Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Jayanti Short Details 2023
Date of Birth
February 19, 1630
Shivneri Fort, Pune district, Maharashtra
Shahaji Bhonsle (Father) and Jijabai (Mother)
Saibai, Soyarabai, Putalabai, Sakvarbai, Laxmibai, Kashibai
Sambhaji, Rajaram, Sakhubai Nimbalkar, Ranubai Jadhav, Ambikabai Mahadik, Rajkumaribai Shirke
April 3, 1680
The seat of Power
Raigad Fort, Maharashtra
Chhatrapati Shivaji Jayanti Biography
The western Maratha Empire was established by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. He is regarded as one of the greatest warriors of his time, and tales of his exploits continue to be told as part of folklore even today. Shivaji established an enclave within the waning Adilshahi sultanate of Bijapur through his bravery and exceptional administrative abilities. The Maratha Empire was eventually born from it. With the assistance of a disciplined military and a well-established administrative structure, Shivaji established a competent and progressive administration after taking power. Shivaji’s innovative military strategies, which relied on non-conventional strategies like geography, speed, and surprise to defeat his more powerful adversaries, earned him a lot of fame.
Childhood & Early Life
Shivaji Bhosle was born on February 19, 1630, in the fort of Shivneri, near the city of Junnar in the Pune district, to Shahaji Bhosle and Jijabai. As a general, Shivaji’s father Shahaji served in the Bijapuri Sultanate, a tripartite association that included Bijapur, Ahmednagar, and Golconda. Additionally, he owned a Jaigirdari near Pune. Jijabai, Shivaji’s mother, was a deeply religious woman and the daughter of Sindkhed leader Lakhujirao Jadhav. Shivaji had a close relationship with his mother, who instilled in him a firm sense of what was right and wrong. A small council of ministers, which included a Peshwa (Shamrao Nilkanth), a Mazumdar (Balkrishna Pant), a Sabnis (Raghunath Ballal), a Dabir (Sonopant), and a chief teacher (Dadoji Konddeo), had oversight of Shivaji’s education because Shahaji spent most of his time outside of Pune. Baji Pasalkar and Kanhoji Jedhe were given the task of instructing Shivaji in military and martial arts. In 1640, Shivaji married Saibai Nimbalkar.
From his earliest years, Shivaji demonstrated that he was a natural leader. He spent a lot of time in the great outdoors, exploring the Sahayadri Mountains that surround the Shivneri forts and coming to know the area like a second home. By the time he was 15 years old, he had gathered a group of loyal Maval soldiers who would later assist him in his early victories.
Struggles with Bijapur
Shivaji took control of several strategic areas around Pune by 1645, including Singhagarh and Purandar, Torna from Inayat Khan, Chakan from FirangojiNarsala, and Kondana from Adil Shahi Governor. Mohammed Adil Shah, who gave the order to imprison Shahaji in 1648, saw him as a threat due to his success. In exchange for Shivaji keeping a low profile and preventing further conquests, Shahaji was granted release. After Shahaji’s death in 1665, Shivaji resumed his conquests by acquiring the Javali valley from Chandra rao More, a Bijapuri jaigirdaar. To subdue Shivaji, Mohammed Adil Shah sent Afzal Khan, a powerful general in his employ.
On November 10, 1659, the two of them had a private rendezvous to talk about the terms of the negotiation. Shivaji dressed in armor and concealed a metal tiger claw because he knew it would be a trap. Shivaji retaliated by striking Afzal Khan with the tiger’s claw, killing him, after the dagger-wielding Afzal Khan was saved by his armor. He directed his troops to attack the Bijapuri groups without leaders. Shivaji easily won the Battle of Pratapgarh, where the Maratha forces killed approximately 3,000 Bijapuri soldiers. After that, Mohammed Adil Shah sent a larger army under General Rustam Zaman’s command, which fought Shivaji at the Battle of Kolhapur. By winning a strategic battle, Shivaji drove the general to flee for his life. On September 22, 1660, Mohammed Adil Shah’s general Siddi Jauhar successfully besieged the fort of Panhala. This was the final victory. In 1673, Shivaji took back the Fort of Panhal.
Conflicts with the Mughals
Shivaji was noticed by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb due to his conflicts with the Bijapuri Sultanate and his consistent victories. Aurangzeb focused his efforts on eliminating the Maratha threat because he perceived him as a threat to the expansion of his imperial goals. When Shivaji’s generals raided and looted Mughal lands near Ahmednagar and Junnar in 1957, the conflict began. Aurangzeb’s retaliation, on the other hand, was thwarted by the arrival of the rainy season and a competition for power in Delhi. Shaista Khan, Aurangzeb’s maternal uncle and Governor of Deccan was given the task of subduing Shivaji. Shaista Khan launched a massive assault on Shivaji, taking control of several of his forts as well as his capital, Poona. Shaista Khan was injured and evicted from Poona as a result of Shivaji’s covert attack on him in retaliation. Shivaji’s fortifications in the Konkan region were severely damaged when Shaista Khan orchestrated a series of attacks against him. Shivaji attacked Surat, a significant Mughal trading center, and looted the Mughal wealth in order to replenish his depleted treasury. Aurangzeb, furious, sent his chief general Jai Singh I and a 150,000-strong army. The Mughal forces made a big dent by besieging Shivaji’s forts, stealing money, and killing soldiers as they went. On June 11, 1665, Shivaji and Jai Singh signed the Treaty of Purandar, agreeing to reach a settlement with Aurangzeb to stop more deaths. Shivaji agreed to give up 23 forts and pay the Mughal Empire 400000 as compensation. Shivaji was invited to Agra by Aurangzeb so that he could use his military skills to build Mughal empires in Afghanistan. Aurangzeb’s treatment of Shivaji, who was traveling to Agra with his eight-year-old son Sambhaji, offended Shivaji. He stormed out of the court and was placed under house arrest by Aurangzeb, who was offended. However, Shivaji was able to escape the prison once more by employing his wit and deception. He pretended to be seriously ill and arranged for sweets baskets to be delivered to the temple as prayer offerings. On August 17, 1666, he escaped by dressing as one of the carriers and hiding his son in one of the baskets. Mughal Sardar Jaswant Singh’s constant mediation was largely responsible for settling hostilities between the Mughals and Marathas in later times. The peace lasted until 1670 when Shivaji launched a full-scale assault on the Mughals. Within four months, he regained most of his besieged territories.
