Discussion in 'Military History' started by Bornubus, Dec 16, 2015.
Rajput girlfriend FTW
Rajputs make up a quarter of the population of both Sindh and Punjab.
They had various ruling Muslim dynasties based off of Sindh. The most famous of these were the Samma Dynasty; probably the "greatest" of the Rajput dynasties, they ruled over 200,000 sq mi of territory stretching all the way from Afghanistan into Balochistan, Punjab, Gujarat and Rajasthan.
They were responsible for fighting various foreign invasions and had defeated Firuz Shah Tughluq and possibly even his famed father, Muhammad bin Tughluq who died during the expedition. Mughal Armies were also crushed by the famous Jam Nizamuddin II whom they feared.
Eventually, Sindh was weakened by succession wars and fell into eventual civil war in which the Sammas were defeated by the Arghuns, a Turkic people who had settled in Sindh.
Pak Rajputs is an oxymoron. It's only during British period that these Pakis started claiming Rajput ancestry otherwise the land now known as Pak was never ruled by native Rajput dynasties.
This samma dynasty you mentioned is itself very dubious with no clear family tree and Rajput ancestors. They ain't even Qaimkhanis
Casteism in Islam
Yes, you're right. We don't believe in Casteism. Punjab and Sindh has a baradari system based off of various tribes that have distinct cultures, history, origins and some even have different languages - however there is no hierarchical system or tribal tension/conflict. You're equal regardless of your tribe.
There does exist some neo-discrimination in backward and uneducated areas against tribes of South Indian descent such as the Churas.
Prior to my Pakistani gf I had a Rajput girlfriend Katoch dynasty
bc koi pandit chori na miley hai manne .. har tame maarey rishtedaro ko shadi mein problem..
21st century mein tamasha laga rakha se
Contentious topic. A lot has been said on it, repeatedly.
Pasting my blog post here:
Following is a response to a flurry of tweets on medieval history where I was tagged.
People read a half baked article and start passing verdicts on history like pandits.
Why did x do that. Why didn’t y do so.
X was a hero. Y was a scoundrel.
It is always easy to second judge history from hindsight.
As easy as a person watching cricket match on TV and taunting at the batsmen on ground “Useless fellow, I would have easily driven that one to long-off.”
This condition is well known in historical studies and they call it – ‘Presentism’ (more here)
Now to the serious business. If you think alliance with Mughals was sin, for your information Shivaji was ready to do that.
If fighting for Mughals was a sin, Shivaji again was more than willing to do that and he did so as well. All these are facts on record in contemporary sources.
History isn’t that simplistic where you can segregate heroes and villains cleanly like in a Bollywood movie.
Truth is, they all have their share of sins and glory – Rajputs, Marathas, Sikhs, Jats- you name it.
Holier than thou attitude doesn’t work nor does singling one out. I’m saying this despite (& because of) knowing what Marathas did in drought ridden Rajputana.
So let us put the facts straight before being judgmental.
Why did Jai Singh ally with Mughals?
Hard geographic reality of north India is, whoever dominates the indo-gangetic plains is surely the ruler of north India (go back and forth in timeline to verify as much as you’d like).
This area was out of Rajputs hands, since generations before Jai Singh. Even Sanga at his peak could only scratch the surface (till PeelaKhal near Agra).
Be it Turks, Mughals or Hindus even before that. The power sitting on indo-gangetic plains has always enjoyed an upper hand over the rest.
In this geographically consistent, well fed and resourced land block, one could easily maintain huge standing armies without letting them break into feudal/federal hierarchies. Co-ordination of different arms of army and government machinery throughout the plains was seamless; which provided for quicker reflexes and logistics. Needless to mention the tremendous natural resources one could marshal in the fertile plains.
That edge shows in political setup as well. Kannauj was considered the de-facto capital of north India before Islamic invasions, after which the focus shifted to Agra (not far). Both are in indo-gangetic plains, so is Delhi.
