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A Tribute to W Bro / E Comp Dr. Jagdev Singh Badhesha: A Pillar of Freemasonry and Community Service

By the Sub-Editor, Wilson CA CHANG, Table Lodge 9717 E.C., Tawau, Sabah, Malaysia




It is with great sadness that the District announces the passing of our esteemed W Bro / E Comp Dr. Jagdev Singh Badhesha, PDSGW, Past Master of Klang Lodge No. 3369 EC, and member of Baldwyn Lowick Chapter No. 7004 EC, PD2ndAGSoj, Past Principal Z, on 5th June 2024.




Following the tribute to our beloved Worshipful Brother Datuk Babu Singh Ramday, it is particularly heartrending to write another remembrance. It is always sorrowful to lose our giants, but it is also heartening to celebrate and remember their remarkable lives.


As family members reminisced: “A tribute we raise, to the cricketer we love, in so many ways. A celebration of life, a love evergreen, on the pitch of our hearts, forever serene.” Dr. Jagdev Singh, in his prime, was one of the best cricketers in Malaysia.


Captain (rtd) Dr Jagdev Singh Badhesha (front row, right) with his hockey team at Adelaide University, Australia. FILE PIX


After the song “My Way” was played and the Malaysian Armed Forces Sikh Veterans Association paid their salute, the last post was sounded. A Saskaar, the last rites performed to honour the deceased and facilitate their soul's journey to the afterlife, was conducted, our late Brother was cremated, as noted in the obituary: “From God we are sent, to God we return.”



Captain (rtd) Dr Jagdev Singh Badhesha as a young medical officer with the armed forces.




This story celebrates one of the prominent figures in Freemasonry (2008 Edition of Pentagram). His awards include the Malaysian Red Cross Gallantry Award, Meritorious Service Award, Long Service Award, and the Anugerah Kerajaan Malaysia. He served as the former Medical Director of Esso Companies in Malaysia, a Life Member of the Malaysian Red Crescent Society, and the Hon. Chief Medical Assessor for the Department of Civil Aviation, Malaysia.

 

In this post, we focus on this esteemed brother’s life as a Freemason.




W Bro Dr. Jagdev was initiated into Freemasonry in 1966 and installed as the Worshipful Master of Klang Lodge No. 3369 in 1975 and again in 1998. He later served as the Worshipful Master of Malaysia’s premier research lodge, Fidelity Lodge No. 2018.

 

EC Jagdev Singh held the position of Past 2nd Assistant Sojourner for the District Grand Chapter of the Eastern Archipelago and was awarded Grand Rank in the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons, SEA, Royal and Select Master Grand Lodge of SEA, the Grand Conclave of the Order of Secret Monitors SEA, and other appendant orders.

 

He was a well-known figure throughout our District and deeply respected by all within our close-knit circle of Freemasonry throughout South East Asia for his life, professionalism, and the manner in which he carried out his Masonic duties.

 

On 8th December 2012, the late Dr. Jagdev Singh Badhesha was conferred the ‘District Grand Master’s Meritorious Award for Service to Freemasonry.’ This annual award honours senior Brethren who have made significant contributions to Freemasonry and provided valuable services to the District.

 

According to past Pentagram issues, particularly the 2014 edition, he was described as:


“His progress in Freemasonry was steady but slow, as in the early years he was often overseas attending professional courses or gaining work experience in his chosen fields. When in Malaysia, he was always a regular attendee at meetings of his Mother Lodge. Because he was busy with work, work related travel, sports and voluntary community services, he was only able to be more involved in Chapter and other Masonic activities after he had retired from Exxon. Incidentally, he is still a regular volunteer to manage the Masonic Charity Clinic at the Read Masonic Centre in Kuala Lumpur.

 

He is well known as an excellent ritualist and always makes efforts to see that any task assigned to him is executed to the highest possible standard.

 

As the Lodge Almoner, he makes it a point to visit any brother who is ill or who has been admitted to hospital and will always do his best to assist any brother who is undergoing hardship of any kind. He regularly volunteers his time in the running of the Masonic Charity Clinic at the Read Masonic Centre.”


For readers interested in learning more about his life, his public contributions are detailed in 4 newspaper articles, all by the same reporter, Mr. Adrian David. The recent article, published by Free Malaysia Today after his passing, is titled “Aviation chiefs pay tribute to pioneer doctor who screened air crews | FMT (freemalaysiatoday.com)” (9th June 2024). Another article in The New Straits Times on 7th January 2022 is titled “It's curtains down, finally for Dr Jagdev | New Straits Times | Malaysia General Business Sports and Lifestyle News (nst.com.my)” and "'90 but not out' for Dr Jagdev (nst.com.my)", published on 15th March 2021 and an earlier article from 2nd July 2019, also in The New Straits Times, is titled “From milk boy to cricket captain, aviation medicine expert: The amazing Dr. Jagdev Singh Badhesha




Dr. Jagdev Singh Badhesha celebrating his 90th birthday by cutting his birthday cake at home.




Lastly, I would like to highlight the final words of the late Dr. Jagdev: "In his last interview, Jagdev mentioned that many pilots thought he was strict in carrying out his duties as one of the 28 accredited aviation medicine doctors, and the most senior in the country. 'On the contrary, we strive very hard to resolve their medical issues and help them remain in their seats,' he said." These words exemplify the dedication and virtue of our late brother.



Dr Jagdev Singh Badhesha on duty at the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia headquarters in Putrajaya before his retirement in 2021.

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