why and how did the marathas lose the battle of burdwan against ali vardi khan

Nov 2012
3,851
#1
They were the strongest power around that time in the subcontinent. They had also beaten Bengali nawabs in orissa as well parts of Bengal in bishnupur. Why is it that they lost the decisive war at burdwan against nawabs of Bengal. Had they won this war they might have captured large chunks if not whole of Bengal. It's not panipat but this battle that spelt beginning of British rule as they would have never gotten an easy entry in Bengal if it had been ruled by marathas. Want to know more about this less known war
 

SSDD

Ad Honorem
Aug 2014
3,900
India
#2
They were the strongest power around that time in the subcontinent. They had also beaten Bengali nawabs in orissa as well parts of Bengal in bishnupur. Why is it that they lost the decisive war at burdwan against nawabs of Bengal. Had they won this war they might have captured large chunks if not whole of Bengal. It's not panipat but this battle that spelt beginning of British rule as they would have never gotten an easy entry in Bengal if it had been ruled by marathas. Want to know more about this less known war
Battle of Burdwan was not that pitched battle AFAIK. The problem started when Alivardi khan became Nawab, the ruler of Orissa, Rustam Jong revolted. When Alivardi Khan went to put down the rebellion and was returning then Marathas began raiding. Bengal Nawab's army could not keep it up with fast Marathas. Marathas plundered and skirmishes continued. In Katoa when Marathas were celebrating Durga Puja then Nawab's army attacked and Marathas retreated.

Many say Maratha raid was actually a result of Puna politics. Peshwa wanted to keep Raghujee Bhonsle busy. A settlement was reached with Peshwa and Peshwa agreed to stop raiding and decided to oust other Maratha party which was fighting. In return Peshwa was to be paid Chauth.

After few months, they united and again attacked. This time Alivardi offered to negotiate. Alivardi made a plot and during negotiation Vaskor Pandit, Maratha commander and along with his 21 other generals were killed. Marathas were confused and began to flee. Another settlement was reached but Maratha raids continued.
 
Nov 2012
3,851
#3
Battle of Burdwan was not that pitched battle AFAIK. The problem started when Alivardi khan became Nawab, the ruler of Orissa, Rustam Jong revolted. When Alivardi Khan went to put down the rebellion and was returning then Marathas began raiding. Bengal Nawab's army could not keep it up with fast Marathas. Marathas plundered and skirmishes continued. In Katoa when Marathas were celebrating Durga Puja then Nawab's army attacked and Marathas retreated.

Many say Maratha raid was actually a result of Puna politics. Peshwa wanted to keep Raghujee Bhonsle busy. A settlement was reached with Peshwa and Peshwa agreed to stop raiding and decided to oust other Maratha party which was fighting. In return Peshwa was to be paid Chauth.

After few months, they united and again attacked. This time Alivardi offered to negotiate. Alivardi made a plot and during negotiation Vaskor Pandit, Maratha commander and along with his 21 other generals were killed. Marathas were confused and began to flee. Another settlement was reached but Maratha raids continued.
This sadly shows that marathas were not fully up there when it came to knocking out Muslim rulers such as nizam, Bengal, awadh, rohillas, topic etc.at different times they seemed to have beaten these powers but they didn't seem like reconquering whole of subcontinent rather extracting tributes and doing raids was enough. I mean a place like Bengal would have sealed India from the Brits apart from giving huge tax base of Bengal into maratha coffee. Yet they are happy with chauths and raids. This is just poor planning and lack of Vision. Instead of ransacking the Hindu kings of bishnupur, mithila, maharajas of khurda, Koch. Beehar etc against the nawabs.
 
Apr 2015
39
A Utopian land
#4
They were the strongest power around that time in the subcontinent. They had also beaten Bengali nawabs in orissa as well parts of Bengal in bishnupur. Why is it that they lost the decisive war at burdwan against nawabs of Bengal. Had they won this war they might have captured large chunks if not whole of Bengal. It's not panipat but this battle that spelt beginning of British rule as they would have never gotten an easy entry in Bengal if it had been ruled by marathas. Want to know more about this less known war
Indian Artillery units of those days could not fire grape shots or canister shots for short range skirmishes like their European counterparts.These artilleries were heavy and had lesser mobility. So main objective of each battle was to guard the artillery units from enemy cavalry charges to keep it firing at distant targets. Unlike other Indian rulers Alivardi Khan placed his artillery on large movable platform which were driven by horses and oxen. This made the artilleries fire with greater accuracy as they were placed a few metres above the ground level and saved its crew from getting shot by musket fires.This new battle tactics gave an edge to Alivardi. In the Middle of the battle, Alivardi was surrounded entirely by Mahratha forces.To get away from this situation he provoked the Mahrathas by sending a baggage of fine carpets and silks. When the Mahrathas gathered near the baggage to loot it they were exposed to Alivardi's mobile artilleries and suffered a lot of casualties. The remaining Mahrathas were finished entirely by a light cavalry charge led by Mustafa Khan Bahadur.

Thus Alivardi defeated the Mahrathas.
 

Similar History Discussions