Baba Gurbachan Singh Manochahal was born on June 6, 1954, at Manochahal village in Amritsar district. He was 6 ft 1 in. He weighed 95 kg and his blood group was AB Negative. After an early education he joined the Indian Army in its ranks but left it after sometime and joined the ranks of Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale. He was one of those who protested against the Nirankaris holding their congregation at Amritsar on April 13, 1978, when 13 other Sikhs were shot at, Baba Manochahal stood by Sant Bhindranwale through thick and thin. He played a role in the safe conduct of Sant Bhindranwale from Bombay to Darbar Sahib, Amritsar, in 1982.

During the operation "Blue Star," Baba Manochahal was with Sant Bhindranwale inside the complex but on Sant's advice had left it. He organized the underground Sikh movement for Khalistan in the Majha districts and enrolled a large number of armed followers. Baba Manochahal was made Jathedar of Akal Takhat in 1986. He made a brief' appearance in the Darbar Sahib complex in April 1986 but left it after making a formal announcement of Khalistan. He also formed the first panthic committee which guided the Sikh underground movement for many years along with other panthic committees.

In 1987 Baba Manochahal formed Bhindranwale Tiger Force of Khalistan with the cooperation of Bhai Wassan Singh Jaffarwal but later the two parted company and formed their separate groups of B.T.F. In the course of last few years, Baba Manochahal lost more then 60 of his followers in different encounters. The biggest loss to him was the death of Bhai Surjit Singh Beehla.

His modus operandi was to equip himself heavily with arms and move about mostly at night and away from main roads and highways. Often he was on horse back. He spent time in villages and farm-houses or in fields. He escaped the police dragnets for more than a dozen times in the past few years. There was a fierce encounter between Baba Manochahal's followers and the Indian security forces at Rataul village about two years ago when a deputy inspector-general of Punjab police was among those killed. But he himself had succeeded in escaping from the village. A few days ago he was again surrounded by security forces near Bargain village but had escaped after firing from a machine gun which he possessed. Indian authorities had announced a reward of Rs 25 lakh, one of the highest for any Sikh militant, to those who would give a clue to the whereabouts of Baba Gurbachan Singh Manochahal.

Baba Manochahal was quite popular among the people of Amritsar district. He was a pillar of strength for the Khalistan movement and was greatly feared by the Indian security forces.