾ ਹਥਿ ਕਿਤਾਬ ਕਛਿ ਦੂਜਾ ਬਾਂਗ ਮੁਸਲਾ ਧਾਰੀ"
4. Jasbir Singh Sarna ^ Guru Nanak's Journey to  Arab Countries , Jammu and Kashmir , 2019, page 16.        
5. Bhai Santokh Singh ^ Sri Nanak Prakash , Chapter - 58           
6. Ibid,     
7. Ibid,               
8. Guru Nanak Sahib's Journey to Arab countries,  24 - 25        
9. The University was opened by Nizam Kutsey 459 Hijri (1203 AD) . Muslims from around the globe came here to educate . This   was considered a stronghold of Muslim Scholars.   
10. Bhai Gurdas , 1 : 35           
11. Ibid, 2:36        
12. This platform was first seen by Sikh military officers . Then in 1918 AD Dr Kirpal Singh reported the inscription in a letter to his brother Seva Ram Singh . This was mentioned by Swami Anand Acharya in his book The Snow Birds , 1919 page 182. Swami had only seen the faded inscription and written date 912 Hijra where actual date is 927 Hijra.   
13. ਗੁਰੂ ਨਾਨਕ ਸਾਹਿਬ ਦਾ ਅਰਬ ਦੇਸ਼ਾਂ ਦਾ ਸਫਰਨਾਮਾ, ਉਹੀ, ਅੰਕ: 48        
14. These verses were written to me 40 years ago by Molvi Bande of Hazrat Bal , Srinagar ( Kashmir ) . He had said that these verses were coming to us after hearing from the Muslims of Arabia and Syria.        
          Other forms of these lines  are also prevalent in Muslim countries.
15. Examples are as follows :         
(1) Muhammad  four letters. Total 92   (2)     Raab. four letters. Total 92              
16. Giani Gian Singh, Twarikh Guru Khalsa , Part 2 , Department of Languages , Punjab , Patiala , Print 2011, Issue : 269 - 270 “In Baghdad, Khalifa Bakkar, the son of Khalifa Wahid, caused great sorrow to the people and the fakirs . Many saints were imprisoned for witnessing miracles . Khalifa Bakkar also came to pay homage to Guru Ji after hearing his praises, then Baba Ji uttered the words :       

“ ਨਾਨਕ ਆਖੇ ਰੇ ਮਨਾ ਸੁਣੀਐ ਸਿਖ ਸਹੀ
....... ........ ...........  .............
ਕੂੜ ਨਿਖੁਟੇ ਨਾਨਕਾ ਓੜਕ ਸਚ ਰਹੀ।

Hearing these words, the caliph folded his hands in front of Baba and said, "Tell me some service ." Baba ji said miracle is wrath , leave the fakirs , your intention is for son so God will fulfill .
17. Bhai Kahn Singh Nabha - Gurshabad Ratnakar Mahan Kosh , Part 2 , page 357        
18.  Mehraj - u-Din Darre samine, Urdu, August , 1906 , Lahore Islamia Steam Press , pages : 38 - 54        
19. Ibid: 38,48,49, 50,52,53,54       


Jasbir Singh Sarna

Jasbir Singh Sarna

Native of Kashmir, Independent historian, poet, Journalist. A well known writer with 62 published books in Punjabi and English. Retired Agriculture Officer

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