General Sher Singh
was a royal military commander
and a member of the Sikh nobility
during the period of the Sikh Empire
in the mid-19th century in Punjab
He commanded the Sikh Khalsa army
in the Second Anglo-Sikh War
against the British East India Company
. His father was General Chattar Singh Attariwalla
. General Sher Singh and the army, under his command, gave a devastating blow to the British Army at Chillianwala. Under his command the Sikh Khalsa Army managed to successfully defend its position against a British army at the Battle of Chillianwala
. Both armies retreated after the battle, with both sides claiming victory.. It was one of the hardest fought battles in the British Army's history. The loss of British prestige at Chillianwala was one of the factors, which contributed to the Indian First War of independence Sepoy Mutiny
some nine years later. Within the British Army, such was the consternation over the events at Chillianwalah that, after the disastrous Charge of the Light Brigade, when Lord Lucan remarked "This is a most serious matter"
, General Airey replied, "It is nothing to Chillianwalah."
With the establishment of British control Sher Singh Attariwalla was forced into exile
from Punjab. The British feared that such a powerful leader could reignite a full scale war with them. Sher Singh died in exile, in Benares
in 1858, away from his homeland of Punjab.