Veer Bal Diwas

Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a big announcement on 09 January 2022 on the occasion of Prakash Parv. Every year on December 26, Veer Bal Diwas is celebrated in the country. On the auspicious occasion of Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s Prakash Parv, Prime Minister Modi said, “I am proud to announce that December 26 will be celebrated as ‘Veer Bal Diwas’ from this year. It is a fitting gift for the courage of the Sahibjadas.

“The courage and ideals of Mata Gujri, Shri Guru Gobind Singh Ji and 4 Sahibjadas give strength to millions. Never bowed your head before injustice. He envisioned an inclusive and united world.” – By Narendra Modi

Background – Struggle
Guru Gobind Singh fought fearlessly and courageously for the equality of man and for absolute freedom and human rights. The prince lived with dignity. To protect the Anandpur Sahib, he built six forts at strategic locations – Fatehgarh on the other side of the Sutlej River, Holghar, Nirmoghar and on the other bank of the river (Anandpur), Anandgarh, Kesgarh. All this was the envy of the hill kings and the Mughal Empire.

The Guru tried but could not defeat the Hindu leaders of the hills. No matter how hard they tried and repeatedly promised, they feared he would snatch their wealth. Instead, he sought protection from the Mughals, sided with them and continued his fight against the Guru. History would have changed if he had sided with his teacher.

Siege of Anandpur
The Mughal army, with the help of an army of hill leaders, besieged Anandpur Sahib with about 30,000 soldiers. The Rangers and Gurjars of the region also joined them. These troops numbered approximately one million and camped out of the city from the range of artillery fired from inside the forts. Guru has about 10,000 warriors. The siege lasted for almost 8 months.

The siege cut off all supplies to the city and it fell into drought-like conditions. Forty warriors left the owner and left the fort. Hindus and Muslims, who came from outside, asked the Guru to vacate the fort and promised a safe way on his oath. On the assurance of the enemy, the Sikhs inside the fort began to pressure the Guru to evacuate it. He advised them to wait a few more days, but the Sikhs overtook him. Eventually had to give up.

When he came out of the Anandgarh fort on the night of 5 to 6 December 1705, shortly after midnight the enemy attacked the Sikhs along with 500 Sikhs in heavy rain and chased them despite their vows. A fierce battle took place on the banks of the overflowing Sirsa River.

Sarsa crossed
The youngest son is a martyr.
The Guru, his two eldest sons and the Sikhs crossed the Sirsa River towards Chamkaur. Guru Bhai Mani Singh along with Mata Sundari and Mata Sahib Kaur were sent to Delhi. The two little Sahibjadas left their grandmother and their cooking gang took them to their village Kheri.

He betrayed and was arrested for his reporting. Sirhind Nawab and Wazir Khan tried their best to change the two Sahib, but they did not move and remained steadfast. Both innocent children sacrificed their lives for this. He hit the wall with a brick, was removed at once, resurrected and his neck opened for ****.

Battle of Chamakauri
The eldest son is a martyr.
In Chamkaur, Guru Ji, two elder Sahib Jadees and 40 Sikhs took charge of a building called Chaudhary Budhi Chand The Haveli, a building called Chaudhary Buddhi Chand Ki Haveli. The Haveli looks like a small castle with a small fort and wall. It is also known as Gadhi (Fortress) and later as ‘Chamnkaur the Garhi’. The Battle of Chamkaur took place here. Both the elder Sahibjade fought hard here and sacrificed their lives.

The Battle of Muktasari
The decision of the remaining five Sikhs forced Guru to leave Garhi and they reached Muktsar. Here, Mai Bhago and Chalice, who had left the Guru at Anandpur Sahib, rejoined him. The teacher waged a decisive battle with the accompanying Mughals. He blessed his forty dead and badly wounded warriors with salvation.

Later on he went to Talwandi Sabo (Damdama Sahib) near Bathinda. Here, he compiled the second edition of the Granth Sahib and added the verses of the 9th Guru to it. Later, one day before his death in 1708, this sect, known as Damdami Bir, was declared the Guru of the Sikhs – Guru Granth Sahib (now, the word ‘Guru’ added).

