Sunday, 22 February 2009

11. War with Shasta Khan – A Daring Feat

While Shivaji was in siege, Shasta Khan took possession of his territory & of his Lalmahal. With plains securely held by Mughals, forts were strongly held by Shivaji. Now he turned towards a fort of Chakan., north of Poona, which was important strong hold of Shivaji. It was not a hill fort. Even as ground fort it was comparatively small. & yet the Marathas held out for more than two & half months, thanks to their valiant leader Firangoji Narsale. It was only after the Mughals had suffered the loss of 268 men, 640 wounded, & the tower in the north- eastern corner blown up by a mine explosion, that the garrison offered to surrender on 15th aug 1660. They were honourably treated & allowed to go away. The expariance of such a heavy loose in one siege must have unnerved Shasta khan. Wisely he decided to return to Poona without any more efforts.

Now Mughals tried to push Shivaji further into south after capturing Kalyan – Bhiwandi. Kartalab khan, at the end of 1660, equipped with a considerable force, descended the Ghats near Lonavala. Shivaji allowed him to enter the thick forest of 9 km in length. There is a village called 'Umber' in this area & pass known as 'Umberkhind'. The Marathas led by Shivaji ambushed Mughals. Finding himself unable either to advance or retreat, Kartalab khan begged for mercy. Shivaji took possession of entire equipment of Kartalab khan & allowed him to depart.

Now Shivaji divided his forces into two. One force led by Netaji Palkar was to engage the Mughals. Other led by Shivaji marched south to the Konkan territory of Adilshah. Shivaji’s advance was spectacular. Dabhol, Pali, Sangameshwar, Chiplun, Rajapur fell into his hands & yielded considerable wealth. Shirngarpur fell on 29th apl 1661. Shivaji spent summer of 1661 on Wardhangad in Konkan.

British, who foolishly supplied ammunition to Siddhi in siege of Panhala came under unfavorable notice of Shivaji. Henry Revington, Richard Taylor, Randolph Taylor, Phillip Gyfford were arrested & thrown into prison first at Vasota & later in Songad. They were released only in feb.1663.

By 1662, Mughals were in effective occupation of the plain lands. Shivaji held the forts strongly. It was a stalemate. Without touching forts Mughals indulged in fruitless raids. Namdarkhan & others attacked villages between Lohagad, Visapur, and Tung & Tikona. They set fire to 70-80 road side villages, destroyed grain & other material. Shivaji kept a relentless fight with Mughals.

Shivaji’s letter dated 23th oct.1662 to Sarjerao Jedhe - Deshmukh of Rohidkhore : “News has been brought that raids of the Mughals are likely in your region. Immediately on receipt of this letter issue warning to all the villages in tapa. Send all the rayat (people) to a strong place below the Ghats. Send them to places where enemy will not harm them. Do not delay matters. Act immediately according to the letter. If you fell in your duty & Mughals arrest people & take them away, all the blame will fall on you. Be visiting your villages night & day & send people to suitable places down the Ghats. Do not delay by even one hour in carrying out these measures. Be alert. There will be some people left who will be guarding their fields. Ask them to be at the safe places in the hills. If they see the Mughals from a distance, they should run away from the route of the raid. Be alert.”

By the time Shasta khan failed to seize the Maratha forts within this territory was a great blunder. The loyal Marathas right from Peshwa Moropant Pingle down to the humble soldier continued to serve Shivaji whole- heartedly. Shasta khan had absolutely no idea of Shivaji’s intelligence, shrewdness & plans. He remained negligent. Although Shivaji had limited resources. Yet he had kept up a fight with the Mughals. His attacks were more daring than what his resources were suggest. Shivaji obtained every possible information about Shasta khan’s camp, the camp bazaars & the roads & by roads.

Shivaji made a daring raid into Shaista khan’s camp on the night of 5th apl.1663. The raid was successful. Shaista khan barely escaped with loss of his fingers. His son Abdul Fatah was killed. His head was cut off & carried away. 50 more were dead & wounded. This daring feat created a profound impression throughout the country. Bhimsen Saxena notes in his autobiography, “Uptil now, no rajah had fought against Mughal generals in this manner, nor had shown such daring.”

