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Power of Ardaas – Guru Gobind Singh Ji

By | Sikh History | No Comments

Once in the Darbaar of Guru Gobind Singh Jee, a Sikh called Laal Singh came with a shield. He had spent a lot of time constructing this shield which was almost impossible to penetrate. It was not only strong but was also very light. Everyone in the darbaar praised the dhaal (shield) and Guru Sahib too expressed his happiness at the dhaal.

Bhai Laal Singh was a very good Sikh but when so many people praised his dhaal, he developed haume (ego) and declared in the sangat that no bullet can penetrate his shield. He said this very egoistically. As soon as he said this Guru Sahib told him that he would test Laal Singh’s dhaal the next day. Bhai Laal Singh still did not realize his mistake and accepted the challenge saying that no bullet could penetrate his shield.As he came out of the darbaar of Guru Sahib, he realized that he had committed a blunder. He said to himself that Guru Sahib is a known warrior and on top of that he is Satguru. What could stop him from penetrating his shield? He greatly regretted his mistake and came to his lodging area greatly depressed. Although, he realized his mistake of challenging the sangat, he still wanted Guru Sahib to keep his honour and not let anyone break his shield.

He consulted his friends who were gursikhs as well and asked them what to do. They told him that Guru Sahib could no doubt penetrate his shield. They suggested to him that the only way for him to save his honour was to perform Ardaas in front of Guru Sahib. Bhai Laal Singh prepared “Degh”(Karaah Parshaad) and along with other Gursikhs did Ardaas before Waheguru to save his honour. Bhai Laal Singh did not sleep all night and kept doing paath all night. The next day Bhai Laal Singh arrived in the darbaar of Guru Kalgidhar Paatshaah but he arrived very humbly. After the bhog of Kirtan, Guru Sahib asked Bhai Laal Singh to get ready as he was going to test his dhaal. Bhai Laal Singh did not accept the challenge as he had done the previous day but responded very humbly to Guru Sahib.Guru Sahib asked Bhai Aalam Singh to test the dhal first. Bhai Laal Singh stood there with the dhaal, constantly doing naam and paath. Bhai Aalam Singh tried three times but the bullet missed the dhaal and did not hit it.

Then Guru Sahib smilingly took over the gun and took aim at the dhaal. Guru Sahib just stood there but did not fire. After few moments he called off his aim and asked Bhai Laal Singh what he had been doing all night. Bhai Laal Singh fell at the lotus feet of Guru Sahib and told him everything. Guru Sahib, blessed Bhai Laal Singh and declared that indeed, no one could penetrate the dhaal as Vaheguru himself and all Gurus were present to protect the dhaal. Guru Sahib told Bhai Laal Singh to never talk in haume again.

CONCLUSION

  • So great is our Guru. Guru Sahib himself accepted the defeat by not penetrating the dhaal but protected the honour of his Sikh. Why should we leave such great Guru and get indulged in maaiya? Aseen kurbaan kyoon nahi ho jaande apne Guru uppar?
  • It is a good idea to prepare degh with full maryada and perform ardaas for our difficult kaarajs. Nothing is impossible if we do ardaas with full faith.
  • Never talk egoistically in Sangat.

Guru does not consider our shortcomings and weaknesses when we do Ardaas. He ignores our shortcomings and accepts Ardaas that is done with faith.

Gurudwara Guru Ka Lahore

By | Gurudwaras

Gurudwara Guru Ka Lahore

Gurudwara Shri Guru Ka Lahore is situated in the village Basantpur in Billaspur Distt. of Himachal Pardesh. Its situated on the border of Himachal Pardesh only 12 km from Shri Anandpur Sahib. Bhai Hari Jas ji father of Mata Jeeto Ji came to Chak Nanaki ( Shri Anandpur Sahib) for getting Marriage fixed up with Shri Guru Gobind Singh Ji (Engagemenimet had already been done during the life time of Shri Guru Teg Bahadur Ji) But the elders didn’t agreed on barats going to lahore. So 10th sikh guru Sri Guru Gobind Singh ji proposed that we shall create lahore here and Mata Jeeto Ji’s family may come here and marriage ceremony may take place. Later a little Lahore was setup which exactly resembled to the nine Bazaars of lahore in village Basantnagar. And finally Guru Sahib’s marriage was performed here.

