Sundri became very agitated when she heard about Lakhpat. But controlling herself, she said, "Tell me about yourself.
Man: "Since you are so interested I will tell you my sad tale. About twenty miles from here, there is a large Muslim village, with a number of Hindu families living in it. There is also a beautiful Shiva temple there. "I belong to a very old high caste Khatri family. During the days of Akbar, one of my ancestors served under Diwan Todar Mal. There was so much wealth in the family, that it has lasted till today." "A Mughal ‘hakam’ and his soldiers live in our village.
A few days ago I went to the Shiva temple to make an offering. My wife had washed her hair and was standing on the roof to dry them. The Mughal ‘hakam’ happened to pass that way and he saw her.
"The moment I returned from the village, his soldiers caught me and took me to him. In an arrogant tone he said, "The Emperor has received information that you are hiding jewels of Akbar’s treasury in your home. Return them at once, otherwise we shall lock you up." "I replied, ‘Generations have passed since Akbar died, and since my ancestors also passed away. What proof have you got?"
Hakam: ‘O Kafar, how dare you be rude to a Momin! Get out of my sight.’ He signalled to his soldiers, who put me in the lock-up. A guard was placed outside my house.
"The next day, he sent me a message that he would set me free if I handed over my wife to him. The shock was too much for me and I fainted. When I regained my senses I managed to bribe the jailor with the gold. bracelets and rings which I was wearing, and rushed home To my horror I found my ,wife missing and soldiers standing guard. From the neighbors I learnt that she had been taken to the Nawab’s palace. I can’t bear this humiliation and want to kill myself."
Sundri "Oh you poor man: I know your suffering is great, but it is not correct to take your own life. If you want to rescue your wife come with me. My brothers will willingly help you."
Khatri: "Bibi, your sweet words are like balm to my troubled soul. I am so confused. What great evil have we done that such suffering has come to our country? Where have all the Gods gone? Why don’t the holy men come to our aid? Oh, Shiv! Oh Vishnu? Help us, and save us from the invaders."
Sundri’s tender heart was deeply touched to hear the pain in the man’s words. She spoke in a soft voice, "O, good man, suffering comes because of our wrong actions. When we all put our efforts in loving Him, who is our creator and benevolent Father, we become united and strong. Then no one can harm us. By following separate paths we are becoming weak and this gives the invaders a chance to enter our country and rule us with tyranny and aggression.
Sundri reassured the Khatri that her brothers could help him, and they set off towards the camp. As soon as they neared the woods Sundri stopped.
"I will have to blind-fold you here. We live surrounded by danger, so we can’t take a chance and reveal the where – abouts of our camp. I hope you will not mind," she said and quickly tied a piece of cloth across his eyes.
In a short time they reached the camp. Sundri was astonished to see the fires were lit and large pots were placed on them. Stopping one of the Singhs, who was busily doing the cooking, she asked, "Bhraji, what is all this?"
Singh: "Dear sister, this is maha prashad. When Sardar Sham Singhji saw that all rations were over he went hunting with Balwant SinghJi and managed to shoot some deer, and now we are cooking them. But where have you been all this time?"
Sundri laughed and said, "Virji, since you have been sitting idle for so long, I thought I’d find some work for you"
Singh: "And did you manage to find any?"
Sundri pointed towards the Khatri and said, "There it is."
Meanwhile Balwant Singh had come up and hearing Sundri’s words, he asked her to come to Sardar Sahib for advice. They took the Khatri along.
Sardar Sham Singh heard the whole story from Sundri. His eyes shone with pride and affection when he learnt of Sundri’s efforts to sell off her ring for the sake of her brothers.
Smiling, he looked at Sundri and said, "You are truly an angel".
Then he turned to one of the Sikhs and told him to take the man to the kitchen, remove his blind – fold and give him food to eat.
He was worried in case this man was a spy, and had been sent to find tile location of their camp. So he instructed one man to stay with him all the time and keep an eye on him. A third Sikh was sent to the village, in disguise, to check out if the man’s story was correct and to find where his wife was being held captive.
Sundri was impatient to have the man’s wife rescued quickly. She remembered her own days in the Mughals lock-up and could imagine the suffering of the woman.
But hearing Sardar Sham Singh’s words of caution, she realized how wise and far – sighted his thinking was. This was the reason that he was respected and accepted as their leader, not only by their group but the whole ‘Panth’
In a short time the Sikh cane back from the village with the news that the man had indeed spoken the truth. Immediately Sardar Sham Singh began to discuss with the others what plan to make for the rescue of the Khatri’s unfortunate wife.