Resistance of Maharana Pratap of Mewar Against Akbar


Rajasthan Tour

Rajasthan Desert Tour

Rajasthan Women, Rajasthan Wildlife, Rajasthan Cuisine, Rajasthan Attraction

Rajasthan Desert Tour Package


Rajasthan Tourism  & Travel Packages -  Rajasthan Vacations & Holidays

12 Days Rajasthan Desert Tour Package

13 Days Rajasthan Desert Holiday Tour

13 Days Rajasthan Round Trip

14 Days Rajasthan Tour Package

16 Days Cultural Rajasthan Tour

17 Days Colorful Rajasthan Tour

17 Days Vacations in Rajasthan

18 Days Rajasthan Tour Package

19 Days Rajasthan - North India Tour

28 Days Heritage Tour of Rajasthan

31 Days Holidays in Rajasthan

31 Days Rajasthan Wildlife Tour


Resistance of Maharana Pratap of Mewar Against Akbar

Resistance of Maharana Pratap against Akbar
At the time of Pratap’s accession, Chittor, the traditional capital of Mewar, was not under the possession of Guhilot Ranas of Mewar. In the words of Dr. G.N. Sharma “The gaddi that he (Pratap) had acquired and the territory that he inherited was not a bed of roses for the Rana.

Like Chandra Sen Mewar, Pratap had also to fight a war of succession against his step brother Jamal in which he emerged out victorious but at the same time the war crippled his resources. Still Pratap continued his struggle against the imperial power of Akbar. Love for his country coupled with his determination to keep it free from the tutelage of Mughals goaded him to measure swords with the Mughal army headed by Man Singh Kachchwah of Amber in the battle of Haldighati. He lived and died as an independent person who was never tired of war hoping against hopes for recovery of Chittor and other lost territories. Dr. V.A. Smith has summed up his struggle against the Mughals in these words “Patriotism was his offence”.


Causes of Pratap’s Resistance Against Akbar

“The two opponents – Pratap and Akbar, were extraordinary men. Both of them were inspired by idealism – different though it was in each case – in the pursuit of which they reckoned on sacrifice as too great and yet both were pre-eminently men of action.”

According to Col. Tod, “Pratap succeeded to the titles and renown of an illustrious house, but without a capital, without resources, his kindred and clans decapitated by reverses, yet possessed of the noble spirit of his race, he meditated the recovery of Chittor, the vindication of the honour of his house, and the restoration of its powers.” Elevated with this design, he hurried in conflict with his powerful antagonist. At the time of Pratap’s accession Chittor was in the hand of the Mughals. The frontier districts of Mewar (Badhor, Shahpura and Rayala) were also under the Mughal control. In the words of Dr. A.L.Srivastava, “By the end of 1572 Mewar was surrounded on the north, east and west by the Mughal territory; her southern and south – eastern boundary was alone outside the Mughal sphere of influence. It was Akbar’s settled policy to bring about a complete blockade of Rana Pratap’s dominion and thus exert military and political pressure so as to make him accept his suzerainty without a fight.”

Modern writers have painted Pratap as the champion of liberty and defender of his religion. Pratap stood for the honour and dignity of Rajput race as a whole. Late Dr. A. L. Srivastava has refuted this assertion by saying, “there was no danger to Hinduism or the Hindu way of life from Akbar, who respected religious beliefs and susceptibilities of all classes of people and more specially those of his Rajput allies and vassals.

According Dr. G.N. Sharma, “equally revolting was the idea in Pratap’s mind to enter into a matrimonial alliance with him Mughal ruling family and send a ‘dola to Akbar’s harem.”

Pratap’s rival Jagmal was received with kindness by the Mughal Emperor who grated him jagir of Jahazpur on the frontiers of Rana’s territory.

Thus, Pratap’s ideology behind his determination to keep him-self aloof from Akbar’s fold was based on the traditional, heroic tradition of his house.


