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Sahibzada Jujhar Singh (27 September1 1691 – 7 December 1705), the second son of Guru Gobind Singh Ji, was born to Mata Jito ji (also known as Mata Sundari ji) at Anandpur on 27 September 1691 (as per Nanakshahi calendar).

Like his elder brother Ajit Singh, he started training in the fighting skills (Gatka) as soon as he started learning the religious texts aged about 4 to 5 years. In 1699, when he was eight years old, he received holy Amrit at the rites of Khalsa initiation, called Amrit Sanskar. By the time it became necessary to leave Anandpur under the pressure of a besieging host in December 1705, Jujhar Singh, nearing the completion of his fifteenth year, was an experienced young warrior, strong and fearless.

He was one of the band that successfully waded through the flooded Sarsa rivulet on horseback and made good their way to Chamkaur by nightfall on 6 December 1705, with the adversary in hot pursuit. With little respite during the night, he participated in the next day’s battle warding off assault after assault upon the “garhi”, the fortified house in which Guru Gobind Singh Ji had, along with his 40 Sikhs and two sons, taken shelter.

As they ran out of ammunition and arrows, Sikhs inside split themselves into batches of five each who would go out one after the other to engage the besiegers in hand to hand combat. Jujhar Singh led the last sally towards the end of the day (7 December 1705), and laid down his life fighting near the place where he had earlier seen his elder brother fall. He was just 14 years old when he gave his life while his older brother was 18 years old when they gave their lives for their faith. Gurdwara Katalgarh Sahib in Chamkaur Sahib now marks the site.

Baba Jujhar Singh also ready

Main article: Story of bravery & sacrifice

Watching his brother Baba Ajit Singh attain Shaheedi, Baba Jujhar Singh desired to fight in the battlefield, as well, even though doing so meant certain death. He asked his father, “Guru Sahib, permit me, dear father, to go where my brother has gone. Don’t say that I am too young. I am your son. I am a Singh, a Lion, of yours. I shall prove worthy of you. I shall die fighting, with my face towards the enemy, with the Naam on my lips and the Guru in my heart.”

Guru Gobind Singh Ji embraced him and said, “Go my son and wed the life-giving bride, Death. May the Almighty be with you always”

Guru Gobind Singh providing protection cover for the Sahibzade

Guru Sahib gave blessings to Baba Jujhar Singh just like a father gives blessings to the bride on the day of her marriage. Guru added, “I asked my father to give his life for “dharam” (righteousness and justice). Today, what I told my father, I now tell you son.”

Bhai Himmat Singh and Bhai Sahib Singh (two of the original Panj Piarey) along with 3 other Singhs accompanied Sahibzada Baba Jujhar Singh . The Mughals were shocked at what they saw. It looked as if Ajit Singh had come back.

“Whoever dies, let him die such a death, that he does not have to die again. (1)” (Ang 555, SGGS)

Dead bodies lay everywhere. Baba Jujhar Singh chose to attack another section of the enemy. He had observed the enemy and chose to attack the section who were showing more aggression against the Sikhs in the mud-fort then the rest of the enemy. Initially, the enemy did not have any courage to formulate an attack against this second unit after the fury of the force displayed by Ajit Singh’s unit.

To them this appeared like a repeat of the same disaster that had befallen them an hour or so ago. They had not even had time to recover from the previous shock and now they had a second wave of the same enormously vibrant energy. This time the enemy was driven even further back; many just took flight as they thought that the Sikh numbers must have increased and so many of the enemy desserted the battlefield. This new force of six Khalsas soldiers killed many hundreds of the enemy; many simply ran away.

The enemy were stunned by the heavy force and thrust of this second attack and had little choice but to retreat. The Khalsa unit created a huge void in the enemy territory and a small circle of about 35 metres within the enemy ground was under the control of the Sikhs. No one had the courage to enter into this circle of control. Anyone who entered this area of command was immediately challenged and quickly extinguished. The Khalsa unit, with their backs to the centre of this circular area attacked the enemy courageously and with vigour at the perimeter of the controlled region.

