Sunday, March 11, 2012

I Have to Bring Something for Marziya When I Come Home For Lunch

Nitin Manmohan Prachi and Soham

Nitin Manmohan or Nitinji as we call him is my ex boss..I owe a lot to him, I owe a lot to his daugter Prachi too, I ran Nitinjis fashion studio about a decade back it was the most famous Bollywood store called Prachins.

But than my mom died and her last wish to me was to start my own .so I parted with Nitinji,with a very heavy heart.

But we keep in touch , and this great man, a prolific filmmaker , is very reputed name in the film Industry, Neha Arts his banner has bought out some of the most memorable movies.. Insaf, Mahasangram, Eena Meena Deeka, Bol Radha Bol, Army , to name a few.

Here he is with Prachi and his son Soham a whiz kid..future hotshot director you can be sure..he is very brilliant studies in Switzerland.

But this familys entire credit goes to Nitinjis wife Dolly Nitin Manmohan.
She is the success story and the three are her golden dream.

A Letter To My Guru Dronacharya Mr KG Maheshwariji ..

Without kissing the dirt of your feet and rubbing it on my forehead I would have not become what I am today ,, I reiterate you taught me values you taught me somethings that are not photography and in a way I learnt everything you did not teach me .those things my parents bequeathed me .. they gave me a path luckily I met you on that path along with Mr Jatkar Mr Malushte and all that I imbibed I am now placing it in the open palms of my grand daughter ..

I taught my grand daughter that she was lucky, she sat played with the slum kids , I showed her the beggar world the world of hijras I showed her starvation , I showed her deformities sores and at that time hung on my waist she saw what I saw through the viewfinder .. today her vision is greater than mine and she will never be corrupted by camera club culture or by the breed of monsters of the camera club..

She wont be polluted by media photographers she shoots what they never shot as those days when her age they were shitting in their diapers ..I am lucky that I found a Master in you.. you are everything but not an old fogy or an old fart that I call those who have destroyed Photography for Good..

You at 90 are on the Internet sharing goodness you were never part of photographic politics .. and you never sold your pictures though you could have coming from a business family .. so I learnt much from you .. and today as a Dam Madar Malang of a fakir Sufi order I too understand the vagaries of time and tide ...

My grand daughter Marziya Shakir 4 year olds pictures are healing balm on the soul of humanity she will never participate in a Photography Salon .. where all pictures look alike only names change .. no I have empowered her to go beyond rules ,... it is not her camera but her poetic soul that overrides camera manuals ..she wont thirst for Acceptances Certificates of Merit or Awards pictures judged by those who have never shot pictures when they were 2 year old .. forgive me for my outspokenness in all humility ..

And hold on Sir at 7 month old Nerjis Asif Shakir is learning photography too .. so what you gave me , the fruits that you were offering to God that slipped from your hands fell into the out stretched hands of my grand daughters .

My prayers good wishes to your children , their children and their children too...

Your disciple
Beggar Poet
Firoze Shakir

Marziya Shakir Joins Flickr

146,511 items / 1,122,735 views

Today 24 Sept 2010 Marziya Shakir street photographer joins Flickr and gets her identity away from the shadow of the barefeet blogger of Mumbai..

kuch kehnepe toofan utha leti hai duniya - apni toh yeh adat hai ke ham kuch nahi kehte

kabhi kabhi mere dil main khayal ata hai admi bebasi main aurat kyon ban jata hai

I Shoot Hijras With My Eyes Closed ..

You Dont Need To Be a Woman to be a Mother .. Hijra Mothers Day

Mona is Babita s foster child ..

God Being a Poet Asked Me To Shoot Hijras As Poems

The Hijra Sees Me In The Eye

Gabriela Fernanda Brusasco commented on your photo album:

"humility and human love ......beautiful words....too much for me!!Really!!! I feel totally honored. That you have dedicated your work, yours pictures, your art, at person who only knows about feelings and emotions.....I haven´t more words to thank such honor...
I love your work, and love at all beings (as you) that have sensibility to detect, to sense, to perceive the human happiness, the human suffering in just one click.....My emotion is so great, that my tears are of happiness............THANKS YOU VERY MUCH !!!TODAY MY HEART IS MORE LIGHT!!.....THANKS AGAIN..THANKS....."

Raveena Has a Prime Asset Her Love Seat

Some Doors of Fate Can Only Be Opened By The Camera

because i am a poet .. i shoot hijras ..

god whispered in my ears son you have to shoot the children of my lost tribe

i became a beggar poet shooting hijras

i dont miss google buzz i am using google+which is almost the same thing

These are the ladies responsible for killing mangroves employed by unscrupulous building contractors

school kids in school rickshas are packed like sardines in a tin

The Bhaiyya Will Work Without Pay To Rebuild Hospitals Schools Instead of Parks Elephants and Statues

He is going to Lucknow for the coronation of King Akhilesh

sometimes i shoot poems and recycle them as pictures

I Post Pictures To Educate And Respect your Intelligence Too .. Posting Shit Would Kill Me Before it Killed You .. On Google+

We Create Beggars To Blackmail God Through Charity

Now That Akhilesh is in the Saddle There is Hope For The Bhaiyya In Mumbai

I shoot the silhouette of the hijab..

Women In India Are Divided Into Haves and Havenots

one lives in gilded mansions
the other in cages rot cosmically
dichotomy of a poetic thought
in the womb yet unborn
the girl child curses her lot
says the system women
are fodder for man so what

The Hijab in Europe Bleeds ..A Criminal is Was Decreed ..

What if There Were No Razors No Barbers ..Time Would Have Terrorized All of Us

Gandhiji Left Behind His Stick.. And The Government uses it on the Common Man

She Cut Me Up Skinned My Poetry Alive First I Was Word Now As a Picture I Survive

I Am a Dead Meat Poet ..She is Heartless Will Never Know It

He is a Muslim Carpenter of the Old Time Charm

He works all by himself , wife saw him working him at a Shia friends house she has given him an assignment of making a small cupboard for hanging my office corporate clothes as they hang on the door knob and get crushed as I only wear linens .. I dont wear wool polyester not even cotton..

A few of my vests are in silkish satin..I wear band galas and have now designed a few suits for myself as my boss needs me in this new sartorial update.

On a Sunday being my day off I get back into my old Malang vestments , pull out my earrings , my ear holes are dry, I oil them regularly before I go to sleep ..

This morning I gave all my Nikon camera bodies lens etc etc to a guy to sell it for me he has a camera shop at Kalbadevi.

So now ends the Nikon era at my house , even my grand daughters will be bought up on Canon technology.. simply because Canon service centers are more consumer friendly and less arrogant rude as compared to Nikon service centers and Nikon loots its customers by bad after sales service faulty products ..I will never forget the Nikon D 70 and even the Nikon D 80 had a shutter problem.. and Err that got on my nerves.