Shasta khan withdrew to Aurangabad immediately. But Mughal forces remained in Poona under the command of Jaswant Singh. By the time Shivaji again descended into Konkon to push Adilshahi to further south. By jun he was back to Rajgad. After rains in 1663, Mughals under command of Jaswant Singh made an attack on Sinhagad. They had to withdraw with disgrace. Many lives also lost as a result of the explosion of ammunition. It became impossible to conquer the fort. He raised siege to Sinhagad on 28th may 1664 after 5 months & returned to Aurangabad wih forces.

By end of 1664 Alamgirnama of Aurangjeb notes, “not even a single fort could be captured. The campaign against Shivaji ran into difficulties & languished.”

10. In Siege of Panhala ...

Fleding of Vijapur army after Afzalkhan’s death made Shivaji to capture strong fort of Panhala on 28th Nov. 1659. There was a panic in court of Vijapur. Now Adilshah again assembled a force & sent it under the leadership of Rustum Zaman. Fazal khan – son of Afzalkhan, Malik Ambar, Fateh Khan, Sarjerao Ghatge were serving under him. Shivaji himself led the attack against Rustum Zaman. Battle was fought near Panhala. Vijapur forces again fled & broke badly. 12 elephants & 2000 horses were captured. After that Shivaji carried raids as far as Athani (now in Belgaun). Shivaji even advanced to lay siege to the fort of Miraz.

Mean while, Vijapur made one more effort again Shivaji. A well-equiped force under command of Vijapur noble, Siddhi Jauhar with 16000-20000 cavalry & 35000-40000 foot soldiers. The Vijapur forces besieged Panhala with Shivaji inside the fort. Shivaji’s effort to divert the enemy by sending his troops to environs of Vijapur & plundering them did not succeed. This was March 1660. The siege last for 6 months. Netali Palkar tried another diversionary attack, but he failed to achieve his purpose.

Mean while Shaista khan marched into Poona from Aurangabad & captured Shivaji’s Lalmahal on 9th may 1660. He was in full correspondence with Siddhi Jauhar. Shaista khan also took possession of Kalyan – Bhiwandi. With plains securely held by Mughals, forts were strongly held by Shivaji. Now he tried occuping Shivaji’s territory.

Siege of Panhala was a tight siege. Mughals were capturing Shivaji’s Swarajya. He decided to leave Panhala & return to Rajgad. Taking advantage of rainy season & dark nights, on 13th july 1660, Shivaji slipped out of Panhala & made for the fort of Vishalgad, 64 km away. He was accompanied by a small contingent of 600 men. Siddhi Jauhar learnt of Shivaji’s escape. The Adilshahi forces pursuit him. The plateau leading to Vishalgad was 6-9 km long. The place called Gajapur Khind or Ghod Khind was perfect to fight with enemy. Shivaji placed his sturdy men to fight with Vijapur forces & he himself pushed on towards Vishalgad. Maratha leader BajiPrabhu Deshpande earned glory in this fight. He died fighting. It was he, who stopped Vijapur forces long enough to enable Shivaji to reach Vishalgad.

The Ghod Khind is now generally known as Pavan Khind – the sacred platue.

Soon after, Shivaji returned to Rajgad. With Mughal pressure steadily increasing, he was in dire need of territory & finances for the war.

9. Afzalkhan Meet: 10th Nov. 1659

With Aurangzeb in the north & his son Muazzam holding charge of Deccan, Vijapur got despite from Mughals. They now turned towards Shivaji. Shivaji was aiming at strengthening himself into Konkan. The enemy of Vijapur was the Mughals & not Shivaji. Aurangzeb was kin to get Shivaji away from the districts annexed to the empire. Vijapur undertook to accomplish what the Mughals wanted to do. It was not really Vijapur which fought against Shivaji. The Mughals busy in the north, were fighting with Shivaji by proxy.

So Adilshah instructed Afzalkhan, ‘that in case Shivaji, being hard – pressed by the Vijapur forces, in his habitual deceptive manner offered to make a peaceful negotiations, the Khan must not listen to him but follow no other policy than that of flinging the fire of death on the harvest of his life.’

Afzalkhan was appointed as Governer of Wai. On 16th june 1659 Adilshah wrote farman to Kanhoji Jedhe saying, “Shivaji out of narrow-mindedness & evil propensities, has started troubling the Mohammedans residing in the province of Konkan belonging to the Nijamshahi. He has also plundered them. He has also captured many forts in the Padshahi province. Therefore, in order to drive him out & conquer him, we have appointed Afzalkhan.”

