History of Garhwal including Haridwar (1223- 1804 AD) –part -161
History of Uttarakhand (Garhwal, Kumaon and Haridwar) -408
By: Bhishma Kukreti (A History Research Student)
Relationship with Chand Kumaon Kingdom
Friendship with Chand Kumaon – By in large, Pradip Shah was a peace loving King who believed on live and let live others too.
Due to continuous infighting between Chand Kumaon and Garhwal Kingdoms the boarding territories of Kumaon and Garhwal were in ruined conditions. The land became jungle there. Pradip Shah tried to have amicable relation with neighboring kingdoms.
In 1723, Pradip Shah sent his representative with gifts his for attending the marriage of first daughter of Chand Kumaon King Kalyan Chandra. In 1739, the second daughter of Kalyan Chand was married with the prince of Sirmaur Kingdom. The road to go to Sirmaur from Kumaon was through Dehradun. The relation between Sirmaur and Garhwal were bitter and Kumaon King went with soldiers with marriage party.
In 1739, Garhwal King deputed his advocate with gifts to Kumaon King in Almora for having friendly relation.
In this period the Kings of Rajasthan used to depute their advocates /representatives to Kumaon and Garhwal. N 1741, Garhwal and Kumaon Kings deputed their representatives with friendly letters and gifts to the court of King Jay Singh Swain of Jaipur. Jaipur King also sent letter and gifts for Garhwal and Kumaon Kings.
Elimination of Chand Family administrators in Kumaon
Kumaon Chand King Kalyan Chandra was cruel and suspicious with the family members of Chand clans (past King’s descended families). He was suspicious with Brahmins. He took out the eyes of hundreds of Brahmin and made them blind.
Kalyan Chandra started killing descended family members (Chandele) of past Chand Kings. Hundreds of Chandele were killed. One Chandela Himmat Singh Rautela escaped to Badaun and took shelter under ruler of Anvala Nabab Ali Muhammad Khan. Kumaon King Kalyan Chandra sent his guards from Bhabhar to kill Himmat Singh Rautela. Guards from Bhabhar killed Himmat Singh Rautela. The Rhila clan Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan became angry on the killing of Himmat Singh Rautela. Nabab Ali Muhammad Khan attacked on Kumaon in 1742.
Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan Attacking on Kumaon
In the winter of 1742, Rohilla (Afghan Highlanders) Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan sent his most powerful three commanders – Hafiz Rahmat Khan, Padan Khan and Bakshi Sradar Khan with huge army to capture Kumaon. Shiv Datt Joshi was Kumaon Kingdom governor in Bhabhar Tarai region of Kumaon Kingdom. Shiv Datt Joshi requested to send money for collecting force for defending Rohila attack on Kumaon. Kumaon King misunderstood the request of Shiv Datt Joshi as Joshi was convulsing Kumaon King for Joshi’s own benefits. Kumaon King was under illusion that Rohilas could not capture Kumaon hills.
Shiv Datt Joshi tried his best to defend Rohilla Attack with small army. The Trio Rohila commanders were with ten thousand trained and professional soldiers. Rohila defeated Shiv Datt Joshi. Shiv Datt Joshi escaped and took shelter in Balkheri/Barakheri fort neat Kathgodam. Rohila captured Bilari and Sarbana regions of Tarai Kumaon. Regent Hafiz Rahmat Khan appointed regional commander for Rudrapur, Kumaon and followed Kumaon army. Old age Sradar Khan stayed back in Bilari. The army led by Rahmat Khan reached to Bhim Tal. Rahmat Khan captured Vijaypur of Chhakhata pargana below Bhim Tal.
Rohilla Capturing Almora
Kumaon King sent his army to stop the arrival of Rohila army but failed. Rohila captured the capital Almora. Kalyan Chand ran away towards Garhwal from Almora. Rohila looted Almora very cruelly and destroyed looted wealthy temples. Rohila destroyed Kingdom records and treasurer. Rohilla army made laksh of people as captive. The beheaded and broken sculptures in Almora temples are witness for cruelty and aggression of Rohillas.
Kumaon King Kalyan Chand taking Shelter in Garhwal
Kumaon King Kalyan Chandra took shelter at Gairmanda of Lohaba region of Garhwal. Shiv Datt Joshi also reached at Gairmanda.
Pradip Shah was also worried man by aggression of Rohillas. He was aware that Rohillas would have attack on Garhwal too.
Pradip Shah forgot past enmities between two Kingdoms and sent his army to Gairmanda. Kumaon King also collected army. Both Kings marched towards Almora with their armies. Garhwal and Kumaon armies captured Dunagiri and Dwarhat regions. Rohila army was camping at hills of Kaidaro and Bauraro. Rohila armies attacked on armies of Kumaon and Garhwal. Shisram Saklani was leading Garhwal army. Shish ram Saklani fought the battle with great bravery. People sing hi s folklore today too. However, Rohilla army defeated Hill Kingdom armies.
