Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Banaili Roots to Raj continued-Dynasty

Dynasty

Dharm-karmaavataar Mahograprataap Raja Dular Singha Chaudhary

When Parmanand Choudhary left Baigni, and in course of wandering from place to place, within the jungles of Nepal, and later, in Munger and Purnea, his wife gave birth to two sons. The elder son was Eklal, meaning the first gem (son). Eklal had a short life. The second son, who grew up to become the founder of Banaili Raj, was Dular (Dulal) Chaudhary. He was born in 1750. His real name was Tejanand, but he was nicknamed Dulal, the second gem. Dulal succeeded his father as the only son, when the latter died in 1785.
The title of Chaudhary was already in the family, from the time of his grandfather, Devananda. A Chaudhary collected land rents in one or more Pargannas and deposited a fixed amount to the treasury of the Nawab (or Muslim ruler). Since, the headquarters were generally, far away, and there was lack of easy conveyance, these Chaudharies were the rulers of these Pargannas for all practical purposes.
It was Dulal Chaudhary, who took up the surname of Singh (a title used by rulers only) and was publicly acknowledged as Raja. When he grew up and entered public life, he became more accepted and known as Dular Singha.
During his early life, he lived at Amour along with his father, cousin Harilal and female members of their families.
It so happened that the house of Bhairav Mullik, their family friend and well wisher, was plundered by dacoits and he died soon after, of shock and desolation. Now, Dular Singh was appointed Kanoongo of Purnea and Dinajpur, in place of Bhairav. It is recorded that he was also a Kanoongo of Tirakharda and received Rs.1, 037, annually from the government. He soon became very influential and powerful in the district.
Already an established agriculturist, he started indulging in trade and enterprise. He purchased Ghee, Bari-ilaichi and timber at cheap rates in Nepal, and sent them by river route to Calcutta to be sold at profitable rates. He had to use elephants as a mode of conveyance in the jungles and hills of Nepal. This led him to trade in elephants as well. A highly profitable business was thus established and the wealth of the family multiplied by leaps and bounds.
When differences cropped up between him and his cousin Harilal (son of Manik Choudhary), a partition was affected and Harilal became the owner of Amour. The Parganna Asjah fell in Harilal’s share and Dular Singh got the Parganna of Tirakhardeh.
Dular Singha shifted back to his old family abode at Banaili, a village on the banks of river Saura. A befitting Palace was erected[1]. Soon Banaili (Vanpalli)[2]was transformed into a capital township of a thriving estate.
Banaili Raj, the subject of this study derives its name after the village (later township) of Banaili (Vanpalli). It was a well-chosen site for the capital of an estate. River Saura worked as a natural citadel as well as a river-way, connecting Banaili, to the Ganges at Karhagola. A proper road, made and maintained by the East India Company, passing due west of the village, ran straight to Nepal. So Banaili was well connected, by road and river as well.
The township had broad roads and well ordered avenues. The palatial residence and seraglio befitted the power and position of Dular Singh. Buchanan writes “Dular Choudhary, an active landlord has a house becoming his station, in the division of Haveli Puraniya.” The place had as many as twenty-two ponds and tanks, meant for beautification and irrigation.
Raghubeer Narayan writes that Parmanand Chaudhary had died before the above-mentioned partition. But professor Madneshwar Mishra in his “Ek Chhalih Maharani” places Parmanand Choudhary as a thriving Zamindar at Banaili. The version of Raghuveer Narayan is more probable as it was written under the guidance of Raja Kirtyanand Sinha. Raja Kirtyanand was the great grandson of Dular Singha and should be more accurate in his information.
Although a successful agriculturist and a thriving businessman, Dular Singha was yet to make a start as a leading Zamindar. He owned only one Parganna named Tirakhardeh till 1793, which was permanently settled in his name. Tirakhardeh was the smallest Pargannah to be settled and was only 76 square miles in area.
Asjah, which went to the share of Harilal Singh Chaudhary, was a much bigger estate, both in area and money. Unfortunately Harilal and his son Kalitnath took to dissipation and profligacy. Their estate was mismanaged to the extent that within a couple of generations, the entire paternal legacy was ruined and lost.
While his cousin and nephew were ruining themselves, Dular Singha was amassing untold wealth. He began to lay the foundation of an extensive estate, and he started purchasing rich properties, one by one. Rich estates, in Nawhatta, Gogri and Dhaphar, Golayan and Maldah were acquired. Soon he became the proprietor of a respectable estate in Bihar.

The Estate-
A lot of valuable information is gathered about Dular Singha, from the book ‘An account of the district of Purnea in 1809-10 by Francis Buchanan. He made a survey report of the district of Patna, Gaya, Shahabad, Bhagalpur, Purnea and Dinajpur, under the orders of the Governor General in council during the years 1807-14. He toured and surveyed Purnea in 1809-10 and Bhagalpur in 1810-11. He has written quite a lot about Dular Singha. It is truly written by Ramanath Jha on page 93 that Buchanan has mentioned Dular Singha more frequently than any other person in his reports. Dular Singha has also been praised in many ways by Francis Buchanan.
In his Bhagalpur and Purnea Reports-Buchanan calls him Dular Singha and Dulal Choudhary on different pages. It means that both names and titles were prevalent.
When a description of the Zamindars in Taluks of different Pargannas within Purnea and Bhagalpur was made, Dular Singha was mentioned again and again. Buchanan gives a list of his self-earned properties.
1. A portion of Parganna Kotwali, falling within Kaliachak and surveyed in 1887-92 as within, Maldeh district. Dular Singha purchased it from the Raja of Dinajpur. Page458, Purnea Report
2. A portion of Mahinagar called Sujanagar, which was surveyed as within the district of Maldeh. Dular Singha purchased it from the Raja of Dinajpur page463, Purnea Report
3. Akberabad, surveyed in 1887-92 as within the district of Maldeh, purchased from the Raja of Dinajpur. Page466, Purnea Report
4. Sujanagar (108000Bighas) purchased from the Raja of Dinajpur. Page183, Purnea Report.
5. Dehatta (5000to6000Bighas, in the division of Kishanganj) purchased from the same Raja. Pg484, Purnea Report
6. Shahpur (5000Bighas approximately) in Haweli Puraniya Pargaannah purchased from the above mentioned Raja. Page488, Purnea Report
7. Parts of Dhaphar (four Maujas) of Sirkar Munger of Subah Bihar originally belonging to Morang Rajas. Page503 Purnea Report
8. Portion of Chhai Parganna of Bhagalpur. Page501 of Bhagalpur Report.
9. Parganna Pharkiya within the district of Munger. Page508 Bhagalpur Report.
All these above properties were purchased by Dular Singh between 1793 and 1810 i.e. within a span of 17 years. Apart from these he already had succeeded to his parental legacy of Tirakhardeh. He had Zamindaries and properties in Tirhut and Dinajpur. According to Jharkhandi Jha, he purchased Nabhatta, Gogri, and other portions of Dhaphar. Dular Singh also succeeded in getting a settlement of a strip of land adjoining Tirakhardeh, after the Anglo-Nepalese war.
About Tirakhardeh, Francis Buchanan wrote “Tirakharda is a fine estate in the divisions of Matiyari and Arariya. This also was taken from Morang, and given to the Rajas of Puraniya, but Ramchandra, the last Raja except one, gave this and Asja as already mentioned to his Dewan Devananda. This man left Asja to one son, Manikchandra, and gave Tirakharda to Puramananda, another son, who has left it to Dular Singha, a person whom I have had frequent occasion to mention as proprietor of a portion of Kotwali, of Mahinagar Sujanagar in Serkar Jennutabad, Akburabad in Serkar Urambar, and of Sujanagar, of Dehatta, and of Shahpur in Serkar Tajpur, all of which I believe he has purchased; as he has also done a part of Dhapar which will be afterwards mentioned. He also has lands in Tirahut, Bhagalpur and Dinajpur, and is a very thriving man.”
“Tirakhardeh may contain 276,000 bigahs, of which perhaps 22,000 are not assessed. Of the remainder perhaps 149,000 are fully occupied. The bigah was originally a square of 100 cubits each side, or was equal to 1.56, Calcutta measure. Mr. Colebrooke, it is said, settled that the leases should be in perpetuity, and that the whole lands of each village should be let at one rate (ekduri), which varied from 10 to12 annas according as there were more or less of a good soil. This, although a much better plan than the attempting to fix a rent on each bigah according to the nature of the crop, leaves great room for oppression and fraud, a favourite getting all his land good, while those who will not agree to be squeezed get nothing but fields of the worst quality. The evil of leases in perpetuity had probably existed before the settlement made by Mr. Colebrooke, so that it was indispensable. The tenants having complained that this assessment was too heavy, they and the Zemindars agreed that the bigah should be extended to 120 cubits, and that the rate should rise to from 16 to 20 annas, in which the tenants were grossly deceived; for in place of lowering the rent it was considerably raised, this being at the rate of from 11 to 13 annas for the old bigah, in place of from 10 to 12 annas. Not that this is by any means too high, being at the rate of from 7 to 8 annas a Calcutta bigah. Not only what is actually cultivated, but a good deal that is fallow pays this rent, which may raise the average rent of the cultivated land to about 10 annas, a rate which in present circumstances is sufficient to incite industry without being oppressive, provided it is levied fairly, as Dular Singha practices. The estate now contains about 66,000 large bigahs fully occupied, with about one-fifth more in fallow, making in all 79,000, which should be rented at from 16 to 20 annas a bigah, with an addition of 1/64th part (paiya, i.e., one-quarter anna) given to the clerk; but in two or three villages near the frontier of Morang some deduction is allowed, herds of wild animals pouring in from the wastes, of that country.”
The following table which depicts the collections made by the government from Parganna Tirakhardeh (Torrah cordeh), between 1172 (1765) and 1180 (1773) as against the amount it was settled for, shows the steady decrease in the collections, year by year.
TiraKhardeh:-
Year Settlement Amount Collection Amount
1172(1765) Rs.33,728 Rs.30,979
1173(1766) 29,722 25,486
1174(1767) 17,180 14,353
1175(1768) 22,052 19,836
1176(1769) 13,433 13,433
1177(1770) 15,610 15,610
1178(1771) 17,110 17,110
1179(1772) 9,929 9,929
1180(1773) 4,641 4,623

