Maharana Pratap of Mewar

Discussion in 'Military History' started by SajeevJino, Jun 27, 2012.

  1. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

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    Maharana Pratap: Mewar's greatest hero


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    Born: May 9, 1540 in Kumbhalgarh, Rajasthan

    Father's Name: Maharana Udai Singh II

    Mother's Name: Rani Jeevant Kanwar

    Died: January 29, 1597 in Chavand



    Maharana Pratap was born on May 9th 1540 in Kumbhalgarh, Rajasthan. His father was Maharana Udai Singh II and his mother was Rani Jeevant Kanwar. Maharana Udai Singh II ruled the kingdom of Mewar, with his capital at Chittor. Maharana Pratap was the eldest of twenty-five sons and hence given the title of Crown Prince. He was destined to be the 54th ruler of Mewar, in the line of the Sisodiya Rajputs.
    In 1567, when Crown Prince Pratap Singh was only 27, Chittor was surrounded bythe Mughal forces of Emperor Akbar . Maharana Udai Singh II decided to leave Chittor and move his family to Gogunda, rather than capitulate to the Mughals. The young Pratap Singh wanted to stay back and fightthe Mughals but the elders intervened and convinced him to leave Chittor, oblivious of the fact that this movefrom Chittor was going to create history for all times to come.
    In Gogunda, Maharana Udai Singh II and his nobles set up a temporary government of thekindom of Mewar. In 1572, the Maharana passed away, leaving the way for Crown Prince Pratap Singh to become the Maharana. However, in his later years, the late Maharana Udai Singh II had fallen under the influence of his favorite queen, Rani Bhatiyani, and had willed that her son Jagmal should ascend to the throne. As the late Maharana's body was being taken to the cremation grounds, Pratap Singh, the Crown Prince decided to accompany the dead body of the Maharana. This was a departure from tradition as the Crown Prince did not accompanythe body of the departed Maharana but instead prepared to ascend the throne, such that the line of succession remained unbroken. Pratap Singh, in deferenceto his father's wishes, decided to let his half-brotherJagmal become the next king. However, knowingthis to be disastrous for Mewar, the late Maharana's nobles,especially the Chundawat Rajputs, forced Jagmal to leave the throne to Pratap Singh. Unlike Bharat, Jagmal did not willingly give up the throne. He swore revenge and left for Ajmer, to join the armies of Akbar, where hewas offered a jagir - the town of Jahazpur - in return for his help. Meanwhile, Crown Prince Pratap Singh became Maha Rana Pratap Singh I, 54th ruler of Mewar in the line of the Sisodiya Rajputs.

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    In the course of the year 1573, Akbar sent six diplomatic missions to Mewar to get Rana Pratapto agree to the former's suzerainty but Rana Pratap turned down each one of them. The last of these missions was headed by Raja Man Singh , the brother-in-law of Akbar himself. Maharana Pratap, angered that his fellow Rajput was aligned with someone who had forced the submission of all Rajputs, refused tosup with Raja Man Singh. The lines were completely drawn now - Akbar understood that Maharana Pratap would never submit and he would have to use his troops against Mewar.

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    With the failure of efforts to negotiate a peace treaty in 1573, Akbar blockaded Mewar from the rest of the world and alienated Mewar's traditional allies, some of whom were Maharana Pratap's own kith and kin. Akbar then tried to turn the people of the all-important Chittor district against their king so they would not help Pratap. He appointed KunwarSagar Singh, a younger brother ofPratap, to rule the conquered territory, However,Sagar, regretting his own treachery, soon returned from Chittor, and committed suicide with a dagger in the Mughal Court. Shakti Singh, Pratap's younger brother now with the Mughal army, is said to have fled the Mughal court temporarily and warned his brother of Akbar's actions.