Elder sons
The two eldest sons of Guru Gobind Singh – Sahibzada Jujhar Singh and Sahibzada Ajit Singh. Their names matched, because their age difference was almost two years, and they were the older brothers of the younger ones. There was a gap of about 6 years in their age and the age of their two younger brothers. The two elders died together (one after the other) in the battle of Chamkaur.

Sahibzada Ajit Singh
He was born in 1687 AD, and died in 1705 AD.
The Guru Gobind Singh’s eldest son was born to Mata Sundar Kaur in Paunta Sahib, on 26 January 1687. The following year Guru Gobind Singh returned to Anandpur Sahib. Ajit Singh was well-educated, well-versed in the Scriptures, and fully trained on the battlefield – fencing, archery, spearheading, and horseback riding.

On Isisakhi Day, 30 March 1699, Guru Gobind Singh created the Khalsa – the pure ones, by giving the people Amrit – Holy-Drink. Shortly afterwards, a group of Sikhs from Pothohar – Northwestern Punjab, were abducted by the Ranghars in the village of Nuh, near Anandpur Sahib. Ajit Singh was about 12 years old. Guru ji sent him 100 Sikhs on May 23, 1699. He punished Ranghars and returned the looted property.

The following year, 29 August 1700, hill-rajas with the support of state troops invaded the city of Anandpur Sahib. Sahibzada Ajit Singh was assigned to defend the Taragarh fort. He, assisted by Bhai (Brother) Oude Singh, thwarted the attack.
In October 1700, he fought in the battle of Nirmohgarh. On March 15, 1701, Sikh devotees from the Darap region (later, Sialkot County) were led by Gujjars and Ranghars. Ajit Singh prepared them well.

On March 7, 1703, with 100 horsemen, he rescued the Brahmin bride from King Pathan of Bassi.

In 1705, when the government forces and the Rajas hill jointly besieged the Anandpur Sahib, Ajit Singh was in charge of the fortresses, without the attack of the surrounding army. On the night of 5 and 6 December 1705, when Anandpur was evicted. Guru, Ajit Singh was about 17 years old.

He guarded the back of the column, and with the help of Bhai Oude Singh, he successfully joined the enemy on a hill called Shahi Tibbi. Guru, Sahibzada Ajit Singh, Sahibzada Jujhar Singh, and about 50 Sikhs crossed the Sarsa River in floodwaters. Their grandmother Mata Ganga, Sahibzada Fateh Singh, Sahibzada Zorawar Singh separated from the group.

On the night of 6 December 1705 AD, An enemy army from Ropar in hot pursuit, arrived in Chamkaur, occupying positions at Garhi – a high-walled fort. Garhi was besieged by troops from Ropar with guarantees from Malalerkotla and Sirhind. The local Gujjars and Ranghars also joined.

When the sun came up on December 7, 1705 AD, there was an unequal battle – only 40 facing a million (Zafarnamah by Guru Gobind Singh). When the bullets and arrows were gone, the Sikhs began marching in groups of five to fight with swords and spears. Sahibzada Ajit Singh led one group and laid down his life fighting bravely. Sahibzada Jujhar Singh followed his older brother leading the next collection.

Sahibzada Jujhar Singh
He was born in 1691AD, and died in 1705 AD.
He was the another son of Guru Gobind Singh, born to the late Mata Ajit Kaur on March 14, 1691 AD, in Anandpur Sahib. He was taught the Scriptures and trained in warfare. In 1699 AD, at the age of 8, he took over the Amrit – to be established as a Sikh bound by its code of discipline. He was a handsome, brave and fearless boy, fit for battle at the age of 15 when Anandpur Sahib was besieged. And he had an older brother with goods in the castles. Also, he played a significant role in the invasion of the surrounding Moguls.

He accompanied Guru during the night out of the night between 5 and 6 December 1705 AD, crossed the flooded Sarsa on horseback, and the other delegates arrived at Garhi in Chamkaur on the night of December 6, 1705 AD. The next day, he bravely chased an enemy attack on Garhi where Guru, 40 Sikhs, Sahibzada Ajit Singh, and he also took refuge.

