The active British influence in the erstwhile State of Jind was visible during the rule of Raja Bhag Singh when he alongwith other Phulkian Sardars approached the British Government for seeking protection against the rising power of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. There is no doubt that Ranjit Singh was very moderate towards the Phulkian Rajas and he was never hesitant to solve their intricate problems whenever such situations occurred. But, in due course, with the rising power of Ranjit Singh, they became suspicious of his designs and hence sought British protection. Accordingly, the leaders of the Cis-Satluj Sikh states including the rulers of Patiala, Nabha and Jind decided in a conclave to send a deputation to the British Resident in Delhi, Mr. Seton. Consequently, a delegation consisting of the Raja of Jind, Bhag Singh, Bhai Lal Singh of Kaithal the Diwan of Patiala, Sardar Chain Singh and the confidential agent of Nabha Ghulam Hussain was despatched to Delhi and presented their memorandum to the British Resident on 1 April 1809, They pledged their loyalty to every succeeding power in Delhi and formally sought protection of the British. The British were very glad to entertain their offer and accordingly they made a treaty on 25 April 1809 with Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The Maharaja agreed not to carry his military exploits in the Cis-Satluj territories. Thus the hope of the Maharaja to unite the whole Sikh nation met with a disaster. According to Prof. Sinha "his (Ranjit's) failure to absorb the cis-Satluj states was a tragedy of Sikh militant nationalism and the success of the cis-Satluj Sikhs with the aid of the British Government marked the disruption of the great creation of Guru Gobind Singh".
The order to defend the cis-Satluj states, the British took the area of Ludhiana from Raja Bhag Singh and made there a permanent cantonment. With the lapse of time the values attached to a thing undergo a change. Paradoxically the Malwa Chiefs carved out independent states out of the Mughal territories. For the fulfilment of this object, they ware assisted by the peasantry who had borne the brunt of Mughal atrocities. Strangely they again were made tools in the hands of their chiefs and were used to their advantage. The peasantry made them strong and independent but these chiefs again enslaved them. By the treaty of 1809 with the British, as soon as the Cis-Satluj states were free from the fear of Ranjit Singh, they tried to demolish and rob each other. Hence, the British found another excellent opportunity to meddle in their affairs and issue another proclamation on 22 August 1811 to protect them against each other as well. This increased their power of interference, patronage, reprimand and even armed intervention, so that these states as time went on, became absolute dependencies of British rather than independent rulers in treaty alliance with the British power, of equal rank in law if not in fact.
After the death of Raja Bhag Singh in 1819, Fateh Singh became the next ruler of Jind State. His reign was very short and quite uneventful. He died in 1822, at the age of 33, leaving one son, Sangat Singh eleven years of age.
The installation of Sangat Singh took place on 30 July 1822, at Jind in the presence of all the Phulkian Chiefs. There was lot of deterioration in the sphere of administration during the period of Raja Sangat Singh. The usual results which a minority produces in native states, soon began to show themselves in Jind, The affairs of the Raja fell into the utmost confusion, the territory was ill-managed, the people discontented, and no attention was paid to the remonstrance’s of the Biritish authorities regarding grievances that he was called upon to redress. To such a point did this recklessness proceed, that the political Agent at length recommended that the monthly and quarterly cash payments received by the Raja on account of the Ludhiana Cantonment, should be suspended until the Raja should satisfy all just claims pending against his territory and subjects.
Raja Sangat Singh had very cordial relations with Maharaja Ranjit Singh. He made frequent visits to Lahore Court and received many presents and jagirs from the Maharaja, The British did not approve of these activities of the Raja. But it was almost impossible to prevent the cis-Satluj chiefs carrying on independent negotiations with Lahore, when almost every one of them had agents and Vakils at that Court.
The mismanagement of Jind continued to increase. Raja deserted his capital altogether. Further, the detention of British subjects in confinement without just cause by the Jind authorities, was in 1834, reported to Government by the Governor General's agent. The Raja was reprimanded by the British for his lapses. But the general inefficiency and oppression of the administration remained the same.