There are few gurudwaras around the main gurudwara :

1) Gurdwara Anand Karaj Sthan Patshahi Dasvin – The gurudwara represents the spot where the marriage was performed. Its present building, a square hall with the domed sanctum over its middle, was constructed by Sant Seva Singh Anandgarhwale during the 1960s.

2) Gurdwara Triveni Sahib – Enclosing a spring formerly called Karpa (lit. spear) Baoli was created, according to popular legend, by the Guru with a blow of his spear. It is a domed square hall with a pavilion over the spring in front of the hall.

3) Gurdwara Paur Sahib – A small domed room with a verandah in front, near another spring is also based on a legend similar to the one related to Triveni Sahib. In this case the spring is said to have been caused by the Guru’s horse stamping its paur (hoof).

4) Gurdwara Sehra Sahib – One kilometer south of Guru ka Lahore in Bilaspur is located at the spot where Guru Gobind Singh halted for a short time on his way to his marriage at Guru ka Lahore. According to tradition the Guru donned his sehra (bridegroom’s floral headband) here.

 

 

Location : Gurudwara Guru Ka Lahore is 12 Km from Anandpur Sahib

Gurudwara Bhibour Sahib

By | Gurudwaras
bhibhour sahib

bhibhour sahib

Gurudwara Shri Bhabour Sahib is located at Bank of Satluj River in Nangal, Dist Ropar (Punjab). This Gurudwara is built in memory of Tenth Master Shri Guru Gobind Singh Ji. Guru Gobind Singh ji had come to this place on Invitation of Raja Rattan Rai. Guru Ji stayed here for several months and meditated here. At this holy place Guru Maharaj Wrote Chaupai Sahib on bank of Satluj River. As mentioned in Chaupai Sahib.

ਚੌਪਈ ॥
चौपई ॥
CHAUPAI

ਸੰਬਤ ਸੱਤ੍ਰਹ ਸਹਸ ਭਣਿੱਜੈ ॥ ਅਰਧ ਸਹਸ ਫੁਨਿ ਤੀਨਿ ਕਹਿੱਜੈ ॥
स्मबत स्त्रह सहस भणि्जै ॥ अरध सहस फुनि तीनि कहि्जै ॥
It was Bikrami Samvat 1753;

ਭਾਦ੍ਰਵ ਸੁਦੀ ਅਸ਼ਟਮੀ ਰਵਿ ਵਾਰਾ ॥ ਤੀਰ ਸਤੁੱਦ੍ਰਵ ਗ੍ਰੰਥ ਸੁਧਾਰਾ ॥੪੦੫॥
भाद्रव सुदी अशटमी रवि वारा ॥ तीर सतु्द्रव ग्रंथ सुधारा ॥४०५॥
This book was competed on the banks of Sutlej on Sunday, the eighth Sudi of the month of Bhadon.

bhibhour sahib

bhibhour sahib

Gurudwara Bhibour Sahib is approximately 11o Km from Chandigarh and 25 Km from Anandpur Sahib.

Bhai Dayala Ji

By | Famous Sikhs, Sikh Martyrs

bhai dayala ji

Bhai Dayala ji (died 1675) variously spelt as Bhai Dayala, Bhai Diala, was one of the earliest martyrs to the Sikh faith. Along with his companions Bhai Mati Das and Bhai Sati Das as well as Ninth Guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur, Bhai Dayala was martyred at Chandni Chowk at Delhi in November 1675 for his refusal to barter his faith.

Bhai Dayala was one of the Sikhs who accompanied Guru Tegh Bahadur when the latter left Anandpur on 11 July 1675 to court martyrdom at Delhi, the other two were brothers—Bhai Mati Das, a Dewan and Bhai Sati Das, a Scribe at Guru’s court. Along with Ninth Guru ji, they were arrested under orders from Emperor Aurangzeb at Agra. On 9 November 1675 A.D, the Qazi pronounced his religious order that Bhai Dayala must either accept Islam or be prepared to embrace death by being boiled in a cauldron. Bhai Dayala heroically accepted the latter alternative and asked leave of the Guru. The Guru graced Bhai Dayala for his lifelong devotion as a true and dedicated Sikh and blessed him with glory and success. Bhai Dayala was put into a big cauldron full of water which was later heated to the boiling point. Bhai Dayala continued to his last breath to recite the Japjiof Guru Nanak and the Sukhmani of Guru Arjan.

