THE LAST STAND OF PAVAN KHIND - THE 300 BATTLE OF INDIA

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In desperate times, great men come forth. Those men who are ready to sacrifice all of their lives work for a single cause.

Baji Prabhu Deshpande is one such man.

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Battle was between the Maratha Warrior Baji Prabhu Deshpande and Sidi Masoud of Adil Shahi Sultanate.

In 1660, the Maratha King Shri Chhatrapati Shivaji was trapped in the fort of Panhala, under siege and vastly outnumbered by an Adilshahis army led by Sidi Masoud.

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And while everyone is thinking that finally the Maratha king will be subdued, Shivaji planned to escape to the fort of Vishalgadh. It was administered by a Maratha chieftain named Range Narayan Orpe under Shivaji.

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For months the siege warfare continued as Shivaji made sure that the food source of the Besieging army drops down, due to which they will initiate a general assault on the castle.

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Shivaji, Baji Prabhu, and around 600 of their best troops, hardened mountaineers of the Maval region, would dash through the Adilshahis force at night.

A man named Shiva Kashid, who resembled Shivaji in appearance, had volunteered to dress like the king and get captured.

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It was envisaged that this would buy some additional time due to the confusion over identity, before Sidi Masoud realized the error and gave chase.

Shivaji made his escape on the dark night of 13 July, with his contingent of troops along with Baji Prabhu’s.

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With less than 600 they raced through the forest to reach Vishalgadh. But as the night time grew, Shivaji realized that it will be impossible for them to out run a large Adil Shahi army.

The only option was for a section of the Marathas to stay back and fight the larger

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Adilshahis forces in a rear-guard action, while the rest of the Marathas would carry on to their destination.
Shivaji decided that this was the inevitable choice and split his forces.

Baji Prabhu Deshpande agreed to face the troops of Bijapur with 300 soldiers of the contingent
Shivaji told Baji Prabhu that he would hear the cannon fire from Vishalgadh (the destination fort), signalling Shivaji’s safety. The strategic position of Ghod Khind (Horse Pass) was chosen for the defence.

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It was very narrow and only a few soldiers could pass at any one time.

Shivaji had hoped that once he reached his safe headquarters, Baji will soon follow. What he didn’t know was that this would be the last time he will see his good friend.

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Bajiprabhu Deshpande occupied Ghod Khind, blocking the path of the pursuers, and made a determined defence against them.

His brother Fulaji Prabhu as well as sardars such as Shambu Singh Jadhav were present with him.

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His bowmen climbed atop the low steep hills ready to shoot their arrows on the enemy. On a tactical basis Baji Prabhu had chosen a great spot.

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A small valley would nullify the oncoming armies’ great numbers, and as his archers had already secured the hill, their flank was safe.

The approaching Adil Shahi army initiated a full head on assault. With the rage of men possessed the Maratha counter charged.

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But the Marathas were no lesser than their Spartan counterparts

Swords clashed, spear shafts broke, men tumbled down.

Just like Thermopylae, The Marathas held out on in a valley surrounded by a hilly terrain
Fighting was too tiring to continue for more than some minutes hence
they fought in short burst like a boxing match.

Tackling then retreat, tackling then retreat.

But despite all this, the great number of the Bijapur Army showed signs of victory.

Fulaji Prabhu and Shambu Singh were killed after a gallant and fierce fights.

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Baji Prabhu was severely wounded but carried on fighting at his station.

The Adilshahi army desperately tried to break through the defences of the pass, but were repeatedly repulsed.

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The archers atop the valley knocked loose arrow after arrow and when the gunner’s bullets were finished, they fought with their bare hands.

The unequal battle raged for hours, with the defenders maintaining their positions, but with rapidly depleting numbers.

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Only a handful of Marathas survived, and around a thousand soldiers of the Adilshahi army became casualties in attempting to take the pass.

According to legend, Baji Prabhu was shot three time but still kept fighting as he wielded two heavy swords while using his own body as a
wall of shield.

Five hours after the battle started, the cannon fire announcing Shivaji’s safe return to Vishalgadh was heard. Almost three hundred Marathas had been killed.

Down to the man they gave their lives.

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Legend has it that a gravely injured Baji Prabhu continued engaging the enemy and held the pass, only laying down his life once he heard the sound of cannon fire.

The handful surviving Marathas then retreated and disappeared in the forest as per the plan.

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On the other hand, Shivaji and his 300 soldiers had to break through the encirclement of Suryarao and Jaswantrao at Vishalgadh, who were the two local Maratha warriors under the Bijapur sultanates army.

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A fierce battle ensued in which Shivaji himself fought wearing Dandpatta in his both hands.

Seeing this fight, the commander of Vishalgadh fort sent help to Shivaji enabling him and his troops to reach the fort safely.

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Shivaji then fired cannons as a signal for Prabhu to retreat.

Shivaji’s plan was successful. Having made his way to Vishalgadh, Range Narayan Orpe had fresh troops at his disposal.

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These troops were being fed and watered, they were strong and heavily motivated to take revenge on the Adil Shahi army.

As they marched forth, they devasted Sidi Masoud’s contingent, routing the entire force.

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The local bards tell the tale that the green valleys of the forests turned red due to blood.

The Maratha Empire that was built from scratch by Shri Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj had contribution of people like Baji Prabhu Deshpande

Naman to such warriors🙏🙏

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Info credit - @Tarang60301263

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In old times, the aborigines of this place were the tribals named Nagas, Pishachas and Yakshas, who used to go in summer towards Tibet and return to Kashmir in winter.

Because of the fear of these tribals, the Brahmins used to depart from the valley before the tribals returned.


The Brahmins begin to reside in Kashmir permanently, only after they started giving presents to these Aborigines on specific festivals at the suggestion of Nila Nag,

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[Let humans settle down permanently in Kashmir,
O, possessed of the fierce prowess. The people are always facing misery in coming and going.


Leaving their homes in various places, the humans
are troubled. With their favour let them live
here. This is the boon I solicit. : Nila (said): “Let it be so, O best among the twice-born. The humans may live here permanently, if you follow my instructions, which

I received from Keshava”].

The festival Khichiramavasya is still observed by all Kashmiri Hindus. On this day, which falls on the fifteenth day of the dark 3 fortnight of the month of Poh (generally in the month of December- January),

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