Treaty with Rohillas
Rohilla soldiers were not habitual of hill winter and they were passing through adverse season. They had already captured slaves and wealth from Kumaon. There was no hope for Rohilas getting more wealth from Kumaon.
Rohilla commander threatened Garhwal King not to support Kumaon King. At last there was treaty between Rohilas and Kumaon with Garhwal King.
The conditions for Kumaon King were put as follows-
1-Kumaon King had to pay three laksh as levy to Rohilas. Kumaon King did not have a penny as Rohillas already looted treasury. Garhwal King paid that money on behalf of Kumaon King.
2- Kumaon King would pay tribute of sixty thousand rupees annually to Rohilla commander Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan.
3- Kumaon King kalian Chand had to resign from throne and his relative would be new King
4-Garhwal King would not support Kumaon King.
Return of Rohillas
With ample of wealth, thousand of slaves, animals, Rohila returned after seven months from Kumaon. Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan was more interested on rule over Kumaon and he was furious with his commander Hafiz Rahmat Khan. Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan did not leave his right on Rudrapur, Kashipur and south hills of Kumaon.
Treaty between Garhwal and Kumaon Kingdoms
Pradip Shah reestablished rule of Kalyan Chand on Almora throne. Both hand a treaty letter exchange (Dharmpatra).
Rohillas Attacking on Garhwal?
Historian Rahul mentions that Rohilas attacked and captured Agyastmuni, Guptkashi and Ukhimath. Rohilas destroyed sculptures and temples. Rohilas reached to neeti and Mana.
However, logic and other source do not vouch the statements of Rahul that Rohilas reached to Neeti, Mana, and Kedarnath. The contemporary history writers of that time Gulistan, Hadik, Abdul Karim , Shakir and Anandram did not mention anything that short that Rohilas attacked on Garhwal and looted upper Garhwal.
The statement of Rahul is totally imaginary.
The date of Rohila attack on Kumaon is stated by historians differently.
Baiton – 1744
Williams – 1741
Shrivastava – 1741 and after
Sarkar – 1742
Mughal Attack on Rohilla Commander Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan
Rohilla returned from Kumaon. However, Rohilla came to know that capturing hills is not so hard and difficult as perceived by their predecessors and Mughal.
Awadh ruler presented himself before Mughal Emperor to capture Rohillas. In 1745, Mughal army attacked on Rohillas. Rohilla Commander wanted to take shelter in Kumaon but was captured by Mughal alliance army.
Rohillas in Shivalik Hills
In 1747, There was war between Nawab Safdar Jang of Awadh and Ahmad Khan Bangas the Nawab of Farukhabad. Rohilla commanders as Saddulla Khan the son of Nawab Ali Muhammad Khan and Hafiz Khan helped Ahmadkhan Bangas. With the help of Marathas, Awadh ruler Nawab Safdar Jang defeated Rohillas. Rohillas ran towards Kumaon hills. Rohillas crossed Rampur, Moradabad and Kashipur. They reached at the bottom a hill that was surrounded by one side by a River and three sides by dense forest. Rohillas camped at plain place in the centre of forest. Rohillas dug canal and terrace and established Guns there. Nawab of Awadh and Maratha tries to stop the food supply for Rohillas However, Kumaon King arranged food supply for Rohillas. Maratha and Awadh Nawab asked Kumaon King to stop food supply for Rohillas but Kumaon King did not obey them. After two month due to Marathas, there was treaty between Rohillas and Safadar Jang of Awadh.
g Place of Rohillas
Historians have disagreement for recognizing the place where Rohillas and Ahmad Khan Bangas took shelter of camped.
Based on the description by Gulistan, Irvin, Sarkar and Shrivastava suggest the place as Chilkiya. However, Hadiktullakalin it was Laldhang.
It seems that the place was either Chilkhiya or Laldhang.
Copyright@ Bhishma Kukreti Mumbai, India, firstname.lastname@example.org/8/2014
History of Garhwal – Kumaon-Haridwar (Uttarakhand, India) to be continued… Part -409
(The History of Garhwal, Kumaon, Haridwar write up is aimed for general readers)
History of Garhwal from 1223-1804 to be continued in next chapter ….
Notes on South Asian Medieval History of Garhwal; SouthAsian Medieval History of Pauri Garhwal; Medieval History of Chamoli Garhwal; South Asian Medieval History of Rudraprayag Garhwal; South Asian Medieval History of Tehri Garhwal; Medieval History of Uttarkashi Garhwal; South Asian Medieval History of Dehradun, Garhwal; Medieval History of Haridwar ; South Asian Medieval History of Manglaur, Haridwar; South Asian Medieval History of Rurkee Haridwar ; South Asian Medieval History of Bahadarpur Haridwar ; South Asian History of Haridwar district to be continued
History of Relationship of Garhwal Kingdom with Neighboring Kingdoms in Pradip Shah Period