Do you recall the First War of Independence: 1857?

It makes my heart beat with pride, to see the colours of Independence Day spreading happiness and great joys all around. May the glory of Independence Day be with our esteemed Friends forever.

India attained Independence on August 15th 1947, after a great political and social struggle. The British had ruled over India for a considerable period of time. Their initial intentions were to carry out trade in India, but in due course of time they developed political and administrative ambitions.

I recall an event of 1857 uprising from my book Rajputana Chronicles: Guns & Glories.

“The news of Neemauch revolt had reached Udaipur and soon after on 6th June 1857, Capt CL Showers, the Political Agent, received Capt MacDonald’s letter containing the news of Neemuch rebellion and asking him to proceed at once for the relief of Dungla. Showers started from Udaipur on 7th June, accompanied by Rao Bakhta Singh of Bedla at the head of Mewar troops.”

mewar map 1857Mehta SSher Singh (1)her Singh, the deposed Pradhan, was also ordered to join them. The Mewar troops faced no resistance. The refugees were found in the last stage of destitution expecting no survival. Mehta Sher Singh and other Mewar officers made arrangements of palanquins, elephants, horses, carts and carriages. All Englishmen, women and children were sent to Udaipur the same night.”

“At Udaipur the Maharana Swarup Singh received them with full care, kept them at Jag Mandir Palace in Pichhola Lake and nominated Mehta Gokal Chand, the Pradhan, to look after their requirements and safety. The young Mehta Pannalal was sent there to take care of hospitality and coordination, since he was fluent in English”.

British Political Agent, Capt CL Showers notes,

“In view of the geographical position of the Nimbahera, Maharana Swarup Singh’s diminishing influence over the subjects and unreliability of the Mohammadan officers of the Tonk State, the possession of Nimbahera was made over temporarily to the former Pradhan and Mewar officer Mehta Sher Singh in September 1857, subject to the approval of the British Government. Subsequently he was appointed as Hakim of Nimbahera”.

Eminent historian RK Gupta obverses in his book, ‘Studies in Indian History: Rajasthan Through The Ages’,

Upon the inauguration of the new Government in India after 1857 rising, the British Government made grants of lands, money and titles to various princes and nobles in appreciation of their services to her in the period of rebellion. The Governor General acknowledged the services of Mehta Sher Singh, Mehta Gopal Singh and Arjun Sahiwala and left to the Maharana the pleasing duty of rewarding these meritorious officers”.

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