BANDĪ BĪR (Warrior Bound), a poem in Bengali by Rabindranath Tagore, based primarily on McGregor's History of the Sikhs and Cunningham's A History of the Sikhs was composed by him in October November 1899. The poem celebrates the heroism of the Sikh warrior Bandā Siṅgh Bahādur (1670-1716). The opening stanzas tell how Gurū Gobind Siṅgh's message had turned the Sikhs into a self respecting and fearless people. The rest of the poem is devoted to panegyrizing the resolute resistance put up by Bandā Siṅgh Bahādur and his men against Mughal oppression and to describing how bravely he met his end after he had been arrested at Gurdās-Naṅgal along with his companions. Before being executed with the cruellest torments, Bandā Siṅgh was, says the poet, ordered by the Qāzī to kill his own son holding him in his hands. The poem was a source of inspiration to several other Bengali writers as well as to Bengali militant youth engaged in the struggle for India's independence.

Himādrī Banerjee