Shivaji fully understood the nature of this threat to his very survival. Same time, his 1st wife Saibai, mother of Sambhaji passed away in sept. 1659. This was great shock to him. Now he made Pratapgad, at a few km from Wai, as his stronghold.

The 2 letters – one from Afzalkhan to Shivaji & other from Shivaji as reply to Afzalkhan are available –

Afzalkhan wrote, “1. The territory. Which after the disappearance of the Nijamshah had been taken by Adilshah, & which had been given by him to Mughals in the interest of peace, that territory full of hill forts, has been taken by you & appropriated by you.

2. The lord of Rajpuri (Siddis) who has more than one besieged & deprived of his territory by you, is angry with you.

3. You invaded & after fighting, forcibly seized this wide kingdom of Chandrarao altogether inaccessible to the enemy.

4. You took Kalyan & Bhiwandi too and, so they say destroyed the mosques.

5. You robbed the Mohammedans of their all & insulted them.

6. Not considering your own strength you have placed under restraint the holy men of Islam & obstructed the practice of the religion of Moslems.

7. As you freely assumed emblems of sovereignty, sit unjustly on a golden throne, award favours & punishments to men on your own authority, and waywardly refuse to render obeisance to those to whom it is due, & move freely as you like, fear nobody, therefore I have been sent by the great Adilshah.

8. The army which is accompanying me is pressing me to fight. Muse Khan & others officers of mine, desiring to fight, as also the chiefs desiring to capture Jawali are pressing to march against you.

9. Sinhagad & Lohagad, great & strong forts, so also the fort of Purandar, & city of Chakan, also the territory between Bhima & Nira, surrender those to the emperor of Delhi of immeasurable power.

10. And Adilshah asks you this Jawali you seized forcibly from Chandrarao.”

It will be seen that Mughals who were waging the war through Vijapur. Shivaji was in a desperate position. Surrender would have meant a political suicide. It was only his supreme self confidence, his conviction that he has fighting for a just cause, & that providence was with him which enabled him to come out of this crisis with success.

He had the unique capacity for inspiring confidence & loyalty among his followers. Moropant Pingle – the Peshwa, Netoji Palkar – commander of the cavalry & more no. of captains with him.
Shivaji called up his army from Konkan. Cavalry operations were handed to Netoji Palkar. Prataprao Gujar surrounded the hills were Afzalkhan camped out.

Now the letter Shivaji wrote to Afzalkhan is a master piece of diplomacy. Here is the letter,

“1. That you, who annihilated all the princes of the Carnataca ( Karnataka) in war, should show even much grace to me is a great deal.

2. In comparable is the strength of your arms. Your valour is like fire. You are an ornament to the earth. There is no guile in you.

3. If you would see the splendor of these woods, come & have a nice view of Jawali.

4. It is best, I think, that you come here now. That will free me from all fear, & will promote my advancement.

5. I have nothing but contempt for the army of the haughty Mughals, also for that of Adilshah, expecting you of terrible power.

6. Come along & be comfortable in the journey. I shall give up the forts, & as you ask for it, this Jawali also.

7. Looking on you, who are terrible to look at, without fear, I shall place my sword in front of you.

8. Seeing this ancient & vast forest, your army will experience all the pleasures of the world in its depth.”

The letter, very carefully worded & full of double meaning, has desired effect on Afzalkhan.

They meet in a pavilion outside fort Pratapgad. There were 10 bodyguards with each one of them placed at the bow-shot. Inside pavilion there will be Krishnaji, the emissary of Afzalkhan & Pantaji, the emissary of Shivaji. Among the bodyguards of Shivaji, Sambhaji Kavji, Katoji Ingle, Siddi Ibrahim were there. Afzalkhan’s body guards were Rahimkhan, Pahilvankhan, Shankraji Mohite & other. This emphasizes the political nature of the struggle. It was not a communal one.

On 10th nov. 1659 they meet. Shivaji had a broad sword, long dagger & tiger claws (waghanakhas). Afzalkhan too had sword & dagger. Inside the tent he said to Shivaji, “with my own hand I shall take you to Vijapur, make you bend your head before the king, & by humble request to that powerful lord, procure for you still greater splendour. Don’t be bewildered. Put your hand in mine & give me an embrance.” With Shivaji in his grip Afzalkhan was tempted to kill him. But an expert wrestler, Shivaji quickly got his own neck released, & keeping head cool, immediately thrust his dagger deep into Afzalkhan. Sonner, Shivaji’s colleagues ran after Afzalkhan & cut his head. Shivaji withdrew to the fort immediately.