Regarding the management of his estate, Buchanan further elaborates “Dular Singha keeps in his own management a farm (Khamar) of 5,000 of these bigahs, one-half of which he cultivates by his slaves and hired servants, and the other by those who take one-half of the crop for their trouble. The losses which even a man of his activity must suffer by fraud should allow little profit on such a concern; but he has vast herds of cattle for which it is necessary to provide, and from which he derives a solid gain; and at the same time diminishes his rental (hustbud), a circumstance most eagerly attended to by even the most intelligent Zemindars. Besides he is probably in hopes of being able to withdraw these lands from the assessed estate, as would appear to have been done in the estates of the Raja of Tirahut, as will be afterwards mentioned. He has given 1,800 bigahs to about 50 men called Jaygirdars, who are fellows of some courage and who pay only 250 Rs a year; but are bound to oppose the incursions of wild beasts from Morang. They also pretend that they oppose the passage of thieves, --- - - - - - - -He gives about 500 bigahs free of rent to 20 messengers (payiks) that attend him, and 50 to their chief called a Serdar. What remains from 4,000 bigahs of lands granted for service goes to his slaves.
The remaining 70,000 bigahs are divided into taluks, in the size of which there is no very material difference, which is of much importance towards economy. On most estates one taluk will be 200 bigahs and another 15,000, so that the person who has charge of the one cannot live by fair means, and he who has charge of the other cannot perform a half of the duty. In each taluk he allows only one clerk (Patwari) and one messenger (Gorayit), who are paid in money in proportion to the value of their receipts. The clerk receives 1/64th part of the amount of collections, which although paid by the tenants actually comes from the master, and if he collects 1,000 Rs., he gets 24rs a year, in all 39rs 10 annas. The messenger gets 12rs a year, and of course begs or takes from the tenants, a poor but general economy from which even Dular has not been able to escape. The village expense of collection is therefore a trifle more than 5 percent. No part of the rents is farmed. His steward and servants receive the money from the village clerks, and account to a master who narrowly inspects their conduct. I heard no estimate of the expense of this establishment; but I have no doubt that it is under 5 percent on the rental. Being on the immediate frontier of Morang to which every rogue can with facility escape, he no doubt loses by arrears; but his people are so little oppressed, when compared with those of all the neighbouring estates whose rents are farmed, that his lands are immediately occupied. I have entered into this detail to explain the proper management of an estate, in which the only defect is the perpetuity of the leases.”
“Being very active and intelligent, he has also had sense to perceive that his real interest is inseparably connected with fair dealing and kindness to his tenants; not shown in the usual manner by granting low rents to parasites, but by protecting the industrious from the frauds and oppressions of agents, and especially of those who farm rents. I believe he employs none such, except where the rents had been farmed, when he purchased and the term has not expired, or where the lands are very distant.”
Although Buchanan is all praise for Dular Singh’s methods of management of his estate, he also describes Dular Singh as a troublesome neighbour. He writes “Dular Singha is a very a troublesome neighbour [3]and has a strong inclination to encroach on all those, whose lands are adjoining to his.”
“Being the Kanoongo of Tirakhardeh, he may have successfully kept the revenue officials in dark, regarding the actual economic position of the Estate. It is a fact that between 1770 and 1774 he miraculously succeeded in getting the assessment of the Parganna reduced in a most drastic way[4]. ”
While writing about the Parganna of Pharkiya, in his report on the district of Bhagalpur, Buchanan writes that he had found only the Estate of Dular Singh to be in good management. He praises the works of Dular Singh by which he had saved the people of his estate, from the fright of attack of wild beasts. Buchanan is sure that in a period of about twenty years the entire Parganna could have been made cultivable if only it had belonged to Dular Singh in totality.
He elaborates that the Daldal (swampy) lands in the north of Ganges in Bhagalpur was infested with wild elephants. These elephants posed great threat to life in this area as well as southern Purnea. When Dular Singh of Purnea purchased this property and found it in a state of chaos, he was told that the main reason was the menace of these wild elephants. Although he knew, that there were other reasons for this confusion, he decided not to neglect this apparent cause, “the elephants”. He purchased four trained elephants and with its help, succeeded in catching seven wild ones.
Although, Buchanan felt that this example, set by Dular Singha could be followed by other Zamindars, it would have been easier to simply shoot them down. He adds that it was reported to him that only one out of the above seven elephants survived.
From the above, it is clear that Dular Singh may have possessed unusually high qualities and great capability to catch the eye of Francis Buchanan, who praises his administrative methods and great enterprise, again and again.
Francis Buchanan mentions his name as Dular Singha at most of the places. He also calls him Dulal Choudhary or Dular Singha Choudhary. But he never calls him a Raja which suggests that he was decorated with the title at a later date.

King-ship -
By the turn of the 19th century Dular Singh had reached such heights in power and influence that he succeeded in establishing friendly political ties with the British Governor-General at Calcutta who was shrewd enough to recognize Dular’s growing influence and held him as an ally.
In 1814, war broke out between Nepal and British India. Dular Singh came to the immediate help of the British government. It is said that he supplied one-lac Maunds of Rasad (food supply) to the army. In conveyance there of, 17 of his elephants died in the mountain passes and tracts. This adventurous endeavor of Dular Singh helps us to form an idea of his wealth and resources. He must have possessed a large caravan of elephants.
When the war ended and the treaty of Sugauli was signed, the government conferred upon Dular Singh, the title of Raja Bahadur[5], in lieu of his services.
In the letter written by Lord Hastings, the Governor General of India to Raja Dular Singh Bahadur in December 1818, the friendly expressions are very noticeable. The very tone of the letter reveals the intimacy between the two.
At the treaty of Sugauli, when the respective frontiers of Nepal and British India were determined, the government settled with Raja Dular Singh, about 7 koses (2 miles =1 kose) of land adjoining Tirakhardeh[6] . It is said that Dular Singh was a key figure at the treaty of Sugauli.
When he became a Zamindar in 1793, Dulal Choudhary took up the title of Singha[7] and became famous as Dular Singha. The literal meaning of Singh is the lion and in those days this title was taken up by rulers and chieftains. Dular Singha was not only a lion by name but also by his deeds. He was full of might and pride and possessed the valour of a lion. He was a man of extraordinary talents and had developed competitive intolerance in his nature. He was very ambitious and firm about his plans and decisions. He was brave, and fearless. He was never struck by the mere thought of subjugation. It was not in his nature to accept himself as inferior to anyone. He wanted to be the best. Dular Singha started his career as the master of the smallest Parganna that was settled during the permanent settlement in 1793 and ended his career as the biggest Zamindar of Purnea and Bhagalpur. He died in 1821 and left an estate with an annual income of about 7 lacs.
Raja Dular Singh Bahadur of Banaili was the true founder of the Banaili Raj in the way that it was he who took up the royal title of Singh and was decorated with the title of Raja. It was in his days that the royal capital was set up at a place named Banaili, and this name was adopted for all his estates held collectively.
We must not forget here, that Dular Singh’s grandfather was the lord and master of two Pargannas, and a ruler in his own capacity. Family lore tells us that Devanand had become a small Raja during the latter period of his life.
In those days, every ruler, small or big, was regarded and addressed as a Raja by the people. The title “Raja” had a wide range of meaning.
Right from the time of the Sultans of Delhi and the Mughals, the provinces of Bihar and Bengal, unlike Rajasthan, were converted into a Suba of the Delhi Empire. It was ruled, mostly by a Muslim ruler who styled himself as a Nawab or a Sultan. However, several Rajas, Thakurs and Maharajas flourished under these Nawabs or Subedar rulers of Bengal and Bihar.
So the concept of a Raja lived on with a different meaning. The normally independent king now lived on as a vassal with much smaller domains of power.
Earlier a Thakur paid annual tributes to a Raja, who in turn paid tributes to a Maharaja and the latter, to a Samraat. Now the order had changed only to the extent that the superior of a Thakur, Maharaja or a Raja was the Nawab Subedar and the Emperor Baadshah at Delhi. So the Raja lived on.
As soon as an ambitious man secured the status of a Choudhary or Thakkur and was promoted in status and power, people accepted him as their Raja and later Maharaja, taking no consideration whether the title was actually conferred by a recognized authority or not.[8]
Later, the British replaced the Emperor Badshah, and held the Maharajas, Nawabs, Rajas, Thakkurs and Choudharies as their subordinates. The ruling patterns had changed and in Bihar and Bengal these subordinates were converted into Zamindars as permanent leaseholders of land against a fixed sum of rent. Rents replaced the earlier tributes. But the Rajas lived on for the sake of the public, which still depended on these chiefs of their respective areas. They had paid land rent to the Rajas (independent), and continued the same even today, noticing but not caring, the fact that these rents were transferred to an overlord. The only thing that vexed the public was the abnormality of lack of a proper army and frequent battles, without which they failed to, understand how the Raja and his Rajya went on peacefully.

Family -
Raja Dular Singh Bahadur was married during the days of his father’s residence at Amour. His elder brother Eklal had a premature death. He had no issues. Dular Singh’s first wife, Rani Pankhiyani Devi [9]was from village Koilakh. After her premature death, her younger sister was married to Dular Singh. This, Rani Ankhiyani Devi and Raja Dular Singh had two sons, Sarbanand and Bedanand, and two daughters Prasannawati and Lotani.
Later, after the death of Rani Ankhiyani Devi, Raja Dular Singh married again. His third wife was the daughter of Mahamahopadhyaya Kulpati Jha[10] of Haripur Pachari. Kulpati Jha was a very learned Yogya of his times. Out of this marriage Raja Dular Singh had one son Rudranand Singh and four daughters namely Rupain, Khelain, Hasain and Badain.