Causes of Akbar’s Action Against Pratap

“Akbar’s ambition,” according to late Dr. A.L. Srivastava, “was to unite the whole of the sub-continent of India under one scepter.” Commenting on the policy followed by Akbar towards Rajput states. Dr. R.P. Tripathi writes, “By his dealings with other Rajput princes, Akbar had clearly shown that he did not wish either or annex their states or interfere with their social, economic and religious life. He wanted nothing more than their allegiance to the new Imperial confederation which implied four things; firstly, the princes were to pay some contribution to the empire in the form of tribute; secondly, they had to surrender their foreign policies and their right to settle their disputes by mutual wars; thirdly, they had to send a fixed military quota for the service of the confederation whenever required; fourthly, they should consider themselves an integral pat of the empire and not merely individual units.” If formation of confederation was the idea in Akbar’s mind he should not have insisted on Pratap’s personal presence in the Mughal court during the period 1572 – 75 when the Rana was half inclined to enter into alliance with the Mughal Emperor. To say that Akbar did not annex any important Hindu State is also not correct historically. The Rathor State of Marwar was put under the direct administration of the Mughals. His policy towards the Rajputs was of complete submission which thereby implied his over lordship. By joining the Mughals his (Pratap’s) state would have ceased to exist as a sovereign state and the would have been a Mughal zamindar as the head of watan jagir like his other coreligionists.

The next reason of Akbar’s determination to subdue Pratap was that smaller states, like Dungarpur, Banswara, Bundi, Sirohi and Jalor looked to Mewar as the first among the Rajput states of India. Akbar could not have tolerated it because his ambition was to unite the entire sub-continent.

Moreover, “the garden of Rajasthan (was rendered) of no value to the conqueror (Akbar) and the commerce already established between the Mughal court and overseas, conveyed through Mewar from Surat and other ports of Gujrat, was intercepted and plundered.” The defiant attitude of Rana Pratap was creating an infection in the newly acquired territories which Akbar could not have tolerated.

According to Dr. R.P. Tripathi, “the Rana of Mewar was in alliance with the discontented Raja of Gwalior and the recalcitrant Afghans. His (Pratap’s) alliance with Chandra Sen of Jodhpur and Raho Sultan of Sirohi who defied imperial authority, could hardly please Akbar”.

Still, he was not prepared to court open warfare with Pratap because it was likely to endanger his conquest in Gujrat. Therefore, he sent three messengers – Mansingh, his father Raja Bhagwant Dass, and Todarmal to make correct assessment of Pratap’s attiude towards him and to enlist his submission by peaceful means. According to Abul Fazi, the Rana sent his eldest son Amara to wait on the Mughal Emperor along with Raja Bhagwant Dass and the three messengers reported that Rana was not planning quarrel with the Emperor.

In spite of inclinations of friendship, the attitude of both the parties grew stiffer towards each other with the passage of time. The Rana was feeling aggrieved against the sluggish recognition of his friendship by the Mughal Emperor who was all the time insisting on his personal attendance at the Mughal court and had no intention of restoring Chittor.