Jassa Singh Ahluwalia

By | Famous Sikhs

Jassa Singh Ahluwalia

Jassa Singh Ahluwalia was born (1718-1783) at a village called Ahlu or Ahluwal near Lahore, established by his ancestor, Sadda singh, a devotee of Sixth Guru, Hargobind. Hence the name Ahluwalia stuck to him. His forefathers were kalals (wine merchants). Hence he is also called Jassa singh Kalal.

However such was the admiration he won of the whole Sikh community that Jassa singh kalal came to be known as ‘Guru Ka Lal’ (the beloved son of Guru). Son of Badar singh Jassa singh was hardly 5 yrs old when his father died (1723 A.D.). His mother entreated Mata Sundri, widow of Guru Gobind Singh ji, to take him into her care. Mata Sundri agreed to do so, and lavished much affection on him, instructing him carefully in the arts of war and peace. He studied Sikh scriptures under Bhai Mani singh. Later, Mata Sundri asked Nawab Kapur singh to take charge of the promising youth. Both he and his mother used to perform Hari-Kirtan before Nawab Kapur singh who much pleased at his supreme devotion to the faith and sense of duty and humility, appointed him as a storekeeper with his forces. As was natural, he participated in many combat as well where he displayed such qualities of leadership that Nawab Kapur singh appointed him his successor on the eve of his death in 1753. Elated at his successful helmsmanship, the Khalsa honored Jassa singh with the title of Sultan-ul-Qaum (king of the whole people), when they captured Lahore in 1761.

On Feb 5 1762, Sikhs were especially the target of Ahmad Shah Abdali Sixth invasion into India. News had reached him in Afghanistan of the defeat of his general, Nur-Ud-Din Bamezai, at the hands of Sikhs who were fast spreading themselves out over the Punjab and had declared their leader, Jassa Singh Ahluwalia, king of Lahore. To rid his Indian dominion of them once for all, he set out from Kandahar. Marching with alacrity, he overtook the Sikhs as they were withdrawing into the Malwa after crossing the Sutlej.

The moving caravan comprised a substantial portion of the total Sikh population and contained, besides active fighters, a large body of old men, women and children who were being escorted to the safety of the interior of the country. Surprised by Ahmad Shah, the Sikhs threw a cordon round those who needed protection, and prepared for the battle. In this formationand continuing their march, they fought invaders and their Indian allies (Nawab of Malerkotla, Sarhind, etc. ) desperetely. Charat Singh, Hari Singh Bhangi and Jassa Singh Ahluwalia led their forces with skill and courage. Jassa Singh ahluwalia sustained sixty four wounds on his body and Charat Singh rode to exhaustion five of his horses one after another.

Ahmad Shah succeeded, in the end, in breaking through the ring and glutted his spite by carrying out a full scale butchery. His orders were for everyone in Indian dress to be killed at sight. The soldiers of Malerkotala and Sarhind were to wear green leaves of trees on their heads to distinguish themselves from the Sikhs. Near the village of Kup, in the vicinity of Malerkotla, about 20,000 Sikhs lay on that ghastly field at the end of a single day’s action (February 5, 1762). This battle in Sikh history is known as Wadda Ghalughara.

Jassa singh fought valiantly and received 64 cuts, but he survived. Even such a disaster as had overtaken them at Kup caused no despondency among the Sikhs. When the survirors of of the Great carnage assembled inthe evening for their prayers. A Sikh got up and said “No harm done, Khalsa ji! The Panth has emerged purer from the trial; the alloy has been eliminated.” Within four months of Ghalughara, Sikhs under Jassa Singh Ahluwalia inflicted and a severe defeat on the governor of Sarhind and were celebrating Diwali in Harimandir which the Shah had demolished, and were fighting pitched battle forcing him to withdraw from Amritsar under cover of darkness (October 17,1762).

Upto now, Sikhs forces were divided into 65 jathas Nawab Kapur singh reorganised them into Eleven bands, each of course with its own name, flag and leader. These bands or Jathas, which came to known later on as Misls (lit. equal, also an example) together were, however, given the name of Dal Khalsa (or the Khalsa force), under over all charge of Jassa singh Ahluwalia.

