Maharana Pratap

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Pratap Singh
Maharana
RajaRaviVarma MaharanaPratap.jpg
Maharana Pratap Singh
Maharana of Mewar
Reign 28 February 1572 - 29 January 1597 (24 years, 327 days)
Coronation 28 February 1572
Predecessor Udai Singh II
Successor Amar Singh I
Born (1540-05-09)9 May 1540
Kumbhalgarh Fort, Rajasthan
Died 29 January 1597(1597-01-29) (aged 56)
Chavand, Rajasthan
Burial Cremated in Vandoli village
Spouse Ajabde Punwar
Issue Amar Singh I
Bhagwan Das
Full name
Maharana Pratap Singh Sisodia
Dynasty Sisodiya
Father Udai Singh II
Mother Maharani Jaiwanta Bai
Religion Hinduism
Sisodia Rajputs of Mewar II (1326–1884)
Hammir Singh (1326–1364)
Kshetra Singh (1364–1382)
Lakha Singh (1382–1421)
Mokal Singh (1421–1433)
Rana Kumbha (1433–1468)
Udai Singh I (1468–1473)
Rana Raimal (1473–1508)
Rana Sanga (1508–1527)
Ratan Singh II (1528–1531)
Vikramaditya Singh (1531–1536)
Vanvir Singh (1536–1540)
Udai Singh II (1540–1572)
Maharana Pratap (1572–1597)
Amar Singh I (1597–1620)
Karan Singh II (1620–1628)
Jagat Singh I (1628–1652)
Raj Singh I (1652–1680)
Jai Singh (1680–1698)
Amar Singh II (1698–1710)
Sangram Singh II (1710–1734)
Jagat Singh II (1734–1751)
Pratap Singh II (1751–1754)
Raj Singh II (1754–1762)
Ari Singh II (1762–1772)
Hamir Singh II (1772–1778)
Bhim Singh (1778–1828)
Jawan Singh (1828–1838)
Shambhu Singh (1861–1874)
Sajjan Singh (1874–1884)
Fateh Singh (1884–1930)
Bhupal Singh (1930–1947)

Pratap Singh (About this sound pronunciation ) or Pratap Singh (9 May 1540 – 29 January 1597) was the ruler of Mewar, a region in north-western India in the present day state of Rajasthan. His birth anniversary (Maharana Pratap Jayanti) is celebrated as a full-fledged festival every year on the 3rd day of the Jyestha Shukla phase. He was the eldest son of Maharani Jaiwanta Bai and Udai Singh II, founder of Udaipur.[1][2] He belonged to the Sisodia clan of Rajputs.[3][4] Maharana Pratap Singh is widely regarded as a fearless warrior and ingenious strategist, who successfully fought the Mughals and safeguarded his people until his death. In popular Indian culture, he is hailed as an inspirational figure for exemplifying gallantry and resourcefulness.[citation needed] He was succeeded by his eldest son Amar Singh I.Cite error: A <ref> tag is missing the closing </ref> (see the help page). Rani Dheer Bai wanted her son Jagmal to succeed Udai Singh[5] but the seniors in the royal court preferred Pratap, as the eldest son, to be their king. The desire of the nobles prevailed.[citation needed] At the end it was found out that it was only due to Rani Bhatiyani Dheerbhai, that Udai Singh nominated Jagmal Singh as his successor who was weak, inefficient and used to drink secretely.But the reason of Jagmal's topple from throne was due to the reason that Kunwar Jagmal was used to ignoring the advice of his ministers and the banishment of Kunwar Pratap from Mewar angered the ministers and the accession of Kunwar Pratap took place and the toppling of Jagmal from the throne.

Conflict[edit]

Chittorgarh Fort which Rana wanted to reclaim. Also seen is Vijay Stambha along with Gaumukh Reservoir

Nearly all of Pratap's fellow Rajput chiefs had meanwhile entered into the vassalage of the Mughals. Even Pratap's own brothers, Shakti Singh, Jagmal and Sagar Singh, served the Mughal emperor, Akbar.[citation needed] Indeed, many Rajput chiefs, such as Man Singh I of Amer (later known as Maharaja of Jaipur) served as army commanders in Akbar's armies and as members of his council. Akbar sent a total of six diplomatic missions to Pratap, seeking to negotiate the same sort of peaceful alliance that he had concluded with the other Rajput chiefs.[citation needed] The first three missions were led by Jalal Khan Qurchi, the fourth by Raja Man Singh, the fifth by Raja Bhagwan Das, and the sixth by Todar Mal.[citation needed] The fifth mission of Bhagwan Das was fruitful in that the Rana agreed to put on a robe presented by Akbar and he sent his son Amar Singh I to the mughal capital.[citation needed] The missions failed, however, since the Rana refused to personally present himself in the mughal court. Since no agreement could be reached at, all out war between Mewar and the Mughals became inevitable.[6][page needed]