The Battle of Haldighati

Dr. R. N. Prasad writes “Akbar finally decided to bend or break the Rana,” It was decided by Akbar in March 1576 when he reached Ajmer after having dealt with the rebel Afghans of eastern India, the rebel Mirza in Gujarat and Rao Chandra Sen of Marwar. By that time he had also done away with major problems of the Mughal Empire. Akbar was also convinced of the fact that Rana Pratap did not want to attend his court in person. He was avoiding his personal presence on one pretext or the other. Under these circumstances he decided to send army against Pratap. The command of the army was conferred on Man Singh. The Mughal forces did not march against Pratap under the leadership of Salim. The contemporary Persian historians, Abul Fazi, Nizammudin Ahmed and Motamid Khan are of the opinion that Akbar appointed Man Singh as the commander – in – Chief of the Mughal forces because of his bravery and farsightedness. The Jaipur vamshavali informs us that on the request of Man Singh the command of Mughal army was entrusted to him. Late Dr. G.H. Ojha is of the opinion that to take revenge of Man Singh’s insult by Pratap on the banks of Udaisagar, the Kachhava Prince was appointed Commander – in – Chief of the Mughal forces. The orthodox Muslims were opposed to Man Singh’s appointment. Abul Qadir Badayuni writes that one of his friends, Naquib Khan, requested the Emperor to permit him not to join the Mughal army because the infidel was appointed as Commander-in-Chief of the army of Islam, Von Noer, the author or Akbar, Vol. II writes on page 24 and 25 that Akbar wanted to defeat the Rajputs by the hands of Rajputs; that is why he appointed Man Singh as Commander of the Mughal forces which left Ajmer in April 1576, with him were Meer Buxi of the Mughal Khan, syyed Ahmed Khan, Syyed Hashim Baraha,Mahtar Khan, Khiroja Raft Badakshan, Mahiwas AH Khan and other well known Muslim warriors. Among the Hindu mansabdars the names of Man Singh’s uncle Raja Jagannath Kachhawa, Khangar Madho Singh and Rao Loonkaran are mentioned in contemporary works. Abdul Qadir Badayuni was present at the Battle of Haldighati. He writes that there were only 5,000 horsemen under Man Singh in the battle of Haldighati. Nensi writes that Man Singh was at the command of 40,000 soldiers at the battle of Haldighati. Modern writer of Vir Vinod informs us that the Mughal forces were 80,000 in the Battle of Haldighati. The modern historians of Akbar accept the version of Badayuni. It is very difficult to believe that the Battle of Haldighati could be fought with only 5000 horsemen.

Mansingh traveled a distance of 75 miles and reached mandalgarh where he halted for about a couple of months. The author of Iqbal Nama-i-Jahangiri informs that the commanders appointed under Man Singh were to join him at Mandalgarh. Abul Fazi also informs us that Man Singh waited for reinforcement at Mandalgarh. The Kachchawa prince wanted to secure the passage between Ajmer and Mandalgarh before proceeding ahead in the mountain region of Mewar. Mutamid Khan again confirms this that Rana Pratap was discouraged by Sardars to be offensive against Man Singh. Man Singh left Mandalgarh in the direction of Gogunda before the end of May or beginning of June 1576. The Mughal forces continued to march till they reached village Molela on the banks of river banas and halted there up to 15th June.

Rana Pratap made complete arrangements for a war against Mughals. But he could not get timely information about Man Singh’s march and therefore he waited at the place Lohasingh for about a fortnight or so. Rana Pratap could have charged Man Singh from his camp of Lohasingh but one of his Sardar namely Nida Jhala advised the Rana not to kill Rajputs unaware of.

Pratap descended from the fort of Kumbalgarh on the 17th of June 1576. He was at a distance of 12 miles from Haldighati and the Mughal forces were not far away from him. Pratap advanced at the head of 3,000 Bhil soldiers to charge Man Singh. Dr. G.N. Sharma writes in Mewar and the Mughal Emperors that Rana Pratap charged the Mughal forces at the head of 3,000 horses – men, 2,000 foot soldiers, 150 elephants and 100 miscellaneous soldiers. Abul Fazi writes that pitched battle between Rana Pratap and Man Singh took place at the village Khamnor. Badayuni writes that the battle took place at Gogunda. Col. Tod had described it as the battle of Haldighati. The actual battle took place in narrow space known as the Badshah Bagh where 8,000 soldiers of Man Singh and Pratap fought against each other.

Man Singh deputed an advance guard of 900 soldiers under Syyed Hashim Barah to repulse the attack of Pratap. Badayuni has described this contingent as Joja-i-Harawal.’ Raja Jaimal, Asaf khan and Ghasiuddin Khan, were in the front ranks of the Mughal army. On the right side were posted Sayyed Ahmed Khan and Hashim Baraha and on the left side Gazi Khan, Badakshah, Loonkaran, and the Sheikhzadas of Sikri. On the left side of the Mughal army was posted Mahtar Khan, to command the reserve of the Mughal army. Man Singh commanded the Mughal forces from an elephant which was in the heart of the Mughal army.

