Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj
Today is Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Jayanti.
Worth knowing atleast a few facts about him.
He was born on 16 February 1630 at Shivneri Fort located in Pune.
10 Things which the great ruler did different from any other, and we should be aware of.
India during Shivaji Maharaj’s regime
Shivaji Maharaj was considered as most secular king in Indian history. He had many Muslim soldiers in his army and his war was never against Muslims.
He appointed Daryadarang as the Chief of the Navy.
He appointed Ibrahim Khan as the Chief of the Artillery.
The strength of the cavalry was 1,50000, out of which about 66,000 troopers were Muslims.
Siddhi Hilal (Chieftain) and Siddhi WahWah were among the brave men who fought the battle with Adilshah in 1600.C.E.
Kazi Hyder was an emissary of King Shivaji, who later became a Secretary. Siddi Ibrahim was a Bodyguard of King Shivaji.
When the King met Afazal Khan at Pratap Gadh, Shivaji was accompanied by 3 Body Guards, Siddi Ibrahim was one of them.
2) Father Of Indian Navy:
Shivaji Maharaj is considered as ‘Father of Indian Navy’. Where other kings failed to understand the danger of foreign invasion , Shivaji Maharaj build a very strong Navy which was called ‘Aarmar’.
He even defeated Britishers and Frenches in many sea battles.
3) Guerrilla warfare:
Shivaji started guerrilla warfare against the Mughals and other powers in 1645 leading to establishment of the Maratha state in 1674, sowing seeds of what would become the last great empire.
He was a practical military commander and always asked his army to take a step back and regroup. Same kind of Guerrilla warfare was later used by many other countries including Vietnam to defeat America.
4) Established a Kingdom:
On His Own Shivaji Maharaj was not a prince and did not inherit any crown. He created a Kingdom on his own fighting with Moghuls, Nizam , Adilshah , British and Rival Marathas. He won the first fort when he was 16 years old.
5) Built More Than 100 Forts Instead Of Palaces:
Unlike other kings Shivaji Maharaj did not prefer a Lavish lifestyle. He did not construct a single palace for himself but built more than 100 forts to defend his people from invaders.
6) Changed The Unfair Tax System:
Before Shivaji’s rule, Zamindars and the Deshmukhs collected heavy taxes from the poor farmers. But, Shivaji stopped this evil practise and infested a proper tax system.
7) Agricultural Reforms:
As most of the people did not have lands to farm, Shivaji Maharaj gave government lands to the farmers. He built many dams in drought prone area of Pune to help farmers.
8) Implemented Strict Laws:
Shivaji Maharaj implemented strict laws in his rule and gave justice to common people.
9) Respecting women:
He stood for the honor of women and made sure none were taken prisoners. Unlike many other rulers of the land, no one under his rule was allowed to dishonor women.
Women of captured territories were left unharmed.
10) Non Superstitious:
Shivaji Maharaj was religious but not superstitious. Even if Amavasya (No Moon) is considered as inauspicious he conducted many raids on Amavasya. According to Hindu scriptures Hindus were not allowed to cross the sea but he established a navy to secure sea from invaders.
The then Empire (Shivaji & his successors), protected India against British invasion for almost 200 years. Later, in 1818 finally British East India Company had captured major parts of India and the British Rule began. It is worth noting and essentially important to know about those who defended India for 200 years and fought against the mighty British + Mughals.
Rohit Dhawade work as Network Design Engineer by profession working on India’s National Vodafone backbone, and a hobby reader of history and well known plays. You can reach him here