Bhai Taru Singh
Born in Punjab during the reign of the Mughal Empire, Bhai Taru Singh was raised as a Sikh by his widowed mother. During this time, Sikh revolutionaries were plotting the overthrow of the Khan and had taken refuge in the jungle. Bhai Taru Singh and his sister gave food and other aid to the rebels. An informant reported them to Zakaria Khan, the governor of Punjab, and the two were arrested for treason. Though his sister's freedom was bought by the villagers, Bhai Taru Singh refused to seek a pardon.
After a period of imprisonment and torture, Singh was brought before the Khan and given the choice of converting to Islam or being executed. As a symbol of his conversion, Singh would have to cut off his Kesh and present it as an offering to the Khan. Upon his refusal, and in a public display, Bhai Taru Singh's scalp was cut away with razors to prevent his hair from ever growing back.
The exact method of his execution is somewhat ambiguous. Sikhs believe that once Singh had been returned to prison to await a slow death, Zakaria Khan was stricken with unbearable pain and the inability to urinate. As a last resort, he sent an apology to the Khalsa Panth for his persecution of the Sikhs and begged for their forgiveness. It was suggested that if Zakaria Khan had his own scalp hit with Bhai Taru Singh's shoes, his condition might be lifted. Although the shoe cured the Khan's condition, he died 22 days later. Upon hearing that he had miraculously outlived the Khan, Bhai Taru Singh died as well.
. A more elaborate version of this narrative includes attempts by the Khan's barber and cobbler to forcibly cut off first Singh's hair and, failing that, his scalp. God prevented them from touching him with their tools, and finally a carpenter was brought in to cut off his head with an adze. In what may be a variation of this story, others suggest that the top of the skull was removed along with the hair and scalp.
Today Bhai Taru Singh is viewed by Sikhs as a martyr and a symbol of the importance of Kesh and of steadfast faith. A gurdwara in the Naulakha Bazaar in Lahore marks the place where his scalp and hair was removed.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 "Sikh Martyrs – Bhai Taru Singh Ji". Search Sikhism. http://www.searchsikhism.com/taru.html.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 Iqbal Qaiser. "Gurudwara Shaheed Ganj Bhai Taru Singh". All About Sikhs. http://www.allaboutsikhs.com/Gurudwaras/Gurudwara-Shaheed-Ganj-Bhai-Taru-Singh-Naulakha-Bazar-L.html.
- ↑ Ian Talbot (2000). India and Pakistan: Inventing the Nation. Hodder Arnold Publishing.
- ↑ "Bhai Taru Singh Ji". Guru Nanak Sikh Museum. http://www.thesikhmuseum.com/pages/LEISM2000_12.htm.
|This Sikhism-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|