World of Advocate Ashish Shelar on

Advocate Ashish Shelar .. Man of Peace On a Mission

I Shoot My Streets Larger Than Life

I Would Kill Myself If I Was To Shoot Contrived Pictures of Holi Shot By Celebrity Media Photographers

This year I did not shoot Holi I let my 4 year old grand daughter Marziya Shakir take charge , I have promoted myself enough through my hijra blogs and stark street photography..

I saw the Lathmar Holi pictures I almost puked I shoot better color of red during Mohram or the Ganesh Visarjan..I say this in sheer humility..

And in Mumbai slums the Holi is more riot of colors , a Holi of Hope but sometimes you have death stalking kids like the color poisoning of the Dharavi kid.. it saddens me we wake up as collective conscience when some human body is sacrificed on the altar of apathy and neglect..

Bus owners should take responsibility of the demented drivers they hire who mow down innocent kids while reversing the buses .. and all in all in India it is about bad outsourcing the result rogue cops , rogue politicians rogue bureaucrat's and corrupted scarred rogue system of law order and governance..

Through My Pictures I Pray Tribute to The Nameless Creator of this Art Work Jai Maharashtra

Shivaji Jayanti Shiv Sena Shakha Bandra Hill Road

Bloggers Shoot Till They Drop Dead Unlike Media Photographers They Use Their Hearts Instead Of Their Head

Shivaji Jayanti Shiv Sena Shakha Bandra Hill Road

Om Namah Shiva

Aum Namah Shivaya (Sanskrit Aum Namaḥ Śivāya ॐ नमः शिवाय) is a popular mantra in Hinduism and particularly in Shaivism. Its translation is "adoration (namas) to Śiva", preceded by the mystical syllable "Aum".
It is also called Panchakshara, the "five-syllable" mantra (viz., excluding the Aum). It is part of the Shri Rudram Chamakam, a Hindu prayer taken from the Black Yajurveda, and thus predates the use of Shiva as a proper name, in the original context being an address to Rudra (the later Shiva), where śiva retains its original meaning as an adjective meaning "auspicious, benign, friendly", a euphemistic epithet of Rudra.

Nagendraharaya Trilochanaya
Bhasmangaragaya Maheshvaraya
Nityaya Shuddhaya Digambaraya
Tasmai Nakaraya Namah Shivaya .. 1

Mandakini salila chandana charchitaya
Nandishvara pramathanatha Maheshvaraya
Mandarapushpa bahupushhpa supujitaya
Tasmai Makaraya Namah Shivaya .. 2

Shivaya Gauri vadanabjavrunda
Suryaya Dakshadhvara Nashakaya
Shrinilakanthaya Vrushhadhvajaya
Tasmai Shikaraya Namah Shivaya .. 3

Vasishhtha kumbhodbhava gautamarya
Munindra devarchita shekharaya .
Chandrarkavaishvanara lochanaya
Tasmai Vakaraya Namah Shivaya .. 4

Yakshasvarupaya Jatadharaya
Pinakahastaya Sanatanaya
Divyaya Devaya Digambaraya
Tasmai Yakaraya Namah Shivaya .. 5

The lyrics or text of Shiva Panchakshari Mantra Strotra in Hindi or Sanskrit script below

नागेन्द्रहराया त्रिलोचनाय
भास्मंगारागाया महेश्वराय
नित्याय शुद्धाय दिगम्बराय
तस्मै नकाराय नमः शिवाय .. १

मन्दाकिनी सलिला चंदना चर्चिताय
नंदिश्वारा प्रमाथानाथा महेश्वराय
मंदारापुश्पा बहुपुश्ह्पा सुपुजिताया
तस्मै मकाराय नमः शिवाय .. २

शिवाय गौरी वादानाब्जवृन्दा
सूर्याय दक्शाध्वारा नशाकाया
श्रीनिलाकंथाया व्रुश्ढ़वाजय
तस्मै शिकाराय नमः शिवाय .. ३

वसिष्ठ कुम्भोद्भावा गौतामार्य
मुनीन्द्र देवार्चिता शेखाराया .
चन्द्रर्कावैश्वनारा लोचानाया
तस्मै वकाराय नमः शिवाय .. ४

यक्शास्वरुपाया जताधाराया
पिनाकहस्ताया सनातनाय
दिव्याय देवाय दिगम्बराय
तस्मै यकाराय नमः शिवाय .. ५
Meaning of The Shiva Panchakshari Mantra Strotra

Salutations to Shiva, who wears the king of snakes as a garland, the
three-eyed god, whose body is smeared with ashes, the great lord, the
eternal and pure one, who wears the directions as his garment, and who
is represented by the syllable ``na ''

I bow to Shiva, who has been worshiped with water from the Ganga
(Mandakini) and anointed with sandalwood paste, the lord of Nandi, the
lord of the host of goblins and ghosts, the great lord, who is worshiped
with Mandara and many other kinds of flowers, and who is represented by
the syllable ``ma. ''

Salutations to Shiva, who is all-auspiciousness, who is the sun that
causes the lotus face of Gauri (Parvati) to blossom, who is the
destroyer of the yajna of Daksha, whose throat is blue (Nilakantha),
whose flag bears the emblem of the bull, and who is represented by the
syllable ``shi. ''

Vasishhtha, Agastya, Gautama, and other venerable sages, and Indra and
other gods have worshipped the head of (Shiva's linga). I bow to that
Shiva whose three eyes are the moon, sun and fire, and who is
represented by the syllable ``va. ''

salutations to Shiva, who bears the form of a Yaksha, who has matted
hair on his head, who bears the Pinaka bow in his hand, the primeval
lord, the brilliant god, who is digambara (naked), and who is
represented by the syllable ``ya. ''
[edit]Interpretation in modern Shaivaism

