Battle of Kharda - March 11, 1795: Notes for UPSC Preparation

The Battle of Kharda that took place on 11th March 1795, was an important event in modern Indian history. In this article, you can read about the details of the battle of Kharda the IAS exam.

Background of the Battle

The Battle of Kharda took place on 11 March 1795 between the Maratha Empire and the Nizam of Hyderabad. The Marathas won a decisive victory. The battle would have a significant impact as the British would take Maratha dominance seriously. Moreover, the refusal of the British to come to the aid of the Nizam despite being under their protection, had several Princely States considering their present arrangements with the British.

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Events of Kharda Background

  • The Battle of Kharda took place at Kharda which currently lies in Ahmednagar District in the state of Maharashtra.
  • It is notable because it was the last battle in which the Maratha Confederacy fought as one.
  • The Marathas and the Nizam of Hyderabad had united albeit briefly in their war against Mysore’s Tipu Sultan.
  • But they had longstanding issues of Chauth and Sardeshmukhi between them (these were types of taxes collected by the Maratha Empire).
  • In 1791, the Marathas had two envoys at the Nizam’s court. They were Govindrao Pingle and Govindrao Kale. The Marathas led by Nana Phadnavis pushed for their demands through these envoys. The Nizam gave his word to talk about it once the war with Tipu Sultan had culminated. Accordingly, both waited for a period of two years.
  • Once the negotiations started, the Nizam did a u-turn and suggested that the Marathas owed him 2.5 crore rupees. He also arranged for the British East India Company (Formed on December 31st 1660) officials to act as arbitrators in this matter. Meanwhile, the Nizam had upgraded his army from 2 battalions to 23 battalions. This infuriated the Marathas.
  • Talks continued till 1794 and by then both sides realised the futility of talks. Neither side budged from their demands.
  • The Nizam, Mir Nizam Ali Khan (Asaf Jah II) had 45000 infantry, 45000 cavalry and more than one hundred guns.
  • The Maratha Confederacy was led by Sawai Madhavrao Peshwa and Nana Phadnavis. The entire Maratha Confederacy joined in and fought together. The Peshwa was supported by the Holkars, the Shindes, the Gaekwads and the Bhonsales. Together they had about 100000 troops and 100 guns.
  • The Nizam’s army marched onwards from Bidar in January 1795. The battle ensued near the Fort at Kharda. The Nizam was routed and had to retreat to the Kharda Fort. The Marathas laid siege to the fort and the Nizam surrendered after holding out for 17 days.
  • Hyderabad had to surrender its minister as a prisoner. The Nizam also ceded many territories to the Marathas. Apart from that, he gave a huge amount in tribute.

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Related Links:
UPSC Books UPSC Monthly Current Affairs Magazine Current Affairs Quiz
Laxmi Bai Current Affairs and Questions Article 29 of the Indian Constitution
M Laxmikanth Dynasties in India Importance of Fundamental Rights

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