Sant Baba Karam Singh ji of Hoti Mardan, was born to Mata Subi Kaur and S. Kirpa Singh ji at village Qazian, Dist. Rawalpindi in 1826 AD.
He imbibed Sikh values from home. At an early age, he took Santhya (lessons for correct pronunciation of Guru Granth Sahib ji) and started reciting Gurbani daily, in routine.
By the time he set foot in his youth, stumbling Khalsa Empire was on the verge of collapse. By 1847 AD., Punjab was completely annexed by the British.
Sikhs with combative spirit turned to the service of British army. Sant Karam Singh ji also, in his youth, served British army.
While serving the army, he got the opportunity to be in the company of Sant Ram Singh ji Virakt, Nauranagabad who had undertaken the mission of Baptization (Amrit Sanchar) in the cantonments in those days.
Impressed by his personality, he decided to dedicate himself to meditation and service of humanity.
During mutiny of 1857, his battalion got posted in Delhi.
During that regime, many soldiers and other personnel were involved in looting and rioting but he, carrying out his moral obligation, protected the distressed victims of the tragedy, and saved the dignity and lives of many families in Delhi.
During his tenure of army service, once such an amazing incident happened that the Almighty had to do his duty as a guard in his place. Thereafter, he left Government job and started doing service of the real authority i.e. Almighty and did indefatigable service and meditation.
By setting up a famous centre known as Dera Hoti Mardan for preaching Sikh principles near the Mardan cantonment, he did austere meditation there for a long time, implanted principles of Sikhism in Sikh masses and operated Langar.
About him, Sant Attar Singh ji Reru Sahib wale used to say that he did austere meditation for 3 dodecads (group of 12 years ) i.e. for 36 years. In that area, he encountered such dreadful Pathans who sometimes came to kill him while at other times to rob his dera.
But that was also well-known in the entire area that anyone who had a holy glimpse of Sant Baba Karam Singh ji Hoti Mardan once, becomes his follower forever.
Guided by his life memoir, many saints undertook the task of preaching Gurmat (Sikh principles) and serving humanity.
He left his mortal body for heavenly abode in 1900 AD. After him, the responsibility of Hoti Mardan was handed over to Baba Aya Singh ji Maharaj.
After the partition of India, saints who came from Hoti Mardan made their own Dera (preaching centre) at Maksoodpur town in Kapurthala district, which is currently being run by Baba Roshan Singh ji of Maksoodpur.