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Nineteenth century Literature (48)
Nineteenth century Literature
AJAT SAGAR, by Surjan Das Ajat, is the religious book of the Ajatpanthi sect of the Udasis. Written in AD 1851, the only known manuscript of the work was available in the Sikh Reference Library, Amritsar, until it perished during the Blue Star action in the holy premises in 1984. The author Surjan Das (father: Bagh Singh, mother: Gulab Devi, a disciple of Sant Tahil Das who was in the Bhagat Bhagvanie sect of the Udasis, established his gaddi at Ajneval, in Gujrariwala district, now in Pakistan. Surjan Das preached the ideal of a casteless (a = without; Jat = caste) society and thus came to be called Ajat and his followers Ajatpanthi.
Nineteenth century Literature
AMAR KATHA, of unknown authorship, comprises a mixture of diverse hagiographic traditions bearing on the life of Guru Nanak. The work remains unpublished, but several manuscripts are known to exist: for instance, two of them, dated AD 1818 and 1872, respectively, are preserved in the Guru Nanak Dev University Library at Amritsar, one, dated 1877, in the Punjabi University Museum, Patiala, one, dated 1870, at the Panjabi Sahitya Akademi, Ludhiana, and one, dated 1825, in the Sikh Reference Library until it perished in the Army attack in 1984. Compiled probably towards the end of the eighteenth century, Amar Katha draws upon all the prevalent janam sakhi cycles such as Puratan, Miharban and BaJa along with the interpolations introduced by the Handalias (q.v.).This miscellany narrates Guru Nanak`s life in terms of the usual legend, myth and miracle.
Nineteenth century Literature
ANANDPUR DI VAR is a versified account in Punjabi, by one Ram Singh, of a battle fought in 1812 between Sodhi Surjan Singh of Anandpur and Raja Maha Chand of Kahlur. Sodhi Surjan Singh was a lineal descendant of Suraj Mall, a son of Guru Hargobind. His father, Nahar Singh, who was a brave and influential person, had established an independent state by force of arms. Surjan Singh, too, was a man of prowess, and was increasing his area of influence. Maha Chand, the chief of the neighbouring state of Kahlur, was jealous of the growing power of Surjan Singh whom he considered no more than a vassal of his. 
Nineteenth century Literature
BACHAN SAIN LOKA KE, a book of morals in Punjabi prose belonging to the Sevapanthi sect. There is no internal evidence to establish its date or authorship, but several of the bachans or sayings in this work are identical with those in Sahaj Ram's Pothi Asavarian. A manuscript copy of this work is preserved in the Central Public Library, Patiala, under MS. No. 2142. In the text, man is adjured to overcome attachment and ever to remember God who is the Creator of all things, sentient and insentient, and watches over all. Poverty is a blessing; the riches are not accumulated without sin (1617).
Nineteenth century Literature
BACHITRA NATAK (bachitra = marvellous, wondrous + natak = drama, play) is the name given a complex of compositions, commonly attributed to Guru Gobind Singh, the Tenth Guru or prophet teacher of the Sikh faith, assembled in his book, the Dasam Granth: hence, the name dasam (tenth) granth (book), i.e. Book of the Tenth Master to distinguish it from the earlier work, the Adi (first, primary or original) Granth, now venerated as Sri Guru Granth Sahib. The most familiar section of compositions collectively called Bachitra Natak Granth is the Bachitra Natak itself, some of the others being Chandi Chritra Ukti Bilas, Chandi Chritra, Var Sri Bhagauti Ji Ki (or Chandi di Var), Gian Prabodh, and Chaubis Autar.The composition of Bachitra Natak may have begun in 1688, at Paonta during the first spurt of Guru Gobind Singh's literary activity.
Nineteenth century Literature
BAINTAN SHER SINGH KIAN, by Nihal Singh, is a poem dealing with some gruesome events from the history of the Sikhs murders in 1843 of the Sikh monarch Maharaja Sher Singh, his young son Partap Singh, and minister Dhian Singh Dogra at the hands of Sandhanvalia collaterals Ajit Singh and Lahina Singh, and of the latter at the hands of Dhian Singh`s son. Hira Singh, and his supporters. No biographical details about the poet are known, except that he was a witness to these tragic events. As he himself says in the text, he composed the poem, in the baint poetic measure, "at the time of the happenings" (34). These murders occurred on 1516 September 1843, followed by Duleep Singh`s installation on the throne referred to in the poem (24).
Nineteenth century Literature
BANI BHAGATAN SATIX (satik = exegesis or commentary) by Pandit Tara Singh Narotam (q.v.) is an exposition of the bani or hymns of the bhaktas or saints (here the word implies contributors to the Guru Granth Sahib other than the Gurus). The work was, according to inner evidence, completed in 1939 Bk/AD 1882 and the scribe was one Sundar Singh. It was published in AD 1907 by Rai Sahib Munshi Gulab Singh and Sons, Lahore. The book is divided into two parts the first part (pp. 386) covering the compositions of the bhaktas included in Sikh Scripture up to Raga Gujari and the second (pp. 522) covering the rest of them.
Nineteenth century Literature
BHAGAT MAL, subtitled SakhiBhai Gurdas Ji ki Var Varvfri Sikhan di Bhagatmala, is an anonymous manuscript (Kirpal Singh, A Catalogue of Punjabi and Urdu Manuscripts, attributes it to one Kirpa Ram, though in the work itself no reference to this name exists) held in the Khalsa College, Amritsar, under MS. No. 2300, bound with several other works all of which are written in the same hand. The manuscript comprises 83 folios and is undated. The opening page of the full volume, however, carries the date 1896 Bk/AD 1839 which may be the year of its transcription. Bhagat Mal is a parallel work to the more famous Bhagatmala by Bhai Mani Singh and is, like the latter, meant to be an elaboration of Bhai Gurdas`s eleventh Var, listing the more prominent of the Sikhs of Guru Nanak`s time.
Nineteenth century Literature
BHAG SINGH CHANDRA UDAYA, an undated manuscript preserved in the Punjab State Archives, Patiala, under accession No. M/773, deals with the life and achievements of Sardar Bhag Singh Ahluvalia (1745-1801), who succeeded Sardar Jassa Singh Ahluvalia as ruler of Kapurthala state in 1783. Its author, Ram Sukh Rao, was tutor to Bhag Singh`s son and successor, Fateh Singh Ahluvalia (1784-1836). The latter, after his accession in 1801, commissioned Ram Sukh Rao to write biographies of Sardar Jassa Singh and Sardar Bhag Singh. Bhag Singh Chandra Udaya, a biography of the latter, comprises 188 folios, size 22 x 16 cm, each page containing 16 lines.
Nineteenth century Literature
BHANDARI PAPERS, a large collection of sundry papers, letters and documents preserved in the Punjab State Archives, Patiala, and named after the collector, Rai Indarjit Singh Bhandari of Batala. Little is known about the life of Indarjit Singh beyond a conjecture based upon some of the letters in the collection itself that he was a descendant or a relation of one of the Sikh kingdom`s vakils or agents at Ludhiana, namely Rai Kishan Chand, Rai Ram Dial, and Rai Gobind Das. Bhandari collection is a huge miscellany of 4103 items, mostly letters in Persian exchanged between the Sikh government at Lahore or its agents and the officers of the British agency at Ludhiana.

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