Jaichand of Kannauj
|Successor||Harish Chandra (as a subordinate of Muhammad Ghori)|
|Mother||Roopsundari (daughter of Anangpal Tomar)|
Jaichand was a ruler of the Kannauj kingdom. He belonged to the Gaharwar dynasty, subsequently known as the Rathore dynasty. He was the father of Sanyogita, Prithviraj Chauhan's wife. He was defeated and killed by Muhammad Ghori at the Battle of Chandawar in 1193-94.
Jaichand is mentioned in Prithviraj Raso, a semi-historical legend on the life of Prithviraj Chauhan; a similar account occurs in Ain-i-Akbari (16th century). Other sources include inscriptions and other accounts of the Battle of Tarain. His court poet Bhatta Kedar wrote a eulogy titled Jaichand Prakash (c. 1168) on his life, but the work is now lost. Another lost eulogy on his life is the poet Madhukar's Jaya Mayank Jas Chandrika.
The most popular account of Jaichand's life occurs in Prithviraj Raso and its several recensions, but the historicity of this legend is disputed by many historians. According to this legend, after becoming one of the most powerful rulers in North India, Jaichand decided to conduct a symbolic sacrifice (yajna) to declare his supremacy. Prithviraj, a rival king, did not accept his suzerainty. Jaichand was a cousin of Prithviraj: their mothers were sisters belonging to the Tomar clan.
Jaichand insulted Prithviraj by erecting a statue that depicted him as a doorkeeper of his palace. An angry Prithviraj raided Jaichand's palace, and later eloped with his daughter Samyogita against his wishes. Thus, Prithviraj and Jaichand became sworn enemies. When Muhammad Ghori (also known as Sultan Shahabuddin) invaded India, Jaichand allied with Ghori, and helped defeat Prithviraj. However, Ghori later turned against Jaichand and defeated him at the Battle of Chandawar. Another vesrion that is accepted is that Jaichand did not aid his forces against the invader along with Prithviraj Chauhan and was confronted later by Ghori and defeated.
Death and legacy
According to one account, Jaichand was killed in the Battle of Chandawar. According to another account, he was taken as a prisoner to Ghazni, where he was killed after attempting to assassinate Muhammad Ghori with an arrow. Jaichand's son Harish Chandra ruled Kannauj as a subordinate of Muhammad Ghori until 1225 CE, when Iltutmish ended his reign.
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