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“I will tell you, whenever men become so corrupt and wicked as to relinquish the path of equity and to abandon themselves to all kinds of excesses, then the Providence never fails to raise up a scourge like me to chastise a race so depraved; When the tyrants oppress their subjects to the limit, then God sends men like me on this earth to mete out his punishment to them.” – Banda Singh Bahadur
Banda Singh Bahadur was handed the mantle of leadership from Guru Gobind Singh Ji himself. Born into the Hindu faith as Lachhman Dev, he encountered the Guru at Nander and immediately declared “I am you Banda (slave).” Thus the Guru gave him the name Banda Singh Bahadur upon his initiation into the order of the Khalsa. Guru Gobind Singh charged Banda with the authority to ride to the Punjab and wage war against the despotic Mughal government and their numerous cronies. As proof of the authority now bestowed upon him, the Guru gave Banda the gift of his own sword, a green bow, and arrows from his own quiver, his battle standard and his war drum.
It was that Banda Singh Bahadur rode forth with a handful of Sikhs that would soon grow into a relentless army. He became the first of many great Khalsa generals and his daring exploits in a handful of years shaped the landscape of the Punjab for centuries to come. Banda Singh fought many large scale campaigns against heavy odds and led Sikh armies against the tyrannical Mughal government. He avenged the cruel murder of Guru Gobind Singh’s youngest sons Baba Zorawar and Fateh Singh by slaying Wazir Khan, the corrupt official who had ordered the deaths of the Sahebzadaya. Sarhind was brought to its knees and would never again rise to its former height.
Between 1710 and 1715, Banda Singh Bahadur ‘s constant onslaught against the Mughals wore away the resources of even that vast empire, so eroding it’s authority that its decline and disintegration came to fruition half a century later.
This painting by Kanwar Singh marks Banda Singh Bahadur’s final stand against a massive Mughal army at Gurdas Nangal. His will against the oppressor never faltered and even after torture and the slaying of his young son, he refused to convert to Islam. Banda Singh Bahadur was executed along with more than a thousand loyal Sikhs in Delhi.
Customer Testimonial – “We got the print and it is fantastic. I had no interest in the poster types really, I wanted a proper canvas painting representing who we are and when I saw your work that was it, no need to look elsewhere. It really captures everything and the fact that it is on canvas provides it with durability and authenticity. Thanks again.” – Navjeet M.