Battle of Haldighati[edit]

Main article: Battle of Haldighati

In 1576, Akbar deputed Man Singh I and Asaf Khan I to lead a force against Maharana Pratap.[citation needed] The Rana advanced with a force numbering almost half the Mughal numbers and took a position near Haldighati which was at the entrance of a defile.[citation needed] In Pratap's army the main commanders were Gwalior's Ram Shah Tanwar and his three sons,Rawat Krishnadasji Chundawat, Maan Singhji Jhala and Chandrasenji Rathore of Marwar. His army also included Afghans lead by Hakim Khan Sur and a small contingent of Bhil tribals headed by Rao Poonjaji fighting alongside him.[7] Anticipating the mughal attack, the Rana had also devastated the entire region up to Chittor to prevent the Mughal forces access to food and fodder.[citation needed] The Mughals were then guided by Pratap's brother Shakti Singh that what was the way they could face Pratap in open and with minimum casualties.

The Battle of Haldighati was fought on 18 June 1576 for around 4 hours.[8] It was primarily fought in the traditional manner between cavalry and elephants since the Mughals found it difficult to transport artillery over the rough terrain. In a traditional fight, the Rajputs were at an advantage; their impetuous attack led to a crumbling of the Mughal left and right wings and put pressure on the center until reserves, and a rumor of Akbar's arrival turned the tide, and resulted in a Rajput retreat. The heat, and fear of ambush in the hills, resulted in the Mughals deciding not to pursue the Rajputs into the hills. Thus this battle failed to break the existing stalemate. This fight can be viewed as an assertion of local independence arising from local and regional patriotism.[6][page needed] Maharana Pratap and his forces were heavily outnumbered by the Mughals and to change the odds to his side, Pratap mounted on his horse Chetak, attacked Raja Man Singh. Raja Man Singh ducked and hence this final gamble of Mewar turned against them as Chetak's leg got deeply wounded in the process of attack on Raja Man Singh's war elephant and Pratap got injured and fell unconscious due to the blow by the elephant. The Mewari enthusiasm was shattered. Man Singh Jhala understood the situation and so he exchanged his armour with Pratap's armour to confuse the Mughals. Chetak ran very fast and seeing the Mughals following him, he crossed the famous pass of Haldighati with a big and a long leap for which he is also remembered. He succumbed to his injuries. Maharana Pratap is said to have been heartbroken at the demise of his stallion and his best friend Chetak who had saved his life and also the future of Mewar. Meanwhile, when Pratap was mourning Chetak's death, his brother Shakti Singh who had defected towards the Mughals, gave his horse to Pratap so that he could escape the Mughal soldiers who were chasing him. Man Singh Jhala who wore Pratap's royal chhavri was misunderstood as Rana Pratap by Mughal soldiers who killed him. They thought they had managed to kill Pratap. Man Singh was shocked to see that it was not Pratap but his chieftain Man Singh Jhala who was killed. In the next three days he overran other parts of Mewar. Subsequently, the whole of Mewar except some of the Aravallis fell in Mughal hands.

After the Battle of Haldighati[edit]

On the third day after the Battle of Haldighati, i.e. on 23 June 1576, Man Singh I conquered Gogunda[9] which was later recaptured by Pratap in July 1576.[10] Pratap then made Kumbhalgarh his temporary capital.[11] After that, Akbar decided to personally lead the campaign against Pratap.[citation needed] In the process, Gogunda, Udaipur and Kumbhalgarh were occupied by the mughals, forcing the Rana deeper into the mountainous tracts of southern Mewar.[citation needed] Mughal pressure was exerted on the Afghan chief of Jalor, and the Rajput chiefs of Idar, Sirohi, Banswara, Dungarpur, and Bundi. These states, situated on the borders of Mewar with Gujarat and Malwa had traditionally acknowledged the supremacy of the dominant power in the region. Consequently, the rulers of these states submitted to the Mughals. A mughal expedition was also sent to Bundi where Duda, the elder son of Rao Surjan Hada, had collaborated with Rana Pratap to take control over Bundi and adjacent areas. Both Surjan Hada and Bhoj, the father and younger brother of Duda, took part in this conflict in support of the mughals. After a mughal victory, Duda escaped to the hills and Bundi was conferred upon Bhoj. At this point Rana Pratap found himself isolated and marginalized in Rajput affairs.[6][page needed]

Resurgence[edit]

Mughal pressure on Mewar relaxed after 1579 following rebellions in Bengal and Bihar and Mirza Hakim's incursion into the Punjab. In 1585, Akbar moved to Lahore and remained there for the next twelve years watching the situation in the north-west. No mughal expedition was sent to Mewar during this period. Taking advantage of the situation, Rana Pratap recovered many of his lost territories including Kumbhalgarh and the areas around Chittor (but not Chittor itself). During this period, he also built a new capital--Chavand, near modern Dungarpur.[6][page needed] His successful defiance of Mughals using guerrilla strategy also proved inspirational to figures ranging from Shivaji to anti-British revolutionaries in Bengal.[12] Maharana got a lot of money from Bhamashah who was given the title of DanShiromani Bhamashah. He used that money to rebuild his army. He conquered Gogunda, Kumbhalgarh, Ranthambore and at last Udaipur from Jagannath Kachhawa. He built up a force of 40000 soldiers and he consolidated his position.

