Shivaji Bhonsle, also known as Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, was an Indian warrior king and a member of the Bhonsle Maratha clan. One of the most progressive and sensible rulers in the history of our country was Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Tales of his bravery are countless and stories of his victories innumerable. He is considered as one of the greatest Maratha King even after his death on 3rd April 1680 at the Raigad Fort. Shivaji also known as Chhatrapati Shivaji was an Indian emperor and founder of Maratha Empire.
Shivaji Maharaj was a brave and kind emperor. He was born in 1627 A.D. (or 1630 A.D.) at Shivneri, a hill fort near Puna. His father Shahaji Raje Bhosale was employed as an officer in the army of the Sultan of Bijapur. Shivaji was brought up under the care of his mother Jijabai and guardian Dadoji Kondadev. Shivaji’s mother Jijabai and his guru Ramdas inspired him with the noble and patriotic ideas and infused in him love for the religion and the motherland. Shivaji got military training and learnt the art of government from Kondadev. He organized a number of Marathi hill-folk into a fighting force and began to raid neighbouring territories.
Shivaji created and maintained an organized and disciplined army consisting of infantry, cavalry and navy. He recruited only able persons in his army. He had the skills to manage a huge army. His army mostly composed of light infantry and light cavalry was admirably well-adapted to guerilla warfare and hill campaign. The army movements were extremely quick. Forts played an important role in Shivaji’s military system. Every Fort was kept under three officers of equal status. They acted together but served as a check on one another. Shivaji recognized the necessity of a strong navy. He had a navy of about 200 warships. The creation of a navy shows the foresight of Shivaji. A number of coastal fortresses kept guard over the sea. The Portuguese, the British, the Siddis and the Mughals were thus effectively kept in check. Nor were Shivaji’s intelligence service neglected. The espionage system formed a well-paid and efficient wing of the Maratha army.
An ardent fan of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj has launched an online petition seeking support to have a ‘Google Doodle’ of the Maratha warrior king. Shivaji Maharaj is so popular and fans seek online support to the great King, who fought fire with fire and proved his worth as the greatest warrior during the Mughal rule. Amit Wankhede, a Maharashtra government employee from Yavatmal district, launched the petition on February 6 and has claimed to have received over 22,000 signatures in support from across the country, mostly from interior Maharashtra. His petition highlights Shivaji’s heroic efforts of defeating the might of the Mughals and creating a Maratha empire that endured for centuries after his time.
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