The meaning of the Namaḥ Śivāya mantra was explained by Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami:
Namaḥ Śivāya is the most holy name of God Śiva, recorded at the very center of the Vedas and elaborated in the Śaiva Agamas.
Na is the Lord's concealing grace, Ma is the world, Śi stands for Śiva, Va is His revealing grace, Ya is the soul. The five elements, too, are embodied in this ancient formula for invocation. Na is earth, Ma is water, Śi is fire, Vā is air, and Ya is ether, or Ākāśa. Many are its meanings.
Namaḥ Śivaya has such power, the mere intonation of these syllables reaps its own reward in salvaging the soul from bondage of the treacherous instinctive mind and the steel bands of a perfected externalized intellect. Namaḥ Śivāya quells the instinct, cuts through the steel bands and turns this intellect within and on itself, to face itself and see its ignorance. Sages declare that mantra is life, that mantra is action, that mantra is love and that the repetition of mantra, japa, bursts forth wisdom from within.
The holy Natchintanai proclaims, "Namaḥ Śivāya is in truth both Āgama and Veda. Namah Śivāya represents all mantras and tantras. Namaḥ Śivaya is our souls, our bodies and possessions. Namaḥ Śivāya has become our sure protection."
—Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami[citation needed]
The book "The Ancient Power of Sanskrit Mantra and Ceremony: Volume I" by Thomas Ashley-Farrand defines Om Namah Shivaya as:
"This mantra has no direct translation. The sounds relate directly to the principles which govern each of the first five chakras on the spine...Earth, water, fire, air, ether. Notice that this does not refer to the chakras themselves which have a different set of seed sounds, but rather, the principles which govern those chakras in their place. A very rough, non-literal translation could be something like, 'Om and salutations to that which I am capable of becoming.' This mantra will start one out on the path of subtle development of spiritual attainments. It is the beginning on the path of Siddha Yoga, or the Yoga of Perfection of the Divine Vehicle."
"Na" refers to the Gross Body (annamayakosa), "Ma" refers to the Pranic Body (pranamayakosa), "Shi" or "Chi" refers to the Mental Body (manonmayakosa), "Va" refers to the Intellectual Body (vignanamayakosa) and "Ya" refers to the Blissful Body (ananda

jahaan daal daal par sone ki chidiyaan karati hai basera wo Bhaarat desh hai mera

Raje Fakt Tumhich..

Beyond Politics Beyond Caste Color Creed Your Reach..

जय जय महाराष्ट्र माझा, गर्जा महाराष्ट्र माझा

जय जय महाराष्ट्र माझा, गर्जा महाराष्ट्र माझा

रेवा वरदा, कृष्ण कोयना, भद्रा गोदावरी
एकपणाचे भरती पाणी मातीच्या घागरी
भीमथडीच्या तट्टांना या यमुनेचे पाणी पाजा
जय जय महाराष्ट्र माझा ...

भीती न आम्हा तुझी मुळी ही गडगडणार्‍या नभा
अस्मानाच्या सुलतानीला जवाब देती जीभा
सह्याद्रीचा सिंह गर्जतो, शिवशंभू राजा
दरीदरीतून नाद गुंजला महाराष्ट्र माझा

काळ्या छातीवरी कोरली अभिमानाची लेणी
पोलादी मनगटे खेळती खेळ जीवघेणी
दारिद्र्याच्या उन्हात शिजला, निढ़ळाच्या घामाने भिजला
देशगौरवासाठी झिजला
दिल्लीचेही तख्त राखितो, महाराष्ट्र माझा

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Flame of Freedom and Nationalism

From wikipedia

Shivaji Bhosle ([ʃiʋaˑɟiˑraˑɟeˑ bʱoˑs(ə)leˑ]; 19 February 1630 – 3 April 1680), with the royal title Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, was a Maratha sovereign who founded the Maratha Empire.[5][6] Shivaji an aristocrat of the Bhosle clan led a resistance to free the Maratha people from the Sultanate of Bijapur, and establish Hindavi Swarajya ("self-rule of Hindu people").[5][6][7] He created an independent Maratha kingdom with Raigad as its capital,[6] and successfully fought against the Mughals to defend his kingdom.[5] He was crowned as Chhatrapati ("sovereign") of the Maratha kingdom in 1674.[5][6]
He established a competent and progressive civil rule with the help of a well-regulated and disciplined military and well-structured administrative organizations. The prevalent practices of treating women as spoils of war, destruction of religious monuments, slavery and forceful religious conversions were firmly opposed under his administration. Shivaji was a religious Hindu.[8] He also innovated rules of military engagement, pioneering the "Shiva sutra" or ganimi kava (guerrilla tactics), which leveraged strategic factors like geography, speed, surprise and focused pinpoint attacks to defeat his larger and more powerful enemies[8] and built many sea-forts.[9][10] From a small contingent of 2,000 soldiers inherited from his father, he created a formidable force of 100,000 soldiers who eventually defeated the mighty Mughal Empire after his death.

Contents [hide]
1 Early life
2 Confrontation with the regional sultanate of Adilshah
2.1 Battle of Purander
2.2 Battle of Pratapgad
2.3 Battle of Kolhapur
2.4 Siege of Panhala
2.5 Marathas' Last Stand: The Battle of Pavan Khind
3 Clash with the Mughals
3.1 Battle of Umberkhind
3.2 Attack on Shaista Khan
3.3 Siege of Surat
3.4 Treaty of Purandar
3.5 Arrest in Agra and escape
3.6 Reconquest
3.6.1 Battle of Sinhgad
3.6.2 Battle of Vani-dindori
3.6.3 Battle of Salher
3.6.4 Battle of Nesari
4 Coronation
5 Conquests in Southern India
6 Death and succession crisis
7 Rule and Administration
7.1 Administration
8 Military
8.1 Forts
8.2 Navy
9 Promotion of Sanskrit
10 Religious policy
11 Character
12 Legacy
12.1 Modern influence
13 Contemporary foreign accounts
14 Depiction in popular culture
14.1 Films
14.2 Literature
14.3 Poetry and music
14.4 Theatre
14.5 Television
15 References
16 Further reading

Main article: Early life of Shivaji

Shivaji's birthplace on Shivneri Fort.
Shivaji was born in the hill-fort of Shivneri, near the Junnar city in Pune district. He was named after a local deity called Shivai Devi.[10] His exact date of birth has been a matter of dispute among the various historians in the past. The Maharashtra state government now accepts the 3rd day of the dark half of Phalguna, year 1551 of Shaka calendar (Friday, 19 February 1630) as the true birthdate of Shivaji.[11] Other suggested dates include 6 April 1627, or other dates near this day.[12][13]:14[14]
Shivaji's father Shahaji Bhonsle was the leader of a band of mercenaries that serviced the Deccan Sultanates. His mother was Jijabai, the daughter of Lakhujirao Jadhav of Sindkhed. During the period of Shivaji's birth, the power in Deccan was shared by three Islamic sultanates – Bijapur, Ahmednagar, and Golconda. Shahaji kept changing his loyalty between the Nizamshahi of Ahmadnagar, Adil Shah of Bijapur and the Mughals, but always kept his jagir (fiefdom) at Pune and his small army with him. Following a treaty between the Mughals and the Bijapur Sultanate, Shahaji was posted to Bangalore-based jagir, while Jijabai and Shivaji remained in Pune.