It is a miracle of Guru Gobind singh that everyone irrespective of Caste, region or station accepted the decision of their venerable old leader with a clean and good heart. Here is what Bhangu Ratan singh has to say ‘Ape Raj, ape Mujdar, Bade bhujangi, dil ke sur. Ape pisen, ap pakwan, to bade sardar Kahawan. koi kare na kise sheereka, koi na sunawe nij dukj ji ka.’ which means ‘They were all brave of heart. They themselves ground their corn and cooked their own food. It is through such dedicated service that they became great Sardars. None felt jealous of another nor ever gave vent to his own privations or personal grief.

The fear of his Indian empire falling to the Sikhs continued to obsess the Ahmad Shah Abdali’s mind and helet out another campaign against Sikhs towards the close of 1766. This was his eighth invasion into India. The Sikhs had recourse to their old game of hide and seek. They vacated Lahore, but faced squarely the Afghan general, Jahan Khan at Amritsar, forcing him to retreat, with six thousand Abdali’s soldiers killed. Jassa Singh Ahluwalia with an army of about twenty thousand Sikhs roamed in the neighbourhood of the Afghan camp plundering it to his heart’s content. Never before Ahmad Shah Abdali had felt so helpless, his dream of capturing the whole of India was dying before his own eyes. In the words of a contemporary writer: “The Shah’s influence is confined merely to those tracts which are covered by his army. The Zamindars appear in general so well affected towards the Sikhs that itis usual with the latter to repair by night to the villages where they find every refreshment. By the day they retire from them and again fall to harassing the Shah’s troops. ” Jassa Singh was also called “Bandi Chhor”, (The delivered) for having rescued 2200 beautiful Hindu women made prisoner by Abdali for his harms.

 

Source :

Copyright © Harbans Singh “The Heritage of the Sikhs.”

Khushwant Singh “History of the Sikhs.

Bhai Haqiqat Rai

By | Famous Sikhs

bhai haqiqat rai

Bhai Haqiqat Rai was born at Sialkot in 1724 A.D. His father was Bhai Bhag Mall Khatri. His maternal grandparents were Sikhs and he was married at a young age to Durgi the daughter of Sardar Kishan Singh. Bhai Haqiqat Rai became a Sikh early in his life due to influence of his mother. During Mughal rule, children used to go to mosques to study Persian from Maulvis (Muslim priests). Bhai Haqiqat Rai was also learning Persian from a maulvi. He was the only Sikh while all his other class-mates were Muslims. One day, the maulvi had gone out. Bhai Haqiqat Rai-had a quarrel with a boy. In order to tease Bhai Haqiqat Rai, he called bad names to mother goddess. In anger, Bhai Haqiqat Rai called name to Bibi Fatima in retaliation. When the Muslim boys heard him calling name, all of them gave him a sound thrashing. He returned home weeping.

In the evening, the Muslim boys got together, went to the maulvi and said, “Today, when we said to Haqiqat Rai that their gods and goddesses are made of clay and all are false, he said Bibi Fatima to be false and called her names.” The maulvi said, “Did that infidel call Bibi Fatima names ?” The boys exaggerated the event and said, “When we said to him that we would complain to the maulvi, he replied that he was not afraid of him. His maternal uncles and inlaws are Sikhs. He will get the maulvi eliminated through them.” The maulvi was greatly enraged on hearing this. He said to the boys, “Call that infidel and bring him to me.”

At the message from the boys, Bhai Haqiqat Rai and his father went to the maulvi. As soon as they arrived, the maulvi caught hold of Bhai Haqiqat Rai and started beating him The maulvi beat him to unconsciousness but his anger did not subside. He arrested Bhai Haqiqat Rai and sent him to Amir Beg, the administrator of Sialkot. The next day the qazi said to Bhai Haqiqat Rai in the court, “You have hurt the feelings of believers by calling names to Bibi Fatima for which you should be given severe punishment. For this sin you can be burnt alive after pouring oil on you. you can be torn apart alive from dogs. But your sin may be pardoned if you embrace Islam.” Bhai Haqiqat Rai refused to become a Muslim. By order of Amir Beg, Bhai Haqiqat Rai was hanged feet up from a tree and beaten but he did not agree to embrace Islam.

