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Baba Maharaj Singh Of Naurangabad


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Taken from Tapoban.org.

http://www.tapoban.org/phorum/read.php?f=1...05&t=109005 by Balpreet Singh

I remember in the past someone mentioned that they believed the kirpans we wear today became common well after the British took over Punjab and hand't existed in the past. As I've said in the past, I've seen small kirpans of Baba Deep Singh and Guru Gobind Singh jee as well. Here are a couple pictures.

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The second is of Bhai Maharaj Singh. This is an amazing picture that was taken by a Britisher who saw Baba jee at his dera, before he was arrested. Bhai Maharaj Singh was held in esteem by countless people who felt he had all spiritual powers. Bhai Sahib was a true Sant Sipahi and a real Kharkoo. Please read the small extract on his life below:

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Bhai Maharaj Singh (d. 1856)

MAHARAJ SINGH was a saintly person turned revolutionary who led an anti-British movement in the Punjab after the first Anglo-Sikh war, was born Nihal Singh at the village of Rabbon, in Ludhiana district. He had a religious bent of mind and came under the influence of Bhai Bir Singh of Naurangabad. After the latter's death in 1844, he succeeded him as head of the Naurafigabad dera and was held in high esteem by a vast following, including most of the Sikh chiefs and courtiers. Maharaj Singh's revolutionary career started with the Prema conspiracy case involving him in a plot to murder the British resident, Henly Lawrence, and other pro-British officers of the Lahore Darbar. Maharaj Singh, whose movements were restricted to Naurangabfid by the British, went underground. The government confiscated his properq at Amritsar and announced a reward for his arrest.

Bhai Maharaj Singh intensified his activities against the British when he came to know that Diwan Mul Raj had in April 1848 raised a standard of revolt against them at Multan. He left for Multan with 400 horsemen to join hands with Mul Raj. But soon differences arose between the two leaders, and Maharaj Singh left Multan for Hazara in June 1848 to seek Chatar Singh Atarivala's assistance in his plans to dislodge the British. In November 1848, he joined Raja Sher Singh's forces at Rimnagar and was seen in the battlefield riding his black mare and exhorting the Sikh soldiers to lay down their lives for the sake of their country. Thereafter he took part in the battles of Chehanvala and Gujrat but, when Raja Sher Singh surrendered to the British at Rawalpindi on 14 March 1849, he resolved to carly on the fight single-handed.

He escaped to Jammu and made Dev Batala his secret headquarters. In December 1849, he went to Hoshiarpur and visited the Sikh regiments to enlist their support. Bhai Maharaj Singh, who carried on his head a price of 10,000 rupees was arrested on 28 December 1849 at Adampur. The Guru is no ordinary man," wrote Dr Vansittart, the Jalandhar deputy commissioner, who had arrested him. He is to the natives what Jesus is to the most zealous of Christians. His miracles were seen by tens of thousands and are more implicitly believed than those worked by the ancient prophets" Vansittart was so greatly impressed by Bhai Maharaj Singh's personaliq that he recommended special treatment to be accorded him, but the government did not wish to take any risks and deported him to Singapore where after several years of solitary confinement, he died on 5 July 1856. He had gone blind before the end came.

Further posting by Kulbir Singh

I have always been fascinated by Baba Maharaj Singh. Baba Maharaj Singh was instrumental in the Chelianwalee Jung with the british where the british suffered one of the worst defeats in their history. The Sikhs completely routed them and it is said that they were crushed as an orange is crushed for juice. So much was the impact of this battle that the viceroy and all the top level british officials were suspended and replaced.

Great Sikh saint Baba Karam Singh Hotee Mardaan, I think was inspired by Baba jee. He was the first one in the history of India to fight against the british rule and he tried his level best to persuade the Sikh Sardaars to revolt against the british. After the Chelianwalee jung the Sikhs failed to take advantage of the situation. Sher Singh went on and softened his stand with the British, fearing that in case they loose the next battle they will also loose their Jagirs. What a Pity ! Babajee explained the Sardars to not to give up the struggle at this time but the sardars got double minded.

Had Babajee established a kingdom, it would have been great for the people of Punjab, even better than Raja Ranjit Singh's rule because Imagine ! a Brahmgyanee ruling the country.

Babajee was not only a general but a great Sikh and it is a widespread belief in the Sikhs that he was a Puran Brahmgyanee.

