Shamaiya Iyengar

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Shamaiya Iyengar (Shama Iyengar) popularly known as Anche Shamaiya ,[1] son of Vasudeva Iyengar, was the minister of the police and the post office (also served as the intelligence department) during the time of Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan. He was originally from Sulikunte in Kolar district of Karnataka [2] (also known as Sulkunte), near Budikote in Bangarpet. Shamaiya had met Hyder when he was a young man. He rose to the height of his power when he was appointed as the head of the post office and police (Anche Guritana) in 1776 (Some historians put this date at 1779). He was honoured with an umbrella, medal, pearl necklace, received 5000 varahas as reward and 1000 varahas as allowance from Hyder Ali. Later in Tipu sultan's time an alleged insurrection to overthrow Tipu and re establish the hindu king was plotted around 1783. Shamaiya was believed to be the leader of the insurrection. Many alleged conspirators were put to death instantly, it is not known why Shamaiya did not suffer the same fate. It is believed that Tipu ordered him to be put in heavy iron's and was occasionally fed on a low diet, flogged publicly with chilli powder applied to his back and later blinded, suspecting political conspiracy. Shamiaya and his brother Rangaiya persisted to their last in denying any involvement in the insurrection. Adherents of his family believe that Shamiaya was a victim of political conspiracy planned by other jealous ministers. Some accounts say that Shamaiya was killed in 1784 but the Inam Records show that he received a sanad (permission/grant) from Tipu to run the sante (weekly market) at Sulikunte in 1793 and that he fathered a son in 1821. Gidwanis book suggests Tipu forgave Shamaiya when Shamaiya's son defended against the English during the last Anglo-Mysore War, dying due to a gunshot to the chest.[3] Shamaiya's elder brother Ranga Iyengar was also a highly placed officer under Tipu.[4] His younger brother Aprameya was also given a position in the government.

He is also referred to as anche shamaiah, inchiwalla, anchewalla, shamia in many records. Rangaiah has been referred to as Bungea, rungea in many records.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hayavadana, Rao Conjeeveram. Mysore Gazetteer : Compiled for Government. Bangalore: Government, 1930. Print.
  2. ^ Hayavadana, Rao Conjeeveram. Mysore Gazetteer : Compiled for Government. Bangalore: Government, 1930. Print.
  3. ^ Bhagwan S. Gidwani, The Sword of Tipu Sultan ISBN 81-291-1475-5 .
  4. ^ Hayavadana, Rao Conjeeveram. Mysore Gazetteer : Compiled for Government. Bangalore: Government, 1930. Print.