A short time afterwards, the Raja left on a visit to Lahore, to be present at the Dussehra festival to which he had been specially invited by Ranjit Singh with whom he seemed more anxious to remain on good terms than with the English Government, This visit gave just cause of dissatisfaction to British Government, occurring so soon after the censure which had been passed on the Raja for his unauthorised negotiations with the Lahore Court.
The natural faults of Sangat Singh's character were carefully encouraged by his ministers for their own ends. He squandered the money in a thousand extravagances, more especially in his expeditions to Lahore. The repeated extortions from all classes of his subjects made him very unpopular. The administrative duties were completely neglected, life and property became insecure, while the most faithful servants of the State sought, in British territory, an asylum where they might be secure from the molestations and oppressions of the Raja and his minister, Diwan Singh. Raja Sangat Singh shifted the headquarters from Jind to Sangrur in 1827 because of the place being nearer to Patiala and Nabha, the other two Phulkian states.
Raja Sangat Singh died at the young age of 23, without a heir to succeed. There were many claimants to his throne. The Raja of Nabha advanced a claim as the descendant, with the Jind house, from a common ancestor, but this claim was atonce disallowed, for his branch of the family had separated from that of Jind, previous to the founding of the principality of Raja Gajpat Singh. However, in this context, the right of Sardar Sarup Singh of Bazidpur having been admitted by the British Government the question arose, what principle should be held to govern the disposition of the several portions of the territory. This territory consisted of three distinct portions; that which was possessed by Raja Gajpat Singh, the founder of the family, through whom Sarup Singh claimed, and which comprised the districts of Jind and Safidon, the best portion of the territory ; secondly the grants made by Maharaja Ranjit Singh of Lahore to the Jind Chief, previous to the treaty of 1809, including Ludhiana, Basia, Morinda, and lastly certain grants made by the Maharaja subsequent to that treaty.
Raja Sarup Singh was formally installed in the presence of all the Phulkian Chiefs and the British Agent in April 1837. However, he was deprived of much of his territory, and Basia, Ludhiana and Morinda were taken away by the British. Since Raja Sarup Singh rose to power by virtue of the British support, he remained loyal to them. When the Second Sikh War broke out in 1849, Raja Sarup Singh proved his devotion to the Government, and offered to lead his troops in person to Lahore, to join the English Army. After the annexation of the Punjab, the Raja of Jind was one of the few chiefs permitted to retain independent powers, with the exception of the right of capital punishment, which was conceded to him after the mutiny. He showed himself deserving of the privileges granted to him, by endeavoring to reform his administration after the English System of revenue and police.
When the mutiny broke out in May 1857, Raja Sarup Singh was not behind the Maharaja of Patiala in active loyalty. At the head of his force, he reached Kamal where he undertook the defence of the city and cantonments. His contingent did not exceed 800 men, but it was orderly and well-disciplined, and its presence at Kamal gave confidence, and secured that station from plunder. Raja Sarup Singh was the only chief who was present with army before. In this respect, he was more fortunate, though not more loyal or courageous than the Maharaja of Patiala and the Raja of Kapurthala, both of whom desired to join the besieging force; but their presence was considered more useful elsewhere. The services of the Raja were duly appreciated by the British. The Governor-General, in his notification of 5 November 1857 declared that the steady support of the Raja of Jind called for the marked thanks of the Government. But Raja Sarup Singh received rewards more substantial than mere thanks. He was amply rewarded in territory and in this context, thirteen villages conveniently situated near Sangrur were also ceded to the Raja in perpetuity.
In recognition of his service in recapturing Delhi for the British, the confiscated house of the rebel Shahzada Mirza Abu Bakr, situated in Delhi, was bestowed on the Raja (Sarup Singh), and his salute was raised to eleven guns. Further, the Raja Sarup Singh was awarded the title of "Farzand dilband rasikhul itikad Raja Sarup Singh Bahadur Wali Jhind", (Beloved son, firm in loyalty, Raja Sarup Singh Bahadur, the ruler of Jind). Two villages, Badrukhan and Bumhamwadi, an issolated plot of land near Sangrur, were held by kinsmen of the Raja nominally in the Thanesar District, but really 80 miles distant from Thanesar. Raja Sarup Singh was allowed to purchase the interest of Government in these villages and hence the Badrukhan Chiefs became feudatories of Jind.