There is not a single successful Islamic invasion of any part of Rajputana that was not campaigned from Indo-Gangetic plains. Almost all the tide turning battles of medieval north India took place in these plains only.
Before we start pointing fingers at Rajputs (and I’m not saying we shouldn’t), Rajputana’s human cost and toll of eight centuries of constant battles, resistance against invasions has to be counted. All that is before Jai Singh.
So far as Amber is concerned, even with Mewar before Mughals, it was a minor ally, part of confederation. Raja PrithviRaj the ruler of Amber fought under Maharana Sanga against Babur, as part of Rajput federated army in 1527 A.D.
Basics of politics (or survival if you will) dictate that in picking ally/confederation, stronger one should be the obvious choice.
As long as Mewar was strong (till 1527 A.D.), Amber was in their confederacy. Even though geographically they were still right next to a strong, plain dwelling Muslim power (Lodis of Agra Sultanate). There was no reason to flip over.
Enter Babur and 1527’s watershed moment. Babur smoked away the Mewar confederacy. He not only emerged the un-disputed ruler of indo gangetic plains, but also the technologically superior one (gunpowder).
This defeat opened the minor Rajput states like Amber to a whole new geo-political reality.
Mewar reteated into its own wounds and there was absolutely no other Hindu power in north India near or strong enough that could be allied with, to thwart Babur (who was stronger, remember?).
If one beats your boss, he definitely becomes your boss.
Why I am stressing on Khanwa’s implication as reason for Amber’s switch, is because the switch happened soon after Khanwa.
Many may not know, but it wasn’t out of the blue that one day Bharmal decides to marry his daughter to young Akbar.
It was his predecessor, elder brother Puranmal (1527-1534) who allied with Babur’s son Humayun and died fighting alongside Mughals in retaking the same fort of Bayana, with which Babur and Sanga’s rivarly had sparked. This, as is evident, happens barely few years post the Khanwa battle.
We pick Amber for bashing because with time Amber had grown in importance as a crucial Mughal ally (since Akbar-Man Singh days).
Amber played a major (often lead) role in virtually all important Mughal campaigns. Their financial health improved and political power rose in and out of Rajputana.
To these developments, the rest of Rajputana could either grudge (like Mewar) or join the chorus like others.
Next comes the timing (second reason).
When Rajputs were strong and Mughals as well, the Sikhs and Marathas were not on the scene as powerful entities.
Later when Marathas were strong, Rajputs were already spent and Sikhs had only begun as a political power.
By the time Sikhs rose, Marathas had been dealt with by British and Rajputs fully co-opted.
So it was never easy for one hindu/native power to actively gel with the other.
Then there’s the emergence of caste and clan based Kingdoms in early medieval centuries. It effectively nullified possibilities of Hindu native powers in producing another Imperial ruler pan north India. No prizes for guessing who filled the vacuum then.
This by the way is the fundamental difference that permeates below many crucial phases of medieval history. A serious threat to Imperial muslim seat at Agra would unite the sub-continent’s muslims. Which is the reason why even in peak power Marathas dominated Agra via Mughal proxy.
If on the other hand it were instead a Hindu Imperial power on decline, there would be a bee-line of Hindu rivals and dis-grunted allies to pick the empire’s flesh piece by piece and make a good run for it, while its free for all.
‘Jitnee Naap Lee Utnee Tumharee’
Did infighting not happen in Muslim Kingdoms? Yes it did, but primarily at ruler level (not as deep social schisms like ours). Regardless, there was always the call of Islamic Ummah and Jihad which would unite and zeal up the fragments like they were never splintered.
Coming to Jai Singh. If Jai Singh had no regards for Shivaji or other Hindu Kings or he was such a blind Mughal servant, why would he and his son Ram Singh swear an oath to protect Shivaji during the latter’s Agra visit?
Why would his son tell the emperor hell bent on killing Shivaji – “I’m bound by oath to protect Shiva, kill me before you harm him.”
Why would Jai Singh far off in Deccan let his son file an affidavit to emperor saying “Should Shivaji do anything untoward or flee, I would be responsible.”
