Battle of Nadaun
Painting of Sikhs in battle from a manuscript.jpg

Depiction of the Battle of Nadaun from an illustrated Dasam Granth manuscript
Result Chandel of Kahlur victory.[3]

Bilaspur flag.svg
Chandel of Kahlur

  • Sikh flag.jpg
    Guru Gobind Singh's disciples (Sikhs)

Alam of the Mughal Empire.svg
Mughal Empire

  • Kangra Kingdom
  • Bijarwal
Commanders and leaders

Bilaspur flag.svg
Bhim Chand Chandel


The Battle of Nadaun was fought at Nadaun, between Raja Bhim Chand Chandel of Bilaspur (Kahlur) and the Mughals under Alif Khan. Raja Bhim Chand Chandel was supported by Guru Gobind Singh (the tenth Sikh Guru) and the Mughals were supported by other hill chieftains, notably Kirpal Chand from Kangra and Dayal Chand from Bijharwal.[4] Bhim Chand Chandel and some hill chieftains, after conclusion of Battle of Bhangani had refused to pay tribute to the Mughal emperor which led to the battle at Nadaun.[5] The battle resulted in the victory of Chandel of Kahlur and Sikh alliance.[6]

Different authors give the date of the battle variously as 1687,[7][8] 1689,[9][10] 1690,[11] 20 March 1691,[12] and 4 April 1691.[13]

Bichitra Natak, considered to be the autobiography of Guru Gobind Singh, is one of the major sources of information about the battle. However, its authorship is disputed by some scholars.


The Mughal emperor Aurangzeb's Deccan campaigns against Bijapur and Golconda had put considerable strain on the Mughal exchequer. To meet these expenses, Aurangazeb ordered the Governor of Punjab, Azim Khan, to recover annual tributes from the rulers of hill states, who had been defaulting on the payment for three consecutive years.[12]

Azim Khan assigned the duty of collecting tributes to Mian Khan, the viceroy of Jammu. The duty of collecting tributes from Kangra and adjoining principalities was assigned to Alif Khan (or Alaf Khan).[14]

Alif Khan first approached Raja Kirpal Chand (or Bhim Chand Katoch[12]) of Kangra. The Raja told him that Raja Bhim Chand of Bilaspur (Kahlur) was the most powerful king in the region; if he pays tribute, the others will follow. Raja Dayal of Bijarwal (or Bijharwal) was persuaded by Kirpal to meet Alif Khan's demands. At Raja Kirpal's suggestion, Alif Khan proceeded towards Bhim Chand's capital. He halted at Nadaun and sent his envoy to Bhim Chand of Bilaspur with his demands. However, Bhim Chand refused to pay the tribute.

Raja Bhim Chand of Bilaspur formed an alliance with the rest of the hill Rajas, and also sought the support of Guru Gobind Singh. The Guru, who was against the idea of paying tributes to the Mughals, decided to support Bhim Chand.

Description in Bichitra Natak

The author of Bichitra Natak states that Bhim Chand was aided by Raj Singh, Ram Singh, Sukhdev Gaji of Jasrot, and Prithi Chand of Dadhwal, among others.[15] He also states that the Rajputs of the Nanglua and Panglu tribes, and the soldiers of Jaswar and Guler, also participated in the battle.[16]

Initially, the forces of Kirpal Chand overpowered Bhim Chand's forces.[17] Then, Bhim Chand recited Hanuman mantras, and called all his allies, including the Guru.[18] As the combined forces launched an attack, the enemy forces of Raja Dayal of Bijharwal and Raja Kirpal also advanced.[19] In the ensuing battle, the forces of Mughals and Kirpal Chand were driven out into the river.[20] Alif Khan and his warriors fled away.[21]


Soon after the battle, Chand patched up his quarrel with the Mughal faujdar and agreed to pay tribute to them. Guru Gobind Singh reacted to this by plundering a village in his territory.[22]

According to Bichitra Natak, Guru Gobind Singh remained at Nadaun, on the banks of the River Beas, for eight more days, and visited the places of all the chiefs.[21] Later, both the parties made an agreement and peace was established.[23]

Later, Maharaja Ranjit Singh built a gurdwara on the spot where the Guru had pitched his tent. The Gurdwara was affiliated to Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee in 1935.[12] It is known as Gurudwara Dasvin Patshahi or Gurdwara Nadaun Sahib.


  1. ^ Jacques, Tony (2006). Dictionary of Battles and Sieges. Greenwood Press. p. 704. ISBN 978-0-313-33536-5. Archived from the original on 26 June 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  2. ^ Jacques, p. 704
  3. ^ Raj Pal Singh (2004). The Sikhs : Their Journey Of Five Hundred Years. Pentagon Press. p. 35. ISBN 9788186505465.
  4. ^ J.S. Grewal (2019). Guru Gobind Singh (1666–1708). OUP India. p. 62. ISBN 9780190990381.
  5. ^ Singh, Raj Pal (2003). The Sikhs: Their Journey of Five Hundred Years. Bhavana Books & Prints. ISBN 978-81-86505-46-5.
  6. ^ Singh, Kartar (1967). Guru Gobind Singh and the Mughals. Chandigarh: Guru Gobind Singh Foundation. p. 55. OCLC 49259.
  7. ^ Malik, Arjan Dass (1975). An Indian guerilla war : the Sikh peoples war, 1699-1768. New York: Wiley. p. 22. ISBN 978-0-470-56576-6. OCLC 1339733.
  8. ^ Johar, Srinder Singh (1976). The Sikh gurus and their shrines. Vivek Pub. Co. p. 87. OCLC 164789879. A fierce battle was fought at Nadaun in 1687.
  9. ^ Mansukhani, Gobind Singh (1965). The Quintessence of Sikhism. Amritsar: Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee. p. 46. OCLC 2654849.
  10. ^ Seetal, Sohan Singh (1968). Prophet of Man, Guru Gobind Singh. Ludhiana: Seetal Pustak Bhandar. p. 179. OCLC 115772. This battle of Nadaun was fought in November, 1689.
  11. ^ Singh, Gopal (1979). A History of the Sikh People, 1469-1978. New Delhi: World Sikh University Press. p. 275. OCLC 6330455. This is known as the battle of Nadaun and was fought probably late in 1690
  12. ^ a b c d Avinash Dani (7 November 1999). "Little-known gurdwara of Nadaun". Sunday Reading. The Tribune. Retrieved 6 December 2007.
  13. ^ "Temples in the District: Gurudwara sahib Nadaun". NIC Hamirpur. Archived from the original on 20 December 2007. Retrieved 6 December 2007.
  14. ^ Singh, Prithi Pal (2007). The History of Sikh Gurus. Lotus Books. p. 138. ISBN 978-81-8382-075-2.
  15. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 3-4 Archived 17 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 16 Archived 9 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 4-5 Archived 17 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  18. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 6 Archived 17 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 7 Archived 17 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  20. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 19 Archived 9 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ a b Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 22 Archived 9 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  22. ^ Grewal, J.S. (8 October 1998). The Sikhs of the Punjab. Cambridge University Press. p. 74. ISBN 9780521637640.
  23. ^ Bichitra Natak. Chapter 9, Chaupai 23 Archived 9 December 2008 at the Wayback Machine

Coordinates: 31°47′N 76°21′E / 31.783°N 76.350°E / 31.783; 76.350