Raja Gajpat Singh , Founder of Jind Kingdom was the second son of Jagirdar Chaudhari Sukhchain Singh Of Balanwali was born on April 15, He was the most adventurous of his brothers. He lived with his father at Phul till the latter’s death, assisting him against his rival and brother Gurdit Singh.
In his youth Gajpat Singh was a fine, handsome and intelligent person. He was well skilled in all military crafts and exercises. He possessed a winsome personality and had a quick grasp of things. In 1767, for being remiss in paying his arrears which amounted to one and a half lakhs, he was imprisoned by Najib Khan Rohilla and taken to Delhi. He remained at Delhi for three years and impressed Muhammad Shah, the Mughal Emperor, as a person of address and good demeanour. The Emperor wanted of Gajpat Singh to learn Persian language and wear the dress of a Mughal courtier which led some orthodox Sikhs attribute to his conversion to Islam.
He had married the daughter of Kishan Singh Mansahia who bore him four children, Mehar Singh, Bhag Singh, Bhup Singh and a daughter Raj Kaur who was married to Bhatti Jat ruler Sardar Mahan Singh Sukerchakia in 1774 and became the mother of Ranjit Singh. 177 Gajpat Singh also married one of the widows of his elder brother Alam Singh and succeed- ed to his estate of Balawali. This wife gave birth to a daughter named Begama. Gajpat Singh’s eldest son Mehar Singh died in his life time in 1780, leaving one son Hari Singh, who was put in possession of Safidon. But Hari Singh, who lived a dissipated life, died in 1791 at the age of 18, by falling from the roof of his house
In 1774 Gajpat Singh took Sangrur from the possession of Nabha, in 1775 he not only overran Hansi, Hissar, Rohtak and Gohana but also laid contribution on Panipat and Kamal. His most important possessions included Jind, Sangrur, Safidon and Kharkhoda.
From 1772 onwards many attempts were made by the Mughal officers, the hostile Sikh Sardars and the Maratha generals upon Jjnd and other possessions of the state. Samru attacked Jind in July 1774. All the Sikhs in the neighborhood of Jind united to give battle to the invader. In the battle the European trained battalions of Samru were routed with three hundred of them slain. Thus Gajpat Singh proved equal to them and saved his territories.
Gajpat Singh extended his capital Jind to a large extent and constructed a fort in the north of the town. Safidon had also many buildings of bricks and a strong fort was built thereby Gajpat Singh. It was built of bricks with walls of uncommon height.
Gajpat Singh was a brave and an intrepid ruler. “He was a remarkable man and a prominent figure in those troublous times.” He was given the title of Raja by Emperor Shah Alam in 1772 under a royal farman and was confirmed in his territories.
He coined his own money on the model of the coins of Patiala with the only difference of Jind inscribed on them. He had deep affection for Raja Amar Singh , of Patiala with whom he joined in almost all his campaigns. 180 There existed great amity and regard for each other and fellow-feeling between the two. Gajpat Singh helped Amar Singh in the revolt of prince Himmat Singh in 1 765 and again in 1772. He helped the Patiala chief when the latter attacked Bhatinda fort in 1771. Amar Singh helped Gajpat Singh when the latter had feud with the Nabha chief in 1774 and again when he (Gaipat Singh) was attacked by Rahim Dad Khan in 1775. Gajpat Singh joined Amar Singh in his attack on Hafi Singh of Sialba in 1778. Gajpat Singh played an important role of a mediator in Abdul Ahad’s campaign against Patiala in 1779. Even after the death of Amar Singh in 1781 Gajpat Singh continued to help the Patiala minister Nanu Mai in restoring order when the new ruler Sahib Singh was just an adolescent, Gajpat Singh went to Patiala with his contingent to give help to Sahib Singh. Gajpat Singh exercised formidable influence with the Mughal officers who recommended the cancellation of the amount of his arrears. He died on November 11, 1789, aged about ’fifty one years and a half.
Gajpat Singh, who Was brought up as a soldier and experienced as a general, took part in not fewer – than 30 battles. He extended his territories considerably and the revenue of his state amounted to between 6 and 7 lakhs. He is also said to have raised the revenue to rupees 16 lakhs. His army consisted of 1500 horse and 500 foot.
- Khushwaqat Rai, p. 121,
- Franckiin. Military Memoirs of George Thomas, pp. 288-90.
- The Punjab Past and Present by Dr. Ganda Singh
- 3SI, R.C. Temple, The. Indian Antiquary, p. 10.
- 182. Lepel Griffin, p. 285; Gian Singh, p. 665; Delhi Chronicle, p. 143.
- 183. Ibid., p. 290; Ibid., p. 665.