Please read on for more details :

=> Bhai MAHARAJ SINGH: Born in village Rabbon, near Malud, Ludhiana

Dist. Parents named him Nihal Singh. As a young lad, he went

to stay at Bhai Bir Singh's Dera at Naurangabad. Did sewa

for many years, took Amrit at the hands of Bhai Bir Singh,

was given the name Bhagwan Singh, and eventually became his

chela. The Dera was practically a military camp with 1200

musketmen and 3000 horsemen. It had always been a sanctuary

for political refugees. It became the centre of the Sikh

revolt against Dogra dominance over the Punjab.

Hira Singh Dogra, the chief minister of the Punjab, attacked

the Dera in 1844 with 20000 troops and 50 cannon. Several

hundred Sikhs, including General Attar Singh Sandhanwalla,

Prince Kashmira Singh and Bhai Bir Singh were killed. Bhagwan

Singh became the head of the Dera.

The British, who had been waiting for the right moment to

intervene and establish their authority, made their move in

1847. They deported Rani Jinda. The Sikh chiefs revolted,

including Bhagwan Singh. He was welcomed by Sikhs saying

"Ah Wo Maharaj", because of his sanctity, thus, soon he

came to be referred to as Bhai Maharaj Singh.

During the second Anglo-Sikh war that followed, at the

battles of Ram Nagar, Chillianwall and Gujrat, he was very

active providing personal inspiration and organizing supplies

for the Sikh Army. Soon after the defeat at Gujrat, all the

other Sikh chiefs had been captured or had surrendered.

By the way, Bhai Maharaj Singh was one of the first people of Punjab to launch a freedom movement in Punjab after the British

took over Punjab. He said in 1849:

"There will be another Naitonal War, let all the true

Sikhs rise on the day fixed."

"Bhai Mahararaj Singh, a Sikh priest of reputed sanctity,

and of great influence, the first man who raised the

standards of rebellion beyound the confines of Multan

in 1848, and the only leader of note who did not lay

down his arms to Sir Walter Gilberts at Rawalpindi."

- Henry Lawrence, Resident of Lahore

Bhai Maharaj Singh's other name was Bhai Nihal Singh. His

belonged to a line of Sikh revolutionaries who wanted to

return to the creed of the Gurus. The pinions of this movement

were Baba Bhag Singh of Pothohar, his worthy and more popular

disciple Bhai Bir Singh of Naurangabad in Amritsar and the

latter's successor Bhai Maharaj Singh.

Bhai Maharaj Singh plan of action against the vastly superior British was framed in the jungles of the Chumb Valley.

1. To rescue Maharajah Dalip Singh from Lahore Fort.

2. To organize a United Front of all anti-British forces.

3. Organized disruption by subversion and suprise attacks

on British treasuries and cantonments.

He displayed superb military generalship and knowledge of

tactical warfare. What sustained him was his rich spiritual heritage.

The British reacted by moving Dalip Singh to securer

confinement, encouraged Muslim zealots to locate him for them

and offered hugh rewards for information of his whereabouts.

On the other hand, the British tried to portray him as a

religious leader to lower his following as a Military or

political leader. It was the British officers who coined the

term "Karnivala" since it they did not want to admit the

failures of their intelligence. Bhai Maharaj Singh, undoubtedly,

was certainly a "Miracle Maker" since it became impossible for

the British to arrest him. This was due to the support given

to him by the public that he was able to hide among the people.

He was captured together with 21 unarmed followers on Dec, 28

1849, near Adampur. Vansttart, the Deputy Commissioner of

Jallundar who arrested him, wrote.

"The Guru is no ordinary man. He is to the natives

what Jesus was to the most zealous of Christians.

His miracles were seen by tens of thousands, and

are more implicitly believed than those worked by

the ancient prophets."

Even more generous was Mcleod, Commissioner of the Doab,

".. had he remained at large, but a little longer

... more outrages of an alarming character would

have been attempted ... the result of which,..

would perhaps be impossible to foretell."