Society -
Before we move on to the adventures and encounters of Dular Singh with the higher divisions of the social setup of Tirhut and the distinct impressions he made therein, let us know a little more about this particular section of the society with which Dular Singh and his descendents decided to keep and maintain all their relations during the times to come.
In contemporary Mithila the highest position among the Brahmins was enjoyed by the Shrotriyas who were followed by the Yogya.
The highest manifestation of Brahminism was called “Shrotriya”. According to Smriti :-

“Janmanaa braahmano gyeyah sanskaaraad dwija-uchchyatay
Vidyayaa yaati vipratwam tribhih shrotriya uchchyatay”

One, who is born of pure Brahmin parents, is called a Brahmin. Next, one attains the position of a Dwija after going through various Sanskar or rituals. After receiving proper and high education, one reaches the position of a Vipra. When a person has all the above three qualifications he attains the exalted position of a “Shrotriya”.
The Shrotriyas or Soit were basically poor people and were always in need of patronage or monetary help for subsistence. These learned Shrotriyas were received well at the Durbar of the Rajas and Maharajas.
Their literary achievements were seen and studied at these courts by a recognized group of scholars who were, employed permanently by the lords or were frequent visitors.
Every new scholarly work was acclaimed and recognized according to its merit. The scholar would be showered with reverence and sometimes a literary title. These would be accompanied with lavish presents, in cash and kind or both. At times these gifts in forms of land and money would be so sumptuous that it would suffice the financial requirements of the scholar for his life time or even more.
Besides Thakkurs and Choudharies who also, gave patronage to the learned man, but only within their means, there were three royal houses within Mithila, under whose patronage, the scholars found recognition and bread.
These were: -
The Pahasara dynasty of Purnea.
The Khandwala Thakurs of Bhour and
The Oinwars who were the descendents of the former rulers of Tirhut.
In those days, these Shrotriyas lived all over Mithila and were not restricted within a fixed boundary. Many lived in the district of Purnea. I place below a list of some villages in Purnea and their Chief Soit Inhabitants.
Village-Khokha – Naroune
Village-Rasaarh- Ekhare
Village-Chanaka –Palibaar Mahisi and Khowaare
Village-Amouni-Khandwala
Village-Farkiya-Karmahe
Village-Gunmanti-Sodarpuriye-Sarisab and Khowaare
Village-Basaiti-Darihare-Ratauli and Khoware-Simarbar
Village-Pahsara- Surgane
Village-JagyaPalli(Jagaili)-Hariambe
Later, when the line of Pahasara withered away (after the death of Rani Indrawati) the house of Banaili came up in the area and filled its place.
Under Parmanand Choudhary, Dular Choudhary and Harilal Choudhary, this house offered patronage to the learned and meritorious. Not only this; through the marriage of their daughters to Shrotriyas, huge amount of property and wealth was given to the respective families.
This learned class, was received with great respect and reverence at the courts of Banaili and Amour. In fact, the recognition given by the rulers of Banaili was more pronounced because of the strong desire of these rulers, to be elevated in caste position, a process which would be speeded up only by appeasing the Shrotriyas (Soit), who were the ultimate in the world of Kuleen. As a result, even a Yogya, or one who had fallen from the position of a Soit would be received with such enthusiasm, at the courts of Banaili, that he would feel honoured and exalted.
Such devotion and sincerity was bound to be recognized by the Shrotriyas.
But for the intervention of Madhav Singh, after he became the social head of Tirhut, the history of Banaili as well as of the Shrotriyas would have been different.
I have already discussed the ways of the Harisingh Deviya Panjee-Prabandh, and its implications to the house of Banaili, till the times of Raja Dular Singh Choudhary. Ramanath Jha writes on page 100 that Dular Singh was fully aware of his very low position according to the social system of Harisingh Deva. He was not happy about it and decided to act in an offensive way by attacking the Harisingh Deviya system with all his might. Ramanath Jha, is of the opinion that Dular Singha should have dealt more carefully and the blows should have been less severe. The offensive policy of Dular Singh, towards the high-born maithil society gave him small victories but these were hardly of any far-reaching consequences. He failed to motivate the Shrotriya sentiments in his favour. These attacks did him no good. He should have been patient, should have attacked with affection and sweetness, and only after winning public opinion in his favour should have moved towards his goal. But he cared little. According to Ramanath Jha, he moved with a motive to demolish the very system of Harisingh Deva, and with this intention he started hitting the Shrotriya sentiments at the most vital points, with the power of his wealth. He should have followed the methods of :
1. The ‘Pahsara’ family which had tactfully risen in caste status and
2. The house of Fannawar of Rambhadra Upadhayaya.

I must say that the learned Pt. Ramanath Jha has made many suppositions and imaginations, of his own on completely baseless grounds.
Except for a single instance where he has been called a troublesome neighbour, Francis Buchanan regards Dular Singh as a good administrator who is quick to grasp the intricacies of management. He rose from the master of a small estate like Tirakhardeh to the biggest proprietor of Purnea and Bhagalpur within a span of 16 years.
Definitely, Dular Singh must have known a lot of tact, skill, wisdom and insight, to have become such a great administrator. But here Ramanath Jha calls him intolerant, impatient and unwise!
Dular Singh had made contacts and friendly relations with the British by helping them with Rasad at the Anglo Nepal war. The British were the rulers and to win them over, Dular Singh must have had the patience to appear before them as a subordinate ally. His polite and gentlemanly behavior, only may have won him the title of a Raja. 17 of his elephants died during the war but obviously Dular did not lose his calm and poise. But here Ramanath Jha calls him to be impatient, intolerant, offensive and rough!! He goes on to brand him as a most unwise person, who, instead of conquering the Harisingh Deviya system, got defeated due to his wrong strategy.
Through Buchanan, we know a man, who played his cards well and always made correct strategic moves, and Ramanath Jha imagines him to be a person who knew nothing, about strategies. How strange and contradictory to each other!
When I made a study of the social scenario of the times of Dular Singh, I seemed to find an answer.

