Rajasthan State Exam Study Notes: Modern History of Rajasthan

By Trupti Thool|Updated : November 7th, 2021

The history is not a chronological arrangement of events & incidents only, it is an overall development in the society, its culture and changing socio-economic conditions. The history of human settlement in Rajasthan is almost as old as any other part of India starting from Paleolithic period. A survey of the Banas and its tributaries the Gambhiri, the Viraj, and Wagan has provided evidences that man lived along the banks of these rivers at least 100,000 years ago. In Rajasthan places like Didwana, are among the major centres of Paleolithic period. Excavations at Kalibanga in northern Rajasthan revealed the zenith of Harappan times on the banks of a river, Saraswati. The present day districts of Jhunjhunu and Sikar, along with other areas of Jaipur district bordering south Haryana, formed the part of Vedic state of Brahmavarta. After that contribution in Medieval period was more than any other part of India. The land of heroes and fighters showed its power in medieval period. Rajputana, Pratiharas were main rulers here. In Modern History, Rajasthan was one of the major battle ground against British Regime. Rajasthan was mainly divided in many princely states, though their rulers didn't join forces with freedom fighters but all subjects of these princely states were major contributors in struggle.

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Modern History of Rajasthan(1707-1964)

Princely State

  • There were many small princely states in Rajasthan during 1707 to 1947.
  • Some important states were Jat ruler of Bharatpur, Kachhwaha ruler of Jaipur, Kachhwaha ruler of Alwar, Shekhawati Ruler, Mewar, Kota, Bundi, etc.
  • Churaman of Bharatpur built Fort of Thun.
  • In 1725, Badan Singh, brother of Churaman built Jal Mahal of Deeg, Kumher and Vair fort.
  • Maharaja Jawahar Singh Constructed The Lahore Fort.
  • The Matsya Union was the first state to be formed with the unification of Alwar, Bharatpur, Dholpur, and Karauli. Later they joined the Indian Union.
  • Mirza Raja Sawai Singh holds the title of Sawai, Saramadi Raja-e-Hind, Raj Rajeshwar and Shri Rajadhiraja. He Built Jantar Mantar at Delhi, Mathura, Ujjain, Varanasi, and Jaipur. In 1727, He laid the foundation of Jaipur which was designed by Vidyadhar Bhattacharya.

Revolt of Rajasthan 1857

  • During 1857 revolt George Lawrence was the Agent to Governor-General (AGG).
  • On 28 May, Naseerabad was the first place where the revolt began.
  • Kushal Singh Champavat led the revolt in Erinpura.
  • There were six cantonments in Rajasthan Naseerabad, Devali, Erinpura, Kota, Kherwara and Beawar.
  • On 21st August, revolt reached to Jodhpur region.
  • Kota revolt was headed by Mehrab Khan and Jadaya Kayashion. They killed Major Barton, his two sons and a doctor on 15th October 1857 for which they were hanged on 3rd March 1858.
    Reason for the failure of revolt in Rajasthan: Lack of unity and organization, no support from rulers, no definite leadership, no ammunition support, etc.,
  • Maharaja Jaswant Singh I was the ruler of Bharatpur during the revolt.
  • Maharaja Ram Singh II was the ruler of Jaipur during the revolt.
  • Maharaja Thakat Singh was the ruler of Jodhpur during the revolt.
  • Maharao Ram Singh was the ruler of Kota during the revolt.
  • Maharao Swaroop Singh was the ruler of Udaipur during the revolt.

Some famous freedom fighters of this revolt

  • Lala Jaydayal from Kota
  • Mehrab Singh from Kota
  • Thakur Kushal Singh from Jodhpur
  • Suryamal Misson from Bundi Darbar as a poet.
  • Rawat Keshri Singh from Mewar
  • Rawat Jodhsingh from Mewar
  • Tarchan Patel from Tonk

Peasant & Tribal Movement

Peasant & Tribal movement reason: Signing of treaties of Rajas with Britishers for getting relieved from Maratha and Pindari attack. This levied the extra tax on Rajas which they collect from the Peasants. Hence Peasants were facing double exploitation now.

Some Famous Peasant Movement were

Bijoliya Movement (1897-1941) 

  • This movement began under the leadership of Sadhu Sitaram.
  • In 1916, leadership was taken by Vijaysingh Pathik.

