|3rd Maratha Chhatrapati|
|Reign||11 March 1689– 3 March 1700|
|Coronation||20 February 1689|
|Born||24 February 1670
|Died||3 March 1700
Sinhagad fort, Maharashtra
Rajaram Raje Bhosale (24 February 1670 – 3 March 1700 Sinhagad) was the younger son of the first Maratha Chhatrapati Shivaji, half-brother of the second Chhatrapati Sambhaji, and took over the Maratha Empire as its third Chhatrapati after his brother's death at the hands of the Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb in 1689. He had a very short reign, during which he was engaged in a struggle with the Mughals.
Coronation and escape to Jinji
After the death of Sambhaji, Rajaram was crowned at Raigad on 12 March 1689. As the Mughals started laying siege to the region around Raigad on 25 March 1689, the widow of Sambhaji, Maharani Yesubai and her minister Ramchandra Pant Amatya sent young Rajaram to the stronghold of Pratapgad through Kavlya ghat. The Maratha army fought with the Mughals and led the new Maratha king, Rajaram to escape through Kavlya ghat to the fort of Jinji in present-day state of Tamil Nadu via Pratapgad and Vishalgad forts, Rajaram reached Keladi in disguise and sought refuge from Keladi Chennamma - The brave queen fought the Mughals and ensured safe passage and escape of Rajaram to Jinji, Keladi Chennamma fought the jungle warfare which frustrated the Mughals and the Mughals proposed peace accord for the first time with an Indian ruler, Keladi Chennamma ensured safe travel of Rajaram to jingi by fighting the mughals where he reached after a month and a half long journey on 1 November 1689. Details of this escape are known from the incomplete poetical biography of Rajaram, the Rajaramacharita written by his Rajpurohit, Keshav Pandit, in Sanskrit.
Siege of Jinji
Aurangzeb deputed Ghazi-ud-din Firoze Jung against the Marathas in the Deccan, and specially sent Zulfiqar Khan Nusrat Jung to capture the Jingi Fort. He laid siege to it in September, 1690. After three failed attempts, it was finally captured after seven years on 8 January 1698. Rajaram, however, escaped and fled first to Vellore and later to Vishalgarh.
Santaji and Dhanaji
Rajaram occupied the fort at Jinji from 11 Nov. 1689, but left before it fell in 1698, setting up his court at fort Satara. During that period when Jinji remained unconquered, "the intrepid Maratha commanders, Santaji Ghorpade and Dhanaji Jadhav, wrought havoc in the Karnataka and Maharashtra by defeating the Mughal generals and cutting off their lines of communication."
Death and legacy
Rajaram died of lung disease in 1700 at Sinhagad near Pune in Maharashtra leaving behind widows and infants. One of Rajaram's widow, Tarabai proclaimed her young son, Shivaji II as the Chhatrapati and ruled as his regent. However, the release of Shahu, after Aurangzeb's death led to an internecine conflict between Tarabai and Shahu with the latter becoming the winner and occupant of the throne. Tarabai established a separate seat at Kolhapur and installed her son as the rival chhtrapati. She was shortly deposed by the Rajasbai, the other widow of Rajaram. Rajasbai installed the other son of Rajaram called Sambhaji II on the Kolhapur throne. The Kolhapur line has continued to this day through natural succession and adoptions per Hindu custom.
- Maratha Empire
- Bhosale family ancestry
- Khando Ballal
- List of people involved in the Maratha Empire
- Bhat family
|Chhatrapati of the
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