Legends are people who do extraordinary things, irrespective of the strength of the powers they are fighting against, irrespective of the threat to their lives.
Leaving aside right & wrong, let us read the story of two legends – Amar Singh Rathore & Ballu Champavat – who attempted (and succeeded) in doing the next-to-impossible, but had to pay with their lives.
This is a true story.
Year: 1644 CE. Place: Agra Fort, Headquarters of Mughal Emperor – Shahjahan.
Amar Singh Rathore – an exiled prince of the Rajput Royal house of Marwar – was appointed as a Subedar (Governor) by Mughal Emperor Shahjahan, due to his bravery and battle prowess. The other courtiers became jealous of him and escalated a small issue (of his unauthorized absence) which resulted in Shahjahan punishing him with a fine.
Amar Singh Rathore declared that he was answerable only to God and whoever wished to collect the fine should answer his sword first. When an angry courtier confronted him, he killed the courtier right in front of the Mughal Emperor! In spite of the best efforts of Mughal army, he escaped alive from there after jumping the 20m high wall of the Agra fort, with his horse (which died).
But on the next day, his brother-in-law (who also worked for Shahjahan) invited him back to the fort, in the pretext of holding talks with the emperor. This was an intrigue – he was attacked and killed by a huge force, as he entered the fort. Shahjahan kept Amar Singh Rathore’s body on a tower inside the fort and challenged the Rajput community to take it away.
Ballu Champavat, a childhood friend of Amar Singh Rathore accepted this challenge stormed into the fort – along with 50 bravest warriors of Rajput clan – as the gates were opened in the morning and killed everyone who came on the way. They were able to retrieve the body, but by this time the gates were closed.
Faced with no other option, Ballu Champavat also jumped over the fortress wall with his horse (along with the body of his friend) and managed to escape from there. But shortly afterwards, he died due to injuries sustained during this next-to-impossible mission.
Even today, these two legends are remembered for their bravery and one gate of the Agra Fort – the Lahore Gate – is also (popularly) called as Amar Singh Gate.
Reference: Wikipedia article on Amar Singh Rathore.
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