Why would Ram Singh’s men guard Shivaji’s life in the inner most circle of troops around him?
Why would Ram Singh be punished and doubted by Mughals all his life, for letting Shivaji slip away?
Why would Shiavji after fleeing confess to Jai Singh “Your son would not leave me alone.”
It bewilders me, which selfish father-son duo would behave in this way and how could this be a selfish behavior in the first place.
Till Marathas were weaker they made proposals to Rajputs for alliance.
Once Marathas were powerful enough to cross Narmada and Mughals were weaker, did they ask Rajputs for any alliance?
No, they asked Rajputs for Chauth.
So where was the nationalism or religion then? Where did the talk of pan-Hindu, anti-Mughal alliance go when Marathas pillaged the drought ridden Rajputana for hafta wasooli?
Factually, that is how power works.
Anyway, going back, Shivaji had asked Jai Singh for alliance so lets analyze it properly.
On what basis would Jai Singh (ruler of Amber close to Mughal base in Agra) unlearn his geographic reality and ally with Marathas?
Let us imagine he just somehow would. Have you thought of the logistics of what next? No, but Jai Singh did.
Simple question, would all the Rajput states between Amber and Marathas (far beneath Narmada back then, no presentism please) co-operate in such an anti-Mughal alliance??
If not, then what alliance, what logistics.
Lets say regardless, he should still pursue alliance. Next question comes on the “why” part.
Putting aside all sentiments of nationalism, religion, emotions and ego, can we answer this “why” like a cold calculated statesman?
Would Jai Singh, a mansabdar of Mughals, ally with a power against Mughals when he himself had defeated that power.
Even if the thought of counter alliance crossed his mind. Wouldn’t he rather look for a power whose addition would definitely and clearly tilt the scales?
Yes Marathas did become that strong, but not in Jai Singh’s time, not in 17th century. That happened in 18th century, when they needed Rajputs only for chauth.
Now we come to the final question. Disregarding all these previous questions, we for a moment assume Jai Singh did refuse to ally with Mughals or say rose against them.
What would happen then?
Firstly Shivaji wouldn’t be able to leave south with full power when Islamic sultanates and other rivals were present in South. If he would enter north to Jai Singh’s aid with partial punch, it is as good as not coming. Both Jai Singh and Shivaji would suffer losses and weaken further. What else; any of the kingdoms like Marwar, Mewar and numerous others would use this god sent political opportunity to side with Mughals against Jai Singh, thus scoring brownie points, better court status/ political equations for self; where does that leave Amber and Jai Singh? To the gallows.
That is how nasty politics is and has always been.
That is part of what stopped the Hindu states from uniting.
Following was one of the conditions of the hardy Hada Chauhans in their very balanced treaty with Mughals. Have a look:
“That we or our troops would never be placed under any other Hindu commander.”
There’s your last reason.
"I am Pancake Rajput descended from Raja unicorn rainbow Singh who accepted Islam with help of Sufi saint xyz"
-Every wannabe paki
Biradri is the caste. In North people refer their caste as biradri.
Ex Pandit biradri, Jat biradri, Gujjar biradri etc.
Maharana Pratap of the Sisodia Clan commands respect than other rajput rulers because he didn't accept the Sovereignty by the Mughals infact in the classical battle of civilizations paradigm ,those rajput ruler betrayed in a sense ,Maharana Pratap thus was not fighting for survival as were the most other rulers but for some greater than that , also there is the controversy of mughal rajput matrimony of which total were 17 matrimonials of which the clan of mahrana pratap did nothing nor did sikhs,marathas or jats did this low deeds,mughal played a game of rewarding those sided with him and war with those who didn't of which Maharana Pratap was the only one even he was to gain everything by accepting Mughal Sovereignty ,he fought with them till last of his time with the bheel tribes ,this is why he is remembered commemorated in most Parts of India ,but most other rajput rulers especially the clan of bhagwant das will be condemned to the margins of history.