Amir Beg sent Bhai Haqiqat Rai to Zakria Khan, the Governor of Lahore. Mother Goran said to Bhai Haqiqat Rai, “Son ! No doubt I shall lose a son by your death but if you give up your faith I shall be called the mother of a deserter and faithless son. I pray to God to bestow on you the will to keep your faith even if you have to sacrifice your life.” When Bhai Haqiqat Rai did not agree to embrace Islam even after further torture, he was martyred by the orders of the Governor in January, 1735 A.D.

  1. Copyright © Santokh Singh Jagdev “Bed Time Stories”

Bhai Sati Das Ji

By | Famous Sikhs
bhai sati das ji

bhai sati das ji

Bhai Sati Das (died 1675) along with his elder brother Bhai Mati Das is one of the greatest martyrs in Sikh history. Bhai Sati Das and his elder brother Bhai Mati Das were followers of ninth Sikh Guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur. Bhai Sati Das, Bhai Mati Das and Bhai Dyal Das were all executed at kotwali(police-station) near the Sunehri Masjid in theChandni Chowk area of Old Delhi, under the express orders of emperor Aurangzeb.

Bhai Sati Das was a Mohyal Brahmin of the Chhibber clan. He belonged to the village of Karyala, a stronghold of the Chhibbers, in the Jhelum District in Punjab (Pakistan), about ten kilometres from Chakwal on the road to the Katas Raj Temple Complex. The village stands on the top of the Surla hills. This part of the country is known as Dhani meaning rich. A few kilometres away are the Salt Mines and coal mines of Dandot. The Katas lake is beautiful. Legend connects it to the Mahabharata. It is believed to be the very pool, where the Pandava, Yudhishtira was tested by his father, Lord Yama/Dharma in the form of a Yaksha. A great Hindu fair used to be held there up to 1947.

Sati Das was the son of Hira Nand, a disciple of Guru Har Gobind, under whom he had fought in many battles. He survived the Guru, and a little before his death he had entrusted his two sons, Mati Das and Sati Das to the care of Guru Har Rai, who had assured the dying man of his full attention and help. Both the lads remained attached to the Guru’s family at Kiratpur. When Guru Har Krishan was summoned to Delhi by Aurangzeb, both the brothers, Mati Das and Sati Das, were present in his entourage along with Dyal Das and Gurditta, a descendant of Bhai Budha (different from Baba Gurditta, the son of Guru Hargobind, brother of Guru Teg Bahadur and father of Guru Har Rai).

On Guru Har Krishan’s death at Delhi, these two brothers were included in the deputation of five men containing Dyal Das and Gurditta to declare the nomination of Teg Bahadur as the ninth Guru at the village of Bakala where the new Guru was then residing. The Guru was pleased to offer the two important portfolios of finance and home departments to Mati Das and Sati Das respectively. Both knew Persian well, and were quite familiar with the working of the Guru’s durbar. The department of household affairs was entrusted to Dyal Das.

The two brothers accompanied Guru Teg Bahadur during his journey to Assam. Guru Tegh Bahadur bought a hillock near the village of Makhowal five miles north of Kiratpur and established a new town, which he named as Anandpur (the abode of bliss). Mati Das and Sati Das were present at the foundation of Anandpur. The Guru’s council of administration then consisted of Mati Das, Sati Das, Dyal Das and Gurditta. When the Guru was arrested and taken to Delhi, these four persons followed the Guru

At Delhi, the Guru and his four companions were summoned into the council chamber of the Red Fort. The Guru was asked numerous questions on religion, Hinduism, Sikhism and Islam. It was suggested to the Guru that he should embrace Islam. On the Guru’s emphatic refusal to abjure his faith, he was asked why he was called Teg Bahadur(gladiator or Knight of the Sword; before this, his name had been Tyag Mal). Bhai Mati Das immediately replied that the Guru had won the title by inflicting a heavy blow on the imperial forces at the young age of fourteen. He was reprimanded for his breach of etiquette and outspokenness. As for the Kashmiri Pandits, it was his duty to raise his voice against cruelty and injustice. The Guru and his companions were ordered to be imprisoned and tortured until they agreed to embrace Islam.

After a few days, Guru Teg Bahadur and three of his companions were produced before the Qazi of the city. Gurditta had managed to escape. He remained in hiding in the city, and in spite of all the efforts of the Government, he could not be traced. The Qazi turned to Mati Das first and asked him to embrace Islam. He refused to do so. He was condemned to an instantaneous death.

