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Ferozepur, Sep.28 (ANI): Every year Sikhs in Punjab's Ferozepur district mark Saragarhi Day to remember the unparalleled valour, demonstrated by 21 Sikh soldiers on September 12, 1897 while participating in the battle of Saragarhi against a 10,000 strong enemy force.

The Sikh soldiers of the 4th Battalion (then 36th Sikhs) of the Sikh Regiment of British India were sent to defend Fort Lockhart at Saragarhi post, in North West Frontier Province (now in Pakistan).

Some 10,000 tribesmen had attacked the Saragarhi post.

The battle lasted over six hours and one by one the defenders kept falling while trying to protect their post. But they did not surrender.

The day of battle is observed each year as `Saragarhi Day' to mark the event.

The Gurudwara, named Saragarhi memorial, in Ferozepur today stands as a protected monument and is a tribute to those Sikh soldiers who sacrificed their lives.

The memorial gurudwara, surrounded by half-a-dozen small and big cannons with names of the 21 brave soldiers inscribed on its walls, was built by the army with stones from the Saragarhi post.

It was declared open in 1904 by Sir Charles Revz. Saragarhi memorial is an inspiration to many a symbol of courage and bravery.

Captain Sadhu Singh of the Sikh Regiment, said:" About 110-years-ago, on 12th of September, 1897 a war was fought, in which 21 brave soldiers were martyred while fighting under the leadership of Hawaldar Ishwar Singh at Saragarhi Post. In memory of those martyrs, we celebrate this day every year. Whatever our ancestors have given us in legacy is for the making of our nation and community proud. "

On the occasion of 110th anniversary of the Saragarhi Day a cross-country run was held in which hundreds of civilians as well as army personnel participated.

After covering a distance of nine miles on the Faridkot-Ferozepur Road, the run culminated at the Saragarhi Memorial Gurudwara.

The Sikh Regiment organized cross-country and cycle rally with the support of the state government to inspire youth and instill a spirit of sacrifice for the motherland in them.

Lt.Gen.R.S.Sujlana, Colonel of the Sikh Regiment, "Today, we organized a cycle-rally and a run, which saw the participation of a large number of youth."

Ferozepur city in South-west Punjab is on the sensitive border with Pakistan that has witnessed three wars.

The border village lacks medical facilities and to make the Saragarhi Day a memorable one the army also organized a free medical camp.
Each year by observing the Saragarhi Day, the spirit and inspiration is kept alive from generation to generation. By Avtar Gill (ANI)

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