Author: Prof. Azizuddin Ahmed
Battle of Feroze City:
This battle took place on 21 December 1845 at a distance of 10 miles from Madki and Ferozpur. In this battle, the Punjabi army was again killed by its commanders. The importance of this battle can be gauged from the fact that Governor General Lord Hardinge was himself commanding a part of the English army. After the war, he wrote, “Never before had the British in India been so fiercely contested in any battle, nor had we ever faced so many dangers.” And all the Governor-General’s staff were wounded except Captain Harding.
Battle of Subhrao:
This battle was fought on 10 February 1846 at a distance of 10 miles from Ferozpur. In this, the command of the Punjabi army was in the hands of Commander-in-Chief General Tej Singh. He also did with his army what Lal Singh had done before him. As soon as the first attack was made, Teich Singh left the army which was fighting bravely and escaped and crossed the Sutlej and hid in his own territory. On his way, he also broke the bridge of boats on the Sutlej so that no reinforcements could arrive to help the Punjabi army and there was no way to retreat. Despite the treachery of the Commander-in-Chief, the soldier fought bravely. Major General Sir Robert Dick lost his life in this battle. This general had fought against Napoleon at the Waterloo front and was a well-known general. Commenting on this battle, Cunningham writes, “The army soldiers and low-ranking officers did very well to protect the majesty of the Lahore court. But the top officers of the army and civil failed their efforts.
The First Sikh War broke the back of the Punjab army and severely damaged its organization. In this war, 8 thousand soldiers were killed and thousands were injured. All the artillery was captured by the British.
On February 12, 1846, the British army crossed the Sutlej and entered Punjab, whose independence was being negotiated. The British captured Kasur. On behalf of the Lahore Darbar, Gulab Singh Dogra came to settle the terms of peace with the British. On February 18, 1846, the British Governor-General summoned Maharaja Dilip Singh to the place of Liliani and announced his obedience. 2 days later, the British Governor-General along with the Commander-in-Chief camped in Mian Mir Cantonment. On March 8, 1846, between the Lahore Darbar and the British. The following agreement was reached.
-1 The East India Company recognizes Maharaja Dilip Singh as the sovereign ruler of Punjab. As the Raja is a minor, his mother will be the agent and Lal Singh will be the minister.
– 2 Lahore Darbar will reduce the number of armed forces. The infantry will not exceed 20 thousand and the horsemen will not exceed 12 thousand
3. All the cannons which were used against the British shall be placed in the custody of the Company.
-4 If the British army needs to pass through Lahore, Lahore Durbar will provide facilities to the British forces.
– 5 A detachment of the British army will stay in Lahore till the end of the year to help in establishing peace and order and its expenses will be paid by the Lahore Darbar.
– 7 British Resident Officer will stay in Lahore Darbar.
– 8 Lahore Darbar will pay one and a half crores of war ransom.
The treasury was completely empty, there was no money to pay the ransom. The British had already thought of a solution. For a crore of rupees, he took Doaba Bast Jalandhar, situated between Sutlej and Beas. And in exchange for the remaining 50 crores of rupees, he gave all of Kashmir and Hazara to Raja Gulab Singh and made him an independent ruler. The Maharaja was now answerable only to the Company for matters in these territories. ( to be continued )
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