Rana Pratap’s front consisted of Kakrm Khan Soor, Kishan Das Chandwat, and Ram Das. The left was commanded by Ran Ram Shah of Gwalior and the right wing of the army was commanded by Man Singh Jhala. Poonja, Purohit Gopi Nath, Metha Ratan Chand and Jagmal were with the Rana who was in the middle of his army.

The first attack was from the side of Rana on the Mughal forces on 18th o June, 1576. Abul fazi has given graphic description of the first encounter between the Mughals and the forces of Rana Pratap. He informs us that in the thick of the battle it was difficult to distinguish between friends and foe. Meanwhile Mahtar Khan spread a rumor that the Mughal emperor was approaching at the head of a large contingent. The rumor was spread with a view to boost the morale of the Mughal army. But it had an adverse effect on the forces of Rana Pratap. Rana fled from the battlefield and after his flight, his army was completely annihilated.

With the flight of Rana Pratap from the battlefield of Haldighati, romantic legend of the meeting of two brothers, Shakti Singh and Pratap, is attached. Dr. Ojha and Dr. G.N. Sharma are of the opinion that this is one of the legends attached with the glorious name of Rana Pratap. Dr. Raghuvir Singh has also discarded it. If Shakti Singh would have been present in the battle of Haldighati, Abul Fazal and Badayuni must have made mention about his presence in the battle field. The battle of Haldighati was not the battle between Akbar and Pratap. The battle was motivated with the sole idea of fight between imperialism and local independence. Pratap and his followers sacrificed their life and liberty for the regional independence of the land of their birth.

Both Abul Fazi and Nizamuddin inform us that 150 men of the Mughal forces and 500 men of Pratap’s army were killed in the battle. Badayuni writes that 500 persons of both sides were killed in the battlefield out of which 120 were Muslims. Rajput chroniclers give an exaggerated number of 20,000 soldiers having been killed in the battlefield. Dr. R.P. Tripathi is of the opinion that Badayuni appears to be correct.

There were four important reasons for the defeat of Rana Pratap in the battle of Haldighati:-

1. He was himself a brave soldiers who did not lack courage and physical bravery, but he did not possess farsightedness as General of the Army and therefore he could not arrange his forces properly in the battlefield.
2. He did not begin the war with a plan. It was haphazard beginning in which front rank of the army was completely lost in first charge.
3. He plunged 2 battalions of his horsemen in the beginning. He did not keep the reserve army intact.
4. The battle was fought with traditional methods of warfare. The bullets of the Mughals could be hardly answered by the arrows of Pratap’s army. Thus the battle was lost by Pratap because of his mistakes of omission and commission. It was a turning point for him in his career because thereafter he had to proceed in the mountainous region of Girwas near present Udaipur where he spent his remaining 21 years in the vain hope of regaining lost power and position against his rival, Akbar the Great.


Pratap’s Career after the Battle of Halidighati

Rana Pratap escaped safely from the battlefield of Haldighati. He moved in the direction of Kumbhalgarh. But he could not stay there for long because Gogunda had fallen in the hand of Man Singh. Rana did not get tired of his activities despite the fact that he was defeated in the battle of Haldighati. He began making an attempt to recover the lost territories by forming a coalition of some of the leading Rajputs of the then Rajasthan. He could successfully persuade Narain Das of Idar to raise a revolt against Akbar. Rana also invited Rao Sultan Sirohi and Taj Khan of Jalore. At a time when Rana Pratap was forming a coalition of powers against the Mughal authority, Fazi informs us that the troubles of Rana Pratap was forming a coalition of powers against the Mughal authority, Chandra Sen of Marwar raised trouble in the area of Nadole. Abul fazi informs us that the trouble of Chandra Senhad some sort of connection with the troubles of Rana Pratap. The sum total result of Pratap’s activities was the recovery of Gogunda from the Mughals during the absence of Kunwar Man Singh.

