HISTORY SHORTS: JASWANT SINGH BAHRAJ

Jaswant Singh Bahraj (1935-?) was a Punjabi Sikh whose father had immigrated to Kenya in 1914. Singh was forced to serve as a police reservist in the colonial government under a mandatory Asian call-up into the police force. He was sympathetic to the Mau Mau movement having been heavily influenced by the ideology of the Revolutionary Party of India that advocated for armed struggle against the British during his studies in India.

While serving as a police reservist, he put his gun making skills to use, teaching members of the Mau Mau movement on how to build guns and other weaponry. Singh also provided a safe haven for fighters hiding from the colonial government. 

For these acts of subversion against the colonial government, he was arrested in 1954 and sent to Manda Island detention camp. At the camp, he spent four-and-a-half years with prominent prisoners such as Pio Gama Pinto and Achieng’ Oneko. 

Very little is known of his life after Kenya’s independence.

Read this Facebook article on Singh.


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