MPSC Study Notes for Battles after Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s Reign – Important Battels of Maha

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

The Maratha Kingdom struggled to hold its ground against the Mughals after the death of Chhatrapati Shivaji in 1680. From 1713 onwards, Balaji Vishwanath, the Peshwa, came to hold the reigns of the power, and the Maratha empire was on its Zenith.

Let us know in detail about the prominent battles that were held post-Shivaji’s reign. 

This article is important for MPSC State Services and MPSC Subordinate Exams. 

Battles after Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj’s Reign: MPSC Study Notes

The infamous War of 27 years was initiated in 1680 when Aurangzeb, the Mughal emperor, invaded the Maratha enclave in Bijapur, which was established by Shivaji. This was a series of battles that were fought between the Marathas and Mughals in the Indian subcontinent from 1681 to 1707.

There are three distinct phases in which this war can be divided:

  • Marathas under Sambhaji’s reign (1681–1689).
  • Marathas under Rajaram’s reign (1689–1700).
  • Marathas under Maharani Tarabai’s reign (1700–1707).

Although many small and long battles were included in it and continued until half a century, this war was ended with the death of Aurangzeb in 1707. The later Mughals did not have a stable reign, and this was the prime reason Maratha expansion could be held in the North.

Like Shivaji, his son Sambhaji Maharaj was also a fabulous military commander and succeeded the Maratha reign after Shivaji’s death in 1680. He managed to defend the Maratha Empire against the strong Mughal rule and many regional enemies such as Siddhis of Janjira, Chikkadevaraya of Mysore, and Portuguese of Goa and North Konkan (Mumbai & Ghodbunder fort).


Brief Description

The sacking of Burhanpur (31 January 1681-2 February 1681)


  • Also known as the looting of Burhanpur.
  • Burhanpur was a wealthy and prosperous city in Madhya Pradesh by Sambhaji.
  • Huge loot was carried out by the Marathas and after that, they returned to Raigadh after evading the Mughal forces.

Battle of Kalyan 

  • Fought between the Mughal and the Maratha Empire in the year 1682 (which continued until 1683).
  • It took place in Kalyan fort.
  • General Bahadur Khan of the Mughal Empire defeated the Maratha army and took over the region.
  • The Marathas attempted a counteroffensive but failed, and they were repulsed, and their army was destroyed by Mughal forces.

Siege of Ramsey (1682-1688) 


  • This siege was a sustained military conflict between Sambhaji led Maratha Empire and the Mughal Empire, which was led by Aurangzeb.
  • It was fought for the control of Ramsey fort in Nashik district of Maharashtra.
  • Mere 600 Maratha troops could defend the overwhelmingly large Mughal army for six years.
  • Subsequently, with a strategic effort, the new administrator was bribed by the Mughals leading to the capture of the fort in 1688.

Maratha Invasion of Goa (1683) 

  • Maratha’s invasion of Goa (a Portuguese-controlled territory) and the Konkan region took place under Sambhaji’s reign.
  • The battle between the two-power continued until 1683.
  • Sambhaji reinforced the Ponda fort, which was attacked by the Portuguese viceroy Francisco de Távora.
  • With this, Marathas captured many forts in the colony of Goa.
  • Although Sambhaji aimed to capture the City of Old Goa, his forces had to retreat to avoid the conflict with the large Mughal Army under Bahadur Shah I, who was famous as prince Muazzam.

Mughal invasion of Konkan (1684)

  • This was part of the Deccan wars, and a campaign was launched by Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb to capture the Konkan region from Sambhaji.
  • Marathas could succeed by guerrilla strategy. Additionally, also the harsh climate forced the numerically strong Mughal army into a slow retreat.
  • In this campaign, the Mughal army suffered great losses in the sustained strategies by the Marathas.

Battle of Wai 

  • It is considered as a part of the Mughal–Maratha Wars, it was fought in the fall of 1687.
  • Sambhaji sent his forces under Hambirao Mohite, Senapati to oppose Mughal army led by Sarja Khan.
  • As Marathas are known for framing good military strategies, the Mughals were defeated by drawing them into the dense forests near Wai and Mahableshwar. 