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    In preparation for the inevitable war with the Mughals, Maharana Pratap altered his administration. He moved his capital to Kumbhalgarh, where he was born. He commanded his subjects to leave for the Aravali mountains and leave behind nothing for the approaching enemy - the war would be fought ina mountain terrainwhich the Mewar army was used to but not the Mughals. It is a testament to the young king's respect amongst his subjects that they obeyed him and left for the mountains. The Bhils of the Aravalis were completely behind him. The army of Mewar now raidedMughal trade caravans going from Delhi to Surat. A section of his army guarded the all important Haldighati Pass, the only way to get into Udaipur from the North. Maharana Pratap himself undertook several penances, not because his finances forced him to do so, but because he wishedto remind himself, and all his subjects, why they were undertaking this pain - to win back their freedom, their right to exist as they wished. He foreswore that he would eat from leaf-plates, would sleep on the floor and would not shave. In his self-inflicted state of penury, the Maharana lived in mud-huts made from mud and bamboo.

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    In 1576, the famous battle of Haldighati was fought with 20,000 Rajputs against a Mughal army of 80,000 men commanded by Raja Man Singh. The battle was fierce though indecisive, to the Mughal army's astonishment. Maharana Pratap's army was not defeated but Maharana Pratap was surrounded byMughal soldiers. It is said that at this point, his estranged brother, Shakti Singh , appeared and saved the Rana's life. Another casualty of this war was MaharanaPratap's famous, and loyal, horse Chetak, who gave up his life trying tosave his Maharana.
     
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  3. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

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    In one incident that caused him extreme pain, his children's meal - bread made from grass - was stolen by a dog. It is said that this cut into Maharana Pratap's heart deeply. He began to have doubts about his resolute refusal to submit to the Mughals. Perhaps in one of these moments of self doubt - something each and every human being goes through - Maharana Pratap wrote to Akbar demanding "a mitigation of his hardship". Overjoyed at this indication of his valiant foe's submission, Akbar commanded publicrejoicing, and showed the letter to a literate Rajputat his Court, Prince Prithiraj. He was the younger brother of Rai Singh, the ruler of Bikaner, a State established some eighty years earlier by the Rathores of Marwar. He had been compelled to serve Akbar because of his kingdom's submission to the Mughals. An award-winning poet, Prithiraj was also a gallant warrior and a longtime admirer of the brave Maharana Pratap Singh. He was astonished and grieved by Maharana Pratap's decision, and told Akbar the note was the forgery of some foe to defame the Mewarking. "I know him well," he explained, "and he would never submit to your terms." He requested and obtained Akbar's permission to senda letter to Pratap, ostensibly to ascertain the fact of his submission, but really with a view to prevent it. He composed the couplets that have become famous in the annals of patriotism.

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    The hopes of the Hindu rest on the Hindu; yet the Rana forsakes them. But for Pratap, all would be placed on the same level by Akbar; for our chiefs have lost their valour and our females their honour. Akbar is the broker in the market of our race: he has purchased all but the son of Udai (Singh II of Mewar); he is beyond his price. What true Rajput would part with honour for nine days (nauroza); yethow many have bartered it away? Will Chittor come to this market ...? Though Patta (an affectionate name for Pratap Singh) has squandered away wealth (on warfare), yet he has preserved this treasure. Despair has driven man to this market, to witness their dishonour: from such infamy the descendant of Hamir (Hamir Singh) alone has been preserved. The world asks, from where does the concealed aid of Pratap emanate? None but the soul of manliness and his sword ... The broker in the market of men (Akbar) will one day be surpassed; he cannot live forever. Then will our race come to Pratap, for the seed of the Rajput to sow in our desolate lands. To him all look for its preservation, that its purity may again become resplendent.

