Jankibai was the daughter of Prataprao Gujar, an aristocratic general, who was the commander-in-chief of the Maratha Empire. Her father died in a battle against the Mughals at Nesari on 24 February 1674. ChhatrapatiShivaji Maharaj, the emperor of the Maratha Empire upon hearing the solemn news, grieved his general's death. As a result, he married his second son, the ten-year-old Rajaram to the five-year-old Jankibai. They got married in a grand ceremony that took place in Raigad Fort on 7 March 1680. Her father-in-law Shivaji died on 3 April 1680, twenty five days after her marriage.