Rana Pratap’s activities posed a serious problem to Akbar. The Mughal emperor decided to first subdue Taj Khan of Jalore and Rao Sultan of Sirohi. Akbar succeeded in reducing them to obedience. Nodole was also taken into possession by the Mughal forces by the 19th of October, 1576. The Mughal commanders succeeded in reestablishing the royal authority in Idar. All these measures crippled the resources of the Rana who was almost cornered by the Mughals. Akbar’s visit to Gogunda on October 11, 1576 was a significant event in the struggle between the Mughals and Pratap of Mewar. Akbar deputed Raja Bhagwant Das of Amber, his son, Man Singh and Qutubuddin Khan to trace the whereabouts of Pratap in the hilly region of Mewar. The Mughal commanders failed in their mission. But Akbar succeeded in establishing outposts at Pindwara, Haldighati and Mohi with a view to keep an eye on the contacts of Pratap with his allies. Akbar visited Udaipur in November, 1576. He appointed Fakrudin and Jagan Nath as the incharges of the city of Udaipur. The Mughal Empereor left for Malwa via Dungarpur and Banswara towards the end of 1576 A.D. He had made complete arrangements to encircle Rana Pratap. But the Rana continued to create troubles in the newly acquired territories of the Mughals. Therefore an imperial army was sent against Pratap under the command of Raja Bhagwant Das, his son Man Singh and Meer Bakshi reinforced took possession of the fort of Kumbhalgarh on the 3rd of April 1578 A.D. The Rana had already slipped out of the fort before its occupation by the Mughals. The Rana went to Dholan, a place on the western frontiers of Mewar, and passed some time there. His minister, Bhama Shah, rendered him financial help in hour of distress - He could manage to attack the Mughal garrison at Kumbhalgarh in November, 1578 A.D. Shahbaz Khan was again deputed by the Mughal Emperor to turn out Rana Pratap from the neighbourhood of Kumbhalgarh. Mughal Commander stayed in the region of Mewar till about the middle of 1580 A.D. The Rana was forced to retire to hilly tracks by the Mughal army.

With the retirement of Rana Pratap from the active military life are attached legends which depict him as a wanderer sleeping on grass and mats and moving from one valley to other in the company of tribes (Bhils and Meenas). The most interesting legend is the story of a cat taking away a lot of bread from the hands of the crying daughter of Pratap. Dr. G.N. Sharma has rejected all stories on the authority of contemporary works like Amar kavya Vanshavli, Raj Vilas, Raj Prashasti and Khyats of Mewar in which no mention has been made of such romantic stories. He comes to the conclusion that Col. Tod picked up legends from some friends with a view to highlight the life of Pratap after 1580 A.D. Rana Pratap is described as a person who lost his balance of mind in hour of distress and wrote a letter of submission to Akbar. It is said that Prithvi Raj of Bikaner wrote a latter to Pratap to withdraw the letter of submission to Akbar. Dr. G.N. Sharma has rejected this story also because no contemporary historian, Hindu or Muslim, mentions it; a letter of submission from Pratap is not the kind of a thing a Muslim historian will overlook.

Akbar appointed Abdul Rahim Khankhana as the Subedar of Ajmer on 16th June 1580. He was also put in charge of the Mughal campaign against the Rana. This forced the Rana to evacuate Dholen and recede to the interior region of Mewar, known as Chhappan. He established his authority there. From there the Rana led expeditions against the states of Banswara and Dungarpur. Akbar appointed Raja Jagan Nath on the 6th December 1584 against Pratap and instructed him to bring the Rana to Mughal court as a captive. On hearing of Jagannath’s march against him Rana receded further in the interior of Mewar Dr. G.N. – Sharma writes, “Jagan Nath’s invasion was practically speaking the last important invasion, after this the Emperor had no time to spare for Mewar.” It is recorded by Dr – Sharma that the Rana Pratap could recover 36 places from the Mughal possessions between the years 1585 and 1597. He was assisted by his son Amar Singh in his plundering activities against the Mughals. During this period, war time capital of Mewar was also established at Chdvand. The Rana died at Chavand on January 19, 1597 A.D.