Shivaji with Jijamata.
Shivaji was extremely devoted to his mother Jijabai, who was deeply religious. This religious environment had a profound influence on Shivaji, and he carefully studied the two great Hindu epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata. The morality and spiritual messages of the epics made a great impression on him. Throughout his life he was deeply interested in religious teachings, and sought the company of Hindu and Sufi (an esoteric Muslim sect) saints throughout his life.[13]
Shivaji drew his earliest trusted comrades and a large number of his soldiers from the Maval region, including Yesaji Kank, Suryaji Kakade, Baji Pasalkar, Baji Prabhu Deshpande and Tanaji Malusare. In the company of his Maval comrades, a young Shivaji wandered over the hills and forests of the Sahyadri range, hardening himself and acquiring first-hand knowledge of the land. By 1639, he commanded a hardy and loyal band of officers and soldiers.[13]
At the age of 12, Shivaji was taken to Bangalore where he was further formally trained along-with elder brother Sambhaji and stepbrother Ekoji I. He married Saibai, a member of the prominent Nimbalkar family in 1640.[15] At age of 14, he returned to Pune with a rajmudra (sovereign seal) and council of minister.
[edit]Confrontation with the regional sultanate of Adilshah

In 1645, at the age of 16, Shivaji managed to pursue the Bijapuri commander of the Torna Fort, named Inayat Khan, to hand over the possession of the fort to him.[13]:26[16] [17] Firangoji Narsala, who held the Chakan fort professed his loyalty to him and the fort of Kondana was acquired by bribing the Adil-Shahi governor.[13]:26 On 25 July 1648, Shahaji was imprisoned by Baji Ghorpade under the orders of Adilshah in a bid to contain Shivaji.[18]
Adilshah also sent an army led by Farradkhan against Shahji's other son Sambhaji at Bangalore, and another army led by Fattekhan against Shivaji at Purandhar. Both Bhonsle brothers defeated the invading armies.
[edit]Battle of Purander
An army led by Fattekhan was defeated by Shivaji in the battle of Purandhar. Meanwhile, Shivaji had petitioned Emperor Shahjahan's son, Murad Baksh, who was governor of Deccan, pledging his loyalty to the Mughals to seek his support in securing the release of his father. The Mughals recognised Shivaji as a Mughal sardar and pressured Adilshah to release Shahaji.[19] On 16 May 1649 Shahaji was released after Shivaji and Sambhaji surrendering the forts of Kondhana,Bangalore and Kandarpi.[13]
[edit]Battle of Pratapgad
Main article: Battle of Pratapgarh

A depiction of Goddess Bhavani giving the sword to Shivaji, at Tuljapur.
In 1659, Adilshah sent Afzal Khan, an experienced and veteran general to destroy Shivaji in an effort to put down what he saw as a regional revolt. Afzal Khan desecrated Hindu temples at Tuljapur and Pandharpur hoping to draw Shivaji to the plains to retaliate with his limited military resources and thus lead him and his budding military power to easy destruction by the numerically bigger, better-armed and more professional Bijapur army. Afzal Khan may have expected Shivaji to meet his army in the plains, however Shivaji, upon carefully weighing his options, agreed to meet Afzal Khan on his home turf on pretext of diplomatic negotiations. Shivaji sent a letter to Afzal Khan stating that he was eager for a meeting. The meeting was arranged between Afzal Khan and Shivaji at the foothills of Fort on the day 10 November 1659 Pratapgad.[8]
This event is one of the most important in Shivaji's life. Shivaji got a pledge from ministers to never submit in case he fell. It is said that during this period, Shivaji had a vision of Goddess Bhavani promising full protection on the confrontation and victory.[10]:479 Afzal Khan was invited to a hut at the base of Pratapgad under the conditions that both the men would be armed only with a sword and attended by a follower. However, Shivaji is said to have learnt that Afzal Khan was planning an attack on him.[20][21] Shivaji, therefore, wore armour underneath his clothes and concealed a Bagh nakh in his left arm, in addition to a visibile dagger on his right hand.[22] Accounts vary on whether Shivaji or Afzal Khan struck the first blow:[23][24][25] the Maratha chronicles accuse Afzal Khan of treachery, while the Persian-language chronicles attribute the treachery to Shivaji.[26][27] Ultimately, Afzal Khan was disemboweled by Shivaji and later decapitated by Sambhaji Kavji.
In the ensuing Battle of Pratapgarh fought on 10 November 1659, Shivaji's forces decisively defeated the Bijapur Sultanate's forces.[28] It was their first significant military victory against a major regional power, and led to the eventual establishment of the Maratha Empire. The Maratha troops led by Kanhoji Jedhe attacked Afzal Khan's Bijapuri forces and routed them at the foothills of the fort. Then in a rapid march, a section of Adilshahi forces commanded by Musekhan was attacked. Musekhan was wounded and subsequently fled, abandoning his soldiers who were then set upon and decimated by the Marathas. Commander Moropant Pingale led the infantry in a lighting attack on to the left flank of the Adilshahi troops. Adilshah's artillery was rendered ineffective by the suddenness of this attack at close quarters. At the same time commander Ragho Atre swiftly attacked Adilshahi cavalry before it was fully prepared for battle and almost completely wiped it out. Shivaji's cavalry headed by Netaji Palkar rushed towards Wai in hot pursuit of retreating Adilshahi forces who were attempting to join reserve forces stationed there. The retreating forces of Afzal Khan were engaged in battle and were routed.[8] More than 3,000 soldiers of the Bijapur army were killed and two sons of Afzal Khan were taken as prisoners.[13]:53
This unexpected and unlikely victory made Shivaji a hero of Maratha folklore and a legendary figure among his people. The large quantities of captured weapons, horses, armour and other materials helped to strengthen the nascent and emerging Maratha army. The Mughal emperor Aurangzeb now identified Shivaji as a major threat to the mighty Mughal Empire. Soon thereafter Shivaji, Shahaji and Netaji Palkar (the chief of the Maratha cavalry) decided to attack and defeat the Adilshahi kingdom at Bijapur. But things did not go as planned as Shahaji's health deteriorated and they were forced to postpone the planned attack. However, Netoji Palkar undertook this mission mounting smaller scale attacks and military harassment of the Adilshahi kingdom.
Subsequently, the Sultan of Bijapur sent an army composed mainly of Afghan mercenaries to subdue and defeat Shivaji before he could substantially expand his army. In the ensuing battle, Bijapur's army was defeated by the Maratha troops. This intense and bloody battle ended in the unconditional surrender of the Bijapuri forces to Shivaji.
[edit]Battle of Kolhapur
Main article: Battle of Kolhapur
To counter the loss at Pratapgad and to defeat the newly emerging Maratha power, another army, this time numbering over 10,000, was sent against Shivaji, commanded by Bijapur's renowned Abyssinian general Rustamjaman. With a cavalry of 5,000 Marathas, Shivaji attacked them near Kolhapur on 28 December 1659. In a swift movement, Shivaji led a full frontal attack at the center of the enemy forces while other two portions of his cavalry attacked the flanks. This battle lasted for several hours and at the end Bijapuri forces were soundly defeated and Rustamjaman ignominiously fled the battlefield.[8] Adilshahi forces lost about 2,000 horses and 12 elephants to the Marathas. This victory alarmed the mighty Mughal empire who now derisively referred to Shivaji as the "Mountain Rat". Aurangzeb the Mughal emperor was now actively preparing to bring the full might and resources of the Mughal Empire to bear down on the potential Maratha threat.
[edit]Siege of Panhala

