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Balawali or Balanwali (बालानवाली) is a town in district (?) of Punjab, India.


Jat Gotras


Lepel H. Griffin writes: [1] Until the time of Chaudhri Phul (Sidhu - Jat clan), the history of the Pattiala and the Jhind families are the same. (See:The Rajas of the Punjab by Lepel H. Griffin/The History of the Patiala State)

Tilokha, the eldest son of Phul, had two sons, Gurditta and Sukhchen.

From the elder Gurditta has descended the Nabha family, and from the younger Sukhchen the Chiefs of Jhind, Badrukhan and Bazidpur.

Tilokha succeeded his father as Chaudhri, but although he thus became the head of the family, he was not a man of any energy, and made no attempt to increase his share of the estate.

Sukhchen, the second son, was a simple zamindar, and nothing worthy of record is known of him, except his marriage to Agan, the daughter of Chuhr Singh, a Bhullar Jat of Mandi, who bore him three sons,

He founded several new villages, one of which, called after his own name, he gave to his youngest son Bulaki Singh ; and a second, Balanwali, to Alam Singh. After having made his division of his estate, he continued to reside with his second son Gajpat Singh, at the ancestral village of Phul, where he died, aged seventy-five, in the year 1758.

* Ante, pp. 2-9

Pratab Singh flies from Jhind to Balawali

Prince Fatah Singh now took charge of the administration, and Partab Singh, knowing that British troops were marching from all sides against him, left Jhind and retired to Balawali, a fort in the wild country about Bhatinda. The zemindars of Balawali were a turbulent race, and Partab Singh had no difficulty in persuading them to adopt his cause. But he was at once followed by several troops of English cavalry who were directed to surround Balawali and prevent Partab Singh's escape, until a force, composed of five companies of infantry and three guns, which marched from Ludhiana on the 30th September, should arrive.

Then he crossed the Satlej and Joins Phula Singh Akali:

The Prince saw that it was dangerous to remain at Balawali, where his capture Was Certain, and, the day after he had entered the fort, he abandoned it, carrying off fifteen or twenty thousand rupees with other valuables that had been lodged there ; and after a long and circuitous march, crossed the Satlej at Makhowal, with forty followers, and joined Phula Singh Akali who was in force on the opposite bank.*

This famous outlaw had taken up his residence at Nandpur Makhowal and defied the whole power of the Sikhs to expel him. He had with

* Sir D. Ochterlony to Resident Dehli 30th September 1814. Sir G. Clerk to Agent Governor General 20th March 1836.

† Phula Singh was the leader of the Akalis of the Amritsar temple, who attacked Mr. Metcalfe’s party in 1809, and also Lieutenant


him about seven hundred horse and two guns. With this man Partab Singh remained for two months, then persuading him to cross the Satlej and actively assist him at Balawali, which remained in open rebellion against the Raja of Jhind. When it became known that Phula Singh had crossed the Satlej, the Agent at Ludhiana wrote without delay to Raja Jaswant Singh of Nabha and the Khans of Maler Kotla, directing them to combine their forces and attack him, though such was the veneration in which Phula Singh was held by the Sikhs that there appeared little chance of the Nabha troops loyally acting against him, and Maler Kotla was not sufficiently strong to act alone.*

Partab Singh reaches Balawali, but Phula Singh compelled to retire:

Balawali, at this time, was invested by Pattiala troops, and was almost pared to Surrender, when its defenders heard of the approach of Phula Singh. They at once broke off negotiations, while Partab Singh went in advance and with a few men threw himself into the fort. Seven hundred of the Pattiala troops marched to intercept Phula Singh, who was unable to relieve the fort, and retired

While on survey duty, and, who, for his numerous crimes, had been outlawed by Ranjit Singh on demand of the British Government.

Vide ante p. 128, 132—84.

* Phula Singh had, as an Akali, (a Sikh ascetic class), great influence with his countrymen. The Maharaja tried for years, with half sincerity to capture him, and the English drove him from place to place, but could never seize him. At this very time, when Partab Singh joined him at Makhowal, the Maharaja had sent the most positive orders for the Philor troops to drive him out of his territories. The garrison was accordingly marched against him, but when they approached, Phula Singh sent to ask them if they would kill their Guru, (spiritual teacher). The Sikhs would not molest him ; and the whole force was kept out some two months to prevent his plundering, marching where be marched, more like a guard of honor than anything else. Numberless stories of the same kind can be told of Phula Singh, who was a very remarkable man. He was a robber and an outlaw, but he was nevertheless a splendid soldier, and a brave, enthusiastic man. He made friends with Ranjit Singh later, and won for him the great battle of Teri, in which he was killed, in 1823.


toward the Satlej, taking refuge in a village belonging to two Sirdars, Dip Singh and Bir Singh, who reproached the troops for attempting to offer violence to a poor fakir and their Guru. The Pattiala General did not know what to do in this emergency, and wrote to the Political Agent, who warned the Sirdars against protecting an outlaw whom all the Cis-Satlej Chiefs had been ordered to expel from their territories. The Chiefs of Nabha and Kythal were directed to send their forces to Balawali to co-operate with those of Pattiala, as the latter were afraid of the odium that would ever afterwards attach itself to them should they be the only assailants of Prince Partab Singh.

The fort of Balawali at last surrendered and Pratap Singh taken prisoner:

The Pattiala authorities wished a British force to be sent to Balawali, but this was unnecessary, for the garrison was reduced to great straits and the fort surrendered on the 28th of January. Prince Partab Singh was taken prisoner, but was placed under merely nominal restraint, and declared his intention of proceeding to Dehli to throw himself on the protection of the British Government. His ally, Phula Singh, was more fortunate. He marched to Mokatsar, in the Firozpur district, and there levied contributions, and being joined by Sirdar Nihal Singh Attariwala, gave battle to the Philor garrison, which he defeated with a loss of three hundred killed and wounded, the Akali not losing more than fifty men. The Maharaja was much annoyed at this affair, and thinking Phula Singh might be made useful if he took him into his service, invited him to Lahore, where he declined to go, demanding that Mokatsar, which was a sacred place of pilgrimage among the Sikhs, should be given him for his residence.

The revolt of Balawali


Lepel H. Griffin writes:[2] The Balawali ilaqua rose in rebellion early in 1836. The inhabitants of this place, situated near Bhatinda, about one hundred miles to the west of Ambala, had always been notorious for their wild and independent character, and it was they, who, in 1815, when Prince Partab Singh had fled from Hansi, under the pretense of supporting his claims, rebelled against the Jhind Government and were only reduced to obedience when Sir David Ochterlony had marched against them with a strong force. Under Jhind they had done exactly as they pleased, and had paid no revenue whatever ; but after the death of Raja Sangat Singh, the administration of Balawali came into the hands of the British Government, and the people were called upon to pay revenue. They had preferred what they seemed to consider a prescriptive right to a light assessment ; and, taking all the circumstance of the case into consideration, it was thought advisable to make only the most moderate demand from them. But this did not satisfy them. They attacked Mr. Edgeworth, when passing through their country, possibly at the instigation of the Akalis who resorted to Gurusar, a sacred place of pilgrimage of the Sikhs in their immediate neighbourhood, and then rose in revolt, apparently believing that their wild and barren country would secure them from any attack by British troops, whom the authorities would be unwilling to move into camp at the commencement of the hot season.

The leaders of the rebellion:

The leader of the insurrection was Gulab Singh, Gil, a resident of Balawali, formerly a Risaldar in the Jhind


Notable Persons

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