The executioners were called and the Guru and all the three of his companions were made to sit at the place of the execution. After the martyrdom of Bhai Mati Das and Bhai Dyal Das, Bhai Sati Das moved towards the Guru with folded hands and asked for his blessings, saying that he was happy to achieve martyrdom.

The Guru blessed him telling that they must resign themselves cheerfully to the will of the Lord. He praised him for his lifelong single-minded devotion to him and his cause. With tears in his eyes, he bade him farewell saying his sacrifice would occupy an abiding place in history. Sati Das touched the Guru’s feet, and came to his place.

Bhai Sati Das was wrapped in cotton and set to fire by the executioner. He remained calm and peaceful and kept uttering Waheguru, waheguru-, waheguru-, waheguru, Waheguru………. Fire consumed his body; his immortal soul remained in peaceful joy. His martyrdom is remembered by the Sikhs in their daily prayer.

Image Source :  https://www.flickr.com/photos/hname/4222018298

Baba Bota Singh Baba Garja Singh

By | Famous Sikhs
shaheed_bhai_bota_singh_garja_singh

Shaheed Baba Bota Singh Baba Garja Singh ji

After the death of Qazi Abdul Razak and Mufti Abdul Rehman at the hands of the Singhs in 1738 A.D., Zakriya Khan, the Governor of Lahore put Abdul Samad Khan Yusufi at the head of an army patrol. Wherever that patrol came across a Singh, they killed him there and then. One day, Abdul Samad Khan fell into the hands of Nawab Kapoor Singh. He tied him head down, behind a horse and ran the horse at a gallop which caused his death. After that, the Governor began rewarding those coming with the heads of Singhs. A large number of Singhs left Lahore and went to other provinces. .

Zakariya Khan had taken vows to destroy the Sikhs, root and branch. Orders were given that all Sikhs-men, women, and children were to be put to death. It was declared lawful to plunder their homes and seize their property. Their houses were to be looted and plundered. They were to be haunted down like wild beasts. Not only government officials, but even notable Hindus and Muhammadans, vied with one another in this cruel campaign of loot, arson and murder. Special rewards were offered for the capture and destruction of the Sikhs. It was announced, ‘Any parson giving information which leads to the arrest of a Sikh, will get ten gold coins. Fifty coins will be rewarded to him who brings the head of a Sikh. Eighty coins will be given to him who captures and brings a Sikh alive.’ It has to be borne in mind that eighty coins in those days would be equal to a few thousand dollars today. So, the rewards were tempting indeed. The whole machinery of the government was put into motion to crush the Sikhs. Even non-official Zamindars were made to lend a hand in this campaign of ruthless genocide. Some Zamindars used to send cartloads of heads to Lahore. This campaign was the most virulent in the Majha tract.

As a result of this fierce persecution, most of the Sikhs left the plains. They took shelter in places away from human habitations. These places were the Shivalik Hills, the Lakhi jungle, and the sandy deserts of Rajputana. The few who still chose to remain in the Majha, had to press their days in bushes and forests, here and there. Sometimes, some persecutors and evil wishers of their would boast that the Sikhs were afraid to appear in the plains. Such taunts would cause some daring Sikhs to come out of their hiding places, and make their presence known and felt. One such daring Sikh was Bhai Bota Singh. He was a GurSikh of Bharana, now in Pakistan. He had a companion named Bhai Garja Singh. They used to come occasionally to Amritsar at night in order to bathe in the sacred tank. They spent the rest of the day in the bushes near Taran Taaran. Bhai Bota Singh was a deeply religious man. He passed his life in reciting the Guru’s sacred hymns and meditating on God. By nature, he was a peace loving saint. But, at the same time, he could be a mighty soldier, if necessary.