Raja Sarup Singh had been nominated a Knight Grand Commander of the Star of India in August 1863, but he was too ill to visit Ambala to be invested, and died before the honour could be bestowed. It was both strange and unfortunate that the three great Chief ships of Patiala, Nabha and Jind should have become vacant almost simultaneously.
Raghbir Singh, the son and heir of Raja Sarup Singh was in every way worthy of his father. He was, at this time, about 30 years of age, and had been thoroughly trained in judicial and administrative matters, in which the late Raja was an excellent teacher; for he had kept his territory in excellent order, and had been eminently just in his dealings with his subjects.
The installation of the new Chief took place on 31 March 1864 in the presence of Sir Herbert Edwards, the Agent of the Lt. Governor, the Maharaja of Patiala, the Raja of Nabha, the Nawab of Malerkotla, and many other chiefs. The principal residence of Raja Raghbir Singh was at Sangrur, but he did not neglect the administration of the distant parts of the estate. He was a man of excellent judgement and honesty, He made Sangrur a beautiful town, constructing bazar on the lines of Jaipur with pukka shops, gardens, tanks, temples and other public religious buildings, as also a metalled road around the town.
During the time of Raja Raghbir Singh, a revolt broke out in Dadri because of the new revenue assessment, which was on the lines of the British system. However, the Raja of Jind was able to crush the revolt. Raja Raghbir Singh rendered help to the British Government on the occasion of agitation launched by Namdhari Sikhs, also called Kukas. On 13 January 1872, there was a meeting of Kukas at Bhaini (District Ludhiana), and a group of about 150 of these, started off under the leadership of the Jats of Sakaraundi in the Patiala State territory. They were armed with axes, sticks etc. only, and were said to have declared that the town of Malerkotla would be the object of their attack. They went to Payal in Patiala territory (now in Ludhiana District) without causing any disturbance, and reappeared next day near to Malaudh (Ludhiana District), the seat of Sardar Badan Singh, on which they made a sudden onset with the idea, probably, of getting arms and money. In this attack, two men were killed on each side and a few wounded and the gang succeeded in securing three horses, one gun and one sword. They next proceeded to Kotla, and on the morning of 15 January 1872, made a sudden attack on the place and treasury of the Nawab, but were driven off when the Kotla guards had recovered from their surprise and pursued to Rurr in the Patiala territory (Patiala District) where they were captured and handed over to Malerkotla authorities. On getting the news of attack on Malaudh and Kotla, Mr. Cowan the Deputy Commissioner of Ludhiana, started for the latter place, and telegraphed for troops, which arrived soon after. Mr. Cowan executed by blowing from guns at Kotla 49 of the captured men, and others were tried by the Commissioner (Mr, Forsyth) and executed on the following day. The Jind Chief showed loyalty to the British Government. On the request of Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, he sent two guns, a troop of horses, two companies of infantry to Malerkotla to supress the Kuka Movement,
Again during the Second Afghan War in 1878, he sent a contingent of 500 sepoys, 200 sawars with a large staff and 2 guns. The forces along with equipment reached at Thal in 1879 and rendred valuable services there. In 1882, during Egyptian attack, the Raja of Jind offered to help the British with troops and ammunition but his offer was declined. In 1887, Raja Raghbir Singh died. His only son Balbir Singh had died during his lifetime. His grandson Ranbir Singh who was born in 1879 was only a minor. He was put up under regency and full powers were vested in him in 1899. He ruled the Jind State till independence in 1947. Since major protion of the erstwhile State of Malerkotla is now included in the Sangrur District, it is worthwhile to narrate briefly here the history of erstwhile Malerkotla State.