Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj

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Comments (3)

Harshal Purohit +919… on June 25, 2009

Thank you viewers! This photograph has been eyed by more than 11000 times!

I have no words to convey my feelings to you all.

Greetings Harshal, India

hemant.patel999 on May 25, 2010

on 25 may 2010.

Its Nice picture.

i like it.

Hemant patel........

desiguyLV on September 28, 2010

The Maharaj was certainly a great Indian leader. However, the fall of the Mogul Empire created an avenue for the entrance of the British. The 1857 War of Independence or The Sepoy Mutiny was the first independence movement against the British.

By bankrupting the nobility and the urban middle class - demand for many local goods was almost eliminated. At the same time local producers were confronted with unfair competition from British imports. The consequences of this were summarized by the rebel prince Feroz Shah, in his August 1857 proclamation: "the Europeans by the introduction of English articles into India have thrown the weavers, the cotton dressers, the carpenters, the blacksmiths and the shoe-makers and others out of employ and have engrossed their occupations, so that every description of native artisan has been reduced to beggary."

Contrast this turn of events with the arrival of Mughal rule in India. Babar, in spite of his distaste for the Indian climate and customs, noted the tremendous diversity and skill of Indian craftspeople, and saw in that a great potential for expanding Indian manufacturing. Quite unlike the British, the Mughals built on the manufacturing strengths of the Indian artisan - (already well establish in the earlier Sultanate period) - and took them to dazzling heights in the later periods. But by the mid-19th century, this pre-industrial virtuosity in manufacturing had been virtually choked off by British policies. A British chronicler of the period, Thomas Lowe noted how "the native arts and manufactures as used to raise for India a name and wonder all over the western world are nearly extinguished in the present day; once renowned and great cities are merely heaps of ruins..."

Threatened by such a radical turn of events, the British rulers poured in immense resources in arms and men to suppress the struggle. Although the rebels fought back heroically - the betrayal by a number of rulers such as the Sikh princes, the Rajasthani princes and Maratha rulers like Scindia allowed the British to prevail. Lord Canning (then Governor General) noted that "If Scindia joins the rebels, I will pack off tomorrow". Later he was to comment: "The Princes acted as the breakwaters to the storm which otherwise would have swept us in one great wave". Such was the crucial importance of the betrayal of the princes.

The 1857 revolt against the British, which had forged an unshakable unity amongst Hindus and Muslims alike, was an important milestone in our freedom struggle - providing hope and inspiration for future generations of freedom lovers. However, the aftermath of the 1857 revolt also brought about dramatic changes in colonial rule. After the defeat of the 1857 national revolt - the British embarked on a furious policy of "Divide and Rule", fomenting religious hatred as never before. Resorting to rumors and falsehoods, they deliberately recast Indian history in highly communal colors and practiced pernicious communal politics to divide the Indian masses. That legacy continues to plague the sub-continent today. However, if more people become aware of the colonial roots of this divisive communal gulf - it is possible that some of the damage done to Hindu-Muslim unity could be reversed. If Hindus and Muslims could rejoin and collaborate in the spirit of 1857, the sub-continent may yet be able to unshackle itself from its colonial past.

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Photo taken in Sayaji Baug, Kala Ghoda Circle, Dak Bunglaw, Sayajigunj, Vadodara, Gujarat 390001, India

Photo details

  • Uploaded on October 15, 2007
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Harshal Purohit +919…
    • Taken on 2007/09/22 14:02:55
    • Exposure: 0.003s (1/400)
    • Focal Length: 9.42mm
    • F/Stop: f/5.600
    • ISO Speed: ISO50
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash