In history, I have read about a lot of heroes and heroines. Out of these heroines, I admire Lakshmibai, the indomitable Ranee of Jhansi who led the first war of Indian Independence against the formidable British rule, in the red year of 1857.
Who she was:
Lakshmibai was the only daughter of Maharashtrian Brahmin family in a small town of maharashtra. Lakshmibai was born on 16th November 1834 A.D. The name of her father was Moropant Tambe, who was an influential personality in the administration of the Peshwa Balaji Bajirao, the name of her mother was Bhagirathibai. Lakshmibai spent her childhood in Benaras in the place of her father. In her childhood, she learnt reading and writing and many kinds of physical feats unlike the girls of her times. When she was eight only she was married to Gangadhar Rao, the king of Jhansi, a kingdom in the territories of Bundelkhand. The marriage took place in the year 1842 A.D. and Lakshmibai gave birth to a son who died after three months.
Gangadhar Rao, was tied to the British by an honourable treaty, adopted a baby-son, named Ananda Rao, By Hindu rites and ceremonies in presence of the British representatives Major Ellis and Captain Martin. Ananda Rao renamed as Damodar Rao, was adopted by the king of Jhansi with full approval of the British authorities. Gangadhar Rao, the king of Jhansi, passed away in November, 1863 and his queen Lakshmibai ruled the kingdom as the queen-regent on behalf of the five-year old Damodar Rao, the heir to the throne of Jhansi, but the Governor-General of British India Lord Dalhousie rejected her regency and ordered to take Jhansi by doctrine of Lapse under the charge of the British Government. major Ellis came to the court of Jhansi and told the queen this order. From behind her Purdah, the queen replied “Mera Jhansi nahin dungi”, which means “I will not give up my Jhansi”. She was red with rage. Like an angry tigress she began to pace in her palace.
In 1857 A.D. the renowned Sepoy Mutiny broke out in India. Lakshmibai joined this outbreak and became a great leader of it. She bravely fought with the British army for many months. Her men inspired by her bravery, killed a lot of British soldiers. The Ranee fought with the enemies holding the swords with both hands and holding the reins of the horse between her teeth, till she fell wounded by a short on her head from the enemy side. She was taken to her camp by her faithful men where she survived for twenty minutes only. She was cremated by her men including her adopted son Damodar, ten years old by that time.
Lakshmibai, the Ranee of Jhansi was the greatest heroine of her times who laid her life for the cause of her country.