Madhav Singh of Tirhut had been given shelter and protection by Dewan Devanand and his son Parmanand Choudhary. When he was 14 years old Madhav Singh was taken from Purnea to Tirhut, where he ascended the throne in the year 1775. Dular Singh was then, 25 years old, therefore a senior by 10 years. Soon after his accession, Madhav Singh became the social as well as political head of Tirhut. But he owed his very life to the Banaili family and lived in awe of his saviors. He had seen with his own eyes the rising power and wealth of the house of Banaili. He was aware of the help given by the Dewan Sahab to his predecessor Raghav Singh. It did not take him long to realize that, with the extinction of the royal house of Pahsara, it was only Banaili, with which he faced any competition. It was only Banaili, which could pose to be a rival to him.
So he acted quickly and made good use of his newly acquired position of the head of the social system of Harisingh Deva. Through political utilization of his supremacy over social affairs, Madhav Singh decided to curb forever, the rising power and influence of Banaili, by sabotaging its social growth.
It was from this point onwards, that each and every effort and attempt made by Dular Singh and his descendents to win back a suitable place in the then prevalent caste system of the Brahmins, was politically manipulated by the Rajahs of Tirhut (Darbhanga), and no stone was left unturned to socially defeat the rival house of Banaili.
According to the social norms of the contemporary Shrotriya society one had to take formal permission from the head of the society before finalizing any negotiation in marriage. Dular Singha was proud enough to refuse to take permission (ijekuxh)[11] from a man, whom his family had saved from death and extinction. He may have expected Madhav Singh to have gratitude and courtesy enough to recognize his matrimonial matches. He may have expected a Parmangi (Permission) without having asked for it in a formal way.
But Madhav Singh did not seem to own this bit of thankfulness and gratitude. He instead, took Dular Singh as a rival. Madhav Singh used his social veto power to achieve political goals against Banaili. This proved to be a successful strategy, and was followed by his successors.
The erstwhile concept of “Stree Ratnam Dushkulaadapi” was also restricted. Once again social dualism flourished and Harisingh Deviya was tarnished forever. Madhav Singh became the social head of Harisingh Deviya, all right. But the new Harisingh Deviya was reconstructed in such a way that Parmangi was regarded to be a must only for the Shrotriyas. With the institution of Parmangi, he severed all connections of the Shrotriyas with the rest of the society. The maintenance of purity was not supposed to be as important for the Yogyas, and Panjibadhs, who otherwise were a definite part of the system. Duality prevailed.
Madhav Singh began establishing a monopoly over the Shrotriyas by confining them within a fixed sphere of land as well as patronage. The learned but poor Shrotriyas were the biggest sufferers. They were left with the rulers of Darbhanga as their only patron and landlord. Thus the Shrotriyas were now compelled to live a closed life. With their access denied to other Royal houses, they now depended completely on the rulers of Darbhanga.
The Zamindars of Darbhanga Raj, after Madhav Singh, continued to make quite a good use of Harisingh Deviya by abusing it time and again.
Once having attained the upper two goals, the Maharaja established his final control over the community of the learned Shrotriyas, who from that day onwards were led into a downhill journey, by the end of which they realized that they had lost almost all, that made them a Shrotriya in the first place.
The society of learned intellectuals, which spent most of its time in debates on Dharma, Indian Philosophy, the Vedas and the Upanishads, deteriorated to such an extent that their new pastime, was confined to fighting over each other’s position in the society on the grounds of mere birth and marriages. Now they took sadistic pleasure in ridiculing another Fellow-Soit who, due to a lower position, had to face tough social humiliation on the occasion of every social event.
The entire Shrotriya society was engulfed in rituals of various kinds, most of them made only with the purpose of establishing one’s social position above another.
The rate of literacy fell to the bare minimum and a time came when the so called lower born Yogya, Panjibaddh and Jaiwars, who were free from the clutches of the Maharaja, came up with educated and learned men, generation after generation, and surprised the Shrotriyas with their intellect.
Whenever a bride was brought to the royal palace of Banaili, the match was denounced by the Shrotriyas, whether she was a Shrotirya or a Yogya. The bugle of alarm was sounded all over Darbhanga and conferences were held to save the high-born from the shadow of the low caste of Banaili. The Maharajah of Darbahanga would create such an atmosphere as to appeal to his people to stay away from Banaili.
But when a bride was brought to the house of ‘Khandwala’ of Dharbhanga, the rules of Harisingh Deviya would stand defunct. In lieu of the favour and patronage, the Shrotriyas would elevate the position of the bride’s family to that of their own.
In the beginning, Dular Singha, feeling confident, that he had a friend in Madhav Singha, who would never go against him, acted in such a way as to follow the system of Harisingh Deviya. In order to revive his position to Shrotriya-ship, he was expected to procure grooms and brides from respectable families. He did so in right earnest. His second wife was the daughter of a Yogya, as he knew that if he took a Shrotriya wife he would offend their community and earn a bad name. On the other hand it was quite according to Harisingh Deviya (“Stree Ratnam Dushkulaadapi”) if he procured Shrotriya bride-grooms for his daughters.
He wanted to please the Shrotriyas in order to revive his own position. So, he gave away all his six daughters to Shrotriya bride-grooms[12]. All his sons-in-law, except two, were already married, the Banaili princess being their third or even fourth wife. Dular Singha overlooked the happiness of his daughters and gave them away to middle-aged men, upon whom he also showered wealth and landed property. Two of his sons-in-law were from Zamindar families of ‘Chanaur’ and ‘Souriya’. The Shrotriyas entered these marriages for financial gains. Dular singh gave away a lot of wealth to the Shrotriyas and expected their help in reviving his own caste position.
But to his utter dismay, he found a change in the attitude of Madhav Singh, the new overlord of the social system. He also realized that, it was not the slightest intention of Madhav Singh to allow the house of Banaili to gain any social ground.
Now, angry and violated, Dular Singha decided to ignore the Harisingh Deviya and started making political alliances.
He made matrimonial alliance with the next rival of Madhav Singh, the contenders to his throne, Ugra Singh Thakur of Bhour. Bhour or Rajgram was the original home of the ‘Khandwala’ rulers of Darbhanga. These Singh Thakurs of Bhour were cousins of the ruling family of Darbhanga. By seniority they were the claimants of the throne. Ugra Singh Thakur’s ancestor was the eldest son of Maharaj Mahesh Thakur, the founder. This eldest son and his son Hemangada had ruled Mithila but later abdicated the throne in favour of the youngest brother Shubhankar. Ugrasingh Thakur was the great grand son of Hemangada.
Ugrasingh Thakur gave away his three daughters to the three sons of Raja Dular Singha. This was a matrimonial alliance on political grounds. Ugra Singh expected, in exchange, the support of the house of Banaili in their contest for the throne of Darbhanga.
Obviously Madhav Singh may have faced a severe blow by this matrimonial alliance. He motivated the Shrotriyas, strongly against Ugra Singh Thakur and ousted him from Shrotriya-ship. They were crippled and sabotaged from all sides. According to the wish of the Maharaja and in order to please him and return his kindness, the Shrotriyas were tricked into a conspiracy against the Singh Thakurs of Bhour. They were ousted from Shrotriya-fold and a derogatory title of Betibecchaa was fixed for the Singh Thakurs of Bhour. This means, a seller of his daughter.
Although, Banaili was not successful in helping the Singh Thakurs in establishing a claim over Darbhanga Raj, the Rajas of Banaili continuously made sincere efforts, to compensate their insult and social degradation. Babu Ugra Singh Thakur’s Son Babu Jagat Singh Thakur became very influential and powerful in Banaili during the days of Raja Bedanand Sinha Bahadur. He was the key figure at the purchase of the Kharagpur Mahal which became the biggest property of the Banaili Raj. Jagat Singh was regarded as the right hand of the Raja and was addressed as the Nayab Raja of Banaili. He received a small Zamindari Estate as well as an allowance of Rs. 1000/- per month from the Banaili Raj. This allowance was not discontinued even after his death and his sons (Babu Damodar Singh Thakur and Mahamahopadhyaya Babu Krishna Singh Thakur Dharmadhurin) and grand sons received the above sum, divided as per their proportionate share till the Banaili Raj existed.


