British and Gurkhas - Himachal Pradesh General Studies

British & Gurkhas:
  • Gurkhas together with Raja of Kahlur (Bilaspur) defeated Sansar Chand in 1806 A.D.
  • In 1809 A.D. Amar Singh Thapa drove out Rana of Bhagal State (Presently in Solan District) and captured Arki.
  • Amar Singh Thapa sent his son Ranzor Singh to attack Sirmaur.
  • Raja Karam Prakash of Sirmaur had to run away to ‘Bhuria’ (Ambala) to save his life.
  • Nahan and Jythak forts were under the control of Gurkhas now.
  • In 1810 A.D. areas of Hindur (Nalagarh), Jubbal and Pundar (both in Shimla) were also occupied by the Gurkhas.
  • Amar Singh Thapa now attacked Bushahar State in 1811 A.D.
  • He remained in Rampur up till 1813 A.D. and after that returned back to Arki.

Amar Singh Thapa

Conflict of Gurkha & British Interest:
  • In 1813 A.D. Amar Singh Thapa tried to capture 6 villages of Sirhind (in Punjab), among which 2 villages were under the control of British-Sikhs. This led to dispute between Gurkhas & British.
  • Secondly Gurkhas were coming in front of British commercial interests. Because Britishers had important trade ties with Tibet and Gurkhas had captured almost all passes & ways which connected British India to Tibet. So Gurkha-British war was looking unavoidable now.
  • On 1 November, 1814 British declared war against Gurkhas.

Gurkha-British War:
  • Under the leadership of Major General David Ochterlony and Major General Rollo Gillespie British fought against Gurkhas. 
  • With 4400 soldiers Major Gillespie defeated the Gurkha army in the fort of “Kalinga” which was being led by Bal Bhadra Thapa.
  • Ranjor Singh son of Amar Singh Thapa went from Nahan to Jythak fort and caused heavy damage to the British Army.
  • In the beginning Kahlur State (Bilaspur) was with Gurkhas due to which Gurkhas dealt heavy blows to British in many places.
  • Later British with the help of Sadder of Bilaspur constructed a road from Kanuri to Nahan.
  • On 16 January, 1815 British under the command of David Ochterlony, attacked Arki (in present day Solan).
  • After this Amar Singh Thapa went to Malaon fort, due to which the forts of ‘Taragarh’ and ‘Ramgarh’ were captured by British.

Defeat of Gurkhas:
  • On 12 March, 1815 at Jubbal State, British together with Dangi Wajir & Primu forced a hundred Gurkhas to surrender. 
  • After winning Chaupal, British attacked “Rawingarh Fort” which was under the control of Ranzor Singh Thapa.
  • With the support of Tikam Das, Badri, Dangi Wazir and Army of Bashahar the British drove out Gurkhas from the “Rawingarh fort”.
  • In Rampur-Kotgarh the joint army of Bashahar and Kullu forced Gurkhas to surrender near ‘Saran Ka Tiba’.
  • Now together with the Raja of Hindur ‘Ram Sharan’ and Raja of Kahlur, the British made a joint front to attack Gurkhas.
  • Amar Singh Thapa had to run away from ‘Ramgarh’ and take asylum in the ‘Malaon fort’.
  • The death of Bhakti Thapa (Brave Sardar of Gurkhas) in ‘Malaon fort’ proved to be a big loss to the Gurkhas.
  • Also the defeat in Kumaon and unwillingness of his soldiers to fight more forced Amar Singh Thapa to surrender.

Treaty of Sugauli:


  • Amar Singh Thapa on 28 November, 1815 signed the “Sugauli Treaty” with British Major General David Ochterlony for respectable & safe return of himself and his son Ranzor Singh who was protecting the Jytakh fort to Nepal.
  •  According to this treaty Gurkhas were provided safe passage to go back to Nepal and were allowed to take away their own personal properties.
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Author: Karun Bharmoria

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