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    After 1587, Akbar relinquished his obsessive pursuit of Maharana Pratap and took his battles into Punjab and India's Northwest Frontier. Thus for the last ten years of his life, Maharana Pratap ruled in relative peace and eventually freed most of Mewar, including Udaipur and Kumbhalgarh, but not Chittor. Bhagwat Singh Mewar: "MaharanaPratap Singh (was)called the light and life of the Hindu community. There were times when he and his family and children ate bread made of grass. Maharana Pratap became a patron of the Arts. During his reign Padmavat Charita and the poems of Dursa Ahada were written. Palaces at Ubheshwar, KamalNath and Chavand bear testimony to his love of architecture. Thesebuildings, built in the dense hilly forest have walls adorned with military-style architecture. But Pratap's broken spirit overpowered him in the twilight of his years. His last moments were an appropriate commentary on his life, when he swore his successor, Crown Prince Amar Singh to eternal conflict against the foes of his country's independence. Maharana Pratap was never able to win back Chittor but he never gave up fighting to win it back.

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    In January 1597, Rana Pratap Singh I, Mewar's greatesthero, was seriouslyinjured in a hunting accident. He left his body at Chavand, aged 56, on January 29, 1597. He died fighting for his nation, for his people, and most importantly for his honor.
     
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  4. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Udaipur fort

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  5. rock127

    rock127 Maulana Rockullah Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Great Thread.

    btw Shouldn't this go in Military History Thread?
     
  6. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Sri Ekling Ji's empire - the unconquered Mewar is an unique space in Holy India where every grain of the soil sings of self respect and independance ...

     
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  7. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Bajaj named its scooter "Chetak" in honor of the legendary horse of Maharana Pratap..
     
  8. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

     
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  9. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Maharana was betrayed by fellow Rajputs, it was the Bhils who came to his rescue. Even today when he is worshipped, its the Bhils who have the first honour.
     
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  10. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Bhils also played an important role in the Maratha army in which they enjoyed a reputation for fierceness and bravery.
     
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  11. pankaj nema

    pankaj nema Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    He was not successful but his struggle DID NOT go in vain

    Years later Rana Pratap inspired Shivaji who was faced with a much bigger tyrant ie Aurangzeb

    If Rana pratap had also not struggled maybe there would have been No
    inspirational figure left for Hindus in their quest for freedom from Muslim rule
     
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  12. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Watch and enjoy

     
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  13. KS

    KS Bye bye DFI Veteran Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    ^^^ Magadheera....Awesome movie and particularly awesome fight scene...
     
  14. ani82v

    ani82v Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    These 2 are Jodhpur's Mehrangarh fort.

     
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  15. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Poems on Maharana Pratap :-

    एही भुजे अरीति । तसलीमत हिन्दू तुरक
    माथै निकर मसीत परताप कै परसादसी
    रोहै पाताल राण । जाँ तसलीम न आदरै
    हिन्दू मुस्सलमाण एक नहीं ता दोय हैं
    [When such is the usage of the day that Hindus have to bow low and perform Tasleem to Musalmans,
    It is only in your country, O Pratap, that the temples are seen reconstructed where mosques had come up
    Only if, O Pratap, you hold the Hindu Banner high and don't acknowledge (Akbar's) suzerainty
    Hindus will retain their independence and identity and not get merged with Musalmans]

    रोकै अकबर राह । लै हिन्दू कूकुर लखां
    बीअर तो बाराह पाडै घणा परताप सी
    सुख हित स्याल समाज, हिन्दू अकबर बस हुए
    रोसीलो मृगराज पजै न राण परताप सी
    [Akbar obstacles the path of pratApa with help from a lakh Dog-Hindus (those who have gone to Akbars side)
    But when did they stop the Boar-like march of pratApa! A single vArAha-Hindu is enough.
    For sake of comfort some coward jackal-Hindus have taken Akbar as overlord
    But when did Lion-Hindus like pratApa ever accept his suzerainty!]

    लोपै हिन्दू लाज सगपण रोपै तुरकसूँ
    आरज कुल री आज पूंजी राण प्रतापसी
    [When Hindu honour has disappeared; they shamelessly give their daughters to musalmans;
    O Pratap rANA, today You are the only refuge left for the Aryakula honour]

    By the way Dursa Adha Charan, the composer of these poems was not a state supported court poet.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
  16. Zebra

    Zebra Senior Member Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Padharo Mhare Des

    Udaipur:

    Maharana Udai Singh founded Udaipur in 1559 AD. According to a legend Udai Singh was guided by a holy man meditating on the hill near Pichola Lake to establish his capital on that very spot. Surrounded by Aravali Ranges, forests and lakes this place was less vulnerable to external invasion than Chittaurgarh.