M.V. Dhurandhar's painting of Shivaji.
Per the terms of the Mughal-Adilshahi plan, Adil Shah in 1660 sent Siddi Jauhar, an accomplished general to attack Shivaji on his southern borders, preceding the expected major Mughal attack from the north. He ordered his army of 40,000 north to Kolhapur to confront and defeat Shivaji as a part of their grand alliance with the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb. He secured the support of local chieftains such as Jasvantrao Dalvi of Palavani and Suryarao Surve of Sringarpur to defeat Shivaji.[8] At that time, Shivaji was camped at the Panhala fort near present day Kolhapur with 8,000 Marathas.
Siddi Jauhar's army besieged Panhala on 2 March 1660, cutting off supply routes to the fort.[29] Helping with siege were Baji Ghorpade and Siddi Masud from the west, Sadat Khan and Bhai Khan from the north, Rustam Zaman and Bade Khan from the east, Siddi Jauhar and Fazal Khan from the south. Netaji Palkar, the Commander of the Maratha forces was on a mission away from Panhala harassing and attacking Adilshahi territory and was not able to come to the aid of Shivaji. At this point of time, Shaista Khan had moved from Baramati to Shirwal.[29]
Panhala was a formidable fort and Adilshahi army was repulsed repeatedly by effective cannon fire and heavy rock-pelting.[29] Siddi Jauhar approached Henry Revington, the British chief at the Rajapur port to seek long-range and more powerful cannons. Henry decided to help him in return for future favours, and began pounding Panhala fort. In spite of this Marathas continued defending Panhala and persevered in keeping Siddi Jauhar at bay.[29]
Marathas even raided the Adilshahi camp a few times but without much success. However, in one such raid, Tryambak Bhaskar and Kondaji Farzand presented themselves as allies of the British and Adlishahi forces. They came down to the Adilshahi camp and met Henry Revington and his associates. They managed to kill one British officer and injured Henry. Thereafter, they sabotaged the cannons and made them ineffective. Jauhar, livid at this, tightened the siege further.[29]
Jauhar did not leave any stone unturned to ensure that the siege around Panhala was unyielding, he personally took utmost care that no one in his army was complacent. He even braved the tumultuous monsoon season and continued the siege even during heaviest downpours.[29] On hearing about the ever tightening siege of Panhala, Netaji Palkar returned from Bijapur and attacked the Adilshahi forces surrounding Panhala. He tried to break the siege but his smaller forces were pushed back by a much larger Adilshahi army.[29]
Thereafter, Shivaji decided to escape to a nearby fort Vishalgad, where he could regroup his soldiers. He then sent misleading messages to Siddi Jauhar indicating that he was willing to negotiate and was looking for accommodation and mutual understanding. With this news, Adilshahi soldiers relaxed somewhat and Shivaji escaped under the cover of a stormy night on 12 July 1660.[29]
Meanwhile Jauhar's soldiers captured a small group of Marathas apparently including Shivaji only to realize he was a look-alike named Shiva Kashid dressed like Shivaji and sent out to create a diversion and facilitate the real Shivaji's escape. Siddi Johar's soldiers realized that the imposter was Shivaji's barber and that Shivaji and his army were headed to Vishalgad, immediately thereafter a massive chase was undertaken to intercept Shivaji and deal with him and his army, once and for all.[8]

Marathas' Last Stand: The Battle of Pavan Khind
Main article: Battle of Pavan Khind

Plaque to commemorate the entrance to Paavankhind
Observing that enemy cavalry was fast closing in on them, Shivaji sought to avoid defeat and capture. Baji Prabhu Deshpande, a Maratha sardar of Bandal Deshmukh along with 300 soldiers, volunteered to fight to the death to hold back the enemy at Ghod Khind (a mountain pass in Gajapur which is 4 miles (6.4 km) south of Vishalgad) to give Shivaji and the rest of the army a chance to reach the safety of the Vishalgad fort.[8][29]
In the ensuing Battle of Pavan Khind, Baji Prabhu Deshpande fought relentlessly. He was wounded but he held on and continued the fight until he heard the sound of cannon fire from Vishalgad, signalling Shivaji had safely reached the fort. The result of this intense and heroic battle was the death of 300 Marathas and 3,000 of Adilshah's troops who were engaged in a fierce combat. The Marathas were heroically committed to this fatal fight to ensure Shivaji's reaching the fort and they held off a larger enemy force for 7 hours using 2 swords one in each hand[8] allowing Shivaji to reach the safety of the fort on 13 July 1660.[29]
Thereafter a truce was made between Shivaji and Adilshah through Shahaji Raje. In addition, as the terms of this accord, Panhala Fort was awarded to Siddi Johar.[8] Ghod Khind (khind meaning "a narrow mountain pass") was renamed Paavan Khind (Sacred Pass) in honor of Bajiprabhu Deshpande, Shibosingh Jadhav, Fuloji, people from Bandal community and all other soldiers who fought in Ghod Khind. People from the Bandal community were specially selected by Shivaji while escaping from Panhala for their knowledge of the region, rock climbing skills, and martial qualities.[29]
[edit]Clash with the Mughals

