There are men who change with the changing times, but there are those, too, who live to change the time in which they live.
Maharaja Ranjeet Singh, the Lion of the Punjab, was a man of the latter type, who had reversed the course of the Indian history of the times before him. The hordes of the foreign raiders had marched into India from across the river Indus, who had been devastating this country for centuries. Not only did the Lion of the Punjab check their raids, he had crossed all the hurdles of the Indus, and had planted his flags of victory at Jamrud. The Pathaans who used to raid India and carried loads of booty and numerous Indians as slaves back home, saw their progeny being compelled to pay tributes to this Maharaja of the Punjab. This turn-about had been effected by the mighty king, Maharaja Ranjeet Singh.
The Lion of the Punjab commands an eminent position in the history of the Sikhs. The Misals had taken possession of the Punjab and made Sardars of the Sikhs. The flags of the feudal Sikh leaders were planted high in the villages. Maharaja Ranjeet Singh, however, raised the Sikh community to the royalty of the Kingship and improved the image of its status in the eyes of the whole world. There is no doubt that the Sikh rule was no more than a wonder of nine days; yet, its existance had turned the Sikh entity notable and well- known in the comity of the nations of the world, which was an achievement of his own labours and service rendered to the Punjab.
I have merely paid my homage to his valorous and eminent personality in writing this account of his life. And in this account do I offer to him what he richly deserves. I well hope that the nation of which he was the architect, will appreciate it.
I am sincerely grateful to the writers of the books on this subject that I have helpfully used in composing this book. I am also grateful to Prof. Hardyal Singh and Prof. M.C. Sharma also, who have helped me translating my original Panjabi book.
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