The Nakai Misl, was one of the twelve Sikh Misls that later became the Sikh Empire. It held territory between the Ravi and Sutlej rivers to the west of Lahore. The misl fought against the Sials and Pathans and The Kharals before being incorporated into the Sikh Empire of the Sukerchakia Misl by Ranjit Singh.
In 1595, Guru Arjan Sahib (1563-1606) the Fifth Sikh Prophet with some of his followers visited the village of Baherwal; but The Guru was not received with due hospitality. So he passed on to the neighboring village of Jamber Kalan where he lay down on a Charpai (cot) under a shady tree. By this time, Hem Raj, a Sandhu Jatt, Chaudhari or headman of Baherwal, who was absent when the Guru passed through his village, heard of what had occurred and ashamed of his town-men's inhospitality went to Jamber Kalan and brought the Guru to his town. The Guru blessed Hem Raj and prophesied that his son and successors, would be great and powerful chiefs.
In 1748 Sardar Hira Singh (1706-1767) took possession of the lands surrounding his native village, Baherwal and countryside of Kasur which was located in the Nakka country South of Majha Region and his misl took the name of the area they ruled. He took Amrit Sanchar (Sikh Baptism)in 1731. Nakka means border and the Nakka country was located between the Ravi and Sutlej south of Lahore. He also took Chunian from the Afghans but died (Became a Shaheed) in a battle against Sujan Chisti for Pakpattan. His companions brought his dead body to Baherwal where it was cremated. Hira Singh's son, Dal Singh, was a minor, so his nephew, Nar Singh succeeded him as leader of the misl.
In 1768, Nar Singh was killed in a battle against the Kharals at Kot Kumaliah and was succeeded by his son, Ran Singh. Ran Singh fought repeatedly against Kamar Singh, the ruler of Syedwala. Sometime before his death in 1781, he defeated him and captured Syedwala. Sardar Khazan Singh greatly expanded the misl's strength so it became dominant among its neighbors. At its high point under Ran Singh it ruled Kasur, Sharaqpur, Gugaira pargana, and the Kharal fort of Kot Kumaliah and could field 2,000 horsemen, Zamburaks, and artillery. His son, Bhagwan Singh, succeeded him but could not hold his territory against Wazir Singh, the brother of Kamar Singh, who retook Syedwala. Realizing he might lose all of his territory, Bhagwan Singh set up the engagement of his sister, Raj Kour, to Ranjit Singh, who was the son of Maha Singh, the leader of the Sukerchakia Misl, in order to gain a powerful ally. In 1785, Maha Singh was facing attacks from Sardar Jai Singh of the Kanheya Misl and called Bhagwan Singh and Wazir Singh to help him, but after they were victorious against Sardar Jai Singh, Maha Singh began to favor Wazir Singh.
Bhagwan Singh and Wazir Singh then fought and Bhagwan Singh was killed in the ensuing battle. Dal Singh, a son of Hira Singh, then killed Wazir Singh in revenge but was killed himself by a servant of Wazir Singh. In 1789, Gyan Singh, succeeded his brother, Bhagwan Singh, sons of Sardar Khazan Singh Nakai and in 1798 married his sister to Ranjit Singh. In 1802, Raj Kour gave birth to Maharaja Kharak Singh. In 1807, Gyan Singh died and Kahn Singh succeeded him. Before having his estate seized by Ranjit Singh in 1810, Kahn Singh conquered Pakpattan.
List of Nakai Misl Rulers from 1748-1810
1. Sardar Hira Singh Nakai (1706-1767)
2. Sardar Nahar Singh Nakai (d. 1768)
3. Sardar Ran Singh Nakai (d. 1781)
4. Sardar Bhagwan Singh Nakai (d. 1789)
5. Sardar Gyan Singh Nakai (d. 1807)
6. Sardar Kahn Singh Nakai
Even during the British rule in Punjab (1849-1947) the Descendants of Nakai Sikh Misl, Sardar Udham Singh Nakai and Sardar Teja Singh Nakai, were still great Sikh Sardars of Baherwal and were respected by the British as well.
But in the early 20th Century Sardar Ishar Singh Nakai converted to Islam and married a Muslim Lady before the partition of 1947 took place. This branch of the family did not migrate to India and has continued to prosper in their ancestral land. One of his descendants or Grandson is Sardar Muhammad Arif Nakai Sandhu also a Pakistani politician who Died in the year 2000. Sardar Muhammad Arif Nakai's Son-in-Law is famous politician Sardar Muhammad Talib Nakai. His sons are Sardar Muhammad Asif Nakai ( Former Federal Minister of State), Sardar Pervaiz Hassan Nakai and Sardar Atif Nakai, current Tehsil Nazim of Pattoki Tehsil.
A 1780 map of the Punjab Region shows the relative positions of the Sikh Misls and other states.
Sikh Confederacy (1707-1799)
Phulkian Misl · Ahluwalia Misl · Bhangi Misl · Kanheya Misl · Ramgarhia Misl · Singhpuria Misl