Royal Court[edit]

Maharana Pratap had a cabinet of able ministers / advisors and commanders including Bhamashah (treasurer) and Rao Poonja.

Personal life[edit]

Maharana Pratap's had 11 wives, out of whom, his first and favourite wife was Maharani Ajabde Punwar.[1][2][13] He had 17 sons[14] and 5 daughters. Of his children, Amar Singh, who was born to Maharani Ajabde, was the eldest and who later succeeded him.[15] The list of Queens and Sons is as follows:[16]

S. No. Queen Son
1 Ajabde Punwar Amar Singh I
2 Solankhinipur Bai Sasha
Gopal
3 Champabai Jhali Kachra
Sanwaldas
Durjan Singh
4 Jasobai Chauhan
5 Shahmatibai Hada Pura
6 Khichar Ashabai Hathi
Ram Singh
7 Alamdebai Chauhan Jaswant Singh
8 Ratanawati Bai Parmar Maal
9 Amarbai Rathore Natha
10 Lakhabai Rathore Raibhana

Death[edit]

Pratap died of injuries sustained in a hunting accident[17] at Chavand, which served as his capital,[18][19] on 29[20][21] January 1597, aged fifty-seven.[22] A chhatri, commemorating Pratap's funeral, exists at Chavand and is an important tourist attraction.[23] after his death Amar Singh I succeeded him. He made Amar Singh vow never to submit to the Mughals and win Chittorgarh back.

TV Serial Depictions[edit]

Year TV Series Channel Country Played by
2013-2015 Bharat Ka Veer Putra – Maharana Pratap Sony TV India Sharad Malhotra and Faisal Khan (Young)

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Rana 2004, p. 28.
  2. ^ a b Rana 2004, p. 105.
  3. ^ Sarkar, Jadunath (1994). A History of Jaipur. p. 48. ISBN 9788125003335. 
  4. ^ Daryanani, Mohan B. (1999). Who's who on Indian Stamps. ISBN 9788493110109.  Unknown parameter |puuuuuuujage= ignored (help)
  5. ^ Lal, Muni (1980). Akbar. p. 135. ISBN 9780706910766. 
  6. ^ a b c d Chandra, Satish (2006). Medieval India: From Sultanat to the Mughals (1206-1526) 2. Har-Anand Publications. 
  7. ^ Rana 2004, p. 54.
  8. ^ Chundawat (9 December 2014), Haldi Ghati War 
  9. ^ Rana 2004, p. 69.
  10. ^ Rana 2004, p. 72.
  11. ^ Rana 2004, p. 76.
  12. ^ Bandyopadhyay, Brishti (2007). Maharana Pratap : Mewar's Rebel King. Rupa Co.
  13. ^ Sharma, Dashrath (1990), Rajasthan Through the Ages: From 1300 to 1761 A.D 2, p. 274 
  14. ^ Meininger, Irmgard (2000), Chittaurgarh, p. 38, ISBN 9788124601501 
  15. ^ Shashi, S.S (1996), Encyclopaedia Indica: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Volume 100, p. 185, ISBN 9788170418597 
  16. ^ Rana 2004.
  17. ^ Sharma, Sri Ram (2005). Maharana Pratap. p. 91. ISBN 978-8178710037. 
  18. ^ Chandra, Satish (2005). Medieval India: From Sultanat to the Mughals Part - II. p. 122. ISBN 8124110662. 
  19. ^ Niraj, Jaysimha (1991). Splendour Of Rajasthani Painting. p. 15. ISBN 8170172675. 
  20. ^ plaque at Maharana Pratap Smarak Samiti, Udaipur
  21. ^ "Maharana Pratap - History of Chittorgarh". chittorgarh.com. 
  22. ^ Gupta, R.K.; Bakshi, S.R. (2008). Studies In Indian History: Rajasthan Through The Ages The Heritage Of Rajputs (Set Of 5 Vols.). p. 46. ISBN 9788176258418. 
  23. ^ "Maharana Pratap Ki Chhatri". Indira Gandhi National Centre for the arts. Retrieved 19 March 2013. 

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Maharana Pratap
Born: 9 May 1540 Died: 19 January 1597
Preceded by
Udai Singh II
Sisodia Rajput Ruler
1572–1597
Succeeded by
Amar Singh I