At the end of the day – December 7, 1705, he led the last day of the day (five Sikhs) after his older brother, and laid down his life in a brave battle. As usual, the war stopped at sunset. In the area where Ajit Singh and Jujhar Singh crossed, there was Gurdwara Qatalgarh – the site of the massacre. Here, in honor of the martyrs, every year a religious festival is held in December-January.

Guru’s two youngest sons, Zorawar Singh and Fateh Singh, were reunited, as the age difference between the two was about 3 years old, and both were about 6 years younger than their two older brothers. Both were killed together in Sirhind. Long ago, there was an article, probably written by the late historian Satnam Singh, that showed that their throats were cut and they would bleed to death. Professor Kartar Singh writes that when the wall climbed into their chests, they were beheaded (Sikh Itihas, Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Amritsar, 1977, page 428). It is known that the two of them were surrounded by walls, living together.

End of Mughal Law
Five Sikhs pressured Guru to leave Garhi. He donated his Kalgi: a wooden ornament, to Bhai Sangat Singh, and left with three Sikhs, leaving only seven. Later, when Guru had a Muslim minister named Rai Kallah in Jattpura, Mahi Noora (Noora a herdsman) gave Guru the news of the murder of her two young sons. The Guru broke the grass with its arrow, claiming that it was the only Mogul Empire.

Sahibzada Zorawar Singh
He was born in 1696 AD, and died in 1705 AD. He was the 3rd son, born of Mata Ajit Kaur, Anandpur Sahib, 17 November 1696 AD. He was about nine years old when the castle of Anandpur was demolished, on the night of 5 and 6 December, 1705 AD.

After then, Mata Ajit Kaur died on the night of 5 December 1700 AD, and raised by his grandfather Mata Gujri. Sahibzada Zorawar Singh and Sahibzada Fateh Singh were with Mata Gujri when the column came out of the castle. As they crossed the Sirsa River on horseback, three of them parted ways with Guru Gobind Singh.

Their chef Gangu accompanied the three of them to his home in Kherri village, which was later renamed Saherri, near Morinda in Ropar District, Punjab. He betrayed me, and at night he stole their wallet and jewelry. In the greed of the prize, on the morning of December 7, 1705, the day of the battle at Chamkaur, he reported the matter to the authorities. Morinda’s officials, Maani Khan and Jaani Khan, detained the three – grandmother and both Sahibzada. The next day, they were sent to Sirhind, and locked up in Thanda-Burj – a cold, towering tower.

As on December 09, 1705, Zorawar Singh and Fateh Singh were brought before the faujdar commander, Nawab Wazir Khan, who had returned to Sirhind from a battle at Chamkaur. Wazir Khan tried to persuade them to accept Islam, but the Sahibzadae firmly refused, remained steadfast in their faith, and was sentenced to death.

They were both trapped in a wall, and when it hit their chest, they fell down and the wall collapsed. They were resurrected and sent back to Thanda Burj. Nawab Sher Mohd Khan of Malerkotla intervened to save the lives of innocent people, but Sucha Nand in Nawab’s ministry, begged them to die. Wazir Khan again tried their conversion, but they remained indifferent and refused. On December 11, 1705 AD, they were executed. Upon receiving the news, Mata Gujri took one last breath in Thanda-Burj.

Sahibzada Fateh Singh
He was born in 1699 AD, died in 1705 AD The fourth son, Mata Ajit Kaur, Anandpur Sahib, Ropar District, Punjab, 25 February 1699 AD. After his mother’s death on December 5, 1700 AD, he was raised by his grandmother Mata Gujree, and lived with her until her death. On December 11, 1705 AD, he was martyred in Sirhind with his older brother Zorawar Singh.

Dewan Todar Mall, a wealthy merchant from Sirhind, bought a land measuring gold coins, and in this place he burned three Sahibzadae – two small ones and their grandmother. Later, the place was renamed Fatehgarh Sahib – Fortress of Conquest. Thanda Burj – Cold Tower, still standing there. On the wall site stands the magnificent Gurdwara. To commemorate the martyrs, there is a religious exhibition there on December 25 to 28, annually.

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