It is silly to judge Sikhs, Marathas and Rajputs in same paragraph on account of marriages with Mughals.
Sikhs were not even a political power when Mughals were at prime. So the question doesn't arise.
When they came up on the scene after all, Mughals had started on their way down to the pit.
Marathas had a huge geographical buffer with Mughal power centre (Rajputana, Gujarat, Malwa).
When they grew in power, again Mughals were already past their prime.
Amber Kingdom :
1) Didn't have a geography to use against Mughal invasion campaign, like Marathas or Mewar had.
2) Were right next to Mughal power base in Delhi-Agra. No buffer at all, like Marathas or Mewar had.
3) Were contemporary to Mughal power's rise and prime. Not the half spent Mughals.
And before we call Mughal-Mewar tussle a civilizational battle, lets remember that Maharana's army had Afghan generals like Hakim Khan Sur. While Akbar's was led by Man Singh.
As I said, it is easy to second judge history from hindsight and paint it with a wide brush.
There are finer nuances deserving observation and analysis.
Amber Kingdom of which Kachawas caste were ruler started to claim Rajput or kshatriya only in 20th century ,infact they were peasents in origin and of shudra varna , proximity to the enemy doesn't mean surrender your sovereignty and women ,in times of Ummayad caliphate which had overrun most empires on the west of india even spain and frontiers of france was a more powerful empire but Gurjara,pratihara and chalukya empires which had many different interests in indian subcontinent but they came together to give a resistance to ummayad caliphate which it hadn't seen anywhere in the world if at that time the kings had sough their selfish self interests then we would resemble present day iran and afghanistan ruled by a mullah regime hating our classic civilizations ,but it was kings like lalitaditya of kashmir,nagabhata I and jaybhata IV of gurjara pratihara even the kings from south like rashtrakuta king bappa rawala and chalukyan king vikramaditya II helped ,this kind of unity isn't seen in medieval period in kings in india especially rajputs
nagabhata I of ujjain
lalitaditya of kashmir
Exactly , Marathas calling rajputs weak for getting conquered is like Danish people calling Greeks weak for getting conquered by Muslims.
Both Greek amd Rajputana borders West Asia/MENA directly compared to other parts of India amd Europe.
When Gurajara pratiharas were figbtifi for West India Rashtras kutas attacked them from behind.
Also employed Large number of Arabs into army, Invited large Arab marchent caravans in port cities and had great diplomatic ties with Arab chilaphs.
don't you get it i am talking about ummayad caliphate which literally changed the persia and gandhara ,also please cite sources for your claim
Kachwahas are not a caste. They are a clan.
Kachwahas claim rajput descent from the very beginning.
They have Suryavanshi kshatriya origin: Ayodhya -> Narwar+Gwalior -> Jaipur+Sikar.
After serving Kannauj Pratiharas', Chandels and Chauhans as vassals, they came to prominence as an independent power in 11th century A.D.
If you have evidence of any other origin, bring forth.
Proximity wasn't the only cause. Either you have not read the post fully or haven't understood it.
Gurjara and Pratihara were not two different people. Gurjara term's original connotation is geographical. Pratihara's original connotation is positional (a designation).
Bappa Rawal was not a Rashtrakuta King, he was a Guhilot.
Pratihara and Chalukya both led separate federated armies of their own. It wasn't a coalition. Rather two very strong military federation that defeated separate Arab advances in their respective regions.
Lalitaditya and Yashovarman's Kingdoms were individually far more powerful than Kachwahas after Khanwa.
Lalitaditya and Yashovarman's alliance easily surpassed the combined strength of multiple medieval Rajputana clans.
Agreed. Medieval period is characterized with clan based Kingdoms as well as thinking. Small state mindedness (not just in Rajputs but elsewhere as well) and huge egos.
8 centuries flew between Arab invasion and Babur. Times changed.
Guys get out of this caste thing. There were jaichands everywhere. Those questioning Rajputs remember it was bappa rawal who saved most of western india from getting islamic for 800 long yrs. He was ancistor of maharana pratap.
