These were the four sons of Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Sikh Guru, who bravely sacrificed their lives for Sikhism and are remembered every day in Ardas (the Sikh common prayer).
Baba Ajit Singh (1687 to 1704) and Baba Jujhar Singh (1689 to 1704)
Baba Ajit Singh was the oldest son of Guru Gobind Singh and was born on January 7, 1687 at Anandpur Sahib. Baba Jujhar Singh, the Gurus second son was born in March 1689.
Both brothers received religious education as well as training in the weapons of war. During the battle of Chamkaur in 1704 in which the Guru and 40 Sikhs fought against overwhelming odds, both brothers died in battle. During the battle Baba Ajit Singh asked his fathers permission to go out of the fort and fight the enemy.
He said, “Dear father, my name is Ajit or Unconquerable. I will not be conquered. And if conquered, I will not flee or come back alive. Permit me to go, dear father.” Guru Gobind Singh hugged and kissed his beloved son before sending him into battle where he fought heroically until his last breath.
Baba Jujhar Singh having watched his brother fight, asked Guru Gobind Singh, “Permit me, dear father to go where my brother has gone. Don’t say that I am too young. I am your son, I am a Singh or Lion of yours. I shall prove worthy of you. I shall die fighting, with my face towards the enemy, with God and the Guru on my lips and in my heart.”
Guru Gobind Singh embraced him and said, “Go my son and wed life-giving Death. We have been here for a while. Now we shall return to our real home. Go and wait for me there. Your grandfather and elder brother are already waiting for you.”
Thus the Guru watched his two sons achieve eternal peace through martyrdom.
Baba Zorawar Singh (1696 to 1704) and Baba Fateh Singh (1698 to 1704)
The two youngest sons of Guru Gobind Singh, Baba Zorawar Singh was the third son and was born in 1696 while Baba Fateh Singh was the youngest son and was born in 1698.
During the crossing of the river Sarsa following the departure of the Guru and his family from Anandpur Sahib, the Sikhs were attacked by the treacherous mughals who had guaranteed them safe passage. During the ensuing battle and confusion, both sons along with Mata Gujri, Guru Gobind Singh’s mother, were separated from the others.
Eventually through the treachery of a Brahmin named Gangu they fell into the hands of Nawab Wazir Khan, the governor of Sirhind. The Nawab gave the two young brothers a choice of either converting to Islam or being put to death.
Baba Zorawar Singh said to his little brother, “My brother, the time to sacrifice our lives has arrived. What do you think? What should be our reply?”
Baba Fateh Singh his younger brother replied, “Brother dear, our grandfather, Guru Tegh Bahadur parted with his head; he stoutly refused to part with his religion. We should follow his example. We have received the baptism of the spirit and the sword. We are the Guru’s lions. Why should we fear death? It is best that we should give up our lives for the sake of our religion. I am prepared to die”.
Baba Zorawar Singh replied, “That is good, indeed. The blood of Guru Arjan, Guru Hargobind, Guru Teg Bahadur and Guru Gobind Singh runs in our veins. We are their descendants. We cannot do anything unworthy of our family”.
Both sons were bricked up in a wall and had their heads cut off but they steadfastly refused to convert to Islam.