Wednesday, Nov 30, 2022

The Hawk Hunters: Where facts, fiction tell story of Banda Bahadur

The book tells the historic story of Banda Singh Bahadur, who got present Punjab and Haryana liberated from the Mughal rule.

banda bahadur, hawk hunters, banda bahadur book, banda bahadur history, banda bahadur story, india news Major General Pushpinder Singh’s (right) book, The Hawk Hunters, released by Gul Panag and her father General Panag at The Browser Library in Sector 8, Chandigarh, on Wednesday. (Source: Express Photo)

The Hawk Hunters is a story, reflects Major General (retd) Pushpendra Singh, that hunted him down and one he had to tell. The book, released by Lt Gen (retd) H S Panag and Gul Panag on Wednesday, tells the historic story of Banda Singh Bahadur, who got present Punjab and Haryana liberated from the Mughal rule.

“A blend of historic events and fiction, I have done research to create the 18th century saga of treachery, sacrifice, romance and war, the backdrop being the Sikh war against Muslims and how they avenged the killing of Guru Gobind Singh,” the author said.

While posted in J&K, Maj-Gen Singh was stationed near Hirni where Lachman Dev shot a doe that was about to deliver. Struck with remorse, he became a hermit and eventually settled at Nanded. In a later tenure, Maj-Gen Singh visited the birthplace of Lachman Dev (Banda Singh Bahadur) in Rajouri. Fascinated with this hermit’s success in liberating most of present Punjab and Haryana from the Mughals, he decided to delve deeper into this brilliant military feat, which The Hawk Hunters portrays.

“Banda set out from Nanded with only 25 soldiers, but as he entered Punjab, thousands thronged to rally around the Nishan Sahib. Banda Bahadur hurled these untrained Punjabi volunteers against Wazir Khan’s powerful army. The remarkable military feat, his strategy, thought process, courage and will had me completely bowled over, and this made me write the book, of course, after painstaking research,’’ adds Maj-Gen Singh.

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For admirers of Sikh history, the book, adds the author, will be an absorbing read that resonates with their beliefs, the valour of Sikh warriors and their sense of justice and secularism. “As the book is historical fiction, the story is told through Shamsheer, a Sikh peasant-warrior, who threw himself into the fierce struggle for freedom, going on to become a celebrated cavalry commander of the Khalsa Army. Amidst the strife and turmoil, Shamsheer and a young Muslim noblewoman from Sirhind fall in love. “

In the 21st century, reflects Maj Gen Singh, ISIS has reverted to medieval savagery and magnified the horror through the internet and social media.

First published on: 03-12-2015 at 08:54:42 am
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