Till 1657, Shivaji maintained peaceful relations with the Mughals. Shivaji offered his assistance to Aurangzeb in conquering Bijapur and in return, he was assured of the formal recognition of his right to the Bijapuri forts and villages under his possession [13]:37. Shivaji's confrontations with the Mughals begain in March 1657, when two officers of Shivaji raided the Mughal territory near Ahmednagar.[30] This was followed by raids in Junnar, with Shivaji carrying off 300,000 huns in cash and 200 horses [13]:38. Aurangzeb responded to the raids by sending Nasiri Khanm who defeated the forces of Shivaji at Ahmednagar. However, the countermeasures were interrupted by the rainy season and the battle of succession for the Mughal throne following the illness of Shah Jahan.
[edit]Battle of Umberkhind
Main article: Battle of Umberkhind
An Uzbek general, Kartalab Khan, was sent by Shaista Khan on a mission to attack and reduce the number of forts under Shivaji's control in the Konkan region on 3 February 1661. He left his camp near Pune with 30,000 troops. This time the Mughals did not march openly and took circuitous back country routes, as they sought to surprise Shivaji.[29] But instead Shivaji surprised them at a pass known as Umber Khind (in a dense forest, near present-day Pen), and attacked them from all sides. Marathas hidden in the dense forest executed a well co-ordinated ambush attack on the Mughal army.[29] Shivaji himself took the forward position with an elite cavalry unit. The other three sides were flanked by Shivaji's light infantry.
In a well co-ordinated movement of light infantry and cavalry, Shivaji prevailed over the attackers. A Maratha lady commander, Raibagan, who co-led the Mughal forces, analyzed the situation and realised that defeat was imminent and advised Kartalab Khan to accept defeat and initiate a compromise with Shivaji.[8][29] Within four hours into the attack the enemy accepted defeat and surrendered all the supplies, arms and assets. The Mughal army suffered high casualties. The defeated army was allowed a safe passage. Kartalab Khan and Raibagan were released with honour in accordance with Shivaji's terms and his long standing policy towards women and unarmed civilians.[8]
[edit]Attack on Shaista Khan
Main article: Battle of Chakan
Upon the request of Badi Begum of Bijapur, Aurangzeb sent his maternal uncle (brother of late Queen Mumtaz Mahal) Shaista Khan, with an army numbering over 100,000 along with a powerful artillery division in January 1660 to defeat Shivaji. Khan was accompanied by eminent commanders like Turktaj, Hussain, Haider, Naamdar Khan, Kartalab Khan, Uzbek Khan, Fateh Jung and Rajputs namely Bhau Singh, Shyam Singh, Rai Singh Sisodiya, Pradyuman and many more.[29] Khan was an experienced commander who had defeated Shahaji in the same region in 1636.[8] He was ordered to attack the Maratha kingdom in conjunction with Bijapur's army led by Siddi Jauhar. Aurangzeb ordered Shaista Khan to capture the Maratha kingdom to add to the empire (he intended to deceive the Adilshah), after Shivaji's expected defeat by Jauhar in Panhala fort. Shivaji now prepared to face a combined attack of Mughals and Adilshahi forces.[29]
Shaista Khan was ordered by Aurangzeb to attack Shivaji per the Mughal-Adilshahi accord. Shaista Khan, with his better equipped and provisioned army of 300,000 that was many times the size of the Maratha forces, seized Pune and the nearby fort of Chakan. At the time, Firangoji Narsala was the killedar (commander) of fort Chakan, which was defended by 300–350 Maratha soldiers. They were able to withstand the Mughal attack on the fort for one and a half month. Then, a burj (outer wall) was blown up with explosives. This created an opening to the fort allowing hordes of Mughals to breach the exterior portion of the fort. Firangoji, himself led the Maratha counter attack against a larger Mughal army.[8][29] Eventually, the fort was lost with the capture of Firangoji, who then was brought before Shaista Khan, who, appreciating his bravery, offered him a jahagir (military commission) on the condition that he join the Mughal forces, which Firangoji declined. Admiring his loyalty, Shaista Khan pardoned Firangoji and set him free. Firangoji returned home and Shivaji awarded him a fort named Bhupalgad.[29]
Shaista Khan pressed his advantage of larger, better provisioned and heavily armed Mughal army and made inroads into some of the Maratha territory. Although he held Pune for almost a year, he had little further success. He had set up his residence at Lal Mahal, Shivaji's palace, in the city of Pune.[8]
Shaista Khan kept a tight security in Pune. However, Shivaji planned an attack on Shaista Khan amidst tight security. In April 1663, a wedding party had obtained special permission for a procession; Shivaji planned an attack using the wedding party as cover. The Marathas disguised themselves as the bridegroom's procession and entered Pune. Shivaji, having spent much of his youth in Pune, knew his way around the city and his own palace of Lal Mahal.[8] Chimanaji Deshpande - one of the childhood friends of Shivaji aided him in this attack offering his services as a personal bodyguard. According to Babasaheb Purandare, since Mughal army also consisted of Maratha soldiers, it was difficult for someone to distinguish between Shivaji's Maratha soldiers and the Maratha soldiers of the Mughal army. Thus, taking advantage of this situation, Shivaji, along with a few of his trusted men, infiltrated the Mughal camp.
After overpowering and slaying of the palace guards, the Marathas broke into the mansion by breaching an outer wall. Chimnaji and Netaji Palkar entered first along with Babaji Deshpande, another of Shivaji's long time loyal associates, they approached Shaista Khan's quarters. Shivaji then personally confronted Shaista Khan in a face to face attack. Meanwhile, perceiving danger, one of Shaista's wives turned off the lights. Shivaji pursued Shaista Khan and severed three of his fingers with his sword (in the darkness) as he fled through an open window. Shaista Khan narrowly escaped death and lost his son and many of his guards and soldiers in the raid.[8]
Within twenty-four hours of this attack, Shaista Khan left Pune and headed North towards Agra. An angered Aurangzeb transferred him to distant Bengal as a punishment for bringing embarrassment to the Mughals with his ignoble defeat in Pune.
[edit]Siege of Surat
Main article: Battle of Surat
In 1664 Shivaji invaded Surat, an important and wealthy Mughal trading city, and looted it to replenish his now depleted treasury and also as a revenge for the capture and looting of Maratha territory by Shaista Khan. (Surat was again sacked by Shivaji in 1670.)[8]
[edit]Treaty of Purandar

Mirza Raja Jai Singh of Amber receiving Shivaji a day before concluding the Treaty of Purandar.
Main article: Treaty of Purandar (1665)
Aurangzeb was enraged and sent Mirza Raja Jai Singh I with an army numbering around 15,000 [31] to defeat Shivaji. Jai Singh planned and executed his battle strategies so well with his vast army that the Mughal forces under him made significant gains and captured many Maratha forts. Shivaji came to terms with Aurangzeb rather than lose more forts and men.
In the ensuing treaty of Purander, signed between Shivaji and Jai Singh on 11 June 1665, Shivaji agreed to give up 23 of his forts and pay compensation of 400,000 rupees to the Mughals. He also agreed to let his son Sambhaji become a Mughal Sardar, serve the Mughal court of Aurangzeb and fight with Mughals against Bijapur. He actually fought along side Raja Jai Singh's Mughal forces against Bijapur's forces for a few months. His commander, Netaji Palkar, joined Mughals, was rewarded very well for his bravery, converted to Islam, changed his name to Quli Mohammed Khan in 1666 and was sent to the Afghan frontier to fight the restive tribes. He returned to Shivaji's service after ten years in 1676 and was accepted back as a Hindu on Shivaji's advice.
[edit]Arrest in Agra and escape
In 1666, Aurangzeb invited Shivaji to Agra, along with his nine-year-old son Sambhaji. Aurangzeb's plan was to send Shivaji to Kandahar, modern day Afghanistan to consolidate the Mughal Empire's north-western frontier. However, in the court, on 12 May 1666, Aurangzeb made Shivaji stand behind mansabdārs (military commanders) of his court.[8] Shivaji took offense at this seeming insult and stormed out of court and was promptly placed under house arrest, under the watch of Faulad Khan, Kotwal of Agra. From his spies, Shivaji learned that Aurangzeb planned to move his residence to Raja Vitthaldas's Haveli and then to possibly kill him or send him to fight in the Afghan frontier. As a result Shivaji planned his escape.
He feigned almost fatal sickness and requested to send most of his contingent back to the Deccan, thereby ensuring the safety of his army and deceiving Aurangzeb. Thereafter, on his request, he was allowed to send daily shipments of sweets and gifts to saints, fakirs, and temples in Agra as offerings for getting well.[8] After several days and weeks of sending out boxes containing sweets, Shivaji and his nine year old son Sambhaji hid themselves in two of the boxes and managed to escape. Shivaji and his son fled to the Deccan disguised as sadhus (holy men). After the escape, rumours of Sambhaji's death were intentionally spread by Shivaji himself in order to deceive the Mughals and to protect Sambhaji.[8]
Dr. Ajit Joshi presented a different view in a Marathi book Agryahun Sutka, concluded that Shivaji most likely disguised himself as a Brahmin priest after performance of religious rites at the haveli grounds and escaped by mingling in within the departing priestly entourage of Pandit Kavindra Paramananda.[32]

