Veer kunwar Singh is one of the famous names of Indian history. He was a rebellion of 1857. But in Bihar, he is a priceless gem. Let us read about how he became a legend?
PERSONAL DETAIL OF VEER KUNWAR SINGH
Kunwar Singh was born in a village named, Jagdishpur in the Shahabad district in 1782, currently a part of the Bhojpur district. The name of his father was Shahebjada and the name of his mother was Panchratna. He was from the Kshatriya dynasty.
He used to work under East India Company and pay taxes to the company. Before the revolution of 1857, he was a great supporter of the British Emperor. Moreover, at that time, the commissioner of Patna, Taylor, said that Kunwar Singh was a faithful man.
For some reason taxes of the company increasing day by day. That increased so much that, in 1854-55, the Bengal government took over his estate with the help of the district magistrate of Shahabad. Taylor sent a call to Kunwar Singh but he did not meet with Taylor due to his illness. And then Taylor heard that Kunwar Singh was preaching mistrust and discontent against the British government.
STARTING THE REVOLT OF 1857
People used to celebrate the arrival of Gandhi Raj by singing and dancing. So, it leads to the concept that tribal also took part in the national movement. In 1845-46 Kunwar had made a plan for freedom fighters in the fair of Sonpur. In that he had the blessing of Shalaka Purush Nana Shaheb.
He roamed from western India on the pretext of pilgrimage. He determined to banish British from the India. This long-awaited rebellion burst into flame in 1857. Firstly three rebel soldiers were hanged in Rohini of Bihar on 12 June 1857. Again on 3 July revolt broke out in Patna. Pir baba with the sixteenth rebellions was hanged on 4 July.
Representatives of Kunwar Singh (Harkishan Singh and Randal Singh) went to Danapur cantonment. They held a secret meeting with the soldiers of the native battalion. British officers lost their faith in their native battalion. They decided to exclude those soldiers. On the morning of 25 July 1857, in battalion field, when an order was placed for collecting the weapons then immediately they started the revolt openly. After that, they moved towards Jagdishpur. They reached Agra and captured the treasure on 26 July and freed the prisoners by opening the prison. In this way, they reached the number 10,000. They salute Kunwar Singh and accepted him as their leader. To suppress the rebels, the army under the leadership of Danwar moved to Danapur. The rebels and soldiers of the British clashed on Gangi Nala. He killed Danwar and his army. Kunwar Singh declared ruler.
Meanwhile, the British general Aayer made them run away and took possession of Jadishpur. But now incident of Arrah had reached far and wide. And then the whole of Bihar wanted to be a freedom fighter. All of them were eagerly waiting for Kunwar’s action. Kunwar Singh was the center point of hope for all people. They reached Nokha after leaving from Jagdishpur. Meanwhile, two rebel battalions of Ramgarh joined them. Then they moved towards Uttar Pradesh. They reached Vijaygarh near Mirzapur on 26 August. Consequently, this caused panic among the British. After hosting the flag of freedom fight in Ramgarh, Riva, Banda, and other places they reached Kalpi, where Gwalior’s military team came to meet him.
In December 1857, Kunwar Singh and Gwalior’s military team competed with the British army in Kanpur. But they got defeated. Kunwar Singh reached Lucknow where the king of Awadh gave him 10,000 rupees. After that, Kunwar Singh defeated the British army in Atarauliya. He also got right over on Aajamgarh. Now they moved towards Banaras and defeated Lord Mark. Meanwhile, on the order of the British Army Chief Campbell, General Lagarde, taking a large army from Lucknow, proceeded to Azamgarh to assist Mark.
Kunwar Singh departed towards Gajipur after giving the responsibility of his two thousand soldiers to Nisan Singh. Army of Lagarde was about to cross the river bridge and come to Azamgarh. Kunwar Singh sent a troop of his army on the river’s bridge for facing the army of Lagarde. They moved towards Gajipur with some soldiers. On 17 April 1858, an army of Kunwar Singh and Douglas faced in a village Nagai. Defeated Douglas moved backward.
ENDING OF REVOLT
Kunwar singh crossed Ghaghara via Nagra and Sikandarpur. After reaching Gajipur they rested the night in a village, Manohar. Douglas attacked in the early morning. Kunwar Singh had to move backward after leaving some elephants and gunpowder. His army was crossing the Shivpur ghat, then that time British army reached there.
Kunwar Singh’s army had crossed the river Ganga except for the last kayak. Kunwar Singh was in this last kayak. When his kayak was in the middle of the river then a gunshot in his right hand. Due to not spreading the poison in the whole body, he cut off his right hand with his sword and offered it to Mother Ganga. After that, he crossed the river bounding the cloth on the wound. They reached Jagdishpur on 22 April. There was a fierce battle between the armies of Captain Lee Grand and freedom fighters. Lee was defeated and killed. Victorious Kunwar Singh hoisted the Green Flag of Independence on Jagdishpur. (Source: Surbhi Publication)
HONOUR OF VEER KUNWAR SINGH
He died on 26 April 1858. But he did what, what no one did. Revolt of 1857 gives the whole struggle of Veer Kunwar Singh. He is the pride of India leading to Bihar. Discussion of his bravery hears in every corner of the village of India. Now he is popularly known as Veer Kunwar Singh. The government of Bihar established the Veer Kunwar Singh University, Arrah in 1992 to the honor of Kunwar Singh. In 2017, the Veer Kunwar Singh Setu, also known as the Arrah-Chhapra Bridge was inaugurated to connect the north and south Bihar. He is mentioned in many Bhojpuri folk songs as a hero in Bihar. The government of Bihar has also included his story in his school’s syllabus to learn his bravery to children.