Sunday, February 11, 2007

Prithviraj Chauhan

Prithviraj Chauhan

Prithviraj Chauhan was born at Ajaymeru (Ajmer) in 1166 A.D. His father was Someshwar Chauhan and mother Karpuri Devi, a Kalachuri (Chedi) princess, daughter of Achalaraja of Tripuri.

Muhammad Ghori attacked India multiple times. First time he was routed in present day Gujarat by Rajputs. Mularaja-II was not even a teen yet and his mother organized the defences of Pattan. Battle was fought at Kayadara near Mount Abu, in 1178 A.D. and Ghori was resoundingly defeated. After this defeat he never entered India through Gujarat. In first battle of Taraori in 1191 Prithviraj Chauhan's cavalry charged and routed the Ghurid cavalry and captured Ghori. Ghori begged for his life. Prithviraj allowed him to go despite his generals asking him not to do so.

Prithviraj Chauhan lived at Taragarh fort which was also known as Ajaymeru after which the town of Ajmer got its name.

Following year Ghori came again. Prithviraj advanced with his army and sent a letter to Ghori. In this letter Ghori was asked to return as he had been defeated the previous year and was spared his life. Ghori replied that he was in India on the orders of his brother, Ghiasuddin, and that he could only retreat after he got a word from his brother. This letter was sent in the evening and after sending the letter Ghori moved his camp back a few kilometers to feign retreat. On receiving this letter and seeing Muhammad move his camp back Prithviraj assumed that Ghori was not interested in fighting. Ghori also knew that rajputs did not fight in the night and only started fighting after sun had come up. (This is an ancient Kshatriya practice e.g Mahabharata was also fought mostly in day time). Ghori treacherously attacked in the early morning hours when Prithviraj and his army were sleeping and was able to win this war.

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