(Last Updated on : 23-01-2012)
The revolt in Bundelkhand (1628-1635 A.D.) under the reign of Shah Jahan is an important part of the medieval history of India. During the reign Jahangir, Bir Singh Bundela was the ruler of Bundelkhand. He had killed Abul Fazl
at the instigation of Jahangir
was the Mughal emperor. When Jahangir became the ruler, Bir Singh was given high honour and rank. After his death his son, Jujhar Singh was accepted as a successor by Jahangir. Jujhar Singh was in the service of the the court while his son, Bikramajit looked after the administration of Bundelkhand
. Bikramajit oppressed his subjects during the collection of revenues. When the news reached Shah Jahan, he ordered an inquiry into the past collections. That alarmed Jujhar Singh and he fled away from the court to Bundelkhand.
Shah Jahan ordered the Mughal army to attack Bundelkhand from different directions in 1628 A.D. and himself reached Gwalior to supervise the operations. Jujhar Singh realised the futility of fighting against the emperor and surrendered himself in 1629 A.D. and offered one thousand gold mohurs, fifteen lakh rupees, forty elephants and a part of his Jagirs to the emperor. Shah Jahan pardoned him and sent him in the campaign of the Deccan. Jujhar Singh served the emperor loyally for five years and played an important part in the wars of the Deccan. In 1634 A.D. he returned to his capital, Orcha. In 1635 A.D., he conquered Gondwana
and killed the ruler Prem Narayan. This was a crime in eyes of the emperor as no Mughal emperor allowed fighting among his vassal rulers. The son of Prem Narayan also appealed to emperor for justice.
Shah Jahan ordered Jujhar Singh either to pay rupees ten lakhs or give up Gondwana to him or hand over his Jagir which may be equal to Gondwana. Jujhar Sir refused to accept any of these conditions. Shah Jahan then sent Aurangzeb
to attack Bundelkhand. Jujhar Singh and his Bikramajit abandoned the capital Orcha, and proceeded towards the Deccan. Orcha was occupied by Aurangzeb, Hindu-temples were destroyed and mosques were raised in their places. Jujhar Singh and Bikramajit were killed in the jungle by the Gonds and their heads were produced before Shah Jahan. Two of the sons of Jujhar Singh and one of his grandsons were converted to Islam
. The Bundela ladies who were captured during the war were either taken over to the Mughal harem or were distributed among the Mughal nobles.
Bundelkhand was handed over to Devi Singh, one of the relatives of Bir Singh, who had sided with the Mughals during the war. Thus the revolt of Bundelkhand under Shah Jahan's reign was brutally suppressed in 1635 A.D.