The 56th sadguru of this Sampradaya was Sri Sri 108 Swami Premdasji Kathia Babaji Maharaj. Ever smiling and possessing an attractive personality, this great saint was love and affection personified. He was born in 1913 on the auspicious day of Maha Saptami (Durga Saptami) in the village of Kashipur in Sylhet district (now in Bangladesh). His name was Sri Priyanath Bhattacharjee. Spirituality and God attracted him from a very young age and it was his wish to become a realized saint. He was not too interested in studies and only studied up to middle school.

He left home when he was just 20 years old and came to the Nimbarka Ashram in Shibpur, Howrah, where he received diksha and sanyaas from Sri Santadasji Maharaj. He was named ‘Premdas’ after his sanyaas. That day was Durga Saptami, his birthday. Ordinarily Sri Santadasji Maharaj would test seeker of sanyaas for about 4-6 months and sometimes even for 1-2 years however, he gave sanyaas to Sri Premdasji after merely 2-3 days. A few days after his sanyaas, his gurudeva made him wear the Kaath (wooden belt) and kowpeen (loincloth made of wood). Sri Premdasji was given the duty of doing Sringaar and aarti of Sri Thakurji. He performed his duties with a lot of devotion and sincerity. After his duties as a pujari were over for the day, Sri Premdasji spent most of his free time in his room doing japa. His Gurudeva asked to do various seva for Sri Thakurji like, cooking for bhog, how to distribute prasada to devotees and many other duties.

After the evanescence of Sri Santadasji, he left the ashram in Vrindavan and searched for a suitable place to perform his penance. He finally chose a cave in Kadamkhandi, the same place where Sri Nagaji Maharaj had achieved spiritual fulfillment. He entered the cave with only a kamandalu of water and took a vow of silence. For about fifteen days he mediated while subsisting only on water and then he finally gave up drinking water. After fifteen days he was graced with the darshan of Sri Tahkurji and yet, he continued with his penance for a futher ten days. He then felt that he had achieved full realisation of God and achieved complete spiritual realisation. All this happened when he was merely 24 years old.

He returned to the Sri Nimbarka Ashram in Vrindavan after the completion of his austerities and bean to live a peaceful life. He resumed his duties as a pujari and continued to do Sringaar and aarti seva of Sri Thakurji. During those days Sri Thakurji and Sri Radharanili would appear in his dream and instruct him on which dress they wished to wear on the next day. Sri Premdasji would joyously do the Sringaar as he had been told to by Sri Thakurji himself. During those days Sri Thakurji appeared before him twice. The first time Sri Thakurji appeared he said to Sri Premdasji, “I feel so cold.” Sri Premdasji came to know that the quilt normally given tto Sri Thakurji had been irreparably damaged and was not in use at the time. He immediately got a new quilt made and gave it for Sri Thakurji. The second time Sri Thakurji appeared he said to Sri Premdasji, “Bahut machar lagta hai (I have to suffer so many mosquito bites).” This time Sri Premdasji found out that the mosquito net used in the temple had been damaged and was not in use. This time he got a new mosquito net prepared for Sri Thakurji.

He used to go for pilgrimages from time to time. Once while crossing a jungle on foot on a pilgrimage to South India, he and a few other sadhus came face to face with a tiger. Sri Premdasji Maharaj was in the lead however, the tiger didn’t harm anyone and went another way into the jungle. While returning from a darshan of Amarnathji, he was blessed with the darshan of Sheshnag at the Sheshnag Sarovar. While in Nepal he visited the Mukti Narayana temple and performed a japa anushthan of 1.25 japa of the Gopal Mantra. One early morning his Gurudeva Sri Santadasji Maharaj physically appeared at the place where he was doing his anushthan. Sri Premdasji was overjoyed to physically see his Gurudeva so many years after his evanescence. He prostrated himself before his Gurudeva and invited him inside the cave. He offered an asana to his guru and two had a conversation for about half an hour. Finally, Sri Santadasji Maharaj started to walk towards the northern horizon and disappeared before his very eyes.

From Vrindavan he came to Sylhet where he started initiating disciples by giving them diksha. Soon, the number of his disciples began to grow and many received his grace in avery short time. In the August of 1953 he was anointed the Mahant of the Nimbarka Ashram in Vrindavan and the Braja Videhi Mahant. In 1954 at the Kumbha Mela in Prayag, he became the Sri Mahant of Chatur sampradaya.  His affectionate nature and simplicity made deep impact on everyone who came into contact with him. He was the Mahant of the Nimbarka Ashram for fourteen years.

In 1967 he gave up the post of the Mahant of the Nimbarka ashram in Vrindavan and came to stay in the Nimbarka Ashram in Shibpur, Howrah. In 1969 he became the Mahant of the Nimbarka ashram in Shibpur, Howrah. In 1972, he replaced the broken idols of the Nimbarka Ashram in Sylhet with idols made in Jaipur. The idols were installed following all rituals in the scriptures. Till date, the idols are worshipped in that Ashram. He loved doing sadhu-seva and was forever eager to be of service to everyone, including his disciples. Whenever he felt that any position or post had become a hindrance to his love for service, he gave it up without a second thought. He was loved and respected in the sadhu samaj for his generosity, kind heartedness and affectionate nature.

In 1970 he established the ‘Sri Santadas Baba Ashram at Gopinath Bazar in Vrindavan and in 1979, he established another ashram by the same name at Laskarpur, Kolkata in West Bengal. In 1974 he established the Kathia Baba Sri Ramdas Khalsa for the sole purpose of doing sadhu-seva. He wrote and published two volumes of the the teachings of his Gurudeva Sri Santadasji Maharaj. He also wrote a book called, “Sankshipta Nitya Karma and Puja Padhati.” He had written the biography of his Gurudeva, “Sri Santadas charitamrita”, however, it could only be published after his evanescence.

Although he had attained many spiritual powers, he kept them well hidden and lived as an ordinary human being. There were times however, when his powers became known and he only used them for the well being of mankind. Once he used his will power to convert the people of an entire village into Vaishnavs. He did this in response to a plea by the few Vaishnavs of the village who were ill treated by the other people of that village. Sri Premdasji Maharaj initiated about 1500 disciples during his lifetime. He left this earthly abode in 1981.

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