On Monday, the Maharashtra government will commemorate the birth of Maratha warrior Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj (March 21). Shivaji is recognised as the Maratha Empire’s finest warrior king.
Though the official celebrations are on February 19, as per the Gregorian calendar, the ruling Shiv Sena recognises Shivaji’s birthday as being on the third (Tritiya) day of Falgun Vadya, as per the Hindu calendar (month of Falgun). The Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), which Raj Thackeray founded, is also commemorating his birthday today.
Shiv Sena leaders wrote letters to then-Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis during the previous Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government, urging that the celebrations be held according to Marathi traditions.
Chhatrapati Shivaji was born in Shivneri Durg, Pune, in 1630. Chhatrapati Shivaji, the founder of the Maratha kingdom, was a natural leader and a brilliant warrior.
Chhatrapati Shivaji had defeated the Mughals in multiple battles and established the Maratha Empire. He was formally crowned ‘Chhatrapati,’ or emperor, in 1674.
This year marks the 392nd anniversary of the legendary Maratha ruler’s birth.
The following are 6 facts about Chhatrapati Shivaji:
Shivaji adored his mother Jijabai, a devoutly religious and strong woman.
He was interested in religious teachings and sought out Hindu saints regularly.
Shivaji was not named after Lord Shiva, contrary to common belief; instead, he was called after a local goddess, Shivai Chhatrapati.
Shivaji was known as the “Mountain Rat” because of his guerrilla combat techniques.
Shivaji was known for forming alliances and fighting with Mughal monarchs.
The Maratha kingdom was enlarged by Shivaji’s armies, who captured and built great forts.