Begun Peasant Movement (Chittodgadh, 1921)

  • It was started against Lag-Baag (Cesses) and Begar (Forced Labour) system.
  • Headed by Ramnarayan Chaudhary. Later by Vijaysingh Pathik.

Alwar Peasant Movement

  • Two peasant movements took place in Alwar.
  • The movement against Pig farming (1921): This movement was started against the tight law on killing pigs which were damaging peasant’s crops.

Neemuchana Peasant Movement (1923-24)

  • It was considered more dreadful than the Jallianwala Bagh massacre by Gandhiji. It was started to oppose the increased tax by the king. Almost 800 farmers gathered for a meeting in which Britishers started the open fire on Peasants in which hundreds were killed.

Shekhawati Peasant Movement (1925)

  • Ended in 1946 through the medium of Hiralal Shashtri.

Bundi Peasant Movement (1926)

  • It is also called Barad peasant movement.
  • Headed and started by Nainuram Sharma.

Mev Peasant Movement (1931)

  • It took place in the region of Alwar and Bharatpur which is also called Mewat region.
  • Headed by Mohammad Ali.

Some famous Tribal movements are

  • Govindgiri Movement (1883)
  • Started in Baswada and Dungarpur region of Bhil tribe.
  • In 1883, Samp Sabha was established for creating political awareness among the Bhil tribe.
  • On 7th December, they gathered at Hills of Maangarh and police open fire on them in which 1500 tribal was killed.
  • Every year a fair is organized on the day of Ashwin Shukla Purnima.

Eki Movement (1921-23):

  • Headed by Motilal Tejawat.
  • Reasons for the movement were interference of Britishers in their customs, extra taxes on salt, tobacco, etc.

Meena Movement (1930):

  • The main reason was the Criminal tribal act of (1924) and Jarayam Pesha Kanun (1930) by British govt. in which Meena tribe was declared as the criminal tribe.
  • In 1952, Jarayam Pesha Kanun was abolished.

Terms Related to Land Revenue System in Rajasthan

  • The land under the direct management of the state was called Khalsa.
  • The land under the feudal or granted land was called Jagir.

Land rights in Khalsa system

  • Biswadar:  This was hereditary and enjoyed undistributed possession on land as they continue to pay tax.
  • Ryotwari System:  Under this system, every registered holder is considered as the proprietor of the land and pays directly to the govt.
  • Ijara System:  Under this system right of collecting revenue from a particular Pargana was given to the highest bidder of the auction.

Land rights in Jagir system:

  • Jagir:  It is land granted to a feudal in which the state had no right to intervene.
  • Inam or Tankha:  It is a revenue-free grant to a person given as a salary or for its good works.
  • There were many cesses also levied on farmers. They were production, cattle breeding, irrigation, nature, social cesses, etc.

Famous Freedom Fighter of Rajasthan

Motilal Tejawat:

  • Started Eki movement
  • He is called Messiah of Tribals.

Swami Kumaranand:

  • Gave shelter to Batukeshwar Dutt after Kankori conspiracy.
  • Contributed by uniting farmers.

Balwant Singh Mehta:

  • Founder of Vanvasi hostel.

Laduram Joshi:

  • Participated in Salt movement and August revolution.

Devishankar Tiwari:

  • Contributed to the establishment of Rajasthan University, Sawai Raja Mansingh medical college and Maharani College.

Vijay Singh Pathik:

  • Real name was Bhoop Singh Gurjar.
  • Leaded Bijoliya Peasant Movement.
  • Rajasthan Sandesh and Nav Sandesh were started by him.
  • He wrote a novel Ajay Meru.
  • Some other freedom fighters were Jugalkishor Chaturvedi, Balmukund Bissa, Mohanlal Sukhadiya, Haridev Joshi, Arjunlal Sethi, Ramnarayan Chaudhary, Damodar Ras Rathi, etc.

Facts After Independence: 

  • First Governor of Rajasthan was Mr Gurumukh Nihal Singh.
  • First assembly President of Rajasthan was Mr Narrottamlal Joshi.
  • First CM of Rajasthan was Hiralal Shashtri.
  • First Chief Justice of Rajasthan High Court was Mr Kamal Kant Verma.
  • First Lady CM of Rajasthan is Smt. Vasundhara Raje.
  • First lady Minister was Smt. Kamla Beniwal.
  • First Lady Governor was Smt. Pratibha Patil.


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