AKHBĀRĀT-I-ḌẸOṚHĪ-I-MAHĀRĀJĀ RAṆJĪT SIṄGH BAHĀDUR, a Persian manuscript written in nasta' līq, mixed with shikastā, preserved in the National Archives of India at New Delhi. This is a copy of the roznāmachā, i. e. a day-to-day account, of the proceedings of the court of Mahārājā Raṇjīt Siṅgh covering the period from January to December 1825. Written in black ink on Siālkoṭ paper, it comprises 677 folios. The name of the author/copyist does not figure anywhere in the manuscript.
To refer to the contents: Nazrānā is collected at Amritsar (fol. l ). Allard, the Frenchman, collects Rs 40, 000 from ta'alluqā Mansovāl and is ordered by Mahārājā Raṇjīt Siṅgh to retain the amount as amānat (fol. 1). Shortage of grass at Amritsar (fol. 250). Bullocks of the topkhānā (arsenal) arrive at Amritsar from Lahore and are sent to Haryāṇā Bhūmākā for grazing (fol. 1). Madsūdan Paṇḍit will procure articles to be given in charity on the amāvas (the last day of the dark half of the lunar month) day (fol. 1). A harkārā sent by the newswriters of Shāhjahānābād (Delhi) comes with news from that part. The harkārā is paid Rs. 10 as in'ām (fol. 1). The qanūngos of ta'alluqā Mansovāl present Rs. 30, 000 to the Mahārājā and are paid Rs. 200 by way of expense (fol. 1). Letters are issued to the kārdārs of Nūrpur, Paṭhankoṭ, Sujānpur and Hājīpur to come with their account books (fol. 1). A harkārā brings an 'arzī from Nawāb Shāh Nawāz Khān of Mankerā touching on events in that part. Rs 20 paid to the harkarā (fol. 1). Bābā Malak Dās and Mīhāṅ Siṅgh, the Nānakputras, request for the lease of ta'alluqā Mansovāl. They are told that Mansovāl will be farmed out to them after Barkhāni Khān kārdār has cleared his accounts (fols. 1-2). Hakīm Imām ud-Dīn, qil'ādār of Gobindgaṛh, is directed to sell the old grain and buy new instead (fol. 2). Shiv Dayāl, grandson of the late Rāmānand Sāhū, is summoned and asked to disclose the entire assets, in cash and kind, of Harsukh Dās (fol. 2). Chet Siṅgh, thāṇedār of qilā Jalandhar reports that the fort is in a dilapidated condition. He is ordered to execute necessary repairs after getting some money from Chaṛhat Siṅgh, kārdār of the place (fol. 2). The Mahārājā weighs himself against ghī, shakarātari, til, māsh on the amāvas day and gives these and Rs 2, 000 in cash, two pairs of gold bracelets, two cows and several robes to the Brāhmaṇs in charity. Afterwards, the Mahārājā makes an offering of Rs 5, 000 and a tray of sacrament (patāshe) to the Gurū Granth Sāhib at the Harimandar at Amritsar (fol. 2). Nau Nihāl Siṅgh, son of Khaṛak Siṅgh is summoned and seated in the lap by the Mahārājā. The Mahārājā talks to him for a while in a kind and sweet tone and gives him a pair of gold bracelets (fol. 3). The Mahārājā pays Rs. 100 to the chobedār who leaves for Peshāwar to escort William Moorcroft to Lahore (fol. 4). The Mahārājā holds court at the Rām Bāgh bārādarī in Amritsar when officers such as Hakīm 'Azīz ud-dīn, Imām ud-dīn, Bhavānī Dās, Munshī Shiv Dayāl, Sarb Dayāl, Sardhā Rām, Dīwān Motī Rām, Sukh Dayāl, Jīvan Mall, Misr Dīvān Chand, Budh Siṅgh Sandhāṅvālīā, and Khushāl Siṅgh Jamādār are present (fol. 5). A courtier informs the Mahārājā about the intentions of the British government to lead expeditions against the rulers of Pegu (in Burma) and Assam to subdue them (fol. 5). The Mahārājā sends a shuqqā, or a royal order, to Bāj Siṅgh, nāzim of Multān, to maintain friendly relations with the local people and send the Bhaṅgī top (cannon) to him (fol. 6). Dharam Chand, a confidant of Nau Nihāl Siṅgh, son of Khaṛak Siṅgh, informs the Mahārājā that the sālgirah (birth anniversary) of the Sarkār's (Raṇjīt Siṅgh) grandson falls the next day (22 February 1825) and says that it will be appropriate for him to participate in the celebration. The Mahārājā expresses his inability to join owing to certain reasons and pays Rs 1, 100 to meet the expenses (fol. 6). Sardār Himmat Siṅgh states that a slip in Gurmukhī relating to the release of Sardārnī Sadā Kaur was placed before the Gurū Granth Sāhib in the Harimandar at Amritsar. Nothing is known about the outcome. The Mahārājā replies that there was an indication that she should not be released (fol. 6). The Mahārājā crosses the Rāvī in the company of 150 riders and amuses himself with hunting. Mīāṅ Dhiān Siṅgh hunts two deer and three hogs. The Mahārājā hunts several