History of Managing Doon valley in Lalit Shah Period

History of Managing Doon valley in Lalit Shah Period
History of Garhwal King Lalit Shah part – 2
History of Garhwal including Haridwar (1223- 1804 AD) –part -166

History of Uttarakhand (Garhwal, Kumaon and Haridwar) -413

By: Bhishma Kukreti (A History Research Student)
In last days of Pradip Shah, Garhwal King Pradip could get back Dehradun from Mughal rule. However, Pradip Shah could not pay attention on managing Dehradun (Doon Valley). Rohilla commander Nazibuddaula established tens of Rohilla and Pathan families in Doon valley. Pradip Shah pushed back Rohilla and Pathan from Doon valley. However, Pradip Shah did not take proper decision to manage Doon valley and the disturbances in Doon valley persisted there even after his death.
Till then, the head quarter of Dehradun /Doon valley was in Nvada. At this period, the population nearby Guru Ram Rai Durbar or Dera at Dhamawala had been increasing. The governor of Doon valley shifted head quarter of Doon at Dera Dhamawala. The Mahant of Guru Ram Rai had been regularly interfering in the Doon Management.
Extention of Awadh’s (Oudh) Territory by Shuja-ud- Daula
Due to interference of Maratha, Jabita Khan became Meer Bakshi of Mughal Empire in 1773. However, his wealth and armed force power was reduced due to Shakrtal and Pithoragarh defeat. Nazib ud Daula the father of Jabita Khan used to help his native forces of Rohillas and Afghans . When around 1774, Rohillas and Afghans were fighting for their existences, Jabita Khan could not help his native forces. However, his secret connections were with Rohillas. In 1774, Oudh/Awadh Nabab Shuja ud Daula defeated Rohillas in Meeran Katra battle. Now, Shuja Ud Daula decided to capture the territory of Jabita Khan. Oudh Nabab captured the territories of Jabita Khan. Nabab captured Nazibabad too and east of Ganga territories.
Oudh Nabab Shuja ud Daula captured South Bhabhar. Now, South Bhabhar -Mordhwaj, Bijnor, Nazibabad, Chandanpur, Motadhang (parts of Garhwal before Nazib Khan) was under Shuja ud- Daula. A narrow strip of LalDhang to Chandighat was under Garhwal Kingdom.

Jabita Khan attacking on Doon Valley
After losing main territory of east of Ganga, Bijnor etc, Jabita Khan had some parts of Meerut and Saharanpur. He was Meer Bakshi just for naming sake. Mirja Najaf was looking after the administration of Mughal administration. Jabita Khan had to pay tribute to Mughal Empire as other Jagirdars used to pay. Jabita Khan tried to recapture Doon valley.
According to folklore, Jabita Khand attacked on a fort of Bhogpur in 1775. At the same time, Mughal Emperor appointed Abulkasimkhan as Faujdar of Saharanpur and ordered him to collect tax from Jabita Khan who did not pay tribute or amny years. Jabita Khan had to return from Doon valley to Saharanpur empty hand.
First Sikh Attack on Doon Valley
Since, Mughal Kingdom was in very bad shape, Sikh armed forces used to loot here and there. Sikh armed forces attacked whole of Doon in 1775. Sikh soldiers looted cruelly to whole Dehradun and did destruction too.
Escaping by Jabita Khan
After looting Doon valley, Sikh soldiers were to loot Saharanpur. Jabita Khan paid them heavy price for not looting Saharanpur region.
In 1776, with the help of Sikh forces, Jabita Khan killed the Mughal Faujdar of Saharanpur. On 24th April 1777, Mughal army defeated Jabita Khan. Jabita Khan ran away from Saharanpur and Mughal army captured his son Gulam Kadir and family members. Jabita Khan accepted Sikh sect and became Dharma Singh.
Second Looting of Doon Valley by Sikh Forces
In 1778, a Mughal force was sent to Punjab for suppressing the Sikh forces. Initially, Mughal force got success. However, in later stage, Mughal force was defeated by compbined forces of Kings or rulers of Patiyala, Jeend, Nabh, Bhadora and Malod. Now, the combined force crossed Yamuna River and looted Doon valley very cruelly.
Arriving Garhwal Army in Doon Valley
Garhwal King was a worried King. Lalit Shah was worried about new territories for his sons from Dotiyali wife. Garhwal King Lalit Shah appointed new force in his army with an intention to win new territories. Lalit Shah sent his new army for protecting Doon valley. However, till then Sikhs went back towards Punjab after looting Dehradun. Garhwal King ordered his new army to win over Sirmaur Kingdom. However, Sirmaur Army defeated Garhwal Army.