Raja Bedanand Sinha Bahadur

Bedanand Sinha was born in 1778 and died in 1851. He was forty-three years old when he succeeded his father in 1821. In the same year, he received the title of Raja Bahadur from the government. This title was conferred upon him, in continuance of the title given to his father for the valuable services rendered to the British Army during the Anglo-Nepal War.
He took keen interest in the management of properties of his Raj (estate) and preferred to be in direct control of matters, rather than depending on managers and other staff. He possessed superb administrative qualities. He used to go out in-cognito at night to inquire the welfare of his people. If he happened to find any tenant neglecting his cultivation, the latter was sure to be taken to task and was compelled to apply himself diligently, to the duties of a cultivator. On the other hand, he extended his valuable support and financial help to those, who took their duties seriously. Bedanand was a lover of justice and implemented it with strictness. Like his father and grandfather, even more, he was an agriculturist. He had a natural liking for agriculture and farming and saw to the steady growth of farming in his capacity as a Zamindar as well as a farmer. More and more land was cultivated. Every possible modern method was implemented and as a result he became richer and richer everyday.
Bedanand was very pious. He was a staunch follower of Brahminism and vigorously performed all the rituals of a Brahmin. He possessed a very quiet nature.
Raja Bahadur Bedanand Sinha, in the capacity of the Karta of the Hindu undivided family, began to manage the estate after the death of his father. Soon, problems cropped up at the domestic front. His younger step-brother Kumar Rudranand Sinha went to court for a partition of their father’s estate. Later there was a compromise between the brothers and the estate was partitioned in two equal parts.
Rudranand continued to live in the palace at Banaili and Bedanand moved due south near the border of the adjoining village called Sadhuaili, and constructed a new palace with all its paraphernalia.
The main palace consisted of two separate sections for male and female members. The female section was called the Haveli, which was a rectangular courtyard with a house on all the four sides and a square canopied platform at the centre of the courtyard called a Marbaa. The ladies used this Marbaa as their evening lounge where they entertained themselves with folk and classical music, and most of all, with gossip. The only male members allowed within the Haveli were relatives below the age of adolescence, and husbands who came by the night and left before dawn.
The male section was situated in the east of the Haveli and was called the Bahri. This consisted of a Durbar Hall, living rooms, a library and an adjoining Verandah for reception and sitting purposes. The Bahri also included the Toshkhana and the Treasury.
To the right of the Bahri was another Marbaa, larger than the one in the Haveli. Functions such as Marriage and Upanayan[13] were held here. Due west to the Marbaa was the Bhansa-Ghar or the royal kitchen. It was here that the family deity or Gosown was enshrined according to the traditions of Mithila. This building also included the dining hall and a general kitchen for the relatives and staff.
A guest-house, offices and the Dewan’s residence were situated to the left of the Bahri.
High walls surrounded the Palace complex called the Garhi. The main entrance was called the Singh Darwaza. It had iron gates. Armed men were posted there to guard and inspect every passer-by. The Singh Darwaza consisted of sepoy’s quarters on both sides and a Naubat-khana on the upper storey.
Next to the palace a tank was dug for the use of the ladies of the palace. All the four embankments as well as the floor of the tank were laid with slabs of stone, making it a suitable bathing and swimming pool. Ornamental stone laid stairways (Ghat) led into the waters from east and west and an ornamental stone pillar (Jaaith) was planted in the centre of the tank. A changing room was made on the western side. High walls surrounded the tank from all sides and a narrow underground passage near the eastern wall led into the inner quarters of the palace.
Outside the Garhi, the Devighara stood in all its splendour and grace. This was a hall of worship, facing south with a verandah on the south, east and west. Annual Durga-puja was held here with great pomp and show. Expert artisans, who lived within the estate of Raja Bedanand, made and decorated several clay idols for the Durga-puja. Adjacent to the Devighara, a temple of Goddess Kali enshrined a stone idol of the Mother, which had been imported from Rajasthan and installed according to the traditions of the Shakta.
A dancing hall called the Nach-ghar was situated in the east of the Devighara. This was an auditorium, meant to accommodate large crowds when programmes of dance and drama were held there during festivals.
I am producing a lay out of the palace complex at Banaili. This may help the readers to form an idea of a typical residential set up of a Zamindar Raja in the first quarter of the nineteenth century.
In 1840, at a Government revenue sale, Bedanand Sinha purchased fourteen annas of the Mahals of Kharagpur of Rehmet Ali Khan (except the Haveli of the Parganna). Later, in the year 1842, he consolidated his estate by buying the remaining two annas from Balnath Sahu. His paternal Estate which had been cut into half by partition was thus increased by more than four times. This Kharagpur Mahal falls mainly in the present district of Munger but also spreads into Bhagalpur and Santhal Pargannas. Its measurement is approximately 2296 square miles, out of which 830sq miles come within the district of Bhagalpur. It spreads out in an area of 1470011 acres and brought in a revenue of Rs 81611/- to the government. In other words, Mahalat Kharagpur consisted of 530727bigha 5kathha and 17dhur of land and included the following Pargannas:- Sahroi, Lakhanpur, Kherhi, Sakharabadi, Parbatpara, (including tappas Lodhwa, Sinroun, Dighi etc.), Wasila, Godda, Hazartakhi, Amlo-motia, Handwai (including a Ghatwali held by the Rani of Handwai), Chandan-katoria, Jahangira, Masdi, Dhararha, Abhaipur, Singaoul and Daoda-sakhwara.
There is an interesting anecdote related to the Purchase of Kharagpur Mahalat. When Bedanand made up his mind to purchase the Mahalat, he realized that he did not have enough money in hand. He tried all his resources but failed to arrange the entire sum before the prescribed date of payment. It is said that he bought over the treasury officers, who allowed him to deposit terracotta chips, instead of coins in the money bags. These were weighed for money and deposited in the treasury, to be replaced with actual coins within a few days when they were finally arranged for.
Mahalat Kharagpur, ever since Bedanand Sinha purchased it, always remained a source of constant dispute and litigation to the proprietors of Raj Banaili. The main dispute was with the Maharaja of Darbhanga, who acquired by purchase in 1848 A.D, Haweli Kharagpur, which was surrounded on all sides by Mahalat Kharagpur of Banaili. Several times the litigation was carried to the Privy Council, costing both the estates, a large amount of money. Then there were disputes regarding the Ghatwali tenures under it. The government resumed most of these Ghatwali tenures as Thanedari lands. Bedanand’s son, Leelanand Singh contested the resumptions and succeeded in the Privy Council. The government entered into an agreement in or about the year 1863, with Raja Leelanand Sing Bahadur by which it accepted Rs. 10,000 a year in lieu of these services. Since then, most of the Ghatwali tenures were converted into Mokarrari Istamrari Tenures except that of Parganna Hundwai which retained its Ghatwali character.
Raja Bedanand Sing Bahadur was able to manage the affairs of Kharagpur considerably well through the able manager-ship of Babu Jagat Singh Thakur, his brother-in-law. Babu Jagat Singh Thakur was known as Nayab Raja[14] of Raj Banaili.
Later in life, he also purchased Mohalla Madhubani in Purnea and Parganna Gorari, in the name of his only son Kumar Leelanand Sinha Bahadur. Thus he increased his estate by many times. The author of Mithila Darshan calls him an able ruler.
The Newspaper ‘The Englishman Aug 23 1838 -col-4’ records that at a meeting of the Landholders Society held on 20-8-1838 “Raja Bedanand Bahadoor of Poorneah was elected member of the society”. At the said meeting, the society discussed the issue of resumption of rent-free lands by the government and decided to prepare a petition against the said move of the government. It is presumed that Bedanand must have taken an active part in the deliberations of the society because at that point of time resumption operations were carried rigorously in Purnea and also in other districts of Bihar. Bedanand must have established himself as a leading Zamindar of the region, to be elected as a member of the landholders Society. We must also remember that he had not purchased the Kharagpur Mahals in 1838.
That he was a handsome man in his youth, is clear from the life size paintings at Deorhi Champanagar. He was also a famous wrestler. Wrestlers from all over were invited to his court and frequent wrestling competitions were held, especially during Durga Puja, when he himself joined the bouts.
Bedanand was learned, a scholar of Sanskrit and a keen student of Ayurveda. This interest led him to write a book named Bedanand Vinode . This is a book on Ayurvedic medicine. In this book one can find detailed prescriptions of Ayurvedic cures for almost every prevalent disease. Treatment through Tantric Yantra, Saabar Mantra and other magical methods are also dealt with. This book was written in the year Bangla-1247 (1840)[15]. Bedanand had also planted a botanical garden called Vaidyakiya-Bari at Sadhuaili, which contained an exhaustive collection of herbs, plants, shrubs, and trees of medicinal value. The book Bedanand Vinode was later printed by his grandson Padmanand in 1891A.D.
Raja Bedanand Sinha Bahadur was married to the daughter of Babu Ugra Singh Thakur [16]of Bhour (Rajagram). Her name was Rani Chitravati Devi. As I have already written about this matrimonial alliance in the last chapter, I will proceed with the interesting story of the peculiar wedding of Chitravati and her elder sister Champavati alias Juraonvati. Both these sisters were mere babies (7 and 5 years old) when they were betrothed to the two princes of Banaili (Kumar Sarbanand and Kumar Bedanand). Due to the strong opposition of the Shrotriyas, Babu Ugra Singh Thakur was finding it difficult, to openly give away his daughters in marriage, to the Banaili Princes. He therefore decided to smuggle them out of Tirhut and send them straight to Banaili. Story goes that the two baby bride sisters were put inside baskets made out of bamboo (Dhaaki)[17]. Thus concealed, they were carried away by coolies, the baskets suspending from either end of a piece of bamboo by ropes, which the coolies carried upon their shoulders. This method was used in those days to send articles and other luggage from one place to another, especially on occasion of marriage and was called Bhaar. As soon as the coolies crossed the border, and were safely out of the influence of the Raja of Tirhut, the two princesses were taken out of the baskets and placed in the comforts of royal palanquins and travelled in style, to the palaces of Banaili. Their father and his men, followed on horseback and reached Banaili soon after, whereupon Champavati and Chitravati were wed to Sarbanand and Bedanand.
Kumar Sarbanand Sinha and Rani Champavati, unfortunately, had no issues and Sarbanand died at an early age.
Raja Bedanand and Rani Chitravati were blessed with two children, Kumar Leelanand Sinha and Rajkumari Sharda Daijee[18]. The second wife of Raja Bedanand Sinha was the daughter of Vighneswar Jha of Sodarpur-kanhouli Mool. She died issueless.











