Sunday, April 7, 2013

Lasem, and The Story of Tan Sin Ko

Me and anothers participant from Semarang, in front of Klenteng Gie Yong Bio, a confucians shrines often mentioned as the "Heroes Shrines", built on 1780 as the rememmberance to the victims of 1740-1743 resistance against VOC. (photos by: Pak Agus Budi S)
Hello World!

Now I gotta shared something that I got yesterday while I was following a trip invited by Mr. Tjahjono Rahardjo, one’s of the Perkumpulan Sobokartti Committee towards Lasem! Lasem, yap the city that become the living proof of Budaya Peranakan, an acculturation between Chinese and Javanese culture, those were implemented on the style of the building, on the pattern on Batik cloth, on the wayang (Javanese puppet show) story , and so on. Together with people’s that coming from different background likes musician, writer, journalist, lecturer, and so on who were have a big attention towards the cultural and heritage preservation, together we went to Lasem, with the main objectives to preserved the burial site’s of Tan Sin Ko, or better known among Lasem people’s as Singseh.

Who is Tan Sin Ko actually? Even me don’t know exactly who is he, and why we must preserved his burial sites, and even when I arrived on the sites, I wondering, why must He’s buried alone, far from the city ? Then when I heard the explanation from Mr. Daradjadi, the author of Geger Pecinan books I got the explanation.

On the October, 1740 there’s a chinese riots over Batavia (Jakarta) which resulted the chinese massacre by VOC which become the Dutch authority in Indonesia. Tan sin Ko, participated the insurgent under the command of Khe Panjang, continued the resistance against VOC. Lack of the armament and strategy, this was finaly succeed to be expelled from Batavia, and the Khe Panjang troops were pursued into the east. On the middle of 1741, the Khe Panjang  troops entered the Kartasura, the capital city of Mataram Sultanate. Here He got the honors as Kapitan Sepanjang due to His courage to led a resistance against VOC.Here his troops was given a name as Laskar Kuning (eng: Yellow Troops) related to the skin of the Chinese people who were “yellow”.

 The map of Samarang, dated 1741, with the position of
VOC army and the enemy fugitives. In the top left corner
written, Chief commander and commanded by Gerrit Mom
(source: Het Genootschap voor het Nationaal Archief)
The Mataram Sultanate under Pakubuwono II had an ambition to released from the VOC authority. He wanted to counter the VOC power and gained the power over the land which granted to VOC by his predecessor, Amangkurat II as the grant for assist Him to suppress the Trunojoyo’s insurgencies. But the Pakubuwono II saw no chance, despite the military power of Mataram army were not too strong yet, the Mataram sultanate were bounded by the treaty of Jepara in 1677. The story goes with Pakubuwono II decision to declared war against VOC , with the Khe Panjang troops as the ally. Here Tan Sin Ko, were appointed as the commander of Laskar Kuning. On August 1st 1742 the VOC base on Kartasura were attacked, resulted the died of Capt. Van Plasen. Soon the conflict spread over the Mataram rules, even its reached Lasem and Gresik.  The VOC sent the reinforcement from Batavia, and slowly its succeed surpressed the resistance. The main loose of the Mataram and Khe Panjang Troops were happened on a battle at Kaligawe, Semarang.

The VOC forced Pakubuwono II to choose for apologizing to the VOC thus the Mataram throne will be continued in his hand, or getting executed. The Pakubuwono II choose to back as VOC ally and betrayed the Khe Panjang troops. This decision opposed by his regent, Notokusumo who still fighting side by side with Khe Panjang. Later he took as prisoner and exiled into die into Ceylon (Sri Lanka). The Pakubuwono II with VOC actually doesn’t have much support from Mataram peoples. The regent over the Mataram rules continued the insurgencies. Then in the middle of 1742’s a meeting between Tan Sin Ko, Martapura Regent, Mangunoneng Regent and Khe Panjang was held. They declared the oath of loyalty and  appointed RM Garendi as the Sultan of Mataram with the honors as Amangkurat V who also known as Sunan Kuning. Soon the resistance started, the Kartasura falls inti the insurgent, and Pakubuwono II escaped to Ponorogo. After takin Kartasura,  Tan Sin Ko paired with RM Said, who known as Pangeran Sambernyawa later he become founder of Mangkunegara Duchy. The conflict were spread greater than before. The Tan Sin Ko with his Laskar Kuning together with RM Said decided to take the VOC base on Jepara under Capt. Geritt Mom, but unfortunately they defeated by VOC troops. Tan Sin Ko were retreated to Lasem while RM Said back to Kartasura. The bad luck comes into Tan Sin Ko in Lasem.  The VOC captured  and beheaded him. His body were buried in the forestall area, far from the Lasem city.

Like’s Tan Sin Ko, anothers insurgents were succeed to surpressed one by one. The Khe Panjang were disappeared while he retreated, no one knows exactly where he is. The Amangkurat V captured and exiled into Ceylon. RM Said continued the resistance until the reign of Pakubuwono III, until the treaty of Salatiga on 1757, where he gained privileged to rules a duchy who now known as Mangkunegara.

Tan Sin Ko graves at Desa Narukan, Lasem, while the
Chinese people held Ceng Beng ceremony. The Tombstone
were stolen during reformation riots, on 1998.
(photos by: Pak Tjahjono R)
That was the biggest resistance ever happened against the rules of VOC who ended its reign on 1799. For me its also the proof of the Chinese-Javanese cooperation, who were never as so big as this, because after this VOC applied the wijkenstelsel policy, which separated the residences in the city based on the races. Nowadays condition where between Indo-Chinese people or so-called Tionghoa and the natives were easy to provokes, getting hatred, getting suspicious, this story was must to be delivered, and realized that we are as one entity, as the people of Indonesia. Thus, Its felt so sentimental for me while that day, in front of Tan Sin Ko graves, peoples, from the different races and backgrounds, singing Indonesia Raya, our national anthem together.

Source: Perang Sepanjang 1740 – 1743, Tionghoa- Jawa lawan VOC | author : Daradjadi
Post a Comment