(Last Updated on : 02-04-2012)
Pragmalji II was the Maharao of the princely state of Cutch, which is currently known as Kutch
district in the state of Gujarat
in western India. He ruled over the territory from the year 1860 to 1875, when he died. He was born in the year 1839 to father Rao Deshalji II and belonged to the Jadeja dynasty of Rajputs
. After the demise of his father on 26th July, 1860, Pragmalji II
ascended the royal throne on 26th July, 1860 and reigned until 19th December, 1875.
Rule of Pragmalji II
Pragmalji II was a progressive and competent ruler and took numerous measures for the advancement of the princely state of Cutch (Kutch) and the betterment of his subjects. During his reign, the Gadh of Mandvi, Mundra were renovated and reconstructed. He established many other prominent buildings and structures. The Prag Mahal
and the embankment of Hamirsar Lake were also built under his supervision. Maharao Pragmalji II also introduced state funded education and founded several schools and educational institutes in his state. The first high school Cutch (Kutch) named the Alfred High School, was started by the reputed Maharao at Bhuj in the year 1870.
Maharao Pragmalji II incorporated various other facilities in the state that contributed hugely to the development of the society at large. The first Bhuj Municipality, the Port Police, Forest officers for protection and conservation of forest, special cell for minerals were established and initiated under his regime. He also framed the civil and army laws under guidance of British East India Company. During the rule of Pragmalji II of Cutch (Kutch), the first non- Kutchi Dewan, Bahadur Krishnaji Tulkar, was appointed. Further more, Pandurang Shivram became the Police Commissioner and Chief Justice Shri Vinayakrao Bhagwat was also appointed. These marked the progress and modernization of the set, as prior to the reign of Maharao Pragmalji, only Kutchis were appointed in these positions.
Maharao Pragmalji II of the princely state of Cutch (now Kutch) also commissioned the Prag Mahal, which was named after him, in the year 1865. The structure was designed by Colon Wilkins and was constructed by British architects and local builders from the state. But the monumental building was completed after in the year 1879, after the death of the ruler. It was completed by his son Maharao Khengarji III of the princely state of Cutch, during his reign.
Maharao Pragmalji II died on 19th December, 1875 and was succeeded by Khengarji III, his son, who ascended the throne and became the Maharajadhiraj Mirza Maharao Sri Sir Khengarji III Sawai Bahadur, GCSI, GCIE, KIH of the princely state of Cutch.