Rani Durgavati: A Rajput Ruler Who Defeated Emperor Akbar Thrice - The Fearless Indian
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Rani Durgavati: A Rajput Ruler Who Defeated Emperor Akbar Thrice

  • Ekaki
  • October 28, 2016
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The invincible Mughal Emperor Akbar is often termed as a ruler who never faced any defeats in his life. Yes; he did receive severe threats from Maharana Pratap, but not anyone else. Or, so is the popular belief.

However, true is the fact that even the valiant Mughal Emperor Akbar had to face defeats—not once but thrice at the hands of Durgavati Maravi, famously known as Rani Durgavati.

Born on 5th October 1524 A.D., she belonged to the family of Rajput Chandel Emperor Keeratt Rai. Not simply a valiant soldier and an aggressive Empress, her deft governance policies outshone among all the contemporary and future rulers. She was also a patron of art, and it was under her regime that the famous Kalinjar Fort and the famous sculptures of Khajuraho were done.


In spite of such importance, her name somehow was lost among the pages of Indian History. But no more; here’s furnishing all our readers with a little yet valuable information about Rani Durgavati, her life and her times:


In spite of being born to a royal family, her accession to the throne was not a cake work. However, being born in the Rajput Chandel family—which was known for their resistance against the Muslim ruler Mehmood Ghaznavi—from her early days, the Rani knew the glory of the Rajputs and the importance of withstanding against all foreign powers.

Her marriage to Dalpat Shah of the Gond Dynasty in 1542 brought the famous dynasties closer. In fact, the battle of the Chandels in unison with the Gonds against Sher Shah Suri culminating the death of the latter has been reiterated time and again in every Indian history book.

In 1545, the Rani gave birth to Vir Narayan. However, soon Dalpat Shah passed away leaving the Gond throne in need of a strong candidate. And, with Vir Narayan being too young to rule, Rani Drugavati enthroned herself with much valour and poise. Her brilliant administrative skills reflected from her very first move as an Empress: she shifted her capital to Singaugarh from Chauragarh. Knowing the strategic position of the new capital atop the Satpura Hills, this move was gladly welcome by all her ministers.


Maharani Durgavati has not only been an epitome of power and valour but has also been one of the major patrons of art in India. She had been and still is a pride of India and, even after her death, continues to live in the hearts of all Indians. Here is little a sneak-peek into the career of this noble Empress:

  1. Thinking of the Gond Empire dwindling in the hands of a new Maharani, the Malwa ruler Bajbahadur called an attack over the territory only to be repulsed and shocked by the Gond soldiers under Maharani Durgavati. Bajbahadur’s army suffered from huge casualties, and the ruler was finally shut up permanently for his deeds.
  2. The second time Durgavati’s deft rule came to display when the territory was observed by the Mughal Subedar Abdul Majid Khan with the intention of gaining the territory, as directed by Emperor Akbar. In spite of knowing the power of the Mughal Army, she decided to resist the forces. After all, it was more glorious to die resisting enemies at the battle field than surrendering in front of the foreign forces. And, she was successful in resisting the Mughals for long.
  3. Her bravery and determination was showcased perfectly when she decided to confront the Mughal Army alone on her elephant, helped by her son. Her courageous confrontation forced the Mughal Army retreat not once, but three times over.
  4. The respect for Rani among all the Indians doubled when she refused to fled the battle on his ‘mahout’s’ advice, and stabbed herself with her own dagger rather than surrendering to the Mughals.

Such was the prowess of Maharani Durgavati.

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