Monday, July 22, 2024

Travails of Panipat: Battle of Peshawar 1758

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As Marathas captured Attock, the confidence of moving forward became stronger within the leaders. For Hindus it was a great opportunity to demolish Afghans and extend boundaries of a Hindu Empire. In the mid- eighteenth century, where there were fragments of Indian polity, Marathas came forward to unite the land.

Victory over Peshawar by the Hindu Maratha forces is one significant event which established the supremacy of Hindu military prowess. Capture of Peshawar is also one incident when Ahmed Shah Abdali’s army was decimated.

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Moving Forward to Peshawar

After capturing Attock, Maratha army moved forward to get their hold over Peshawar. At that point Peshwar was held by Timur Shah Durrani and Jahan Khan, vassals of Abdali. And to break this fortress under the two able leaders the Maratha Army was sent further. Tukoji Holkar and Khandoji Kadam led the army. Peshwar currently present in the Khyber Pakhtunwa state of Pakistan.

(p.c.- indiatoday)

On 8th May this Battle of Peshawar took place between the Marathas and Durranis. Bhagwa dhwaj was hoisted over the fortress and the great day was celebrated as a huge victory of the Marathas.

Significantly, in this battle Sikh misls were also cooperating with the Maratha forces, which shows the Hindu unity. During the invasions of Abdali north was dilapidated and noticeable, our prime teerthas were under attack. Kashi, Vrindavan, Ayodhya and Mathura were the holy places to be saved.

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Shah of Persia writes to Raghunath Rao

As the Maratha grip was strengthening in the north-west frontier, other significant kings also found an opportunity in this. When the forces of Raghunathrao captured Attock, Shah of Persia wrote a letter to Peshwa Raghunath Rao that what if Attock becomes the boundary of India, Shah of Persia and Marathas can tackle the Durranis. Therefore, it simply meant that beyond Attock important cities like Peshwar, Kandahar and Kabul had to be handed over to Shah of Persia. And hence, Raghunath rao prepared his comeback after setting up the military and administrative base in Lahore.

(p.c.- Shrimant Raghunath Rao (Raghoba Dada)


In conclusion, the battles fought in all these years before 1761 were very significant in reclaiming the lost trade routes and even tax- regions from Abdali. And Abdali;s devastation of our places could be recovered. These small victories are a rejoinder to Hindu selves that bravery and might is to be attained by indomitable spirit and undefeatable resolve. Any Empire is attained and sustained by the might of the swords and the blood of sacrifice!

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Jai Bhavani, Jai Shivaji!





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