Bloody Pirates !
Posted 31 August 2013 - 10:44 AM
The EIC was a private enterprise given letters of Marque by the crown to basically pillage at will, they had their own standing army and were a law unto themselves. Arrogantly marching into India they thought all would be easy pickings and they had their eyes set on the "land of the five rivers" – The Punjab. But they had not reckoned on the Sikhs. By the time the EIC was casting it's greedy eye over the Punjab the Sikhs had formed an Empire the likes of which India had not seen for generations.
The last living Guru, (The book – Granth Sahib- is now the spiritual Guru) Guru Gobind Singh had forged the Sikh nation – The Khalsa AKA the Guru Panth- the embodiment of the Guru and the final temporal Guru of the Sikhs. So the book is the spiritual Guru and the Panth or Khalsa is the temporal Guru. Thus the Sikhs govern themselves.
To become a member of the Khalsa is to become a warrior saint.
Established in 1799 The Sikh empire under Maharaja Ranjit Singh was forged on the foundations of the Khalsa, at it's zenith extended from the Khyber Pass in the west to tibet in the east and from Bahawalpur in the south to Kashmir in the North.
On Ranjit Singh's death internal feuding and strife was fostered by the EIC and it was inevitable that the Khalsa would have to go to war with the British. Two Anglo-Sikh wars were fought and inevitably the EIC/British won, however it is widely accepted that they coerced and bribed various military parties to renegade on the Khalsa, particularly the Hindu Dogras
The Battle of Ferozeshah in 1845 marked many turning points, the British encountered the Punjab Army, opening with a gun-duel in which the Sikhs "had the better of the British artillery". As the British made advances, Europeans in their army were especially targeted, as the Sikhs believed if the army "became demoralised, the backbone of the enemy's position would be broken". The fighting continued throughout the night. The British position "grew graver as the night wore on", and "suffered terrible casualties with every single member of the Governor General's staff either killed or wounded". Nevertheless, the British army took and held Ferozeshah. British General Sir James Hope Grant recorded: "Truly the night was one of gloom and forbidding and perhaps never in the annals of warfare has a British Army on such a large scale been nearer to a defeat which would have involved annihilation"
The reasons for the withdrawal of the Sikhs from Ferozeshah are contentious. Some, especially Sikh fundamentalists, believe that it was treachery of the non-Sikh high command of their own army which led to them marching away from a British force in a precarious and battered state. Others believe that a tactical withdrawal was the best policy.
The Sikh empire was finally dissolved after a series of wars with the British at the end of the Second Anglo-Sikh War in 1849 into separate princely states and the British province of Punjab, which were granted statehood. Eventually, a Lieutenant Governorship was formed in Lahore as a direct representative of the British Crown.
The Ko-I-Noor - The Mountain Of Light A 793 Carat (uncut) diamond, once the largest known diamond in the world, was stolen from the Khalsa after the death of Ranjit Singh, by the British. They reused to execute his will and the diamond was given to Queen Victoria, it now resides in the Tower of London set into the Crown of Queen Alexandra- the wife of Edward VII having been decimated by 42 %.
It is said that the stone carries a curse which effects men who wear it. It is said that all men who have owned it have either lost their throne or had other misfortunes befell them, Queen Victoria was the first reigning monarch to have worn the gem since then the stone has generally been worn by the Queen Consort, never by a male ruler.
On Feb 21 2013, the visiting UK Prime Minister stated in India that the diamond will not be returned and that it was illogical to return it.
Bloody Pirates !!!
- pillsmt likes this
Posted 31 August 2013 - 11:02 AM
Posted 31 August 2013 - 11:07 AM
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