Battle of Sinhgad
Main article: Battle of Sinhagad
After this escape, both sides maintained calm and a treaty was concluded for some time. However it was broken at the end of the year 1670. Shivaji launched a major offensive against Mughals. In a span of four months he recovered a major portion of the territories surrendered to Mughals. During this phase, the valiant Tanaji Malusare won the prestigious fort of Sinhgad in the battle of Sinhgad, although he lost his life.
[edit]Battle of Vani-dindori
Subsequently, Shivaji sacked Surat for second time in 1670. When Shivaji was returning from Surat, Mughals under Daud Khan tried to intercept him, but were defeated in the Battle of Vani-dindori near present-day Nashik.
[edit]Battle of Salher
Peshwa Moropant Pingale won a number of forts in this area. Senapati Prataprao Gujar defeated Mughals in various campaigns. In order to subdue this Maratha resurgence, Dilerkhan was sent along with Bahlol khan and other generals. During this phase, the combined forces of Moropant and Prataprao defeated the Mughals in the open battle of Salher.
This was the first major battle in which Mughals were defeated by any opponent. This greatly raised the status of Marathas and Shivaji, in particular. Against this background of victories, Shivaji decided to coronate himself, thereby giving sovereignty to the Maratha people. However, a tragedy struck in that Shivaji lost his trusted cavalry general Prataprao in the following battle of Nesari.
[edit]Battle of Nesari
In 1674, Prataprao Gujar, the then Commander-in chief of the Maratha forces, was sent to push back the invading force led by the Adil Shahi general, Bahlol Khan. Prataprao's forces defeated and captured the opposing general in the battle after cutting-off their water supply by encircling a strategically located lake, which prompted Bahlol Khan to sue for peace. In spite of Shivaji's specific warnings against doing so Prataprao released Bahlol Khan who started preparing for a fresh invasion.[33]

Towers of the Raigad Fort.
When Shivaji sent a displeasure letter to Prataprao refusing him audience until Bahlol Khan was re-captured. In the ensuing days, he learnt of Bahlol Khan having camped with 15,000 force at Nesari near Kolhapur. Given the uneven match Prataprao reasoned that there was no point in leading his 1,200 cavalrymen into a suicide charge alone. Other six sardars of distinction followed him to perish with their commander. The seven Maratha officers were Prataprao Gujar, Visaji Ballal, Dipoji Rautrao, Vithal Pilaji Atre, Krishnaji Bhaskar, Siddi Hilal and Vithoji Shinde. The loss of Prataprao Gujar was a big loss to the Marathas. Anandrao Mohite managed to the withdraw army to safer areas.[34]
Marathas then avenged the death of their general, by defeating Bahlol Khan and capturing his jagir (fiefdom) under the leadership of Anaji and Hambirao Mohite. Shivaji was deeply grieved on hearing of Prataprao's death. He arranged for the marriage of his second son, Rajaram, to the daughter of Prataprao Gujar. Anandrao Mohite became Hambirrao Mohite, the new sarnaubat (Commander-in-Chief of the Maratha forces). Shivaji started preparation for coronation. Fort Raigad was newly built by Hiroji Indulkar as a capital of rising Maratha kingdom.

Chhattrapati Shivaji, founder of the Maratha Confederacy.
Shivaji was crowned a king in a lavish ceremony at Raigad on 6 June 1674.[35] Some Brahmins had opposed Shivaji's coronation, questioning his Kshatriya ancestry.[36] But Pandit Gaga Bhatt of Varanasi presented a genealogy tracing Shivaji's ancestry to the Kshatriya Sisodia Rajputs of Mewar.[37]
Gaga Bhatt, an authority on Vedas, officially presided over the ceremony, and had a gold vessel filled with the seven sacred waters of the rivers Yamuna, Indus, Ganges, Godavari, Krishna and Kaveri. He held the vessel over Shivaji's head and chanted the coronation mantras, as the water kept dripping from the several tiny holes in the vessel. After the ablution, Shivaji bowed before Jijamata and touched her feet. Nearly fifty thousand people gathered at Raigad for the ceremonies.[8] Shivaji was bestowed with the sacred thread jaanva, with the Vedas and was bathed in an abhisheka. Shivaji then had the title of "shakakarta" conferred upon him.
Shivaji then had the title of "Shakakarta" conferred upon him, as well as assumed the title 'Kshatriya Kulavantas' meaning head of Kshatriyas. Further, he preferred Chhatrapati title than Maharaja.
His mother Jijabai died on 18 June 1674, within a few days of the coronation. This was considered a bad omen. Therefore, a second coronation was carried out 24 September 1674, this time according to the Bengal school of Tantricism and presided over by Nischal Puri.[38]
[edit]Conquests in Southern India

Maratha Empire in 1680. (red)
In October 1674, the Marathas raided Khandesh. On 17 April 1675 Shivaji captured Phonda from Bijapuris. Karwar was occupied by mid 1675 and Kolhapur in July 1675. There were naval skirmishes with the Siddis of Janjira in November 1675. In early 1676, Peshwa Pingale engaged Raja of Ramnagar in battle en route to Surat. Shivaji raided Athani in March 1676. By the end of 1676, Shivaji besieged Belgaum and Vayem Rayim in current day northern Karnataka.
At the end of 1676, Shivaji launched a wave of conquests in southern India with a massive force of 50,000 (30,000 cavalry and 20,000 infantry).[8] He captured the forts at Vellore and Jinji that belonged to the sultanate of Bijapur and are in modern-day Tamil Nadu. In the run-up to this expedition Shivaji appealed to a sense of Deccani patriotism, that the "Deccan" or Southern India was a homeland that should be protected from outsiders.[39] His appeal was somewhat successful and he entered into a treaty with the Qutubshah of the Golconda sultanate that covered the eastern Deccan. Shivají's conquests in the south proved quite crucial during future wars. Jinji served as Maratha capital for nine years during the War of 27 years. The small bands of marathas were now moving like imperial forces ready for open battle.
His other intention was to reconcile with his stepbrother Vyankoji (his father Shahaji's son from his second wife, who came from the Mohite family) who ruled Thanjavur after Shahaji. They had talks, Venkoji (Ekoji I) showed signs of uniting with Shivaji but then no concrete result was obtained.[8] On return to Raigad, Shivaji seized most of Ekoji's possessions in the Mysore plateau. Ekoji's wife Deepabai a scholar of saintly bent of character brought reconciliation between the two brothers so they were not enemies and maintained the status quo of co-existing independent.
[edit]Death and succession crisis

