Peshwa Bajirao, Indian Hindi historical period drama television series has started getting aired on Sony TV from 23rd January 2017. This Serial is based on the life of great Maratha warrior Peshwa Bajirao.
From the Very first episode We got to know that after the death of Great Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in 1680, his dream of Swaraj has been shattered by Aurangzeb. His Successor Maratha were hiding in their high forts and the impenetrable forests. Sambhaji was tortured and finally executed. Sambhaji’s son Shahuji, was captured by Aurangzeb.
TaraBai : Widow of Rajaram who took over the reins of the Maratha kingdom during the Crucial Hour
Sambhaji’s brother Rajaram now became the leader of the Maratha, In 1700 Rajaram died of a chest disease, The Maratha’s now only had the widows and two infant sons as heirs. But little did any one specially Aurangzeb would have thought that, one widow can became his nightmare after Vir Shivaji.
After the death of Rajaram, his widow Tarabai took over the reins of the Maratha kingdom and continued the war against Aurangzeb. She became the leader to the Maratha army at the crucial hour.
Rani Tarabai was the wife of Chatrapati Rajaram Maharaj, and the daughter in law of the great Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj . she was also the niece of Shivaji’s wife Soyrabai and the daughter of Hambirao Mohite senapati of the Maratha army.
Fight against the Mughals
Tarabai declared her four-year-old son the king under the name Shivaji II, throwing aside Shahu’s claim.
She then bribed, and convinced the Maratha generals to support her and threw second wife Queen Rajasbai and her son Sambhaji into prison.
She was a clever intelligent woman, and had obtained a reputation during her husband’s lifetime for her knowledge of civil and military matters.
Between the period 1700—1707, Tarabai solely directed the Maratha defense against Aurangzeb’s army. She led attacks from the front, travelling between Forts, mobilizing resources and motivating her commanders. She also mastered Aurangzeb’s particular technique of bribing commanders on both sides of the conflict.
A sick and dispirited Aurangzeb finally returned to Aurangabad, where he died in 1707 at the age of 89.
Shahuji was released by the Mughals mainly to counter Tarabai, and to divide the Maratha’s
After the death of Aurangzeb Mughals released shahuji, so that they can take advantage of quarrel among Marathas and stop Tarabai .
Shahuji won a battle against Tarabai’s troops at Khed, and he finally entered Satara and was crowned in 1708.
Tarabai retired to the province of Kolhapur , where she set up her independent throne in 1713.
In 1713, Shahu made, Balaji Vishwanath, his Peshwa (Chief Minister) who managed to win over Tarabai’s most powerful supporter,and put a temporay halt on her plans, by helping Rajasabai (Rajarams other wife)and her son Sambhaji upon the throne of Tarabai and her son .Tarabai and her son Shivaji were thrown into Panhala’s prison, where she spent 16 years, and her son eventually died.
During 1730, Shahu, finally freed her, and overcome with family feeling, generously invited her to stay in Satara. Sambhaji II continued to rule from Kolhapur.
Tarabai’s power lust
In 1748, Shahu fell ill, and he was without any heir.That time Tarabai was 73, and She said that she had a grandson Ramraja.
Tarabai impressed upon Shahu, that her grandson, whom everyone had thought had died, was in fact alive, and that she had kept him hidden to ward of assassination attempts on him by her dead husbands other wife, Rajasabai and her son Sambhaji. Tarabai thus presented Ramraja as a more direct descendent with greater right to succeed Shahu.
Through Ramraja, Tarabai tried to control over the affairs of the Maratha kingdom. She even tried to remove the Peshwa Balaji Bajirao from his post , as she found him an challenging her power. Later, finding Ramraja out of control , Tarabai imprisoned him. She even declared that Ramraja was not really her grandson but someone whom she had pretended to be one to get the throne.
There was a brief power struggle between the Peshwa Balaji Bajirao and Tarabai . But eventually the old queen agreed to a compromise whereby Peshwa would show his loyalty to her, and Tarabai would acknowledge his right to govern the country. Ramraja remained Tarabai’s prisoner to her last.
Few people loved her, few did hate her, But No one can deny her Struggle Against Aurangzeb during the Crucial Hour
TaraBai died in 1761 at the age of 86, for so many people it was a news of relief But all accepted the fact that if Tarabai hadn’t taken the charge of Maratha empire after Rajarams death, the hard fought kingdom of Shivaji would have disintegrated. Tarabai , despite all her faults was one of the most fearless leaders the Marathas had seen. If she had not been there in 1701, it is likely that Aurangzeb would have removed out Maratha rule, and the history of India would have been very different.