A copy of the news paper article in Punjabi has been pasted here.There
are many who are not readers or understand in Punjabi, thus, I will try
and share with the readers the contents of the above original mail by
Giani Jarnail Singh Ji.
Personally, I had read about this great Sikhs general many years ago;
and must say almost forgot it myself!He has been compared to General Sr
Hari Singh Nalwa.Some have compared him to Baba Banda Singh Bahadur.
There are many military traits that were very much similar among all
Sikh generals of that period.At personal levels the likes and language
of mentality, actions and expression may not have been the same, but
where commitment to Sikhi, Khalsa raj,and panthic commitment and their
military abilities were concerned , there was great parallelity between
them.That is the most important and crux of the matter in Sikh history
and as far as Sikh should be concerned.Every other individual has his
or her own weakness.
I will add to this as I find time to do so.Thus the article may not be
wholly presented at one go.Pls bear with me.
General Zorawar Singh --[translation]
The first time ever I came to know about General Zorawar Singh was from
a book written by Brigadier Gurbachan Singh Bal,and published by
Punjabi University Patiala.As I read the book, I became very
sensitively intrigued and also many questions arose in my mind about
the heroic deeds, little known among the Sikhs, of this General of the
Sikh nation.I became very mesmerised by his victorious abilities and
military genius and bare
At the same time, questions arose that here we have had an unparalled
general and so little was known about him and far few people knew about
his exploits for the Sikh nation.Let alone the Non Sikhs!
We feel strongly hurt, that very little was known about this General of
the Sikh nation; and in a way he has been cognac chentied and it is
time we brought him back into the main stream, and made a Sikh
house hold name just as hari Singh nalwa or Sham Singh Attariwala.
Unlike the writers of yester years, the air conditioned comfort
based scholars of today could not be bothered to carry a proper
research about this great entity and share it with the present
generations, lest he was forgotten!
The great writers of Sikhism from yester years put a great effort
into doing their research and travelling to the places of historical
interest and signifcance, more than often at their won expanses to
gather the historical facts and material aand eventually at cost of
personal time and finances share their knowledge with the Sikh panth.
These writers included, Giani Dit Singh, Kahn Singh Nabha;Karam Singh
Historian, among the many more who spared no stone or effort to
collect all facts relating to Sikh history and shared that knowledge
with the panth;unlike todays writers who do not see self inconvenience
as part of their effort to write the factual and proper history of
It was quite conincidental and a lucky break that Brigadier Gurbachan
Singh was able to follow and trace into the foot steps of General
Zorawar Singh and recognise the significance, efforts and historical
significance of General Zorawar Singh 's exploits!Being an army officer
,Gurbachan Singh ji was able to cover the difficult terrain and other
difficulties that arose in the course of his trekking the historicalReference:: Sikh Philosophy Network http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/sikh-personalities/38763-general-zoravaar-singh-forgotten-sikh-general.html
pursuits of General Zorawar Singh.It was helpful that Brigadier
Gurbachan Singh Ji being an academic was widely read, and thus able toReference:: Sikh Philosophy Network http://www.sikhphilosophy.net/showthread.php?t=38763
distinguish between facts and unsound evidence of historical
investigations.It was also important that being a Sikh he was very much
committed to the Sikh historical causes and determined to establish the
true story of the Sikhs and General Zorawar Singh to the world at
large; and this he did without a flaw,and brought to light the heroic
deeds of a great Sikh general, who by now was almost forgotten had ever
existed, even among the Sikhs.
General Zorawar Singh was born in 1876, but by the time he was
about 18/19 years old; he had learnt all about the traditional weapons
of war and was very skilled in their use.He became a celeberity master
in warfare and had natural skills of warfare and leadership; and
without any question he was seen to be the leader by all around him.
However what brought him fame for the first time his exploits,during a
crises whie defending a fortress in Jammu.The fort was attacked, the
officer in charge wished to negotiate with the attackers and surrender
the fortress, but when Zorawar Singh came to know this intention of
his commanding officer, he took some officers into his confidence and
imprisonned the coward officer, and then took control of the fort
led his men in to battle against the enemy.He not only successfully
repulsed the attack; but killed many of the attacking enemy and routed
the remaining enemy soldiers, many of whom fled from the battle field.
He then got a report prepared and sent it off to his Sovereign,
Maharajah Ranjit Singh.He eexplained the reasons for his actions and
the arrest of the military commander.He then sent his report &
explained the victory and asked the Maharajah for forgiveness in having
to take such action
in the defence of the Khalsa Fort.He then went on to mitigate and
apologise for his behaviour and re-iterated to the Maharajah that
he[Zorawar Singh Ji]
will accept any punishment due, if the maharajah thinks his actions are
deemed to be
insubordination of the established protocol of the Khalsa
Maharajah Ranjit Singh sent for investigation of the issue; after
it was ascertained that Zorawar Singh's report was honest and true,he
stripped the imprisoned commander of the command of the fort and
awarded it to Zorawar Singh.Zorawar Singh now elated by this
went on to be more determined to serve the Khalsa raj with
determination, and truly he distinguished himself in the end.
Gurcharan Singh Kulim