Kali-Karnaavatar Mahodaar Raja Leelanand Singha Bahadur

Raja Leelanand Sinha Bahadur was born in the year 1816 A.D. His Grandfather was alive at that time. From a very early age, Leelanand received from his father, a rigorous training in revenue administration and Zamindari management. He was well versed in Sanskrit, Persian, and Arabic but did not know the English language.
Leelanand Sinha succeeded his father when the latter died in 1851. He received the title of Raja Bahadur from the Government on 8/12/1851[19] and, later in the same year, ascended the throne at a Durbar held in the new palace at Banaili.
Immediately after his accession, Leelanand had to face the question of shifting the capital to a more suitable place. Persistent floods, malaria and various epidemics had of late, disrupted general life and habitation in and around Banaili. It was felt that a change of place was inevitable. Two of his infant cousins had died in the epidemic at the adjoining Deorhi of Banaili. His only cousin who survived had been shifted to a safer place. Complete desertion of Banaili and Sadhuaili was inevitable. Leelanand chose to move farther west. He crossed the Kari-Kosi and constructed a new capital named Ramnagar on the western banks of the river. This Kari-Kosi had once been the chief stream of Kosi. Even in those days the river was flowing in full swing although the main stream had shifted further west. This place was found to be very suitable for the Raja’s new abode, as it was well connected by river route and very appropriate for his fleet of big riverboats and Bajras which were used for travelling and other business in those days. The establishment of Leelanand Singh at Banaili was very big, befitting his position and status. It was not an easy task to shift bag and baggage to Ramnagar. It is said that while the family deity (Gosown) had to be carried on a Rath to the new capital, one goat was sacrificed for each revolution of the wheel of the Rath. Thousands of goats were sacrificed before the goddess reached her new temple at Ramnagar in 1856.
Palace intrigues between the two nearby palaces at Banaili was another reason for the shifting of abode to Ramnagar. Rudranand Singh lived in the old Garhi of Banaili while Bedanand had constructed a new Garhi, within a distance of ½ a kilometer due south. The two settlements were very close to each other and led to constant misunderstandings and intrigues. Raja Leelanand was a peace loving man. He had always wanted to move to more peaceful surroundings.
The worsening atmosphere of Banaili added up to his plans and the epidemic came as the immediate cause for the shifting to Ramnagar. As was the wish of the Gods, Raja Leelanand Singh could not find peace, even at Ramnagar and moved to Champanagar. Even Champanagar did not give him, peace of mind, which he sought earnestly. Again he shifted to Asarganj, near Jalalabad in Bhagalpur, where he died in June 1883.
He was a young boy when he moved into the new palace at Banaili. Throughout life he moved from one abode to another, constructing palaces and temples at every new place. He founded Ramnagar and Champanagar and constructed a new Deorhi at Asarganj. Four times in all, he left home, in search of a new one. Throughout life he was disturbed by domestic problems, which did not end even with his death in 1883.
If it was Dular Singh who became a Raja and accumulated immense wealth and it was Bedanand Sinha who increased the extent of the estate by many times and consolidated it, it was Raja Leelanand Sinha who spread the prestige and glory of Raj Banaili throughout northern India. Leelanand was extremely generous and just. He was very famous for his liberal donations. He was always more than ready to satisfy anyone who came up to him for financial help. No beggar was ever turned out. Every morning, after performing Puja and before taking breakfast he would give alms to the poor. Leelanand Sinha was compared with the generous mythological character of Karna of the Mahabharata. This comparison appealed so much to the public that it crowned him with the title of Kali-Karna i.e Karna of today. Very soon, he was regarded as a reincarnation of Karna due to a couple of co-incidences: -
A. Major portions of his vast estate fell within the districts of Bhagalpur and Munger, which was called the kingdom of Anga in the days of the Mahabharata and Karna, was the ruler of Anga.
B. He shifted to a new capital called Deorhi- Champanagar in 1868-69 and named it after his aunt Rani Champavati who had mothered him as a child. It was pure coincidence that the capital of Karna was also called Champa-nagari.
Although, Raja Leelanand Sinha extended the domains of his estate by purchasing Mahals Chandpur Hussaina and Khajuria in 1860 A.D., yet the total income of his estate was not enough to meet his extravagance. As a result he contracted some loans. In 1878 the Estate was burdened by a debt about 60 lacs.
At a very early age, Leelanand was married to Rani Sasimukhi the daughter of Mahesh Dutt Jha of Kakrour[20]. After her premature death, Leelanand married Parvati Devi.
Rani Parvati Debi alias Manorama was the daughter of Hemnath Jha of village Ranitol in the district of Samastipur[21]. Rani Parvati Devi gave birth to one son, Padmanand Singh and four daughters namely- Yogmaya, Mahamaya, Nityamaya and Chandramaya.
She was, however very possessive about her only son Padmanand and could not bear the idea of a co-sharer to the throne. She fiercely opposed the Raja when he took a third and fourth wife. This led to differences with her husband and finally, Parvati Devi was separated from her husband, when the latter left Ramnagar with his third wife. She preferred to stay back with her son and daughters.
Rani Parvati alias Manorama constructed a temple of Kali at Benares and endowed some property for its maintenance. She was a very pious lady and spent most of her old age in pilgrimage to different places in India. She carried herself as an ordinary woman.
In 1858 A.D, Raja Leelanand Singh married for the third time. The bride was the fourteen year old daughter of Ishwari Dutt Mishra of Salempur[22]. This third wife came to be known as Rani Chandeshwari (Chandreshwari) alias Nabi-Rani. Unlike his second wife Leelanand was very close to his third wife, Nabi-Rani, but soon after this marriage, a chain of palace intrigues began in the inner quarters of Deorhi Ramnagar.
A son, Padmanand Singh had already been born to Rani Parvati. She being a very possessive lady (as I have mentioned before) did not receive her co-wife well. It so happened that Rani Chandeshwari gave birth to many children but all of them died soon after birth. These recurring deaths of infants further deteriorated relations between the two Ranies. Rani Chandeswari held the senior wife responsible for all her calamities and the Raja sided with the junior Rani. In the meantime, Padmanand Singh grew up into manhood. He obviously took sides with his mother. Matters became worse day by day.
It is said that one-day Raja Leelanand had an argument with his son. There was an exchange of unpleasant allegations, following which the Raja cursed his son. Angry and hurt, he left Deorhi Ramnagar within an hour with his junior wife and other subjects, never to return again. Rani Parvati preferred to stay back with Padmanand Singh.
When Leelanand left Deorhi Ramnagar, in a fit of anger and disgust he may not have been very sure about his next destination. But, he did not go far and settled the same day at a place called Kohbara, Only about a kilometer south of Deorhi Ramnagar. A new Palace was constructed in haste and named Deorhi Champanagar.
There is a very dramatic story related to this migration. As they were leaving Ramnagar, Rani Chandeshwari had enquired of the Raja about their next destination. The Raja declared that he did not care much and would allow his elephant to decide. In other words, he would settle down where his elephant would halt. He must have forgotten his declaration because, on reaching the place where Deorhi Champanagar stands today, he ordered his Mahout to stop the elephant and pluck a few ripe mangoes from a nearby grove. When he presented these mangoes to his wife, she reminded him that the elephant had stopped and had decided the place of their new abode.
It must have taken the royal caravan a couple of hours to reach this new place. I personally feel that the Raja, after gaining back his calm and poise, must have decided to stay nearby and deliberately stopped his elephant to establish his point. Or else, he must have been extremely whimsical to make and follow such vows.
Rani Chandreswari laid the foundation of Deorhi Champanagar in the year 1868-69. By her orders, a new palace, along with a Gosown-ghar (Bhansa-ghar) Thakur-bari and a temple for the annual Durga-puja, was constructed. Later on 12/2/1872, the Raja gifted some Zamindari property for the upkeep and maintenance of the above mentioned temples of Chandreswari. These Mahals gave an approximate annual income of Rs. 40000/-and the Atayanama was made in favour of Rani Chandeswari.
Chandeswari’s father, Ishwari Dutt Misra was a top class Yogya as well as a great Tantrik. On the recommendation of Ishwari Dutt, a temple of Goddess Kali was made at Deorhi Champanagar. The idol of Goddess Kali was installed in the temple amidst several Tantrik rituals. The goddess remains to date, the chief deity of this branch of the family.
Two sons and four daughters were born to Rani Chandeshwari at Deorhi Champanagar. Unfortunately only the eldest daughter, Kamakhya lived. The rest died and once again hostilities began with Deorhi Ramnagar. These sad deaths led to the fast deterioration of the Rani’s health. She started suffering from heart ailments.
Rani Chandeshwari did not have a son. A son was badly wanted for the salvation of her own soul (after death) as well as a suitable heir for her husband’s throne. Going back to Padmanand was out of question. She therefore compelled her husband for a fourth marriage. But Chandeswari could not live long enough to see the much coveted heir to the throne and died soon after the marriage.
At quite an advanced age, Raja Leelanand married once again. His fourth wife was the daughter of Shrotriya Gopinath Jha of Ujaan[23].
The members of the house of Ekhara-Ruchauli at Rasarh, where the bride lived with her widow mother, were opposed to this marriage, because of the low caste level, and advanced age of Raja Leelanand. The bride’s maternal uncle Mohan Misra had to move to a nearby village of Koshikapur,[24] which was gifted by the Raja, to the mother of the bride. Finally the marriage was performed and the new bride came to Deorhi Champanagar with her new title and name of Rani Sitabati.
Soon after, Rani Chandeshwari died at Champanagar. The Raja suspected foul play (witch craft) as cause of her death, and decided to move away from Champanagar to Asargunj in Bhagalpur.
Leelanand went to Asargunj, mainly to be away from his son. Persistent palace intrigues had vexed his mind. Asargunj fell within Jelalabad which was an important circle of the estate and was very close to the headquarters at Bhagalpur. Thus it was more suitable for the Royal Residence, even otherwise.
The Raja had contracted heavy loans. Since long, there had been frequent friction between the father and son regarding the management of the estate affairs as well as domestic affairs. In 1873 an Ekrarnama was signed between the father and the son, and a trust deed was executed, whereby Mr T. Sandys and Babu Harimohan Thakur were appointed trustees to pay off the debts of the estate. But only after four years, in March 1877, much to the discomfort of the Raja, Kumar Padmanand brought a suit against him, in the civil court of Bhagalpur, for the partition of the estate and appointment of a Receiver. The Court gave a consent decree in August, in the same year. This suit led to further deterioration in the relations between the father and the son. In 1878, However, Leelanand gave formal permission to Padmanand (his only heir at that time) to look after the management of the estate. Thus the partition was not brought into effect. But Kumar Padmanand Singh was not to be pacified and on 1.9.1881, he filed a suit against the manager Mr. E. Taylor, in the court of the sub- judge Purnea. Subsequently a Board of Management was constituted on 15.3.1882, with Babu Brahmanath Sen as the Managing Manager.
Being a conventional man, The Raja may have seen the above-mentioned incidents as rude interferences from an ill-mannered and over-independent son.
He moved to Asarganj within the Jalalabad circle of the estate in Bhagalpur, along with his newly wedded wife, and his daughter Kamakhya. Raja Leelanand built a small Palace, named Kunj-Bhawan,[25] and lived there for the rest of his life.
During the time of Raja Bedanand, after the Kharagpur Mahalat was purchased, an important Kachehari had been established at Asargunj. A Devighara along with some residential houses had also been put up. These were renovated with a few additions, to accommodate the Raja’s new household.
Deorhi Asargunj was a typical palatial construction similar to Banaili and Ramnagar, except that the family deity, Gosown, was not enshrined in the Bhansaghar at this place. This indicates the temporary nature of the abode. Yet it was complete with all the other details such as the Thakur-bari, Singh-Darwaza, Naubat-khana, Toshkhana, Tehkhana, Haveli, Bahri, Bhansa-ghar and a Devighara.[26]
Raja Leelanand had given away his daughter Kamakhya in marriage, to Chandidutt Jha[27] of Ujaan. Chandidutt was a Shrotriya of Sodarpur-Kanhauli Mool. Kamakhya Daiji went to live with her husband at Karna-garh in Sultangunj, on the banks of Ganga, where the Raja built for her, a double-storey house.
At Deorhi-Asarganj, Rani Sitabati gave birth to two daughters, Kirtimaya and Dharmamaya, and a son, Kalanand Sinha. The latter was born in 1880.
Raja Lilanand was, by now, quite old. He had been constantly on rejuvenating drugs and health boosters. Already, almost lame with arthritis and gout, he suffered from various other ailments. He fell to various disorders and died on 3/6/1883, leaving behind in mourning, Rani Sitavati who was then, six months pregnant with her fourth child.
Raja Leelanand was a proprietor of vast and extensive but scattered properties and estates. He had received these from his father and later added portions like Chandpur Hussaina and Khajuria. He was very rich, and enjoyed the entire Raj Banaili without any hindrance from the side of co-sharers, as he had none except his eldest son, who proved to be quite troublesome towards him, during the latter part of his life.
Lelanand’s maternal uncle, Babu Jagat Singh Thakur who had been the chief associate of his late father, continued as Naayab Raja even during his time and was later succeeded by his son Damodar Singh Thakur. His brother-in-law from Salempur, Madhusudan Mishra also helped him in the management of the Estate. Raja Leelanand had, Babu Nayan Mani Mullick and Munshi Kamruddin as his Diwan, and another Ishwari Prasad as his chief agent and associate.
Raja Leelanand led his life in a very pompous and extravagant way.A very interesting account of a Pokkar-yagya that he performed with his third wife Chandeswari has come into my possession and I place it below for the amusement of the readers.
According to Maithil customs, Iswaridutt Mishra gave away 5 bighas of land to his daughter Rani Chandeswari, as gift, on the occasion of the Upanayan ceremony[28] of his sons. She in return gave him Rs.6000/- to excavate a tank on the said piece of land. When the tank excavation was over she gave another 6000/- to install idols of Shiv and kali on the banks of the tank in the name of her father and mother. When all was done, Raja Leelanand visited Salempur with his wife to perform a Yagya of the said tank, which was named Chandi-Sagar.
The narrative goes thus “A month and fifteen days before, the proposed Yagya, the lord of Banaili, the generous, and the human gem, Raja Leelanand Singh Bahadur made his royal entry with Rani Chandeswari, Rajkumari Mahamaya and his entourage into the village of Salempur. 1400 men came with him. 50 Elephants, 50 Horses, 10 Palanquins, 100 Bullock-carts, Traps, Buggies and their respective drivers and riders laid the foundation of the beauty of the village. Since it was the second visit of the Raja (the first being his marriage), according to the maithil custom, the ritual of offering Paan-thari was carried out by his mother-in-law and other senior ladies. (According to this custom sandal-wood paste, betel leaves, betel-nuts, and a shawl, placed upon a plate is offered to the new son-in-law by the senior ladies). The Raja gave Rs.10/- to every senior lady as a token of respect and bowed down to them. On this occasion a Shamiana had been fitted to cover up the courtyard. Carpets were laid on the floor. The Raja sat on a Gaddi[29] of velvet. A fine and valuable Masnad[30] supported his back. Silver lamp-stands were placed in front of him. And a chandelier worth a lac of rupees hung from the ceiling of the Shamiana. The Raja wore a red Dhoti, Towni and a Paag (head dress of a Maithil Brahmin) made of gold threads. It seemed as if the lord Surya had entered the courtyard with all his divine light and colours. Every thing sparkled like lightening. There was no end to the odour of Itra, Rose water and Lavender. It is beyond my capacity to describe the beauty of that day. 66 years have gone by but even today it gives pleasure to think about that day.”-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “500 Kutumb (male relatives), 350 Kutumbini (lady relatives), 40 Gunee (learned men), Lawyers, Mokhtars, Peshkars, Munsifs, Registrars, Magistrates, Deputy-magistrates, Honorary-magistrates, Collectors and Judges were invited. The Daroga with their Choukidars were also invited. Two months prior to the Yagya, Malel Jha, a Manager of the Raja had come from Banaili to Salempur. He had brought Rs.5000/- to be given to the cultivators of the village as compensation against the anticipated damage of their property by elephants and horses of the Raja. No body accepted to take this compensation. So the money was returned. In those days Munshi Kamaruddin was the manager of the Estate. He had come with the Raja.
At the northern bank of the Chandi- sagar Tank, 25 sweet-makers had been preparing sweets since, a month. 3 very big thatched houses were made on the east, north and south bank of the tank for the purpose of the Raja’s residence. Tents were put up on the western side. Four houses were made for the Rani’s residence. A huge Shamiana, belonging to Raja Babu Parmeshwari Narayan Singh of Narhan had been brought on twelve vehicles. There were 200 chop. This Shaminana was put up in the east of the Raja’s lodge and near the road and it was used for keeping the people”. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------“Raja Bahadur Leelanand Singh performed the Yagya with his wife Rani Chadreswari Devi. More than 20000 people gathered on that day. Everybody was given food. The Magistrate himself was present with fifty Policemen. On the day of the Yagya, the generous Raja Saheb entered the Yagya premises on a Taamdaan of gold and silver, along with his royal entourage”-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “The approximate price of articles used in the Vedic ritual was Rs. 4000/- and all this was given to the Purohit. One thousand Brahmins were fed and given Rs. 1/- as Dakshina per Brahmin. 400 Kutumbs were present. Each of them received one pair of good Dhoti, Rs. 4/- in cash, traveling allowances and sweets. Their attendant Brahmin and servant were given Rs.1/-and 8 annas respectively. Each of the 250 Kutumbinies received one roll of Nansoot (fine muslin), Rs. 10/- in cash, traveling expenses for the palanquins and its bearers, and 8 annas for the maid-servent”. ----------------------------------------------- “On the day of the Yagya, such quantities of Supari was distributed that persons who had come from Tirhut, sold their Supari at the rate of one kaincha per bowl, because they already had a heavy bundle of sweets and found it very difficult to carry the Supari.
The above narrative throws light on the extravagant and pompous life style of Raja Leelanand Sinha. He was definitely a man of whims and idiosyncrasies. Once, he tried to make Sharbat available for the whole village by emptying bags of sugar and essence in to a well, and mixing it in vain.
At another time, his Khazanchi (with, not very honest intentions) complained to him that the money in the treasury needed to be dried in the sun, in order to get rid of the damp that had set in. This idea appealed so much to the whimsical Raja that he immediately gave permission. The Treasury was emptied, weighed and put in the sun to dry up. Later when the money was again weighed before being put back into the treasury, it was found, much to the amusement of the Raja, that it weighed less. The Khazanchi explained the loss as a normal phenomenon called Sukhout or drying away. This usually happens with food grains, after it is dried in the sun. The Raja smiled and said that he had been aware of the poor financial condition of the Khazanchi and had knowingly permitted the funny procedure to help him and also for fun.
Once, an ascetic came to his court. He wanted donations for some religious cause and had heard of the generosity of the Raja. He said “I have visited many donors but am yet to come across a man who may fill my Kamandal (pail) with money. On hearing this, Leelanand ordered his wish to be fulfilled. The ascetic, overjoyed, took as much as he could, and thanked the Raja. When he was about to leave, the Raja stopped him and said that the ascetic had forgotten to shake his utensil well, and that some more coins could be accommodated. The ascetic was spellbound on such generosity and blessed him again and again.
Although Pandit Ramanath Jha praised the Raja’s generosity, he says that the latter maintained hardly any criterion as to who deserved to be given and who did not.
Being a peace-loving man, Leelanand never missed any opportunity to make a friendly gesture towards other contemporary rulers and Zamindars. A memorable example was set by him when the young Zamindars of Darbhanga-Raj, Kumar Lakshmiswar Singh and Kumar Rameswar Singh paid a visit to Leelanand, during their official tour to Pargannah Dharampur in Purnea. At that time, the Kumars of Darbhanga were heavily indebted to Raja Leelanand Singh, as the latter had won a suit against Darbhanga which was related with property disputes in Kharagpur. In a Friendly gesture, Raja Leelanand dramatically tore the decree (worth 8 lacs) in two parts and presented it to the Kumars of Darbhanga as a parting gift. Indeed this was a praiseworthy act. Raja Leelanand Sinha made a memorable sacrifice, in making of which, his only motive may have been re-establishing peace, harmony and brotherhood with the Khandwala dynasty of Darbhanga.
In another typical gesture, he took vows of everlasting friendship and brotherhood with his friend and distant cousin, Babu Buddhinath Choudhary of Maldwar Estate. Standing in the holy Ganga, they pledged to regard the members of each other’s family as kith and kin.
Raja Leelanand Singha was one of the biggest Zamindars of his times. Mr. John Beames, the Collector of Purnea in 1862-64, recalls in his book “He owned large but scattered estates”. Mr. Beames was aware of Leelanand’s extravagance. He writes, “The Raja was sickly, indolent and very extravagant”. John Beames narrates an interesting incident. He writes “But he had occasional fits of activity. In one of these fits he examined into the state of his accounts and discovered that Isri Prosad had been guilty of various acts of peculation and mismanagement, whereupon he flew into a rage and dismissed him from his service. Isri had, as usual, bestowed upon himself and his relatives, long term leases of the best farms on the estate, and, of course, had paid no rent for many years. The Raja sued him for arrears of rent amounting to Rs. 40,000, a part only of what was due from him. The case was tried by Ricketts, an old, experienced half-caste Deputy Collector. In his defense Isri astonished the plaintiff and the court by producing a document, apparently in perfect form and bearing the Raja’s seal, which purported to be a receipt for the whole amount! Ricketts’s experienced eye, however, detected this as a forgery and he ordered Isri to be tried by the criminal court on that charge. Mike weatherall (Police Superintendent) went to work in some mysterious way of his own and soon produced proof that the Raja’s seal had been abstracted from the box where it was usually kept and an imitation made of it in wax, the original seal being then put back again before its absence was noticed. He also found out and caught the men who had assisted Isri in the business and brought the crime home to them in a convincing manner. Isri and his accomplices were therefore committed to the sessions to take their trial for forgery and uttering a forged document. They got down a barrister from Calcutta, a man new to India, one Coryton, who finding his client had not got the ghost of a defense, took to abusing the other side. The Raja, who had a disease in the hip and could not walk, was carried into court, and as a mark of courtesy usually accorded to natives of his rank, was allowed by the judge a seat on the bench. He could not have stood in the witness-box. Coryton objected to this, but Muspratt, the judge, a quiet, experienced old hand, silenced him, saying, ‘Mr. Coryton, I will thank you to confine yourself to your brief, it is for me to decide where the witness shall sit.’ Coryton’s old bailey manner and brow-beating tone were quite lost upon the Raja who did not understand a word of English and did not even realize that he was being addressed. Such adjurations as ‘remember that you are on your oath, sir,’ fell quite flat.
Asked how many servants he kept, the Raja, on the question being translated to him, smiled and said he had not the faintest idea. Coryton waxed furious at this and began to bully with, ‘Do you mean to tell the court, sir, that you do not really know,’ etc. but Muspratt again stopped him by remarking that it was highly probable that the Raja did not know how many he had. In fact, if the lawyer had ever seen a Raja’s palace with its numerous courtyards and straggling village of outhouses all swarming with hangers-on, he would not have asked such a question. When all the evidence was taken Coryton made a long speech, forgetting, as barristers so often do in India, that he was not speaking to a simple-minded, impressionable jury, but a hard-headed old judge on whom his eloquence made no impression at all. Muspratt used on such occasions to say that he supposed the barrister was bound to talk for so many hours in return for his heavy fee, and he used to occupy himself during the inevitable infliction in looking over his notes and weighing the evidence. On this occasion Coryton, having nothing to urge on behalf of his client, fell to abusing Weatherall and Ricketts and lastly me. He said so much about ‘this Mr. John Beames—this Magistrate,’ and so on, that at last Muspratt looked up and observed, ‘we are not trying Mr. John Beames but Isri Prosad and I beg that you will confine your remarks to him.’
‘Eventually Isri Prosad got fourteen years’ imprisonment and was sent to the Andaman Islands to do it.”
The above incident throws light on the way Leelanand conducted his business. He was lazy at one time and active at another. His associates and employees enjoyed his generosity and kindness and often took undue advantage of his lenient nature. Nevertheless, he became very tough with his men, who were found guilty of dishonesty and foul play. Such offenders were not spared. Mr. Beames was very friendly towards the Raja. So were the other English officials who showed special consideration to his position and Rank. Beames was very helpful in making secret inquiries about the theft of the Raja’s seal, through another gentleman Mr. Henry Michael Weatherall, the District Superintendent.
Through the Memoirs of The Mughal Prince, Zubairuddin Bahadur Gorgan, one learns of the popularity of Raja Leelanand Sinha. In his Book ‘Mauz-i-sultani’ he writes highly of the hospitality and behavior of the Raja.
The Durbar of Raja Leelanand Sinha used to flourish as a centre of various studies. Scholars from different schools of thought found protection and patronage at Champanagar. Frequent debates and discourses in religion and philosophy were held under able judges and the winner as well as the loser was honoured and awarded with rich gifts.
One most memorable occasion was the Shastrarth (Religious Debate) between Mahamahopadhyaya Dharma-dhureen Krishna Singh Thakur of Bhaur and Swami Dayanand Saraswati of Bengal.
Dayanand Saraswati was the founder of Arya Samaj and strictly opposed idol worship. He happened to come to Champanagar to ask for monetary help from the Raja of Banaili who was one of the biggest supporters of idol worship in the province, rather represented the cult itself. Worship of idols of clay of goddess Durga and other manifestations of Shakti had been in practice in Banaili. Durga Puja in the month of Ashwin was started as early as the middle of the eighteenth century, during the early days of their life at Amourgarh. As soon as Swami Dayanand Saraswati arrived at Champanagar, Raja Leelanand placed before him his sincere wish to experience a debate between the Swami and the learned Dharmadhureen who was the Raja’s cousin.
Krishna Singh Thakur debated for the cause of idol worship and Swami Dayanand opposed the motion. The Swami was defeated at the debate. Yet, he returned to Bengal with a considerable amount of cash as monetary help from the Raja as well as a suitable reward for having taken part in the Shaastraarth. [31]











