JAṄGNĀMĀ SRĪ GURŪ GOBIND SIṄGH JĪ KĀ, a vār or stanzas by Aṇī Rāi describing Gurū Gobind Siṅgh's battle with a Mughal force at Anandpur. Aṇī Rāi was one of the fifty-two poets who enjoyed the Gurū's patronage. The welcome he received on his arrival in Anandpur and the conferment through a hukamnāmā of costly presents including gold and jewels upon him find mention in the opening stanzas of Jaṅgnāmā. The conjecture is that he came to Anandpur after AD 1699, the year of the promulgation of the Khālsā, for he makes no mention of the battles of Bhaṅgāṇī and Nadauṇ which took place prior to that event and he throughout refers to the Gurū as Gobind Siṅgh, which name he took only after receiving initiation at the hands of the Pañj Piāre. Written in an admixture of Braj and Punjabi, the poem comprises 69 cantos. A manuscript copy is preserved in the private collection of the Mahārājā of Paṭiālā. The text is now available in an anthology entitled Prāchīn Vārāṅ te Jaṅgnāme, published by the Shiromaṇī Gurdwārā Parbandhak Committee in 1950. The theme of the Jaṅgnāmā is the battle fought outside the fortress of Anandgaṛh. 'Azīm Khān had under the orders of Emperor Auraṅgzīb marched to Anandpur with a strong force and, supported by seven of the surrounding hill chiefs, reached the outskirts of the town. In eloquent poetic image, Aṇī Rāi evokes the battle scenes and describes with special relish the feats of valour displayed by Sikhs such as Bhāī Himmat Siṅgh and Bhāī Dalel Siṅgh who, tearing their way through the host, attacked 'Azīm Khān's own elephant hitting its howdah or saddle with their swords, and Bachittar Siṅgh and Mohkam Siṅgh confronting and killing a drunken elephant covered with deadly weapons let loose by the Mughal army, and of Gurū Gobind Siṅgh who overpowered 'Azīm Khān in a duel. The last eight cantos of the Jaṅgnāmā are devoted to summing up the events narrated in the preceding parts of the poem. Towards the close, the poet being a devout Sikh begs for the blessing of the Gurū whom he calls the saviour of the world appointed by God Himself to chastise the tyrants.


    Ashok, Shamsher Siṅgh, ed., Prāchīn Vārāṅ te Jaṅgnāme. Amritsar, 1950

Jīt Siṅgh Sītal