The Guru watched this development with pride and gratefulness to the Almighty and he knew that the Sikhs had learned the lessons of warfare well and would soon join the many hundreds of Sikh martyrs who had attained the highest honour of Dharam. The Almighty had indeed blessed the Sahibzade and the Sikhs with true bravery and deepest understanding of the Guru’s message.

Slowly, due to the huge number of the enemy, they eventually assembled around Baba Jujhar Singh. He was now surrounded and had a Neja (spear) in his hand. Wherever the Neja hit, the enemy was destroyed. He also used a Khanda (double-sword), with which he killed the enemy as a farmer mows down his crop. Guru saw that Jujhar Singh was being surrounded and the opportunity to kill the Mughal soldiers was decreasing.

Painting inside Gurdwara Katalgarh Sahib showing Sahibzada Jujhar Singh in battle. “Purja purja cut  marhai, kabhoon na chhadai khet”.

So Guru Sahib fired volleys of arrows in the area around the Sahibzada giving ‘protection fire’ to the Sikh soldiers. The person providing protection fire must be very skilful and precise because if the target is missed, people on the same side can be killed giving rise to ‘casualty from friendly fire’. Guru sahib continued to give protection cover with arrows for almost 30 minutes, but none of the 5 Singhs or Baba were hit or injured by the arrows. Baba and the 5 Singhs demonstrated the Sikh concept of one equalling the bravery and courage of “Sava Lakh” (125,000) humans.

Baba Jujhar Singh eventually was able to break the ring of the Mughal army soldiers surrounding him. However, due to the huge number of enemy soldiers, Baba eventually attained Shaheedi but died a hero’s death in the fight against tyranny and falsehood.

“That person alone is known as a spiritual warrior, who fights in defence of religion. They may be cut apart, piece by piece, but they never leave the field of battle. 22.” (Ang 1105, SGGS)

This was truly a sign of a dedicated warrior! By the time Baba Jujhar Singh had attained Shaheedi nightfall had arrived and the moon could be seen in the sky. Guru Sahib wrote in his composition, the Zafarnama:

“What trust can I have on your oath on Quran? Otherwise, why should I have taken this path of taking up the sword?” (Line 23, Zafarnama)

During the night, Bhai Daya Singh and Bhai Dharam Singh (two of the original Panj Piarey) along with Bhai Maan Singh and other Singhs remained in the fort of Chamkaur Sahib. There were a total of 10 Singhs left. Now the Guru-roop Panj Piarey (Five Singhs) gave Hukam to Guru Sahib to leave the fort, which the Guru could not refuse. However, Guru Sahib did not leave quietly. On leaving, Guru Sahib blew his horn and stood on high ground and clapped his hands three times saying “PeerÚ Hind Rahaavat” (“The “Peer” of India is Leaving”).

“Blessed is that land, blessed is that father, blessed is the great mother. Whose son has shown the way to live, for centuries to come.”

Several months before March 1699Guru Gobind Singh Ji invited his followers from all over India to a special congregation at Anandpur on Vaisakhi Day, 30 March 1699. As a result, on that particular day many hundreds of devotees and onlookers had gathered at Anandpur Sahib. Many had come as a sign of respect for the Guru and in accordance to his invitation while some had just come out of curiosity. On the appointed day, the Guru addressed the congregants with a most stirring oration on his divine mission of restoring their faith and preserving Dharam (righteousness).

After his inspirational discourse, he flashed his unsheathed sword and said that every great deed was preceded by equally great sacrifice. He asked, with a naked sword in his hand, “I need one head. Is there anyone among you, who is ready to die for his faith?” When people heard his call, they were taken aback. Some wavering followers left the congregation, while the other began to look at one another in amazement.

