Sardar Subeg Singh was a big land lord and a contractor at Lahore. He was respected as a man of high character as well as for being a scholar of Persian. Because of his uprightness, administrative skills and integrity, he was respected even by the Governor, Zakria Khan.
The Governor of Lahore realized that his policy of persecuting the Sikhs was failing and there was no way he could suppress them, so he decided to pacify the Sikhs. In 1733, Zakria Khan with the permission of the Delhi Government planned a policy of reconciliation. He approached Subeg Singh to persuade the Sikhs to accept his offer of peace.
The Khalsa Leaders met at the Akal Takht, Amritsar, to consider the offer Sardar Subeg Singh presented to them on behalf of the Governor. The offer included the title of Nawab for their chosen Sikh leader along with a ‘Jagir’ (an area of land as a free gift) yielding one hundred thousand rupees. They were out to reject it but Sardar Subeg Singh succeeded in persuading them and the offer was accepted. The Sikhs collectively directed Sardar Kapur Singh, who was the incharge of the Khalsa army stables to accept the title of Nawab.
The peace agreement was however short lived, as after some time the campaign of persecuting the Sikhs was renewed. It so happened that Shahbaz Singh, son of Subeg Singh was a very handsome young man of 18 years. He was studying Persian from a Qazi, a Muslim theologian. The Qazi was very much impressed by his intelligence, handsomeness and fine manners. He offered to make him his son-in-law, if he embraced Islam. Although Shahbaz Singh was threatened with severe torture if he refused the offer, he stood fast and expressed firm dedication to his faith.
A false case was registered against Shahbaz Singh. He was accused of using disrespectful words against the prophet of Islam. The young Shahbaz Singh was arrested and tortured. His father, Sardar Subeg Singh was also arrested on the charges that he spied for the Sikhs against the state. The two were ordered either to stand a trial or give up their faith and accept conversion to Islam.
Zakria Khan, the Governor died before the case was decided. He was succeeded by his son, Yahiya Khan who was more cruel than his father. When both the father and the son repeatedly refused to give up their Sikh faith, they were ordered to be crushed between two rotating sharp toothed wheels. They underwent the torture with great courage chanting Waheguru, Waheguru to their last breath.
Their martyrdom took place in the year of 1745.

No comments:

Post a Comment