Thakar Singh Myth Busters

Setting the Record Straight on Sant Thakar Singh

Myth: Sant Thakar Singh kept children in schools in India and mistreated them.

Variations: Sant Thakar Singh kept hundreds of children captive in India; made them meditate for 18 to 20 hours daily; gave them no education; the children were starved and were beaten and were not allowed to have contact with the outside world.

Status: False.


Following tradition in India, Sant Thakar Singh promoted the establishment of day schools and boarding schools in India that offered underprivileged children an education with a spiritual orientation. These schools are government approved and the usual regulating authorities confirm that these children are healthy and thoroughly looked after.

Manav Kendra Pupils WritingAs well as the usual general education, meditation is an inherent part of the daily schedule. According to age, need for physical activity and disposition, the children fall into groups having different meditation schedules. Nobody has to meditate for 18 or 20 hours, and no child is beaten.

These primary and secondary schools have achieved all-around community appreciation lasting until the present day. There were start-up challenges that any pioneering project could expect, but by Indian standards these schools’ level of achievement is outstanding. As can be seen from these photos from one of the schools, in some instances they can even be compared to Western institutions. Manav Kendra School Building

The children are regularly visited by their parents and siblings. If a child refuses to stay after the orientation period, their parents are requested to take them back home. All boarding and day pupils regularly participate in various events, for example public sporting events or religious festivals which often take place in India. Long journeys of several days are undertaken that include stays in other ashrams or schools. There is contact with the outside world, and it goes without saying that nobody is held captive.

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Last updated: 22 Apr 2010