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Current Affairs

Hari Singh Nalwa

Date: 30 August 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous

Issue

Legendary Sikh commander Hari Singh Nalwa is widely remembered as a warrior who won battles against Afghans.

 

Background

Many superpowers and erstwhile kingdoms came to Afghanistan to capture the country but had to withdraw without success.

 

 

Details

  • Hari Singh Nalwa was Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s army’s most trusted commander. He served as the governor of Peshawar, Kashmir and Hazara.

  • Nalwa was known to have captured kingdom areas near the border with Afghanistan that prevented Afghans from entering Punjab through the Khyber Pass.

  • From the 1000 AD till early 19th century, Khyber Pass was the only route available for invaders to enter India. Nalwa’s fights proved decisive in protecting the country.

 

Nalwa’s reputation

  • It is said that Afghan mothers would use Hari Singh Nalwa’s name to calm unruly children by telling them Haria Ragle would come.

  • Maharaja Ranjit Singh had organized his armies in two forms to prevent Afghans from coming to Punjab and Delhi.

  • The first type of army was based on modern lines with soldiers employed from Germany, Italy, France, Russia, Greece etc.

  • The other army was led by Hari Singh Nalwa in form of a traditional force. Nalwa had showcased his strength by defeating Hazaras three times his army’s strength.

 

Battles won

  • Nalwa defeated Afghani ruler Kutab-ud-din Khan in the battle of Kasur. In the Battle of Attock (in 1813) Nalwa won against Azim Khan and his brother Dost Mohammad Khan.

  • The Sikh army won the Battle of Peshawar under Nalwa and captured the city. He took control over Jamrud in 1837 to secure Khyber Pass.

  • During battle of Jamrud, Nalwa got seriously injured and died. His death was kept a secret to create fear among Pathans and allow forces to come from Lahore.