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Saragarhi Epic Wraps Filming In India

A long-awaited factual film about the epic battle of Saragarhi has completed filming in India.

“Saragarhi: The True Story” tells the story of how 21 Sikhs fought to the last man against 10,000 enemy tribesmen to defend a small frontier outpost in 1897.

The battle was commemorated by the British at the time, with memorials built to it in Amritsar and Ferozepur and a battle honour awarded to the 36th Sikh regiment that fought (now the 4 Sikh regiment in the Indian Army).

The UK-based production secured grassroots support through a social media fundraising drive and is being developed by the “Saragarhi Society” in partnership with broadcaster “KTV” and digital arts producers “Taran 3D”.

Writer and filmmaker Jay Singh-Sohal has been working on the film for the past 6 years, and has also written a book about it. He brought the “Saragarhi Day” commemoration back to the UK, the event is now in its fifth year and hosted by the British Army on the 12th September.

Mr Singh-Sohal said: “It’s been both an inspiring and humbly experience to see and film at the memorials raised in honour of the Sikhs who fought at Saragarhi. They did their duty with strong belief in God and Guru – and it is incumbent on us today to narrate their story far and wide. Our film will delve into what really happened, using authoritative research and primary sources, in order to pay tribute to them. This will give the proper respect due to their sacrifices which can motivate many more young people to take up public service.

The documentary will be released in September 2017, to mark the 120th anniversary of the epic battle. It will be premier in London before going on the road to be screened across the UK and abroad. The organisers are working hard to ensure a Punjabi language version is screened in India also.

The Saragarhi Society is a project of the “WW1 Sikh Memorial”, which created the UK’s first national monument to Sikh service at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.

Filmmaker Jay Singh-Sohal presenting a copy of his book to the head priest at Ferozepur Saragarhi Memorial Gurdwara during filmming. Photo: Dot Hyphen Productions

Jay Singh-Sohal outside the Amritsar Saragarhi Memorial Gurdwara during filming. Photo: Dot Hyphen Productions