[1] Buchanan’s Purnea report page58 “Dulal Chaudhuri, an active landlord, has a house becoming his station”.
[2] Yagyapalli was the original name of Jagaili.---Mithila Tatva Vimarsh-Uttaraardha page 21. Banaili and Sadhuaili were the neighbouring villages, Vanpalli and Sadhupalli may have been their respective names.
[3] On the basis of the above lines, Dr. Madneshwar Mishra has created the character of Dular Choudhary, as a troublesome Neighbour-landlord, in his novel “Ek chhalih maharani”. On page15 of this novel, Sher Ali Khan, the Fouzdar Nawab of Purnea is shown to mediate in a conflict between the estates of Pahsara and Banaili. Dular Singh has been shown to have encroached on his neighbour’s land.
[4] Final report on the survey and settlement operations in the district of Purnea (1901-1908) by J. Byrne---Pg-25-The Parganna Tirakhardeh brought in Rs. 24,800 in 1770A.D. Within four years, by judiciously bribing the then farmer, the Zamindar had his assessment reduced to Rs. 4641only. In 1788 it paid over Rs. 11000. The Zamindar Dular Sing, was also a Kanungo, and in that capacity he was able to conceal all knowledge of the internal economy of this Parganna from the superior revenue officers
[5] This is confirmed on page577 of The modern history of the Indian Chiefs, Rajas and Zamindars part II by Lokenath Ghosh, printed in 1881. It says, “the title of Raja Bahadur was also conferred on the father and grandfather of Leelananda Sing, in 1816 and 1821 respectively. His grandfather rendered good services during Nepal war.”
[6] “Raj Banaili”by Raghubeer Narayan-He writes that the newly acquired land was called Khardeh which, when combined with Tira, formed Tirakhardeh. But Buchanan is clear that Asjah and Tirakhardeh were given to Devanand.
[7] is written as Singh, Singha, Sing, Simha and Sinha. The descendents of Raja Kalanand and Kirtyanand preferred to use Sinha where as the members of the Srinagar branch continued to use Singh.
[8] When Babu Tankanath Chaudhary, the Zamindar of Maldwar (Rajaur) was awarded with the title of Raja by the British Government, the occasion was celebrated with freat fanfare at Deorhi-Ramganj. One of the invitees, a Jeth-Raiyat, went up to the Raja and inquired about the actual reason of the feast. ‘O Maharaja’ he said ‘I wish to know why you have invited us. What is the good occasion?’ The Raja replied ‘I am astonished that you are not aware that I have been titled as a Raja!’ On hearing this, the Jeth-Raiyat touched his ears and exclaimed in horror ‘All is lost! You were a Maharaja (to us) and now you have been demoted with the title of a Raja! And you are rejoicing this demotion!’
[9] She was the daughter of Bhaiyan Jha of Sarisab-khangur Mool. This house was originally a Shrotriya but had recently been demoted to the position of a Yogya, the second highest grade of Brahmins. She held the Paainj of Shrikant Jha.
[10]He was a member of Kujauli Bhakhrauli Mool and held the Paainj of Lachhu Pathak.
[11] The consent of the Maharaja of Darbhanga before performance of every marriage of the Shrotriyas.
[12] Dular Singh’s Eldest daughter Prassanvati was wed to shrotriya Kanhai Misra of Sodarpur-Sarisab. Kanhai was the son of Pakhia and was a direct descendent of the Great Ayaachi Misra. The second princess, Lotain was married to Ratan Singh jha, the eldest son of Babu Dhirnath Singh jha, a zamindar of Chanaur.He belonged to the mool- Mander- singhauli. Princess Rupain was the wife of the grandson of Raja Devnarayan of Surgan Dynasty of Sauriya. Rupain’s husband, Satyanarain was the son of Ramnarain.The fourth daughter of Dular Singh was Khelain. She was married to Shrotriya Baidyanath Jha of Sodarpur-tetarihaar. Baidyanath was the son of Manik jha of Sarisab.Princess Hasain and Badain; the last two daughters of Dular Singh were given away in marriage to Bhudhar and Punyadhar, Shrotriyas of the Sodarpur-Sarisab clan of Sarisab. Both were direct descendents of Ayaachi Bhavnath and were cousins.
[13] sacred thread Ceremony
[14] Deputy king
[15] Bedanand Binode
[16] Ugra Singh Thkaur’s wife was the daughter of Jyotirvid Hareram of Mandar Singouli Mool. Hareram was the son of Mahipati.
[17] This story is popular in the family. My aunt, Rajkumari saraswati called her Dhaaki wali Maiyaji[grandmother of the basket] whenever she happened to mention her.
[18] I came across her name in one of the genealogical trees I found in the family. It is written that she died unwed at the age of fourteen. It is said that a suitable match could not be found for her because every Shrotriya bridegroom, who was approached, demanded the rich Kharagpur Mahal as dowry.
[19] The modern history of Indian chiefs, Rajas and Zamindars---Part 2—by Lokenath Ghose, printed in 1880-Pg557
[20] Mahesh Dutt belonged to Sodarpur-Mahia Mool and Sasimukhi held the Paainj “Parmai Misar”.
[21] Hemnath Jha belonged to Khowal-mahua Mool and Parvati held the high Yogya Paainj called “Yadumachal”
[22]Iswaridutt Misra was from the Narsam branch of Balias Mool and Chandeswari held the Singhbaar Paainj.
[23] Gopinath Jha was a Shrotriya of the house of Darihara-Ratauli. He had married the daughter of Vanshamani Misra of Ekhara-Ruchauli and Sitavati held the Paainj ‘Narpati Jha’. Gopinath had settled in Rasarh in Purnea.