Shivaji died on 2 April 1680,[40] on the eve of Hanuman Jayanti. In a span of 50 years he started from a jagir and ended with a vast empire streching from hilly terrains to southern plain. According to James Grant Duff, the first historian of Marathas in modern times, the spirit infused in the minds of people by Shivaji was more valuable than the forts and treasury left behind.
After the death of Shivaji, his widow Soyarabai Shirke started making plans with various ministers of the administration to replace Sambhaji with her son Raja Ram as the heir to the kingdom. On 21 April 1680, the ten-year old Raja Ram was installed in the throne. The news reached Sambhaji who was imprisoned in Panhala. On 27 April, he took possession of the fort after killing the commander and on 18 June, he acquired control of Raigarh. Sambhaji formally ascended the throne on 20 July, putting Soyarabai and Raja Ram in prison.[41][42]
[edit]Rule and Administration

Shivaji statue at Pratapgad.
Shivaji was an able administrator who established a government that included modern concepts such as cabinet (Ashtapradhan mandal), foreign affairs (Dabir) and internal intelligence.[43] Shivaji established an effective civil and military administration. He also built a powerful navy. Maynak Bhandari was one of the first chiefs of the Maratha Navy under Shivaji, and helped in both building the Maratha Navy and safeguarding the coastline of the emerging Maratha Empire. He built new forts like Sindhudurg and strengthened old ones like Vijaydurg on the west coast.[8] The Maratha navy held its own against the British, Portuguese and Dutch.[44]
Shivaji is well known for his benevolent attitude towards his subjects. He believed that there was a close bond between the state and the citizens. He encouraged all accomplished and competent individuals to participate in the ongoing political/military struggle. He is remembered as a just and welfare-minded king. He brought revolutionary changes in military organisation, fort architecture, society and politics.[8]
Shivaji was the first king of the medieval world to undertake the revolutionary idea of abolishing the Feudal System, 150 years before its worldwide recognition in the French revolution. For a span of about 50 years, there were no feudals in his kingdom. After the fall of Raigad in 1689, Raja Ram started giving land grants to maratha chieftans to fight against the mughals in the War of 27 years.
See also: Ashtapradhan
The organization of Shivaji's administration was composed of eight ministers or pradhaanas:[10]:438
Peshwa - Mukhya (main) Pradhan, next to the king, for supervising and governing under king's orders in his absence. The king's orders bore the Peshwa's seal.
Mazumdar - An auditor to take care of income and expenditure checks, keep the king informed of finances and sign districts-level accounts.
Navis or Waqia Mantri - to record daily activities of the royal family and to serve as master of ceremony.
Sur Navis or Sachiv - to oversee the king's correspondence to ensure letter and style adherence to wishes of the king and check accounts of palace and Parganas.
Sumant or Dabir - for foreign affairs and to receive ambassadors.
Senapati or Sir-nobut - To keep troops ready and the king fully informed.
Panditrao - to promote learning, spirituality and settle religious disputes.
Nyayadhish - the highest judicial authority.

Sindhudurg fortress from mainland, a sea fort constructed by Shivaji.
Shivaji demonstrated great skill in creating his military organisation, which lasted till the demise of the Maratha empire. He was one of the pioneers of commando actions, then known as ganimi kava.[45] His Mavala army's war cry was Har Har Mahadev ("Hail Lord Our God", Har and Mahadev being common names of Shiva).[8] Shivaji was responsible for many significant changes in military organization:
A standing army belonging to the state, called paga.
All war horses belonged to the state; responsibility for their upkeep rested on the Sovereign.
Creation of part time soldiers from peasants who worked for eight months in their fields and supported four months in war for which they were paid.
Highly mobile and light infantry and cavalry excelling in commando tactics.
The introduction of a centralized intelligence department; Bahirjee Naik was the foremost spy who provided Shivaji with enemy information in all of Shivaji's campaigns.
A potent and effective navy.
Introduction of field craft, such as guerrilla warfare, commando actions, and swift flanking attacks.
Innovation of weapons and firepower, innovative use of traditional weapons like the tiger claw (vaghnakh) and vita.
Militarisation of large swathes of society, across all classes, with the entire peasant population of settlements and villages near forts actively involved in their defence.[8]
Shivaji realized the importance of having a secure coastline and protecting the western Konkan coastline from the attacks of Siddi's fleet.[8][13][46] His strategy was to build a strong navy to protect and bolster his kingdom. He was also concerned about the growing dominance of British Indian naval forces in regional waters and actively sought to resist it. For this reason he is also referred to as the "Father of Indian Navy".[47]

Suvela Machi, view of southern sub-plateaux, as seen from Ballekilla, Rajgad.
Main article: Shivaji's Forts
Shivaji captured strategically important forts at Murumbdev (Rajgad), Torana, Kondana (Sinhagad) and Purandar and laid the foundation of swaraj or self rule. Toward the end of his career, he had a control of 360 forts to secure his growing kingdom. Shivaji himself constructed about 15-20 totally new forts (including key sea forts like Sindhudurg), but he also rebuilt or repaired many strategically placed forts to create a chain of 300 or more, stretched over a thousand kilometres across the rugged crest of the Western Ghats. Each were placed under three officers of equal status lest a single traitor be bribed or tempted to deliver it to the enemy. The officers (sabnis, havladar, sarnobhat) acted jointly and provided mutual checks and balance.
Shivaji built a strong naval presence across long coast of Konkan and Goa to protect sea trade, to protect the lands from sack of prosperity of subjects from coastal raids, plunder and destruction by Arabs, Portuguese, British, Abyssinians and pirates. Shivaji started navy in Kalyan. Shivaji built ships in towns such as Kalyan, Bhivandi, and Goa for building fighting navy as well as trade. He also built a number of sea forts and bases for repair, storage and shelter. Shivaji fought many lengthy battles with Siddis of Janjira on coastline. The fleet grew to reportedly 160 to 700 merchant, support and fighting vessels. He started trading with foreigners on his own after possession of 8 or 9 ports in the Deccan.[13][48][49]

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