“Shivaji had presence of mind, while Afzalkhan paid the price of his rash over-confidence.”

With signal, Shivaji’s army fell upon army of Afzalkhan. It was a surprise attack & Afzalkhan’s army was completely destroyed. The plunder which fell into the hands of Marathas was enormous. 65 elephants, 4000 horses, 1200 camels, Rs.3,00,000/- worth jewelry, 2000 bales of garment, Rs.7,00,000/- in cash,& all cannons, guns, weapons of all kind, & other equipments were capture. It was the great boost to the morale of the Marathas. While one army ran over modern districts of Satara & Sangli to reach Panhala under leadership of Shivaji, other descended into Konkan & spread to its southern extremities. The Maratha state small but compact, was turning into a reality.

8. Father of the Indian Navy

Portuguese letter dated 6th aug 1659 says, “a son of Shahaji, rebel against Adilshah, has captured the areas near Bassein (Vasai) & Chaul. He has grown strong. He has constructed some fighting vessels in the Bhiwandi, Kalyan & Panvel ports of the Bassein region. We are therefore forced to remain alert. We have ordered the Portuguese captain not to allow these vessels to come out of the ports & see that they do not move out on the seas.”

Now Shivaji was threat to all his enemies. He was in full control of kalyan & began to hum with navy – building activities by 1657-58. The work of building 20 fighting vessels started under trained hands. According to Shivaji, ostensibly the navy was to be used against the Siddis, but in reality his aim went far beyond.

As the Konkan came increasingly under possession, Shivaji started building number of coastal fortresses such as Padmadurg, Vijaydurg, Suvarnadurg, Sindhudurg & other small to afford protection to his coastal navy & to watch & to curb the activities of the Portuguese.

Mughals & Vijapur were land based power. They always neglected building up a navy. Their pilgrim & merchant ships depended on Europeans in the sea. Under such circumstances Shivaji’s stress on naval activities reveals his far-sightedness.

He can well be acclaimed as ‘Father of the Indian Navy.’

7. Into Mughal Territory

Aurangzeb worte to Shivaji on 22nd april 1657, “In fact all the forts & mahals pertaining to Vijapur, that are in your possession now have been confirmed to you as before. I also leave to you the revenue of the fort of Dabhol & its dependencies, as desired by you. Your remaining prayers will be granted & you will be comprehended in my favour & grace more than you can imagine.”

Shivaji got alarmed by this letter. He was worried about his jagir of Poona & Chakan. To secure them he marched against Mughals, & plundered Junnar in 1657. Aurangzeb was wild with anger. This was to be the reply to his efforts of seducing Shivaji to his side?

Now he wrote to his officials - “Invade Shivaji’s territory, lay waste the villages, slay people without pity & plunder them to the extreme.”

Mughals also captured Kalyani & Bidar forts of Vijapur. Soon the treaty came between Mughals & Vijapur as Shahjahan got ill & Aurangzeb wants to go to Delhi. With this opportunity Shivaji swooped down Kalyan & Bhiwandi on 24th oct. 1657. He also captured fort of Mahuli. Shivaji purposely confined his activities to Konkan & avoided incursions into Khandesh – Mughal districts.

Aurangzeb felt deeply mortified. But he hardly could do anything in the hurry to go north.
Shivaji also deprived the Siddis of many of their strongholds on the main land on other side.

6. Entraning into Javli…

With widening borders of Swarajya in west & south Shivaji opened conflicts with Chandrarao More of Javli. Javli was strategically positioned between Konkan & Ghats. It was extremely important for communication between Ghats & Konkan for Adilshahi. Shivaji steadily & causiously, aiming at extending & consolidating his power looking for entering Javli, waiting for the right time. This was 1655. His plans were to break communication between Ghats & Konkan for Vijapur.

Shivaji wrote to Chandrarao More of Javli about his vision of Swarajya & asked him to join the venture. Chandrarao More replied; “I m the king. Shri Shambhu Mahadev has given me sovereignty. You should not in future entitle yourself as rajah. You have become a King only yesterday. Who has bestowed upon you this sovereignty? If you have any courage in you, you should meet us today & not postpone the visit till tomorrow.”