The account of Rana Pratap’s incessant struggle against Akbar throughout his life proves the fact that he was fighting for the independence of the land of his birth. He sacrificed his personal peace and comfort by not submitting before the Mughal Emperor. He sacrificed the lives of many of his faithful followers for achieving his goal. The stand taken by Pratap is criticized by some of the modem scholars on the authority of events that took place in Mewar after his death. No doubt his son and successor Amar Singh had to submit before Akbar’s son and successor, yet we cannot criticize Pratap for his sentimental attachment for the land of his birth which coaxed him to continue struggle against Mughals. His war-time measures were at the cost of economic losses of Mewar. The Mughals ravaged the land of Mewar as a result of which the region could not prosper in years to come. Akbar’s determination to avoid submission in person were the main reasons responsible for the devastation of Mewar at the hands of Mughals during the last quarter of the 16th century.


Rajasthan Information: History - Culture - Heritage - Music - Dance - Art - Architecture - Society

Sources of the History and Culture of Rajasthan
(From earliest times up to 1200 A.D.)

Rajput - Muslims Relations
 (1200 – 1526 A.D.)

Architecture in Rajasthan (1200 – 1800 A.D.)

Kalibangan - the largest prehistoric site in Rajasthan

Excavations at Ahar (South Rajasthan)

Origin of the Rajputs

Origin of the Guhilas, their Rise and Bappa Rawal in Rajasthan

Moguls & Chauhans Resistance in Rajasthan

Rawal Ratan Singh of Rajasthan and his Resistance against the Turks

Maharana Kumbha (1433 – 1468) and his Political Achievements

Maharana Kumbha & his Cultural Achievements

Maharana Sanga & his Achievements (1508 – 1528 A.D.)

Rajasthani Paintings Schools

Merger of Rajput states in the Indian Union

Resistance of Mahararana Pratap of Mewar Against Akbar

Maratha - Rajputs Relations

Raja Man Singh of Amber

Rathore – Sisodia Alliance & Achievements of Raj Singh in Mewar

Role of Durga Dass Rathor in the history of Rajasthan

Sawai Jai Singh of Jaipur , Mughals and Marathas

Rajasthan’s Cultural Heritage


Rajasthan Tourism  & Travel Packages -  Rajasthan Vacations & Holidays

12 Days Rajasthan Desert Tour Package

13 Days Rajasthan Desert Holiday Tour

13 Days Rajasthan Round Trip

14 Days Rajasthan Tour Package

16 Days Cultural Rajasthan Tour

17 Days Colorful Rajasthan Tour

17 Days Vacations in Rajasthan

18 Days Rajasthan Tour Package

19 Days Rajasthan - North India Tour

28 Days Heritage Tour of Rajasthan

31 Days Holidays in Rajasthan

31 Days Rajasthan Wildlife Tour

                      Group Tours of Rajasthan                                                                     Car Rental in Rajasthan 


Special Service for German Speaking Traveller - Rajasthan Group Travel with German Speaking Tour Guide !

Gruppenreisen - Durchführung aber schon ab 2 Teilnehmer garantiert !


:: Home :: email  :: Contact :: Enquiry :: Sitemap

Indo Vacations®

(Recognized Rajasthan Tour Operator & Holiday Planner)
Address: Plot No.312
-313 A, Valmiki Marg, Raja Park, Jaipur 302004 (India)
Click here to see our Location Online

Network  for Rajasthan Tourism in following cities

Delhi – Agra – Bharatpur –– Ranthambore – Jaipur – Shekhawati – Bikaner – Jaisalmer – Jodhpur –– Ranakpur – Kumbhalgarh -
Mount Abu – Udaipur

Online Assistance via Skype: indo-vacations   (live video option available)

Tel.: 0091 141 4013241 (not to be used for general queries)
(We recommend and prefer email as the mode of communication for your initial queries .You will be informed later the unique tel. Number of your personal Tour Executive after we receive your query)
PS: if you do not hear from us within 48 hours please repeat your e-mail


Rajasthan - Tour - Package
Copyright ©, Indo Vacations®. All Rights Reserved.