Veer Haqiqat Rai (1722– 1734)

Discussion in 'Indian History' started by garry420, Jan 12, 2016.

  1. garry420

    garry420 Well-Known Member

    Veer Haqiqat Rai was born in 1722 A.D in Sialkot (now in current day Pakistan) to Bhag Mall Khatri on October 2nd, Kartik Vadi [1], his maternal grandparents and his mother were Sikhs while his father was a Hindu. He was married at the age of ten to Durgi the daughter of Sardar Kishan Singh. At the time of Haqiqat Rai, the state of Punjab was already under great Muslim influence, at the same time there was a lack of proper Hindu schools, which meant that Haqiqat Rai was sent to a Muslim school for his education where he began his instruction at the age of twelve. One day some of his Muslim classmates abused Ma Bhavani by calling her insulting names, which prompted Haqiqat Rai to get into a heated debate with some of his classmates. As a consequence he was accused of committing blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad and Islam and was imprisoned, later he was taken to the court of Governor Nawab Zakariya Khan in Lahore where he was asked to embrace Islam and save him self, which Haqiqat Rai stoutly refused to do, this caused Zakariya Khan to pass the death sentence against him and he was tortured and later executed at the tender age of twelve on the day of Basanth Panchami, but he did not yield to the requests of his mother to give up his faith nor to the tempting offer of Zakariya Khan and happily embraced death for the sake of his religion and his body was cremated on the banks of River Ravi at Lahore. An annual fair was organized on the day of Basanth Panchami every year to commemorate his martyrdom until the partition of Bharat in 1947 and a samadhi of Veer Haqiqat Rai exists to this day near Lahore’s Engineering University.

    On The Question Of Haqiqat Rai’s Religion:

    It is extremely important that we discuss the question of Haqiqat Rai’s faith since it is very noticeable that many Sikh sites claim that Haqiqat Rai was a Sikh martyr and the Hindu community must find out whether Haqiqat Rai was in fact Sikh or Hindu.

    A good way to begin this investigation would be to examine some of the statements on Sikh websites regarding Haqiqat Rai, at the opening let us look at the following statement from a Sikh website on Veer Haqiqat Rai:

    "Bhai Haqiqat Rai became a Sikh early in his life due to influence of his mother. During Mughal rule, children used to go to mosques to study Persian from Maulvis (Muslim priests). Bhai Haqiqat Rai was also learning Persian from a maulvi. He was the only Hindu while all his other class-mates were Muslims.” [2]

    The above statement claims that Veer Haqiqat Rai “became a Sikh early in his life due to influence of his mother” but a moment later it states, “He was the only Hindu while all his other class-mates were Muslims.” Which is a bit strange because Sikhs firmly deny that they are Hindus so it is not possible for Haqiqat Rai to be both Hindu and Sikh at the same time which the Sikh website seems to have disregarded in trying to make Haqiqat Rai a Sikh.

    The next important point to consider is the reason for Haqiqat Rai’s blasphemy against Muhmmad, according to the Sikh Encyclopedia the following was the reason for his alleged blasphemy against Prophet Muhammad:

    “It was here that some of the Muslim students in the mosque spoke ill of the Goddess Bhavani which provoked Haqiqat Rai into a polemic with his fellow students” [3]

    In the statement given above it clearly states that the reason for Haqiqat Rai’s anger was the words spoken by his Muslim classmates against Goddess Bhavani which is an important point to consider, according to Sikhs the Sikh religion teaches the worship of only One God, so Why exactly did Haqiqat Rai get angry about blasphemy against Goddess Bhavani if he was a Sikh since Sikhs do not worship Ma Bhavani? And this leads to the conclusion that either the Sikhs at the time still considered themselves Hindus or Veer Haqiqat Rai himself was a Hindu. But according to Sikhs they never regarded themselves as Hindus at any time so the only possible conclusion is that Haqiqat Rai himself was a Hindu.

    An interesting detail I found on the net while researching about Haqiqat Rai is the fact that there are two different articles on him at two different websites [4] that are virtually identical except for the fact that one of the sites (a Sikh website) has the following statement which is not found in the article on the other website, the statement is this:

    "Bhai Haqiqat Rai became a Sikh early in his life due to influence of his mother.” [5]

    The previous quote seems to show us that the Sikh website just took the article from the other website and added in that sentence to make Haqiqat Rai a Sikh which strengthens the idea that Haqiqat Rai was a Hindu and not a Sikh.

    A few other facts frequently mentioned on Sikh sites to make Haqiqat Rai a Sikh are that his mother and maternal grandparents were Sikhs but none of this proves that Haqiqat Rai in fact was Sikh since going by this logic even Guru Nanak becomes a Hindu because he had Hindu parents and so does Master Tara Singh since he came from a Hindu Khatri family which obviously Sikhs would not agree with, so the fact that Haqiqat Rai had a Sikh mother does not make him Sikh.

    Another important point is the fact that the name Haqiqat Rai indicates that he didn’t join the Khalsa since Sikh men who join the Khalsa usually took up the last name “Singh” and according to Sikhs it is imperative that all Sikhs should keep the 5K’s to be considered fully Sikh which again throws a spanner in the belief that Haqiqat Rai was a Sikh since he didn’t keep the 5K’s.

    Haqiqat Rai no doubt may have been influenced by Sikh philosophy to some extent since his mother was a Sikh but that doesn’t mean that he becomes a Sikh and there is no reason to believe that Haqiqat Rai was Sikh since he falls short of the definition of a Sikh constructed by the Sikh community itself. In conclusion Veer Haqiqat Rai was a Hindu who sacrificed his life for his own religion and who should be remembered by all Hindus for all times to come for his great sacrifice.

    Jai Durga Ma.


    [1] “VAR HAQIQAT RAI” – The Sikh Encyclopedia.

    [2] “Bhai Haqiqat Rai” –

    [3] “VAR HAQIQAT RAI” – The Sikh Encyclopedia.

    [4] This is one of the sites


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