Shivaji’s campaign against Chandrarao More was sharp & swift. On jan 27th 1656, Shivaji marched into Javli & captured it. At the time Kanhoji Jedhe, the Bandals, the Silimkars & other Deshmukhs of Rohilkhand were with him. Chandrarao More ran from Javli to Rairi. In May Shivaji took Rairi as well, after 2 months siege to fort. Chandrarao More lost no of people. Even his 2 sons died in the battle. Many fled & joined Adilshahi. With annexation of Javli & capture of Rairi (later known as Raigad – 2nd capital of Swarajya) Shivaji made incursion into central Konkan with straight threat to Siddis & Vijapur. Now Shivaji started constructing a massive fort called Pratapgad (Bhorpyacha Donger) into javli.

5. Into the Konkan ...

Shivaji’s eyes thus turned towards the coastal belt of Konkan, the northern part of which had been held by Shahaji Raje during struggle with the Mughals from 1632 – 1636. The 483 km. long & 90-95 km. wide Konkan, the coastline is broken into innumerable creeks, rivers & streams. The creeks in many places reach the hill ranges. The rainfall is heavy & communications difficult. The coastline boasts of a number of ports, small & big such as Bassein (Vasai), Bombay (Mumbai), Chaul (Revdanda), Dabhol, Rajapuri, Vengurla, besides the trading places like sangameshwar, Mahad, Thane. The north Konkan area of Kalyan-Bhiwandi was under Mughals, Thane & above was under Portuguese. Centrel Konkan was under Siddis & further south was under Vijapur.

4. Poona Jagir ...

The jagir, though not big, was strategically located. The Sahyadri hill ranges, running from Khandesh in the north to the borders of Goa in the south, devide Konkan from Ghats. These hills rise at some places to 1,218 metres above sea level & provide an excellent defence to the terrain. Small offshoots from these ranges, running west to east, provided enough land to brave, hardy population – fiercely independent & assertive. Small rivers running through the villages enabled the small farmers to cultivate the lands between Junnar in the north & Mahabaleshwar in the south. The valleys known as ‘khores’ were often named after the streams flowing through them. Since they were situated in the west (Mavalati – the land of sunset), the land come to be collectively known as Maval. Each valley boasted of a high hill crowned by a fort or fortress, providing good defence to the people.

Shivaji grew up amidst the hills & valleys of Poona district. The people he administrated were sturdy & manly.
‘Great events usually develop from small beginnings.’

‘Laying the foundations for a purely native, independent & welfare state, national in every sense of the word, with vast potentialities of expansion throughout the country, is greatest achievement of Shivaji. He awakened the national feeling, He imbeded confidence in an apathetic people. He fought against in tolerance, arrogance & pride of his enemies & proved to them that no power can stand & flourish without the tactic support of the people.’

But this was to come later. The beginning reveals a young man moving step by step, defining his objectives, extremely shrewd, & charged with an admirable mixture of caution & adventure.

In 1645, he was barely 15 yrs old. The Vijapur ruler, Muhammad Adilshah, was taken ill. Little time later, Dadoji Konddev, Shivaji’s manager of Poona estate, died on 7th march 1647. His death naturally removed the restraints imposed by as older & cautious generation. Shivaji took possession of the half built fort of Murumbdev (later called Rajgad – capital of Swarajya till 1671) & fort Torna (prachandgad). However, his biggest achievement was the peaceful possession of Kondana, which come to know as Sinhagad in 1647 only. The Vijapur court was naturally alarmed. Adilshah ordered, his general Fateh khan, & Khudavant khan, to march against Shivaji. Maintaining the base at Purander, Shivaji prepared to meet the 1st danger. Mean while Shivaji heard the shocking news of his father’s arrest nr. Jinji fort. This happened on 28th july 1648. Shahaji’s jagir in Banglore was also invaded, which was defended tenaciously by Shivaji’s older brother Sambhaji.

The Vijapur forces included Maratha contigents led by the Ghatges & Nimbalkars of Phaltan. Shivaji’s wife, Maharani Saibai was the sister of Balaji Nimbalkar of Phaltan. After a fierce encounter, the Vijapur forces break & fled, leaving their leader, Muse khan, among the dead. Shivaji’s early companions like Kavji Malhar, Godaji Kamble, Bhimaji Wagh, Sambhaji Kate, Shivaji Engle, Bhikaji Chore, & Bhairav Chore. It was wide strata from which Shivaji drew his forces. While Baji Jedhe, son of kanhoji Jedhe, distinguished himself in this battle, Shivaji suffered a great loss in the death of his staunch follower, Baji Pasalkar. Shivaji corresponded with prince Murad, son of Shahjahan & Mughal governer of Deccan with latter dated 14th march 1649. Much later Shahji was released on 16th may 1649. but Shivaji pay the price of relinquishing the fort Kondana / Sinhagad back to Vijapur.