hogs, deer and hare (fol. 7). A pair of harkārās brings news about Peshāwar. They are paid Rs. 20 (fol. 9). The Mahārājā listens to songs and music of the dancing girls who are paid Rs 1, 000 for dresses (fol. 11). Gulāb Siṅgh Kabbā tells the Mahārājā that horsemen under him have requested for Holī payments. They are paid Rs. 100 for wine, Rs. 300 for payment to the dancing girls and Rs. 50 for sweets (fol. 16). The lāṅgarīs (cooks) of the camp report famine of fuel and state that fuel is not available in Lahore at the rate of even one rupee per maund (fol. 16). The courtiers are provided with gold syringes. The trays of gulāl are asked for. Gulāl is thrown on the courtiers (fol. 16). Hakīm 'Azīz ud-Dīn informs the Mahārājā that 'Imām ud-Dīn, qil'ādar-i-Gobindgaṛh, has bought 500 maunds of sikkā (lead) from Amritsar. The Mahārājā orders for the purchase of 2, 000 maunds of sikkā more for manufacturing cannons (fol. 23). Bābū Bāj Siṅgh qil'ādār of Multān, offers 3 horses, 2 dromedaries and 2 ashrafīs and tells the Mahārājā that Jawāhar Mall, kārdār of Multān, had killed an innocent zamīndār and that such a person should not be appointed sūbahdār of any province. The Mahārājā on hearing it sends a parwānā with a Khill'at and a pair of gold bracelets to Hazārī Madan Siṅgh appointing him sūbahdār of Multān, instructing him to rule with justice (fols. 23-24). Misr Belī Rām tells the Mahārājā that Misr Ralīā Rām and Narsiṅgh Dās had been in his confinement for the last two or three days and asks what he should do further. The Mahārājā asks him to collect the arrears of revenue from them and the acceptance of the lease for the next year (fol. 489). The Mahārājā goes for a morning walk (fol. 489). The qil'ādār of Hājīpur presents a nazr of two rupees and requests payment of salary to troops under him (fol. 489). A sum of Rs 2, 000 is sent to Srī Javālāmukhī on account of pūjā (fol. 489). A letter is sent to Nawāb Sādiq Muhammad Khān of Bahāwalpur, with instructions to transmit all the arrears of revenue as early as possible failing which an army would be sent against him (fol. 489). Kauṛā Mall Sāhū is sent for and pashmīnā worth Rs 10, 000 is sold to him (fol. 489). shuqqāis addressed to Hazārī Madan Siṅgh, sūbahdār of Multān, with directions to execute repairs of the fort there (fol. 489). An ' arzī, along with two bahaṅgīs of apples sent by Chūnī Lāl, nāzim of Kashmīr, is presented to the Mahārājā who gives Rs. 10 to the bearers of the bahaṅgīs by way of in'ām and sends a khill'at of seven pieces and a pair of gold bracelets for the nāzim (fol. 490). Rām Ratan Sāhū of Qasbā Jalandhar is summoned by the Mahārājā who fixes upon him the lease money of one lakh and five thousand rupees per year in respect of Jalandhar and honours him with a turban and dopaṭṭā-i-banārasī on the occasion (fol. 490). The zamīndārs of Koṭ Kamālīā present one rupee each to the Mahārājā and then apprise him of the atrocities perpetrated on the subjects by the 'āmil of the said place. The Mahārājā offers to them the lease of the qasbā but they express their inability to accept it (fol. 491). A parwānā is sent to the Rājā of Chambā to send two bahaṅgīs of preserves of green myrobalan to the Mahārājā (fol. 492). A letter is received from Sardār Fateh Siṅgh Āhlūvālīā to the effect that fever has broken out at Kapūrthalā (fol. 492). Kidār Nāth, a jeweller of Shāhjahānabād sells two bracelets made of emeralds to the Mahārājā for Rs. 5, 000 (fol. 492). The vakīl of Sardārnī Sadā Kaur communicates her message to the Mahārājā saying, "I have grown old in the jail I am assigned to by the Mahārājā. I am ready to hand over the entire property to the Mahārājā. I request to be set free so that I may pass the remaining days of my life in worship and prayer to God. " The Mahārājā gives no reply (fol. 493). The Mahārājā distributes fifty rupees among the Akālīs (fol. 484). Sundar Siṅgh Daroghā-i-'Adālat is adjured by the Mahārājā to do justice and refrain from acts of high-handedness (fol. 586). Qāzī Badr ud-Dīn, vakīl of Sardār Yār Muhammad Khān, informs the Mahārājā about the death of William Moorcroft (fol. 593). Dīwān Motī Rām reports high prices of grain in Mankerā (fol. 616). Ganesh Datt, kochwān, is ordered to have a new bugghī made. He tells the Mahārājā that a bugghi could not be made locally; it could be had from Calcutta (fol. 616).
Jatī Rām Gupta