Raja Man Singh

Raja Man Singh, born in 1540, was the Raja of Amber. He was one of the famous 'Navaratnas'- the nine gems of the royal court of Akbar. As a trusted general of Akbar, he fought many battles including the historic battle of 'Haldighati' against Maharana Pratap. In 1594, he was appointed as the Governor of West Bengal, Orissa and Bihar.

Although a Rajput, Man Singh rose to the post of commander in Akbar's army and the emperor had a huge reliability on him. Since Man Singh's aunt was married to Akbar, he was in fact the Kings nephew -in- law in relation. On the other hand Maharana Pratap was also Man Singh's relative but Rana Pratap hated the Mughals as he considered them as invaders. Thus when Akbar sent Man Singh to persuade Rana to sign a treaty and accept Mughal sovereignty, he was invited to a dinner and was insulted. This led to the war between the Muhgals and Rana Pratap, the famous battle of Haldi Ghati in the year 1576.

Akbar sent the army, which was though formally led by his son Salim but actually controlled by Man Singh. A fierce war was fought and the Mughals emerged as the winner but Prarap managed to escape. Jhala Man, one of Pratap's nobles put on his helmet to deceive the enemy and sacrificed his life, helping Rana to flee.

In 1585, some Afghan tribes revolted against the Mughal Empire. The ongoing conflicts took the life of Birbal, one of Akbar's famous 'Navratnas'. Then, Man Singh accompanied by Rao Gopaldas crossed the invincible Khyber Pass and defeated the rebellions. In 1594 he was appointed as the Governor of Bengal, Orissa and Bihar. During this period Governor Man Singh defeated many small kings and expanded the Mughal Empire. Akbar's son Salim and Man Singh had their differences as Man Singh wanted to be the King's heir. So, when Akbar died and Salim sat on the throne, Man Singh was removed from Bengal.

Raja Man Singh built many wonderful temples, including one at Vrindavan. He contributed a lot to the beautification of Amber. He died a natural death at Ellichpur.

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Last Updated on : February 1, 2014