6. Campaign against Sikhs 

In 1735, the rulers of Lahore attacked and repossessed the estate given to the Sikhs only two years before. This was intended to check the growth of the Sikhs. However, it only acted as a further stimulant. Kapoor Singh decided that the whole of Punjab should be taken over as their estate. This was endorsed by the Khalsa and all the Sikhs assured him of their full cooperation in his endeavor for self-rule. The decision was taken against heavy odds. Khan sent roaming squads to hunt and kill the Sikhs. Orders were issued to all administrators down to the village level officials to seek Sikhs, murder them, get them arrested, or report their whereabouts to the government. One year’s wages were offered to anyone who would murder a Sikh and deliver his head to the police station. Rewards were also promised to those who helped arrest Sikhs. Persons providing food or shelter to Sikhs were severely punished. It was a time of unspeakable state violence against the followers of Guru Nanak. These orders forced the committed Sikhs into hiding. Becoming a Sikhs was like signing one’s own death warrant. If one of two brothers became a Sikh, the family presumed they had only one son; the other, they would say, is “dead.” This was the period when the Sikhs were sawed into pieces, burnt alive, fed to dogs, their heads crushed with hammers and young children were pierced with spears before their mothers’ eyes. To keep their morale high, the Sikhs humorously developed their own high-sounding terminologies and slogans. For example: Tree leaves boiled for food were called green dish; the parched chick-peas were almonds; the Babul tree was a rose; a blind man was a brave man; getting on the back of a buffalo was riding an elephant.

When Mir Manu intensified his attacks for the genocide of the Sikhs, they responded with the rhyme, “Manu is our sickle, we are his weeds all know. The more he cuts us the more we grow.”