Relationship with The English
During Shivaji’s early years in power, he maintained cordial relationships with the English until 1660, when the Bijapuri Sultanate confronted Shivaji and captured Fort Panhala. As a result, Shivaji took legal action in Bombay in 1670 against the English for not selling him war materials. This conflict continued in 1971 when he attacked Danda-Rajpuri once more with English support and looted Rajapur’s English factories. The English did not support his efforts, and numerous negotiations between the parties to reach an agreement were unsuccessful.
Coronation and Conquests
Shivaji made the decision to adopt a kingly title and establish the first Hindu sovereignty in the South, which had previously been dominated by Muslims, after establishing significant control over the areas surrounding Poona and Konkan. On June 6, 1674, he was crowned King of the Marathas in a lavish ceremony at Raigadh. Pandit Gaga Bhatt officiated the Coronation in front of approximately 50,000 people. He was given a number of titles, including Chhatrapati, which means supreme ruler, Shakakarta, which means he started an era, Kshatriya Kulavantas, which means he led the Kshatriyas, and Haindava Dharmodhhaarak, which means he upheld the sacredness of Hinduism.
Under Shivaji’s orders, the Marathas began aggressive conquest efforts following the coronation to bring the majority of the Deccan states under Hindu sovereignty. Khandesh, Bijapur, Karwar, Kolkapur, Janjira, Ramnagar, and Belgaum were all conquered by him. He took control of the Adil Shahi rulers’ Vellore and Gingee forts. In addition, he reached an agreement with Venkoji, his stepbrother, regarding his holdings in Tanjavur and Mysore. He wanted to protect the Deccan states from outsiders like Muslims and Mughals and unite them under the rule of a native Hindu.
The Maratha administration, in which Chhatrapati was the supreme sovereign and a team of eight ministers was appointed to oversee the proper implementation of various policies, was established during his reign. These eight ministers had a lot of authority over how the King’s policies were carried out and reported directly to Shivaji. The eight ministers in question were:
(1) The Peshwa, also known as the Prime Minister, was in charge of all administration and served as the king’s agent when he was absent.
(2) The maintenance of the kingdom’s financial health was the responsibility of the Majumder, also known as the Auditor. (3) The Chief Spiritual Head, also known as the PanditRao, was in charge of determining the dates for religious ceremonies and supervising the king’s charitable initiatives.
(4) The role of the Dabir, also known as the Foreign Secretary, was to provide the king with advice regarding international policy.
(5) Every aspect of the military, including the organization, recruitment, and training of soldiers, was overseen by the Senapati, or Military General. During times of conflict, he also served as the king’s strategic advisor.
(6) The Nyayadhish, or Chief Justice, witnessed civil, judicial, and military lawmaking and implementation.
(7) The elaborate records of the king’s daily activities were kept by the Mantri, also known as the Chronicler.
(8) Royal correspondence was managed by the Sachiv or superintendent.
In his court, Shivaji vigorously advocated for the use of Marathi and Sanskrit rather than Persian, the Royal language. To emphasize his Hindu rule, he even changed the names of the forts under his control to Sanskrit. Despite the fact that Shivaji was a self-devout Hindu, he encouraged tolerance of all religions during his rule. His administrative policies were humane and friendly to the subjects, and he supported women’s freedom under his rule. He employed people from all castes in his court and was vehemently opposed to caste discrimination. He introduced the Ryotwari system, which collects revenues directly from manufacturers and producers and eliminates the need for middlemen between farmers and the state. The two taxes called the Chauth and Sardeshmukhi were introduced by Shivaji. He made four provinces, each headed by a Mamlatdar, out of his kingdom. Deshpande served as the head of the Village Panchayat, which was the smallest administrative unit. Shivaji built a number of strategic forts to protect his borders, developed a substantial naval presence on the Konkan and Goan coasts, and maintained a large military force.
Demise and Legacy
On April 3, 1680, Shivaji succumbed to dysentery at the Raigad Fort, where he was 52 years old. After his death, Sambhaji, his eldest son, and Soyrabai, his third wife, fought over Rajaram, her 10-year-old son, over succession. On June 20, 1680, Sambhaji succeeded the young Rajaram on the throne. After Shivaji’s death, the Mughal-Maratha conflict continued, and the Maratha glory declined significantly. However, Madhavrao Peshwa, a young Maratha leader who established his authority over North India, was the one to reclaim it.
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