It was toward the end of 1739, when one day, a party of wayfarers noticed Bhai Bota Singh and his companion near Nurdi. The two were returning from a secret pilgrimage to the darbar Sahib at Amritsar. ‘Look There’ said one of the wayfarers, ‘there goes the pair of Sikhs’. ‘O , no’, said another. ‘They can’t be Sikhs. there is no Sikh left anywhere in the neighborhood. All of them have been either killed or driven away. Zakriya Khan has proudly proclaimed that he has exterminated the Sikhs that no Sikh exists in the Punjab.’ But, said the first man, ‘I am sure that they are Sikhs.’ ‘In that case,’ said the other, ‘they must be a pair of cowards, jackals, hiding about to save their skins. The Sikhs are not subject to such fears.’ These taunting remarks stung Bhai Bota Singh. A Singh of Guru Gobind Singh was, to him, as brave as a lion. That a Singh or lion should be called jackal was more than he could stand. The Guru’s Khalsa, he felt, could not be exterminated. Zakriya Khan must be made to realize that his boast was empty, that the Khalsa was in existence and would ever continue to exist, in spite of all that he and his ilk might do. Indeed, the taunt awoke the soldier in that saint. He decided to come out into the open, make his presence felt, by Zakriya Khan and his government, and to maintain the prestige of the Khalsa. His companion was of the same view.

Bhai Bota Singh and his companion came out from the bushes. They took their position on the then Grand Trunk Road near Nurdi, a few miles west of Taran Taaran. In those days, this road connected Delhi and Lahore. As mere bravado and show of courage, Bhai Bota Singh began to collect toll tax of one anna per cart and one pice per donkey load. None dared to refuse his demand. All paid it readily and quietly. Nobody dared make a report to the government. Their weapons were big sticks cut from kikkar trees. This went for some time. Bhai Bota Singh’s presence was, no doubt, felt by those who used the Grand Trunk road. But it had not yet been felt by the government. Bhai Bota Singh did not like it. He had not taken this position merely for collecting toll. His object was only to prove to the fanatical rulers that, in spite for their all-out effort to exterminate the Sikhs, the Sikhs were still very much in existence. Therefore, he wrote direct to the governor, Zakriya Khan, at Lahore, announcing himself and the tax he was levying on travelers. He gave it to the traveler bound for Lahore and asked him to do deliver it to the governor there. The traveler undertook to do so. The letter was, of course, in Punjabi. Its words were as follows:

“Chithi likhi Singh Bota,

Hath hai sota, Vich rah khalota,

Anna laya gadde noo, Paisa laya khota,

Akho Bhabi Khano nun, Eeun akhe Singh Bota”

In English the words would read:

“Thus writes Bota Singh a letter,

With a big stick in hand, on the road I stand,

Levying an anna for a cart, And pice for a donkey load.

Tell sister-in-law Khano,

That this is a message from Bota Singh.”

The letter was a clear and daring challenge to the governor. He was red with rage. Immediately he, sent a detachment of on hundred fully armed horsemen under the command of Jalal Din, to arrest Bhai Bota Singh. On approaching Nurdi, they saw the two Sikhs standing on the road. They held big kikar sticks in their hands. They had no other weapon; no axe, no lance, and no sword. Approaching them, Jalal Din called upon them to surrender. Bhai Bota Singh replied, ‘Sikhs know no surrender. We are not used to that sort of act. You would certainly like very much to take us alive to your governor and earn his good opinion. He would like very much to see me cut into pieces, limb by limb, like Bhai Mani Singh. But we refuse to oblige you and your governor. We shall give up our lives, but we shall charge a heavy price for them. We shall die fighting. But we shall kill many before we die. Come on, and taste our big sticks. Send four of your best strongest swordsmen against us two big-stick wielders. Come on ! “Sat Sri Akal”.

Jalal Din sent four his bravest and strongest soldiers. He said to them, ‘Fall on these beasts, and fell them with your sharp swords.’ They advanced, crying, ‘Ya Ali’. Bhai Bota Singh and Garja Singh struck them repeated blows with their big sticks. Thus thrashed, the four Mughals soldiers were fell to the ground. Another batch of four met the same fate. Then Jalal Ding ordered all his soldiers to make a joint attack. Bhai Bota Singh and Garja Singh were surrounded by shouting swordsmen. The unequal fight could not last long. The brave Sikhs fell martyrs at last; but only after over a dozen Mughal soldiers had been dispatched by them to hell. Thus did they make their presence felt by the government of Zakriya Khan. Thus did they demonstrate that they were not cowards, but bold and daring saint soldiers of Guru Gobind Singh; that they were not jackals, but lions. Thus did they show Zakriya Khan that his boast of having exterminated the Khalsa was altogether empty; that the Khalsa was very much in existence, and would continue to exist, in spite of all that he and his ilk might do.  This happened in the year 1739.

Source : Sikh History Book 5 by Kartar Singh.