Saturday, September 20, 2014

Sakhi Series :- 253 ( Village Palahi )

Tiag Mal to Tegh Bahadur ji

Palahi is a very old village. It has the privilege and grace of having the touch of the pious feet of Guru Hargobind and his son Guru Teg Bahadur. The time when Guru Hargobind visited Palahi, Guru Teg Bahadur accompanied him who had not yet gone in seclusion dungeon for meditation. He took part in the battle here with his father. Afterwards the seventh Guru Har Rai also visited Palahi.

Guru Arjan Dev Ji was martyred at Lahore in 1606. The mention of this has been in the autobiography known as "Juzak-e-Jehangir" by Emprorer Jehangir himself. Guru Arjan Dev ji before his martrydom left a message for his brave, breaker of the enemy installations and warrior son(Hargobind Sahib)) that a time has come to hold the sheath of the sword.

After which Guru Hargobind Sahib ji adopted two Kirpans(swords). He organised his own army within four years from 1606 to 1610. He got built Akal Takhat in Amritsar in 1608. It became the political capital of the sikhs and got constructed the fort of Loh Garh in Amritsar.

Observing his military preparations the Mughal Government arrested him in 1609 and he remained in detention in the fort of Gowaliar uptil 1612. Realising his fault, Jahangir honourably released Guru Hargobind Sahib ji along-with 52 other emperors. However Guru Hargobind ji carried on his military preparations and moved to Doaba in 1614. He made Kartarpur, his headquarter. Paindey Khan also joined the army of Guru Hargobind at this place.

In the meantime Guru Hargobind settled in Kiratpur Sahib which was the best strategic place from the military point of view. In 1627, after the death of Jehangir, scuffle developed between the sikh organisation and the Mughal ruler. The Subedar of Lahore felt irritated at the royal ascendancy of Guru Hargobind Sahib. Consequently the first battle of Sikh History was fought at Amritsar. Guru Hargobind led the Sikh Army. This occurred on 15th May 1629. Three other battles were fought afterwards. The second battle was fought in Doaba. This battle was fought at Sri Hargobindpur. The third battle was fought in Malwa. The fourth battle was again fought in Doaba. This battle was fought at Palahi and is said to be the most fierce battle. At the time of this battle Guru Hargobind ji had come to Kartarpur to ceremonise the marriage of Guru Tegh Bahadur. The festival of Baisakhi was also celebrated here. Piandey Khan who had become arrogant and become hostile to Guru Hargobind ji, joined warring army against Guru Hargobind. The first encounter was held at Kartarpur. Paindey Khan was killed and the Mughal army was defeated. Marching from Kartarpur Guru Hargobind ji came to Palahi and again encountered with Mughal Army here.

Principal Satbir Singh mentions thus about the battle of Palahi in his recently published book 'Guru Hargobind' that Guru Hargobind had just reached Palahi near Phagwara from Kartarpur when small troop of Emperor's army chasing Guru came here also. It was being led by Ahmed Khan son of Abdul Khan. Rais Jamal, Fateh Khan of Basti Sheikh, Jafat Khan of Alawalpur and many other Pathans from other parts of the area were with the Mughal army.

As the attack was sudden and unexpected, all the Sikhs faced it bravely with whatever they could catch hold of. Fateh Khan and Ahmed Khan were killed and the opponent troops fled away. In this battle the youngest son Baba Tiag Mall of Guru Hargobind fought so boldly that all the witnessers applauded it. As a matter of applause Guru ji exclaimed, "Your name is not Tiag Mall but you are Tegh Bahadur(Master of the Sword)". Since that day this name was permanently recognised.

The memorials of the battle fought at Palahi have been preserved till today. When the deep foundations of the present splendid building of the Gurudwara were being dug, lot of rust torn weapons and the hooves of the horses were obtained. These historical memorials are still securely preserved in the Gurudwara.

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