Note: The death of Hambirao was a serious blow to Sambhaji’s cause.

Battle of Palkhed (1728)

  • It was a land battle and fought at Palkhe, a village near the city of Nashik.
  • It was held between Baji Rao I, the Maratha Peshwa, and the Nizam-ul-Mulk of Hyderabad.
  • The Marathas defeated the Nizam. 

Note: The battle is considered an example of the brilliant execution of military strategy.

Battle of Jaitpur

  • Chhatrasal Maharaj was in rebellion against the Mughal Empire and established an independent kingdom in the Bundelkhand region.
  • Muhammad Khan, a distinguished commander, attacked him in 1728 and besieged his fort along with his family.
  • In 1729, after repeated assistance requests sought by Chhatrasal, the Peshwa Baji Rao I responded and marched in the Bundelkhand region.
  • Chhatrasal escaped his captivity to join the Maratha forces and marched to Jaipur.
  • As a result, Bangash was forced from the Bundelkhand region. 

Note: Chhatrasal’s position as the ruler of Bundelkhand was restored.

Battle of Dabhoi

  • Asaf Jah I, the Nizam of Hyderabad in 1731, managed to secure the defections of influential Maratha leaders.
  • Trimbak Rao Dabhade and Sanbhoji threatened to abandon the Marathas and join forces with the Mughal Emperor Muhammad Shah instead.
  • This move was unacceptable to the Peshwas.
  • In the Battle of Dabhoi, Baji Rao, his brother Chimnaji Appa I, led a large, well-armed brigade of Marathas to intercept Trimbak Rao Dabhade and Sanbhoji.
  • In this battle, the defecting factions were all defeated, overrun, and eliminated. 

Battle of Mandsaur (1733)

  • The battle took place in Mandsaur (present-day Madhya Pradesh) between Jai Singh and Marathas, who were commanded by Malharrao Holkar.
  • Jai Singh was defeated in this battle, and Malhar Rao Holkar then conquered Bundelkhand and Bundi.

Battle of Delhi (1736)


  • The Maratha Peshwa Baji Rao I attacked Old Delhi, the Mughal Capital.
  • To retaliate Muhammad Shah, the Mughal Emperor sent Saadat Ali khan I with a 1,50,000 strong army to stop the Maratha advance, but Malhar Rao Holkar and Pilaji Jadhav crossed the Yamuna and looted the Ganga-Yamuna Doab region.
  • And Saadat khan was tricked to wait at Mathura, thinking the Marathas had retreated towards Pune. Marathas army kept marching towards Delhi and encamped near Talkatora.
  • With the fierce Maratha attack, the Mughals were devastated and lost half of their army.
  • This resulted in Mughals compelling to ask for assistance from regional rulers against the Marathas.
  • However, when the news of Saadat Ali Khan’s large Mughal army approaching Marathas reached Baji Rao, he decided to retreat to Pune. 

Battle of Bhopal (1737)

  • This battle was fought between the Mughal forces and the Maratha empire.
  • The Mughals were led by Nizam of Hyderabad.
  • This battle was fought with regional assistance wherein the Marathas have poisoned the water and replenishment supplies of the Mughal forces.
  • To stop the reinforcements, Chimaji was sent with an army of 10,000 troops.
  • In this manner, instead of directly attacking the Nizam, Bajirao blockaded the city.
  • The outcome was that the Nizam was forced to sue for peace after he was denied reinforcements from Delhi.
  • This had resulted in a decisive Maratha victory mainly through the swift tactics of Maratha Peshwa Baji Rao.

Battle of Vasai 

  • It was fought between the Portuguese rulers of Vasai and the Marathas.
  • Vasai is a village near Bombay (present-day Mumbai). Chimaji Appa, the brother of Peshwa Baji Rao, led the Maratha troops.
  • Marathas decisively won the battle, and it was considered a major achievement of Baji Rao I’s reign.

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