    Maharana Udai Singh died in 1572 and was succeeded by Maharana Pratap who valiantly defended Udaipur from Mughal attacks. Maharana Pratap is the most revered Rajput icon who gallantly fought the Mughals at the battle of Haldighati in 1576.

    Mewar continuously defied foreign invaders and has a history of bloody battles until the British intervention in the nineteenth century when a treaty was signed to protect Udaipur. Upon independence, Udaipur merged with the union of India.
     
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  17. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Maharna Pratap didn't have only Bhils as his allies. Even Surtan Singh Deoda of Sirohi helped him. There was idelogical support from chieftains in Marwar and financial support from marwari Bhamashah as well. Maharana's army was formed of people from various caste and creed.

    Coming to the figures, I don't know how much the claim of 20,000 and 80,000 strong armies on the two sides is true.
    Before the young Pratap became Maharana of Mewar, Chittor had already fallen to Akbar in 1588 where 8,000 Rajput soldiers and 30,000 civilians were killed (civilians killed after the war was over).
    in the 17th century, during the Rajput war against Aurangzeb, the Kingdom of Mewar had fielded a 12,000 strong army, which is confirmed by all sources. Even back in the age of Rana Sanga, Mewar had an army of 20-25,000, while the rest came from their vassals and allies.
    By the time Pratap was fighting Mughals, most of the depleted allies (or refugee to say accurately) came to Mewar with only little help of their own to add in the kitty.

    My guess is the Mewari side could fielded around 15,000 total and Mughal side at 20-25,000, excluding the reserve that arrived in the middle of the ongoing Haldighati battle.

    Although his army was depleted in the battle of Haldighati, Pratap was able to continue resistance and by the time of his death he had recovered most of his Kingdom.
    The battle of Haldighati continued till mid-day in the scorching heat. The Mughal Vanguard and Left wing were routed. Lunkaran Kachwaha (left wing), Jagannath of Amber (vanguard) and other Kachwahas along with Shaikzadas left the field and did not stop till they were 5 kos from the battlefield. Man Singh Kachwaha's personal troops stood firm and so did the Sayyids of Barha (who were in the right wing). The Mughal reserve that arrived under Mihtar Khan's swung the battle in favor of the Mughals.

    While Rajput forces of both sides clashed and mingled with each other, the Mughal cavalry archers were told (on record) by their commander to encircle the mass of Rajput soldiers and shoot arrows at will.
    As per the bigoted Al-Badauni, present at the battle, he asked Asaf Khan how their archers would distinguish between friendly and enemy Rajputs
    His reply was -”whichever side a man falls, is a gain to Islam.”
    ~Stephen P Rosen

    Mughals could not take any prisoners of war in Haldighati, except an elephant.
    The Mughal army didn't proceed to Gogunda (their target) until the next morning. When they reached there, the place was empty except a few Rajput soldiers guarding the temples there and who died fighting for the same till the last man.
    Maharana Pratap and most of his army made out intact from the battleground. It was a small force of Tomar Rajputs who did the daring rear-guar action to prevent a chase from Mughals. Tomars suffered the maximum dead in Haldighati (unsung heroes in a way :rolleyes: )

    Surprisingly, the heavy, pompuous imperial Mughal army lost all its ration in single day (or may be not so surprising :D )
    Whats more, rationl less Mughals were left with nothing in Gogunda to feed upon. They were so scared of a Mewari counter attack that they built walls around the camp to stop cavalry and also dug deep trenches around. They didn't venture out even for help towards Agra or Ajmer, leave alone going after Pratap as expected by Akbar. Technically they were sitting at an island.
    Things got so bad that they had to kill their own horses and eat them to stay alive. Many soldiers got sick.
    An enraged Akbar banished most of the Generals from his audience (including Man Singh).