It was found too risky to put Bhai Maharaj Singh on trial

in India and he was deported to Singapore. He arrived on

the "Mahomed Shaw", on 9th July 1850, together with a

disciple, Khurruck Singh, and moved to Outram Jail. He was

kept in solitary confinement in a cell 14 by 15 feet, which, because of the walling up of the windows, had been "further rendered dark, dinghy and absolutely unhealthy" (Secret

Consultation Papers, 28th Feb 1851, #52-57). He was

practically blind within three years, developed cancer on his tongue, and had rheumatic swellings and pains in his feet and

ankles. The Civil Surgeon, Singapore, recommended that Bhai

Maharaj Singh be allowed an occasional walk in the open, but

this was turned down by the Government of India. The result was that his health continued to deteriorate, and about two months before his death, his neck and tongue became so swollen that it became very difficult for him to swallow.

Bhai Maharaj Singh died on 5th July 1856. He was cremated on a

plot of land outside the prison, presumebably by Khurruck Singh,

who also died in prison later. Locals, mainly Hindu Tamils began

to revere the spot, marking it with stones. Offerings of flowers found their way there, Sikhs and Muslims joined in. The Sikhs placed a structure on this spot, turning it into a small temple.

In 1966, the Sri Guru Granth Sahib was moved to the Silat Road Temple. Only the stones were re-erected outside the temple. Large

numbers of Sikhs and non-Sikhs come to the samadh to worship,

with offerings of valuables, a practice against Sikh tenets.

Bhai Maharaj Singh was the head of the Order now known as the

Hoti Mardan Valli Sant Khalsa Sampardai, recent illustrious

heads were Sant Attar Singh and Sant Isher Singh. He was thus

not only a revolutionary fighter but also a recognized religious personage of very high standing. Many believe him to be a "Karniwala".

-Source - extracted from 'Bhai Maharaj Singh Saint-Soldier'

by Choor Singh, Singapore.

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Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

Great posting. I have heard about Baba Maharaj Singh, but to see a picture is amazing. It's interesting to note how the look of the GurSikhs have changed over the years, you can see how the hoti mardaan or the rara sahib babay look today compared to the Sant-Siphai look of the mid 1800 even though they are part of the same lineage.

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Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh!

Great posting. I have heard about Baba Maharaj Singh, but to see a picture is amazing. It's interesting to note how the look of the GurSikhs have changed over the years, you can see how the hoti mardaan or the rara sahib babay look today compared to the Sant-Siphai look of the mid 1800 even though they are part of the same lineage.

vah ji vah... ignorant comments like these that gives birth to black and white sikhi, what do you know bhai dya singh ji lineage, probably swat, bhai dya singh lineage has lot of shant ras sants and bir ras sant, who are you to divide the mahapursh of bhai dya singh ji and claim that true image of khalsa was around baba bir singh nurangabad and baba maharaj sngh ji time where they were shastar dhari?

Sharia Sikhs cannot never comprehend mahapursh's lifestyle, for them everything is black and white, have it ever cross your mind? why sri guru nanak dev ji didnt raise swords but sri guru gobind singh ji did? i m sure if you existed guru's time you probably judged guru maharaj as well by claiming "oh look at the observations sri guru nanak dev ji is from same lineage as sri guru gobind singh ji who was king of sant sipahi yet sri guru nanak dev ji was not shastar dhari or didn't raise weapons against injustice during that time...so there must be something different... sri guru gobind singh ji was greatest guru than sri guru nanak dev ji because he was sant-sipahi .. blah blah..i can bet if you were in guru's time you probably done the same because thinking does not change, body may change.

So coming back to your rigid thinking, let me answer why sri guru nanak dev ji was not shastardhari and didnt raise weapons against injustice as compared to sri guru gobind singh ji, it was because hakum of akaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaal purkh.

Guru Avtars and Sant Mahatama's come here in this world in hakum of Vahiguroo and follow hakum of Vahiguroo, follow task given by them by Vahiguroo, they don't follow their own mat or follow black and white sikhi or sikhs. They don't need sharia sikhs to tell them "what role they should follow?" They do everything in will of Vahiguroo...Hoti Mardan Wale mahapursh and Raraie Wale Mahapursh if you read about them only you will know why they were here, what purpose they fullfilled when they came in this earth in hakum of Vahiguroo? Did they follow their own mat and accept the roles or do they accept hakum of Vahiguroo and spread adhyatamic(spiritual, mystical ) sikhi just like how ( sri guru nanak dev ji) played the role of spreading sikh and atamik knowledge in hakum of Vahiguroo.

Nobody has authority to question hakum of Akaaaaaaaaaal Purkh.

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