Rani Lakshmi bai- The brave warrior

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She was married to the King of Jhansi, Raja Gangadhar Rao in the year 1842. Only after her marriage she was called as Lakshmi bai. She gave birth to a boy in the year 1851 and called him Damodar Rao, but the child died when it was four months old and so the King adopted a child and called him Anand Rao, that child was the King’s cousin, who was renamed as Damodar Roa, a day before the King died. The adoption took place in front of the British officer and he also requested that the government of Jhansi should be given to his wife for her lifetime and that adopted child should be treated with kindness. But after the death of the King in the year 1853, the British did not accept his request for the child to annex the throne, as Damodar was an adopted child and conquered all the territories of Jhansi under the governor general Lord Dalhousie. In the year 1854, March, the Rani of Jhansi was given a pension of 60,000 and was asked to leave the fort and the palace. As usual she rode on the horseback and was accompanied with a small escort to the temple. Her horses included Pavan, Sarangi and Badal, and going with the tradition, she rode on Badal when she escaped from the fort in the year 1858. The palace is now converted into a museum and has a lot of archaeological remains from the period 9th and 12th centuries.

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The Indian rebellion of 1857 which started in the month May and ended in July, 1857, and another started in the month of August, 1857 and ended in the year 1858 June. The first phase was the convincing the People and making them gain confidence to fight the British. A rumor was spreading around India in the year 1857 that the cartridges that was supplied by British had pork and beef fats. The First Indian Rebellion started in the year 1857, May 10, when this News reached Jhansi. At that time Rani asked the then British Political officer if she can start a body of armed men for her own protection and the officer agreed for that. Rani wanted the women in Jhansi to take part in the Rebellion and so she conducted a Haldi Kumkum in front of all the women and also assured to all her subjects, and convinced them that the British not to be frightened because they were coward.

Rani did not want to rebel against the British, but it was coming around. In June, some men massacred the European officers along with their wives and children and seized the fort. Rani’s involvement in massacred is still a topic of debate. Rani wanted the throne to go to her adopted child and so she was guarding that indirectly. Rani’s forces defeated the mutineers who tried to claim the throne, they were caught and imprisoned. Jhansi was invaded and then split into two and so Rani aided help from the then British governor, but he refused because he believed that Rani was responsible for the massacre. She set up her own forces and prevented the invaders in the year 1857. Her intension was to hold Jhansi on behalf of the British. This was the end of the first rebellion.

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The second rebellion started in August 1857, and at that time Jhansi was calm and peaceful under Rani’s control. British forces threatened Rani’s troops to move away so that they could take control, but their forces never arrived, and India was forcing for Independence from the British. When the British forces came in, they found it very difficult because the British had guns which could break the walls and even Jhansi, Sir Hugh Rose ordered then to surrender Jhansi, and if that was refused, Jhansi would be destroyed. Rani had other thoughts and she was ready for the British attacks and she proclaimed that if they are victorious they will enjoy the fruits of victory or if they are killed in the battle field, they shall earn eternal glory and salvation. She was successful in defending Jhansi from the British on 23 March, 1858. The bombardment began on 24th March, but they were back fired by heavy metals by the British and so Rani asked help from Tatya Tope, who sent in 20,000 army person, but failed in front of the British. There were firing in all parts of Jhansi, also in every room of the palace. The firing became so intense that Rani was not able to take more and women and children were also attacked, so she left the palace. She had to join either Tatya Tope or Nana Sahib’s nephew.

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There was a lot of film type of types of scenes such as Rani jumping with her adopted son, on to her horse Badal, they survived from the fort but the horse died.

 

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Her next motive was Kalpi; she along with Tatya Tope annexed the place and decided to guard it. On May 22, the British attacked Kalpi which was defended by Indian forces commanded by Rani herself, but were defeated. The leaders again fled the site and joined the Indian forces in Gwalior, but failed again because Rao was Peshwa and Rani was unsuccessful in persuading other rebel leaders to fight the British because they never came when she expected. The British forces came on June 17 and annexed Gwalior. Rani failed again with such big army. During the attack, Rani put on a sower’s uniform and tried to fake fight the British, but she was found and badly wounded and later killed. While another says that she was badly shot by the British and so before dying she asked her people to burn her body so that her British won’t get her body.

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It is very difficult to be like Rani Lakshmi Bai because she was very brave and had the courage to fight the British even after losing the battle. She was referred in a note by Hugh Rose as the Most Dangerous of all the Indian Leaders. She died at the age of 22 for the country. She was very clever, personable, and beautiful. If Girls of our generation are like Rani, they will be able to fight even the men of this generation rather than going in to Kitchen. She was a great fighter and wanted India to get its independence. She is a great inspiration and we can take her as an example.

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