Shaheed Bhai Karaj Singh Peer Mohammed
Shaheed Bhai Karaj Singh Peer Mohammed
Warriors attaining shaheedi in the battle which was started to stand against the injustices of Delhi government, Shaheed Bhai Karaj Singh Peer Mohammed is amongst those warriors. The family of Bhai Sahib were connected to the Dam Dami Taksal and were close to 13th Jathedar of Dam Dami Taksal, Sant Kartar Singh Ji Bhindranwale. Bhai Sahib’s grandfather was the brother of Sant Kartar Singh Ji Bhindranwale. Until 1970 Bhai Sahib and family stayed at the village of Bhoora, then in village Gulamiwal and finally settled in village Peer Mohammed, district Ferozpur.
Bhai Sahib’s father Sardar Shingara Singh was married twice, from 1st marriage he had 3 children, Bhai Santokh Singh, Bhai Anokh Singh and Bibi Kashmir Kaur and another 3 children from the 2nd marriage which was with Mata Swarn Kaur, Bhai Karaj Singh, Bhai Baaj Singh and Bibi Gurmeet Kaur. Out of all these children, Bhai Karaj Singh and Bhai Baaj Singh devoted their lives to the Sikh Freedom Movement. Bhai Sahib and Bhai Baaj Singh played together from a young age in the streets of Peer Mohammed. The whole family had taken amrit from the Panj Pyare of Guru Gobind Singh Ji’s Dam Dami Taksal. In 1978 when the Narakhdhari cult massacred 13 Sikhs and wounded more than 150 Sikhs, Bhai Sahib was very young. Sardar Shingara Singh took part in many Dharam Yudh Morchas and also protested against the arrest of Bhai Amrik Singh and spent 3 months in jail. By now Bhai Sahib had come into his teen age.
When Sardar Shingara Singh came out of jail, he took Bhai Sahib and took him to Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale. When Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale saw the father and son he said, “What’s up, do you want to get your son married?”Sardar Shingara Singh put his hands together and said, “Only you know if he needs to get married or not, he is yours now.”
Bhai Sahib stayed with Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale for roughly 2 years at Sri Akaal Takht Sahib. Few months before June 1984 attack Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale got Bhai Sahib married to Bibi Sukhwinder Kaur, daughter of Sardar Mohan Singh of village Nasharea panua. Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale sent a message to Bhai Sahib’s family to attend the marriage. After Bhai Sahib’s wedding Sant Jarnail Singh Ji Bhindranwale sent the newlywed couple home.
Bhai Sahib was at home when the government of India attacked Sri Harimandir Sahib. Not only the Sikhs were shocked about the attack on the Sikh historic gurudwara, but also the Hindus and Muslims were shocked in how the government can attack its own people. Bhai Sahib was of the lions who had felt the pain of the attack on Sri Darbar Sahib from home, but as soon as the attack had ended, Bhai Sahib left home and joined the Khalsa army to take revenge of the destruction of Sri Akaal Takht. After the 1984 June Sikh massacre, Bhai Sahib started doing actions while staying at home, but Bhai Sahib knew that soon he will have to leave home.
In the start of 1985 the police got to know of Bhai Sahib actions and started to hunt him down. CIA of Ferozpur on 5th January 1985 had surrounded Bhai Sahib’s home while Bhai Sahib was out in his farms. When the police demanded of Bhai Sahib’s where abouts, Mata Swarn Kaur said, “Karaj has gone to see relatives in another village.” The news of Mata Swarn Kaur being questioned by Indian security forces got to Bhai Sahib, so Bhai Sahib left home and went far away from his family, so that the police will not harass the family.
Bhai Sahib met and joined Bhai Nishan Singh Makhu’s group and sometime later joined Babbar Khalsa. Bhai Sahib led a group of singhs as a Babbar Khalsa general. Soon the police put Bhai Sahib’s name along with top wanted Khadku Singhs. To get to Bhai Sahib the police started harassing the family even more. The police put a pistol next to the ears of Mata Swarn Kaur and fired bullets which left Mata Ji partly deaf, but Mata Ji stayed in high spirits. Police sometimes asked, “Did Karaj come home last night?” but mother of Bhai Sahib replied, “If you knew then why didn’t you come last night?” The police would feel embarrassed after hearing the answers of Mata Swarn Kaur.
Bhai Sahib would regularly have encounters the security forces of India. Whenever the police surrounded Bhai Sahib, he would escape safely after killing couple of officers. The encounters of village Bhagla, Jindran, Varsala were some of the famous encounters of Bhai Sahib. In Varsala encounter one singh from Bhai Sahib’s group attained shaheedi.
Having encounters were like games of a playground for Bhai Karaj Singh Peer Mohammed. Whenever Bhai Sahib got new gun, he would say, “Now where will I get surrounded by the police, so I can test this gun.” When Bhai Sahib visited the family house he would say, “Hey Waheguru, I wish to have an encounter in my village.” After hearing this, the family would get upset, and then Bhai Sahib would say, “Why shouldn’t I have encounters in my own village instead of other villages?” Bhai Sahib’s wish came true, one day the police surrounded Bhai Sahib in Peer Mohammed and an encounter started, which lasted all day. At night Bhai Sahib broke the police circle and escaped.
The police now had crossed the line in harassing Bhai Sahib’s family, Bhai Sahib’s younger brother, Bhai Baaj Singh was arrested and sent to Ferozpur jail on fake charges. Rest of Bhai Sahib’s family started to live in hiding. By now Bhai Sahib had 2 sons, Bhai Gurbej Singh and Bhai Balraj Singh, their childhood was also spent in hiding.
December 1991 the police started to hire black cats and planted them into Sikh freedom fighting groups. Due to black cats many top Khadku Singhs were being captured and killed. One black cat had reported to the police that Bhai Sahib is travelling on transporter truck totally unarmed under the fake name of Bhai Balwinder Singh. The police quickly got ready to carry out a mission which would result in the capture of Bhai Sahib. The police stopped the truck at Jalandhar bypass and arrested Bhai Sahib, and took him to the interrogation centre, where the brutal torture was to take place. The black cat came in front of Bhai Sahib when the lion was tied to a chair and told the police, “This is Karaj Singh.”But Bhai Sahib shouted, “My name is not Karaj Singh, its Balwinder Singh.”
For the 10 days Bhai Sahib was at the interrogation centre, he was mercilessly tortured but Bhai Sahib did not change the statement he had given. On the 10thday, the police could not get any information from Bhai Sahib and emptied a full magazine of bullets into Bhai Sahib’s torso. The police later declared killing Bhai Sahib in an encounter. Mata Swarn Kaur saw the photo of her brave son and knew that Bhai Sahib had attained shaheedi. This all happened in the very early days of January 1992.
Then in February 1992, the government of Butcher Beant Singh came into power in Punjab. Innocent Sikh youth were getting picked up by the police and eventually killed in fake encounters. Bhai Sahib’s brother, Bhai Baaj Singh who was married and a father to one son, Bhai Gurdarshan Singh was taken out of jail by the Thanedar of Khemkaran, Nirmal Singh and killed in a fake encounter like many other countless innocent Sikhs.
Both lion brothers attained shaheedi for the panth, but later the family struggled with financial problems and medical care, which can be seen till today. Bhai Sahib knew the outcomen of his involvement in the Sikh Freedom Movement, Bhai Sahib gave his family up for the wider Sikh family of Guru Gobind Singh Ji. We call ourselves Khalistani, but what are we doing for our soldiers of our nation?
Purja Purja Kat Maray – Baljit Singh Khalsa