Bharat Stories
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Rani Lakshmi Bai – Freedom Fighter of India

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Rani Lakhsmi Bai, born in a Marathi family in 1828, was the symbol of resistance to the British raj. Originally born as Manikarnika, she became the Rani of Jhansi as she was married to Raja Gangadhar Rao, the Maharaja of Jhansi, in the year 1842. She had a son named Damodar who died at the age of four months. Before the raja’s death she adopted a child in November 1853. The child was named Anand, but later he was renamed as Damodar after Rani’s deceased son.

Raja, before his death, sent a letter to the British Government requesting to allow his widow to be crowned as the ruler of Jhansi after his demise. But after his death, Lord Dalhousie, the head of the British Government of India, denied the rights of Damodar, the adopted son of rani, from being the Raja and the state of Jhansi was taken over by the Government.

As the mutiny of the Indian troops killed all the British in Jhansi June 1857, the administration was then taken over by Rani. In 1858, the British forcefully took back the city from Rani. Rani along with the Maratha general Tatya Tope fought against the British in the battle of Kotah k Serai in 1858, where she took her last breath.

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