Historical Figures

10. Prithviraj's father Someshwar got the throne of Chauhans by luck!

After the death of Vigraharaj (IV) in AD 1163, his minor son Amargangaya or Apargangeya ascended the throne of Ajmer. He could only rule for 5-6 years and was ousted by his cousin Prithviraj (II). Prithviraj (II), was the son of the patriarch Jagadeva. An inscription dated to AD 1167 from the time of Prithviraj (II) has been found from Hansi, which states that the Chauhan rulers are Chandravanshi.

An inscription dated AD 1168 has been found from the temple of Ruthi Rani of Dhaud village of Jahajpur pargana of Mewar, in which it is said that Prithvibhatta i.e. Prithviraj (II) conquered the Shakambhari king i.e. Amargangeya with the strength of his arms.

The meaning of this inscription is that the kingdom which Vigraharaja (IV) had snatched from Jagdev, the father of Prithviraj (II), was reclaimed by Jagadeva's son Prithviraj (II) with the strength of his arms.

In this inscription, the name of the queen of Prithvibhatta i.e. Prithviraj (II) has been mentioned as Suhagdevi. Prithviraj (II) was known for his works of charity. He defeated King Vastupal, defeated the Turks and built a palace in the fort of Hansi.

Prithviraj (II) appointed his maternal uncle Guhil Kilhan as the officer of Hansi to keep the Muslims away from his kingdom. His kingdom extended up to Ajmer and Shakambhari as well as Khoka (near Jahajpur), Menal (near Chittor) and Hansi (Punjab). In AD 1169, Prithviraj (II) died in a childless state.

At this time there were three adult princes alive in the family of Arnoraj. The first of these was Amaragangeya or Apargangya, the grandson of late Arnoraja and the eldest son of late king Vigraharaja (IV) and who had already been deposed from the kingdom by his nephew Prithviraj (II).

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The second claimant to the kingdom was Nagarjuna who was the second son of King Vigraharaja (IV), grandson of late Arnoraja and the younger brother of the formerly deposed king Amargangeya.

The third claimant of the state was Someshwar. He was the third son of Late Arnoraj and the youngest brother of Late Vigraharaja (IV). Someshwar's authority over the kingdom was the least as the late King Vigraharaja (IV) had two sons alive, but instead of making the deposed king Amargageya and his younger brother Nagarjuna king, the ministers of Ajmer, the only surviving younger brother of late Vigraharaja (IV), Someshwar Decided to make him the king.

Someshvara was born in the womb of Kanchanadevi, the daughter of Chaulukya king Siddharaj Jai Singh. Someshwar's childhood was spent in Gujarat in the court of his maternal grandfather Siddharaj Jaisingh and step-uncle Kumarpal.

Someshvara had gained fame by beheading his maternal uncle Chaulukyaraj Kumarpal's enemy Konkan King Mallikarjuna in battle during his stay in his maternal home. At the time of Konkan conquest, Someshwar married Karpurdevi, the princess of Kalachuri. Karpurdevi's father Achalraj was the king of Chedi country. Chedidesh was around present day Jabalpur.

Two sons were born from the womb of Rani Karpurdevi, out of which the elder son was named Prithviraj and the younger son was named Hariraj. King Someshvara also had a daughter named Pritha. Prithviraj, the son of Karpurdevi, is called Prithviraj (3rd) and Rai Pithora in history. We will tell its history in the coming episodes, but for now we go back to Prithviraj (II), who died in childless condition in AD 1169.

Now the late King Arnoraj's two sons Jagdev and Vigraharaj (IV) and two grandsons Amargangeya and Prithviraj (II) had died and Arnoraj's third and only surviving son Someshwar lived in the court of his step-uncle Kumarpal.

Therefore, Prince Someshwar was invited by the feudatories of Ajmer to become the ruler of Ajmer. There was no possibility of Someshwar becoming the ruler of Ajmer, but fortunately, due to the untimely death of King Prithviraj (II) of Ajmer in childless condition, Someshwar suddenly got the powerful kingdom of his father.

Someshwar came to Ajmer with his queen Karpurdevi and two sons Prithviraj and Hariraj. Along with him people named Nagarvanshi, Skanda, Baman and Sodh also came to Ajmer. All these people were respected persons or high officials of Gujarat and had come to Ajmer with the purpose of organizing the kingdom of Someshwar.

Someshwar became a majestic king. The parts of Bijolia, Revasa, Thod, Anavak etc. were also included in his kingdom. An inscription from the time of Someshwar has been found in a place called Bijolia in Mewar, which is called Bijolia inscription. This inscription is dated 5 February 1170. In this the genealogy of Chauhan rulers has been given. An umbrella of Someshwar's time has also been found in Ajmer.

Someshwar also took interest in the construction of cities, temples and palaces like his ancestors. He got the statue of his father Arnoraj made and his own idol made and promoted the art of sculpture in northern India.

Coins from the time of King Someshwar tell the story of Ajmer's prosperity. Despite being a Shaivist, he followed a tolerant policy towards Jainism. He built a huge temple of Vaidyanath which was higher than the palaces of Visaladeva. He got the idols of Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh installed in this temple and got the horse-mounted statue of his father Arnoraj built.

Someshwar built five temples in Ajmer which competed in height with the mountains. He used to call these temples the five Kalpavrikshas. He built many temples at Gauganak and other places, 9 miles away from Ajmer. According to the Bijolia inscription, according to his birth sign, his name was Pratap Lankeshwar. He was a mighty king, he conquered all his enemies. During his time again the Chaulukya-Chauhan conflict broke out due to which he had to suffer.

Watch in the next episode- Rani Karpurdevi takes over the kingdom of Chauhans!

-Doctor. Mohanlal Gupta