Barbarian Aurangzeb—after destroying the great temple of Keshava Dev Rai, at Krishna Janmabhumi in Mathura and building Idhah mosque at its place—transported idols (Murti) of God Krishna to Agra and buried them under the steps of Nawab Begum Sahib’s (Jahanara’s) mosque so that they could be trampled and humiliated under the feet of Muslims.
It was ‘Maharana Raj Singh’ of Mewar Kingdom, who recovered idol of Shri Nath Ji from Agra and installed them at Aravali Hills on the banks of Banas River in Nathdwara in Rajasthan, because no other king dared to challenge the authority of Aurangzeb?
There were freedom fighters, who fought with British to free India. There were warrior Hindu emperors and kings, who battled Islamic attackers to protect India’s temples and heritages to the last drop of their blood. One such warrior king has been the great Maharana of Mewar, Rana Raj Singh. Born in 1629, Maharana Raj Singh became ruler of Mewar in 1652. After ascending the throne Maharana Raj Singh fought many battles with Aurnagzeb.
In 1669, Aurangzeb had issued an order to demolish all Hindu temples and Hindu schools throughout the empire banning public worship. When the blood thirsty Aurangzeb’s army attacked Gyanvapi Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Kashi, it is said that the head priest of temple jumped to the well with Shivling holding to his chest, in order to protect it. What a traumatic and gut wrenching visuals it would be! Thereafter, Aurangzeb’s barbarian army moved towards Mathura razing the temples which came their way.
In the month of Ramzan in 1670, after plundering Mathura, Aurungzeb destroyed the great temple Keshav Dev Rai, one of the magnificent temples ever built in India. And a mosque known as Idgah was built on its site. This is how he displayed strength of his faith. Even more disturbing and disgraceful was the idols were carried to Agra to be buried under the steps of Jahanara’s mosque. The name of Mathura was changed to Islamabad.
When the priest of Shri Nath Ji Temple reached to Rajputana (Present Day Rajasthan) pleading to recover idols, no other king such as king of Jaipur and Jodhpur could dare to help the priest, as it meant to upset Aurangzeb, who was considered to be most brutal ruler in the Asia. A disheartened priest reached to court of Maharana Raj with distress call. Without thinking twice Maharana Raj Singh roared, “Aurangzeb cannot touch the idols of Shri Nath Ji, until he trampled over the bodies of one lakh brave Rajput warriors.”
Maharana Raj Singh recovered idols of Shri Nath Ji, a seven years old infant incarnation of God Krishna and installed it at Aravali hills on the banks of Banas River in Nathdwara in 1672. Nathdwara, which means Gateway to Shri Nath Ji (God), is a famous pilgrimage place in Rajasthan, today.
Quite expectedly, Aurangzeb threatened Maharana Raj Singh. Instead of replying Aurangzeb, Maharana Raj Singh continued to reinforce his army speculating attack from Aurangzeb. Enraged Aurangzeb levied Jizya tax against the whole Hindu kingdoms in Rajputana. Such tyranny united Maharana Raj Singh with Rathore of Jodhpur.
True to his fanatic element, Aurangzeb attacked the capital of Mewar, Udaipur in 1680. It is known as Battle of Udaipur and Aravali Hills. Maharana Raj Singh safely escorted his citizens to the Aravali Hills, but he could not protect several villages and temples, which were burnt and destroyed by Aurangzeb’s General, Taj Khan. The formidable battle between Aurangzeb and Maharana Raj Singh continued for months. It was Maharana Raj Singh’s Guerrilla Warfare, which forced Aurangzeb’s troops to retreat.
Unsung warrior Maharana Raj Singh not only fought to protect Dharma and his motherland but he battled to protect ‘honour’. He saved Charumati, princess of Kishangarh, from Aurangzeb. Charumati was daughter of king of Kishangarh Roopsingh during 1660s. After sudden death of Roopsingh, his teenage son Maansingh was appointed as a Mughal Mansabdar by Aurangzeb. When he learnt about Charumati’s astonishing beauty, he forced Maansingh to marry his sister to him. Charumati requested Maharana Raj Singh to protect her sanctity. Maharana Raj Singh not only saved her from Aurangzeb, but married her at the cost of Mughal’s invasion.
How many Indians are educated about unsung king warrior like Maharana Raj Singh, who fought to protect his nation, civilisation and honour?