[24] Rasarh-Gram ki Atma Katha by Dr Muktinath Misra.
[25] Grapevines and other flowery climbers, made of white plaster, entwined all the pillars of the palace giving it the name of “Kunj-Bhavan”.
[26] I personally visited the site in 1996 and inspected the ruins of the palace and saw the remains of the Haveli, Tehkhana, and Naubat-khana. The Devighara was in a considerably decent condition.
[27] Chandidutt was the son of Ganesh dutt Jha. Kamakhya’s stepson was Lekhdutt Jha.
[28] Sacred thread ceremony
[29] Royal seat
[30] Cushion, Bolster
[31]An Article named ‘Mahamahopadhyaya Dharmadhureen Krishna Singh Thakur’ by professor Bhaktinath Singh Thakur in Kavi Shekhar Badrinath Jha- Abhinandan Granth;pg.61

2 comments:

mony said...

namaskar sinha sir! i congratulate you for such informative and fantastic blog on banaili state of bihar. i have 2 queries:-

1)a court pandit named mahamahopadhyaya parmeshvar jha was there in banaili state around 1890. do u have any idea?

2)in one of his work "kusumkalika " he had mentioned jaipal singh, samar singh and manohar.had they any connection with banaili state?

i am waiting for ur reply. my email akjha16@gmail.com

vinay ballabh chaturvedi said...

I am from Malaypur Mauza, Parbatpara Talluk of Banaili Raj.
My Ancestors were Registered as KHEVAT 2,in Khatiyaan after Survey between 1902 - 1909 (as Jeth Rayyat).
At the moment I wish to know about Maharaja Kirtyanand Singh of Banaili Raj.
There is a Middle English School in Malaypur named as KIRTYANAND ME SCHOOL,MALLEHPUR Established 1917.
I was student of the school which is going to complete 100 years next year.
I wish to know about Raja Saheb, but did not get detail I sought