Raiding on Doon Valley by Rajput and Gurjar
The new force went back to Shrinagar from Doon valley after getting defeat from Sirmaur army.
Now, Rajput forces and Gurjar forces of Saharanpur started raiding on Doon valley. A few commanders collected armed forces in Haridwar, Saharanpur and Meerut. They used to appoint forces on the basis of partition on looted wealth. Regularly Rajputs and Gurjar forces started looting Doon Valley.
The local subjects used to protect themselves from raiders. These looters used to raid on Doon via Timli and Mohan Ghats. When the Khubadgujar Jagirdar became powerful than Pundir, the force of Landhaura Talukedar or Jagirdar or Gurjar chieftain Ramdayal Singh captured that path and started raiding Doon Valley.
Awarding Raiders
When Pundir and other Rajputs and Gurjar Talukedars were busy in raiding Doon valley, Lalit Shah was busy in planning to capture Kumaon for his sons with Joshis of Kumaon Kingdom.
Lalit Shah rewarded the raiders that there would be peace in Doon vaaley. Lalit Shah appointed Gulab Singh Pundir as Jagirdar of twelve villages of Doon valley. Lalit Shah also married his daughter with Gulab Singh that Gulab Singh Pundir would protect the interest of Doon.
Lalit Shah offered Ram Dayal Singh five villages. He offered some villages to Rav (Thokdar) of Khedi ( Haridwar), Rav of Sakrauda (Haridwar) and Rav of Raypur.
Llait Shah appointed son of Gulab Singh Pundir as governor of Doon valley and another Pundir – Peetambar Singh was offered Jagir of two villages in Doon valley.

Campaign of Sirmaur Attack by Lalit Shah
Lalit Shah had more affection for his Dotiyali queen. Lalit Shah did not like his eldest queen and price Jai Krit Shah. The court administrators took advantage of love for Doti queen and hate for eldest queen by the Garhwal King. The supporters of Doti queen became more influential in Garhwal court of Lalit Shah. Lalit Shah promised his Doti queen that her sons would get the throne.
There were two groups –one was supporting Jai Krit Shah as heir of Kingdom and other group was supporter of Pradyumna or Parakram Shah as heirs of Garhwal Kingdom .However, as per Garhwali culture, the eldest son would had right on the crown. Ultimately, Lalit shah had to obey the culture.
Doti queen was furious about Jai Krit Shah being grown as prince of Kingdom. As Dashrath promised his queen Kaikayi, Lalit Shah promised his queen Doti that he would win Sirmaur and Kumaon for her two sons.
Appointing new forces by Lalit Shah
Lalit Shah had plan to conquer Kumaon and Sirmaur for the sons of Dotiyal queen. Lalit Shah collected armed forces on hire from Kumaon, Himachal and other places. These soldiers used to be readily available at any time for anybody.
Attack on Sirmaur
Lalit Shah collected a new army for protecting Dehradun. Lalit Shah ordered his new army to capture Sirmaur Kingdom from Doon.
Garhwal force surrounded Bairat Garh and burnt the fort. After getting Bairat Garh, Garhwal Force attacked on Kalsi fort. Sirmaur army ran away from Kalsi. However, Sirmaur army was busy to defend wherever they got Garhwal army. Sirmaur army defeated Garhwal army everywhere. Garhwal force had to escape from Sirmaur territory.
Garhwal King had to have treaty with Sirmaur King. Garhwal army returned to Shrinagar. The soldiers demanded the salary from Garhwal King. Garhwal treasury did not have money to pay salary for newly appointed force gone to capture Sirmaur. By not getting salary, force threatened disturbing the capital. Lalit shah sold his personal valuables and paid back the salary of new force.

Copyright@ Bhishma Kukreti Mumbai, India, bckukreti@gmail.com 27/8/2014
History of Garhwal – Kumaon-Haridwar (Uttarakhand, India) to be continued… Part -414
(The History of Garhwal, Kumaon, Haridwar write up is aimed for general readers)
History of Garhwal from 1223-1804 to be continued in next chapter ….
Notes on South Asian Early Modern Period History of Garhwal; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Pauri Garhwal; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Chamoli Garhwal; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Rudraprayag Garhwal; South Asian Medieval History of Tehri Garhwal; Medieval History of Uttarkashi Garhwal; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Dehradun, Garhwal; Medieval History of Haridwar ; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Manglaur, Haridwar; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Rurkee Haridwar ; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Bahadarpur Haridwar ; South Asian Early Modern Period History of Haridwar district to be continued

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