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Monday, June 5, 2023

Scindia remembers Mahadji Shinde who reconquered Delhi in 1771 for Hindavi Swaraj, worked for Army modernization

Remembering his ancestor the ‘Grand Maratha’ Mahadji Shinde (Scindia) on the 251st anniversary of his reconquer of Delhi, Minister for Civil Aviation Jyotiraditya Scindia on Friday said the ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ that Prime Minister talks of today was the same principle that Mahadji had followed.

“Mahadji can be termed as the pioneer of coalition government as he brought together the Gujar, Jat, Dalit, Sikh and Muslims all under the banner of Hindavi Swaraj and the name of the army was ‘Hind Ki Fauz’,” Scindia said.

Incidentally, today is also the death anniversary of the Maratha statesman who passed away on February 12, 1794.

Mahadji had a special ‘Deccan Invincibles’ brigade that had advisors from France and Portugal, the Union Minister said while recounting how Mahadji “favoured modernisation of arms and artillery” as he was determined to face the Britishers who could not be fought just with ‘talwar and dhaal’ (swords and shields).

“He even started an industrial unit on the outskirts of Agra where he started a tank manufacturing unit. Army modernisation, Aatma Nirbhar Bharat, all that we talk of today, Mahadji Shinde had laid the foundation in 1771,” Scindia said at a programme organised to mark the 251st anniversary of the Mahadji Shinde’s take over of the then Mughal ruled Delhi.

The programme was jointly organised by ‘Dilli Marathi Pratishthan’, a socio-cultural organisation, with ‘Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhini’, an organisation based in Thane, working for improving civic governance.

Held at Maharashtra Sadan in the national capital, the programme was watched live by over 10,000 people on multiple social media platforms managed by Vayam.

Recalling how Mahadji had been single handedly responsible for expansion of the Hindavi Swaraj ‘Attock Se Cuttack Tak’ (from Attock in present day Pakistan to Cuttack in Odisha), Scindia said, “I am not just emotional as I come from the family of this great personality but feel pride that he has shaped a glorious chapter in the history of India.”

Rajya Sabha member Vinay Sahastrabuddhe, who also heads the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) said, “Gen Lake (who led the British forces in 1803 Battle of Patparganj) had mentioned in his diary that Britishers had taken over India from the Marathas and not from any Mughal rulers.”

Earlier, explaining ‘Dilli Vijayotsav’, Vaibhav Dange of Dilli Marathi Pratisthan, said, “Unfortunately, people remember the tragic defeat at the 1761 Battle of Panipat. But within 10 years of that, Mahadji Shinde, a Maratha sardar, had gathered force and reconquered Delhi. What we need to do is to revisit history again and again as we believe, a society that learns from history can create a bright future.”

The Madhya Pradesh Tourism twitter handle also shared some valuable information on the great national hero –

“In February 1771, Mahadji Shinde, often termed as the ‘Great Grand Maratha’, had led a powerful Maratha army to conquer Delhi. Mahadji Shinde, also known as Mahadji Scindia, was instrumental in resurrecting Maratha power, from Attock to Cuttack, uniting a fragmented Indian polity. 

Born in 1730, Scindia rose to power after the Battle of Panipat in 1761. His coronation as the king of Gwalior was held in 1768. Mahadji Scindia was one of the few Indian rulers who defeated the British not once but multiple times.

He was at the zenith of his power when he died from typhoid fever in 1794 in Pune. This year marks the 251st anniversary of his Delhi conquest.”

Interested readers can check out this video discussion on the history of the Maratha Empire –

(With IANS inputs)

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