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The Tragic Tale Of Maharaja Duleep Singh - Book By S. P. Gulati

Introduction To The Book 'The Tragic Tale Of Maharaja Duleep Singh' By S. P. Gulati 

By late 1807, in just a decade old carreer of systematic aggressions and upsurptions as a Misl Chief, Maharaja Ranjit Singh was in an enviable position. On a small principality of Gujranwala that he inherited, he had already built up an empire hundred-fold in area and responsibility and styled himself as Maharaja. He had yet a lot more to achieve. Fire of ambition was glowing even brighter in him. He had made it clear to all and sundry that he was dead serious about establishing a Sikh monarchy extending from Indus to Jamuna. His successes so far had led him to entertain notions that he was the lord of the whole Sikh nation. He called himself Khalsaji, which signified Sikh government (Sarkar). The Sikhs of Malwa and Sirhind, who had yet to be subdued and brought under his rule were naturally filled with alarm, as they clearly saw their impending ruin. They had only two alternatives-either to submit to the yoke of Lahore conqueror, as many others had done or to seek the protection of the British government who had even more illustrious success story of conquest and expansion in Hindustan. The Sikh Chiefs of Patiala, Jind and Nabha held a meeting and unanimously resolved to seek British protection. Consequently, a formal deputation, consisting of Raja Bhag Singh of Jind, Bhai Lal Singh of Kaithal and Mir Ghulam Hussain, the confidential agent of Nabha met the British Resident, Mr. Seton, in Delhi on 1st April, 1808 and implored the protection of the British Government. They submitted a document pointing out that the states of Satluj had always been under the protection of Delhi Sovereign, and rendered him service in time of war. Sovereign of Delhi at that moment was the British Government, they argued.

Just at that time, the political aspect of affairs in India underwent a material change under the impact of phenomenal growth of power of France which was assuming threatening proportions. The ambitious  Napolean Bonapart, emperor of France, who had won brilliant victories in Europe and had just concluded a treaty with Russia was believed to be meditating an invasion of India. To prevent his designs, Lord Minto determined to abandon the policy of non-interference inaugurated by Lord Cornwallis earlier on and to adopt the policy of forming defensive alliances, not only with the powers beyond Jamuna and Satluj, but also with those beyond the Indus. This policy had the seeds of extention of political power as well, a defensive alliance being only the first step towards that goal. It was accordingly resolved to send ambassadors to Afganistan, Persia and Lahore to negotiate with those monarchs treaties of unity by which they could hope to keep the enemy at bay. In August 1808, Mr. C.T. Metcalfe, a young Bengal civilian, was sent as the British Plenipotentiary to the court of Maharaja Ranjit Singh at Lahore. The aggressive policy of Ranjit Singh against the cis-Satluj States was, it need hardly be said, an additional motive for deputing the mission to Lahore. 

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The Tragic Tale Of Maharaja Duleep Singh - Book By S. P. Gulati

  • Brand: National Book Shop
  • Product Code: ESE168
  • Year: 1998
  • ISBN: 8171162126
  • Page: 228
  • Format: Hardbound
  • Language: English
  • Availability: Out Of Stock
  • Rs.200.00
  • Rs.180.00

  • You Save: Rs.20.00 or 10.00%

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