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Mewar Encyclopedia

Introduction by Thakur Nahar Singh Jasol

The royal House of Mewar (Udaipur) claims descent from Lov, elder son of Lord Rama, King of Ayodhya, and protagonist of the epic Ramayana. Bappa Rawal received the kingdom of Mewar in trust from the holy sage, Harit Rashi, to hold, defend and govern as vassal on earth of the Lord Eklingji. This the House of Mewar has continued to do in unbroken line of succession to the present, governing and defending the land as agents of the Lord, bestowing upon the task of governance the noblest ideals of trusteeship, and defending the kingdom with unflinching and unparalleled courage and fortitude. They yielded to none, howsoever powerful. Even into the present, the House of Mewar continues to be acknowledged as the epitome of Rajput pride, chivalry, fortitude and courage.

So illustrious indeed was the conduct of this royal house that it drew the bravest and best from other Rajput kingdoms and clans to its ideals and service. One such was the Rathore, Rao Kalla, who left his native Mehavo in the Mallani tract and joined Mewar under the then Maharana, Udai Singh II. He served him with distinction, eventually laying down his life in the duty of his adopted state at Chittor, along with Jaimal Rathore. A cenotaph still stands at Chittor, bearing witness to Kalla’s bravery and sacrifice.

In coming to a full circle of the Wheel of Destiny, a descendant of Kalla, namely I, now serves the House of Mewar. In what is a distinct honour and privilege, Shriji (Arvind Singh Mewar) sought me out in my retirement from service to the House of Jodhpur, where I served several years as Director of the Mehrangarh Fort Museum, and offered me the position of Chief Administrator of the City Palace Museum at Udaipur. It was an honour I could not have refused, and it is in that capacity that I was drawn into the Maharana Mewar Charitable Foundation’s exciting project led by the Australian writer, Ian Austin, involving the production of a definitive Encyclopedia of Mewar.

I was able to give input that only someone with local cultural moorings could have contributed. My contribution has been to edit the entire manuscript, correcting and amplifying wherever required through the entire text. I assisted Ian in understanding local terminology, correcting all proper names, which have a variety of spellings in many other texts, and fleshed out various entries to include clans and genealogies.

My own effort required considerable desk research and I am grateful in this regard to my colleague, P.C. Bhargava, and the Library staff. I am grateful also to my mother for her blessings and to my brothers for their encouragement and support. I am also grateful to my esteemed friend, Dr. Naval Krishna who always encouraged me to write. Last but not least, I acknowledge my gratitude to Shriji and Ian Austin for agreeing to let me share honours as co-author and co-editor of this milestone contribution to the rich body of literature on the illustrious House of Mewar.

I am quite sure in my mind that this book will help future curious minds into further research in terms of words, places, people and events. Here is a catalogue, quite honestly researched, of what is past, passing, or to come.

In dedication : to the greatest of the great, none else but the protagonist, Maharana Pratap, his steed Chetak, to Chittorgarh, and to all those unsung heroes who laid down their lives for this land and for liberty.

Thakur Nahar Singh Jasol
Udaipur, February 2001

Updated by
Thakur Bhupendra Singh Auwa
Udaipur, December 2014