Thursday, June 23, 2005

Remembering the Queen of Jabalpur (My home town)

Rani Durgavati (1524 – 1564 AD) is a part of Indian history, whom most people in India do not know. One of the reasons may be the absence of the poetess like Smt Subhadra Kumari Chouhan during her period or later (read previous post). Rani Durgavati ruled the kingdom of Gondwana (current region of Mahakoushal in Madhya Pradesh) from 1550 AD to 1564 AD.

Rani Durgavati is famous in Indian history for refusing to submit to the Mughul emperor Akbar as he pushed deep into Central India, which was part of his goal of dominating all of India. Rani fought a battle with limited resources against the commander Asaf Khan of Akbar's army in 1564 AD.

During the battle she was hit by two arrows, one through her jaw near the ear, and the other through her neck. She lost consciousness, and when she regained it, she saw immediately the battle was about to be lost. The mahout of her battle elephant pleaded with her to let him take her back to safety. That meant acknowledging the inevitable defeat and surrender.

Instead of retreating, she killed herself with a dagger. It was this 24th day of June in 1564.

She was seen as a role model 300 years later during the first war of Indian Independence and later.

People in Jabalpur still remember her with great pride. In her honor Jabalpur University is named after her.

To read all her history and war plan please read-

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Remembering the Queen of Jhansi.

Those of you who studied in the Hindi heartland of India know her through a poem, which is still taught somewhere in middle schools. Rani Lakshmi Bai of Jhansi Fought against the British East India Company during the first war of Indian independence triggered by the Sepoy rebellion in 1857 AD at Meerut.

The ferocious battles that Rani fought bravly would never be known to current generation had Smt Subhadra Kumari Chauhan not written this brilliant poem. She not only wrote this poem but was not afraid to read out her poem in the public meetings, for which she was imprisoned. Now considering that all this happened in the latter part of Indian freedom struggle, during which British were very intolerant towards such literary works, she is seen as a lady equivalent to Rani in her determination to live in the free India.

Although both lived in periods separated by a century yet Subhadra Kumari Chauhan embodied the character of queen replacing sword with pen.

On this day of 18 June in the year 1858 AD the 22 year-old Rani gave her life for his motherland. British commander Sir Hurose said “The best warrior who died from the enemy side was a female”.

I salute to Rani of Jhansi and Smt Subhadra Kumari Chauhan.

Wikipage of Rani Lakshmi Bai:-

Poem by Subhadra Kumari Chauhan can read in Hindi And English at:-

About Smt Subhadra Kumari Chauhan at