In the 19th century, the Sikh Empire ruler of India, Maharaja Ranjit Singh had won a competition from around the world to become the “Greatest Leader Of All Time” in a poll operated by ‘BBC World Histories Magazine.’
There were around 5000 readers who voted in the poll and Maharaja received 38 percent of the vote. He was further honored for creating a new liberal empire. He is one of the leaders who had defeated Winston Churchill and Abraham Lincoln during the early 19th century. Singh was appointed by historian Matthew Lockwood, an assistant professor of history at the University of Alabama for establishing the ‘modern empire of toleration’.
The reader of the magazine chooses a leader who had ‘exercised power and had a positive impact on humanity and to explore their achievements and legacy’. So, all these features belong to Maharaja Ranjit Singh and he topped the poll and was described by Lockwood as a uniting force whose rule ‘marked a golden age for Punjab and northwest India’.
After Maharaja Ranjit Singh, African independence fighter Amílcar Cabral who is known for uniting over a million Guineans to free themselves from Portuguese occupation came second in polling. Cabral received 25 percent of the votes, while the Maharaja garnered 38 percent. In the third list, it was British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. He earned 7 percent votes for his contributions to Britain during World War. Further, he was followed by the President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln.
Meanwhile, talking about Maharaja Ranjit Singh, he was renowned as a ‘Lion Of Punjab’. His rise to power came after a period of economic and political uncertainty. He had also modernized the Sikh Khalsa Army, embraced western innovations without abandoning local forms and institutions. Due to his great work and achievements, he was marked as a golden age for Punjab and Northwest India. His path for Unity and toleration still benefited many representatives.