A tense moment

 

 

 

 

The Guru asks for one head

After a few minutes, a brave Sikh from Lahore named Daya Ram stood up and offered his head to the Guru. The Guru took him to a tent pitched close by, and after some time, came out with a blood dripping sword. The Sikhs thought Daya Ram had been slain.

The Guru repeated his demand calling for another Sikh who was prepared to die at his command. At this second call, even more people were shocked and some were frightened. A few more of the wavering followers discreetly began to filter out of the congregation.

However, to the shock of many, another person stood up. The second Sikh who offered himself was Dharam Das. This amazing episode did not end there. Soon three more, Mohkam ChandSahib Chand and Himmat Rai, offered their heads to the Guru. Each Sikh was taken into the tent and some though that they could now hear a ‘thud’ sound – as if the sword was falling on the neck of the Sikh.

There was pin-drop silence

Now the five Sikhs were missing with the Guru in the tent. It was a nerve-racking time for the sangat (congregation). There was pin-drop silence as all focussed intensely on the tent opening. After what seemed an eternity, the tent opening moved and the Guru came out of the tent. No naked sword this time!

Soon the five Sikhs were presented alive to the congregation wearing brand new decorated robes. They constituted the Panj Pyare: the Five Beloved Ones, who were baptized as the Khalsa or the Pure Ones with the administration of Amrit. The Guru declared: “From now on, the Khalsa shall be baptized with Amrit created with water stirred with a double-edged sword – Khanda while the words of Gurbani are uttered.”

Panj Pyare – The five beloved

Upon administering Amrit to the Five Beloved Ones (Panj Pyare), the Guru asked them to baptize him in the same manner, thus emphasizing equality between the Guru and his disciples.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji named the new ceremony, Khande di Pahul, namely the baptism of the double-edged sword, which is also known as Amrit-Sanchar. He stirred water in an iron bowl with the sword, reciting five major compositions, JapjiJaapSavaiyyeBenti Chaupai and Anand Sahib, while the five Sikhs stood facing him. The Guru’s wife, Mata Sahib Kaur put some sugar-puffs into the water. The nectar thus obtained was called “Khanday-da-Amrit” or simply just “Amrit“. This implied that the new Khalsa brother-hood would not only be full of courage and heroism, but also filled with humility.

Briefly, the Khalsa concept has been captured by G.C. Narang in Transformation of Sikhism:

“Abolition of prejudice, equality of privilege amongst one another and with the Guru, common worship, common place of pilgrimage, common baptism for all classes and lastly, common external appearance – these were the means besides common leadership and the community of aspiration which Gobind Singh employed to bring unity among his followers and by which he bound them together into a compact mass.”

Creation of the Khalsa

The Guru becomes the disciple

The creation of Khalsa marked the culmination of about 240 years of training given by the ten Gurus to their Sikhs. The Guru wanted to create ideal people who should be perfect in all respects, that is a combination of devotion (Bhakti) and strength (Shakti). He combined charity (Deg) with the sword (Tegh) in the image of his Sikh.

The Khalsa was to be a saint, a soldier and a scholar, with high moral and excellent character. He or she would be strong, courageous, learned and wise.

In order to mould his personality the Guru inculcated in him the five virtues – sacrifice, cleanliness, honesty, charity and courage, and prescribed a Rehat – the Sikh code of discipline.

His character would be strengthened by the spirit of God revealed in the Guru’s hymns. For this purpose he was asked to recite the five sacred composition or Banis daily.

Khalsa: Virtue and Strength

The combination of virtue and courage is the strength of the Khalsa. This is an assurance against the ruthless exploitation of masses by their masters, and a device for overcoming hurdles that lied in the practice of holiness and spiritualism in daily life.

Guru Gobind Singh Ji commanded the Khalsa to use the sword only in times of emergency, that is, when peaceful methods failed and only for self-defence and the protection of the oppressed.

His spirit will continue to inspire them for the preservation of peace, order and dignity of mankind for all time to come.