Now lets look at rajputs who got alliance with Moghuls from a different angle and considering those situations. Lets say they fought. Output will be they will lose considering moghuls has min 10 times more army and superior ecplosives. Their emipres will be forcefully converted and those not accepting to convert will be killed. Not to mention rapes. By getting into alliance they just protected their people and thus hinduism.
Someone said marathas rose when moghuls were down. Thats wrong. They were as much powerfull. It was Chattrapati Shivaji maharaj who took regions bit by bit and thus weakning moghuls. By the time of peshwas marathas were already major power and moghuls were under them. So lets give due here to Chattrapati Shivaji maharaj.
Sikhs also rose in this time.
So get out of caste thing all have contributed to resistance to muslims including Rajputs as they bore brunt for very long time. Note Bappa rawal was in 8th century when sindh present day pork became islamic. Had bappa rawal not defeated bin quasim gujarat and even north India would have been islamic long back. Dont forget Rani Padmavati and countless other rajputs who sacrificed their all to protect hinduism and look at those who did alliance in the circumstances at that time. Though most of us may not agree. That step did portect hinduism in their kingdoms else would have been islmic Whoever remained alive.
There is no evidence to conclude that Jai Chand was a traitor. It is one of the biggest myths propagating in mainstream.
Nobody said Mughals were down. They were only past their peak power. Shivaji marks the rise of Maratha power, not its peak. Because with Mughals being strong yet, there just wasn't enough room for him.
Moreover, there was plenty of buffer between Mughal power centre and his. I don't want to repeat what I've already said in 1st post above.
And yes, that doesn't take away anything from Shivaji's achievements. Even Jai Singh's officers posted in Agra were in full praise of him and rued the fact that Maharaja wasn't allying with Shivaji more actively and on a broader spectrum. Rajasthani letters they sent back home to Amber's diwan cover these details well.
Their description of his persona, the way he carried himself. Doesn't fit well with Jadunath Sarkar's jibe that Shivaji was a regional chieftain unaware of the protocols of the polished Imperial court. This is in context of that famous incident during his Agra visit and what happened in the court on Aurangzeb's birthday.
Anyway, the point I had made was, it is not reasonable to compare two different Kingdoms (Amber/Marathas) in different locations and situations. Apples and oranges.
Barely. They were not yet an independent political power. Mughal weakening on one side and Maratha+Sikh rise on the other, happened hand in hand. To some extent both factors caused/effected the other. These things didn't happen in isolation.
Her historicity is debatable. We don't know with surety whether she actually existed or not. Will leave it at that.
Yes, that was one benefit for people on ground. The degree to which different Rajput states allied with Mughals varied as well. For example - Amber was the closest ally. Marwar's co-operation was quite uneasy, with on and off hostilities. Barring the 30 year war with Aurangzeb, there was never a point when Mughal armies were permanently stationed anywhere in Marwar.
Mewar was the least subjugated.
Even the Rajput make fun of them. I remember my father making fun of kachwahas. Dunno why they are the only punching bag of Rajputana. I mean it was total politics.
Indeed that happens with Kachwahas today. One word answer is the condition called - presentism. Already covered.
But reasons for why today's Rajputs would do it, don't hold too much credence. When Rajputs import their honour in current nationalistic narratives, looking at things in hindsight their record seems like a mixed bag to them. Far from clean as their sense of self-esteem would want. Since Kachwahas deeds don't appeal to this narrative, they try to hold their heads high by criticizing them and filling their hearts with Pratap.
Problem is, medieval India wasn't driven so much by these nationalistic narratives. It was a different time with different circumstance and thinking.
Despite a socio-cultural affinity and shared civilizational values, politico-militarily there was clannish thinking and small state mindedness. Complete lack of broader acumen.
In my opinion, a moderate grip Imperial power with individual kshatraps in regions was always best for India (bit like it is today). We let a vacuum develop on the Imperial throne. It was filled by marauders. Whose fault?
Separate names with a comma.