Between 1649 to 1655 it seems a slow career for Shivaji & nothing special happened. But that was silence before the thunderstorm. By 1655, Shivaji was in full possession of Poona, Chakan, Baramati & Indapur. He also secured the forts like Torna, Rajgad, Purandar, and Lohagad. The northern borders of Shivaji’s jagir were the same as southern borders for Mughal Empire. Any question of advancing in that direction was unthinkable. His eastern borders were enclosed by well-administrated & strongly guarded Vijapur districts of Satara, Sangli & Kolhapur also know as Balaghat. So ???

3. The Early Days ...

Shivaji born on 19th feb. 1630 (falgun vadya trutiya, shake 1551 by Hindu Calendar date) on the fort Shivneri who gave mightiest challenge to Mughal empire. Shortly after Shivaji’s birth, Vijapur forces attacked & destroyed the Poona ‘jagir’ of his father Shahaji Raje. He was busy mobilizing his resources & all his efforts could not save Poona from destruction. It remains a wilderness for about 8 yrs. In november 1630 Shahaji decide to serve Mughals again but sooner in 1632 he broke away. With strongholds in Nashik, Junnar & Konkan Shahaji kept relentless struggle against Mughals from Nijamshahi. Vijapur was watching his admiration the struggle which he was waging against the Mughals. In 1636, the struggle ended. Nijamshahi was destroyed completely by Shahjahan with the help of Adilshah. Shahaji joined Adilshahi & was send to south to take part in campaigns. But Poona jagir was restored to him. Also Banglore was won by Vijapur & was fled to Shahaji Raje.

Jijabai & Shivaji, stayed on with Shahaji till Shivaji was 12 yrs old. It was then decided that Jijabai should move to Poona with Shivaji & manage the jagir there. There was no estrangement between Jijabai & Shahaji. It was primarily a simple, practical arrangement. At the age of 12 Shivaji arrived in Poona, sometime in 1642. He was accompanied by small band of trusted officials of Shahaji. Under the guidance of his mother Jijabai, a lady of remarkable character & determination to whom he was deeply attached, Shivaji grew up into a man of firm beliefs & devotion to his creed & culture. It was this pride in the great heritage of the country, a deep religious instinct, & a broad spirit of tolerance, which blossomed in him under the affectionate & watchful eye of his mother.

Friday, 20 February 2009

2. Chatrpati Shivaji Maharaj ...

Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj is one of the great national figures of India. A man of faith as well as action, this extraordinary statesman and general, created a nation, gave its people a cause to fight and to die for and established a state permeated with a spirit of tolerance and justice; a truly secular and welfare state.

And yet, who could have believed that this son of a feudal lord of Bijapur- a feudatory kingdom of the Mughal empire- would in the course of his brief life span of 50 years, defy the Mughal and carve out an extensive state, the 'HINDAVI SWARAJYA' - a state of the sons of the soil.

As a soldier, warrior and general, Shivaji fashioned the army into a truly national one. Perfect discipline, rapid movements, excellent intelligence service, and continuous attention to defense marked his military organization, and this enable him to defeat adversaries time and again. Nor did he neglect the defense of the sea coast. he is rightly called the Father of Indian Navy.

He fought for the defense of his homeland. He fought against intolerance, injustice and racial arrogance. His example inspired the Rajputs, the Bundelas Chatrasal and others to follow him. In course of time, his movements assumed the form of an all India struggle: a struggle which was to change the political map of India. Dauntless in face of defeat, and generous in victory, this man of deep religious convictions cherished the honor of women and championed and practiced tolerance to all faiths.

Shivaji's personality and message are as relevant today as they were in the past ...

1. Introduction

This blog is created by editing a book called 'Chatrapati Shivaji'. The book is written by Setu Madhavrao Pagadi & published by National book trust.

Series of topics from his birth (1630) till the death (1680) will be covered in this blog.

The aim of this blog is to spread information & knowledge about Chatrapati Shivrai & Maratha History all across the globe.

I hope you will like it.