Ranjit Singh was declared Maharaja of Punjab in 1805 and ensured that there was stability in the Panth and areas of the Punjab. As part of this stability the Maharaja ensured that the he was also "Partron of the Arts". The schools of languages flourished under his partronage but most importantly birs of the Guru Granth Sahib and Sri Dasam Granth were now being produced in illustrated and illuminated forms.
Various Granths were being comissioned not only by the SIkhs but by the British who were trying to find out more about the manners and ways of the Sikhs.
Decorated Sri Dasam Granth c 1840's.( British Library)
Whist Ranjit Singh respected the traditions and promoted the Khalsa Empire it was the custodians of the Akal Bunga( Takht) who controlled the maryada and initation of the Khalsa. These custodians were the Akali Nihangs who were derived their roots from Baba Budha Ji ( a learned individual who witnessed and lived with many Gurus). In the 1800's the Jathedar of the Akal Bunga and the Akali Nihangs was Akali Phula Singh. There was only one maryada at the Bunga and this was initation of the Khalsa with both Granths present.
Sir John Malcolm gives numerous descriptions of how the Nihangs were ensuring that the maryada of the Khalsa was being preserved. In his book the " Sketch of the Sikhs" he gives the maryada of the Sri Dasam Granth in relation to the Guru Granth Sahib. ( Visit download page) .
Fore more information See
Descriptions of the Dasam Granth from the “Sketch of the Sikhs” in view of Sikh History