Chaudhary Sahib Rai, a Jat of Gill sub-caste, was the resident of Surdev which was situated at a distance of 5 kos (15 kms) from Kot Isa Khan towards its south. His two sons, Dasaundha (Saundha) Singh and Sangat Singh, who lived on cultivation of land, took baptism of the double-edged sword and joined the Dal Khalsa. A little later, they founded a village, named Singhanwala, near Zira (in the present district of Faridkot), and took up their residence thereat
In 1734, Dasaundha Singh was one of the leaders of the Taruna Dal. Since he was a strong and sturdy man, he was generally entrusted with the duty of carrying the flag in front of the Dal Khalsa when moving from one place to another. He was very much respected by the Sikh jathas. Dasaundha Singh, being the flag-bearer of the Dal Khalsa, or the Khalsa army, was given the name of Nishanwalia. Nishan means a standard or a banner and Nishanwalia means standard or flag bearer. The national flag of the Sikhs was of saffron colour. Dasaundha Singh was baptised by Diwan Darbara Singh. He wielded his sword like Rustam. He participated in the battle of Sirhind in January 1764. He took possession of the ilaqas of Singhanwala, Sanehwal, Sarai Lashkari Khan, Doraha, Amloh, Zira, Liddhar,
Shahabad and Ambala and made the last named place his headquarters. Dasaundha Singh died in 1767, of a gun-shot in the battle of the Brars at Droli which is situated at a distance of 5 kos(10 kms) from Singhanwala, in its west.
Dasaundha Singh was succeeded by his brother, Sangat Singh. He was still more chivalrous and brave as compared to his brother. Accompanied by his men, he attacked Sirhind for the second time. He built a brick wall around the town of Ambala, his capital, to provide it protection against robbers. This town did not have sufficient water of good quality. Sangat Singh chose to leave Ambala for want of drinkable water and also the climate of this place did not suit him. He, therefore, shifted to Singhanwala. He handed over the possession of Ambala to his brother-in-law (wife's brother), Dhian Singh, who appointed Gurbakhsh Singh and Lal Singh as the thanedars of Ambala and the adjoining possessions.
Dhian Singh went to Singhanwala. Sangat Singh died soon after and Dhian Singh paid no attention to Ambala and the other possessions there. When he returned to Ambala he found Gurbakhsh Singh and Lal Singh to have become independent there. Jai Singh, resident of Kairon, and Kaur Singh of Dhand Kasel of the pargana of Tarn Taran, were Gurbakhsh Singh's close associates. They had taken pahul at the hands of Diwan Darbara Singh. The number of troops under Sangat Singh was 12,000.
Sangat Singh did not live a long life. He died in 1774, due to a natural death, while on a march in the hills, aftcr ruling his territories for a few years.
Excerpts taken from a History of Sikh Misls
Gurmat Gyan (Knowledge)
Other Gurbani Contributors