    After Haldighati, Pratap waged a guerrilla war on the Mughals. The Mughals had a stable revenue source but Mewar's fertile eastern half was under enemy control. So Maharana Pratap had to issue an order forbidding his subjects, on the pain of death, from raising crops, tending to their herds or any such activity in that region. It was a difficult but necessary decision to fight off the giant mughal war machine. This step robbed the Mughals from any perceivable materials gains off the eastern Mewar territory under their control.

    Many chieftains and rulers in India trampled under Mughals, would turn to the Mewari Maharanas when in dire need of hope and help.
    Examples are - Rathores of Merta, the Tanwars of Gwalior, Rathors of Idar, the Deora Chauhans of Sirohi and Hakim Khan Suri a pathan who came from south.
    Maharana's tactics and feats were repeated on a grander scale by Chatrapati (Kshetrapati) Shivaji.

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2012
  18. Virendra

    Virendra Moderator Moderator

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    Actually Rajputs have had strong bonds with the aboriginals of all the places they colonized as feudal lords in medieval centuries.
    Be it the Bhils in Mewar or Gurjars and Meenas for the Kachhwahas in Amber.
    Rolled in the state services as guards/sentries, Meenas were once so highly trusted that they were charged with the duty of escorting the palace ladies whenever the lot made a journey.
    Even for the tika ceremony of every new Kachhwaha ruler, the tike (symbolically important red mark) on the forehead of the King was put by the leader of Meenas from the blood of his big toe. This practice was however abandoned after the Mughal emperors agreed to perform it themselves by sandal paste.
    The anoint-er in this practice was considered to be the entity in whose gratitude/blessing the Kachhwaha ruler is taking charge of his Kingdom.
    Source ~ A history of Jaipur (Jadunath Sarkar)

    Regards,
    Virendra
     
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  19. Zebra

    Zebra Senior Member Senior Member

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    Sisodia Kings who ruled from Udaipur

    Rana Udai Singh II – reigned 1568-1572
    Maharana Pratap Singh – reigned 1572-1597
    Rana Amar Singh I – reigned 1597-1620
    Rana Karan Singh – reigned 1620-28
    Rana Jagat Singh I – reigned 1628-54
    Rana Raj Singh I – reigned 1654- 1681
    Maharana Jai Singh – reigned 1681-1700
    Rana Amar Singh II – reigned 1700-16
    Maharana Sangram Singh II – reigned 1716-34
    Rana Jagat Singh II – reigned 1734-51
    Rana Pratap Singh II – reigned 1752-55
    Rana Raj Singh II – reigned 1755-62
    Rana Ari Singh II – reigned 1762-72
    Rana Hamir Singh II – reigned 1772-78
    Rana Bhim Singh – reigned 1778-1828
    Maharana Jawan Singh – reigned 1828-38
    Maharana Swaroop Singh – reigned 1842-1861
    Maharana Shambhu Singh – reigned 1861-74
    Rana Sajjan Singh – reigned 1874-84
    Maharana Fateh Singh – reigned 1884-1930
    Maharana Bhopal Singh – reigned 1930-55
    Maharana Bhagwat Singh – reigned 1955-84
    Maharana Arvind Singh from 1984-

    History and Heritage of India | Indian History and Heritage | India | Indian Discovery

    *****

    Taj Lake Palace and Interview With Maharana Arvind Singh Mewar Of Udaipur

    Taj Lake Palace and Interview With Maharana Arvind Singh Mewar Of Udaipur - YouTube

    Uploaded by MewarSanskriti on May 28, 2010.
     
  20. Bhadra

    Bhadra Defence Professionals Defence Professionals Senior Member

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    Re: Maharana pratap. . The Lengendary freedom fighter

    you mean to say in Mewar Army ?

    Bheels, Gharasia and Meenas of Mewar formed the backbone of Maharana's Army.
     
  21. Ankit Purohit

    Ankit Purohit Senior Member Senior Member

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    ghani khamma maharaj
     

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