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Who was Maharaja Suheldev?

Maharaja Suheldev:

The Prime Minister has laid the foundation stone of a Maharaja Suheldev memorial and the development work of Chittaura lake in Uttar Pradesh’s Bahraich district.

About Maharaja Suheldev:

  • He was the erstwhile ruler of Shravasti in Uttar Pradesh’s (UP) Bahraich district, who ruled in the 11th century.
  • He is known in history for waging guerrilla warfare against Mahmud Ghazni’s large army.
  • Suheldev was deeply moved by the loot and destruction of the magnificent Somnath temple by invader Mahmud Ghazni that he decided to gather heads of different communities like Tharu and Banjara as well as small kings to block the invasion.
  • His army defeated and killed Ghazi Salar Masud, the nephew of Mahmud Ghazni, at Bahraich.
  • Raja Suheldev finds mention in ‘Mirat-i-Masudi’, a 17th century Persian-language historical account.
  • ‘Mirat-i-Masudi’ is the biography of Salar Masud, written by Abd-ur-Rahman Chishti during the reign of the Mughal emperor Jahangir (1605–1627).
  • In local folklore, Suheldev is said to be a Rajbhar.
  • He is popular as a caste icon among the Rajbhars (OBC) and the Pasis (second largest Dalit caste in UP), both of whom have been competing for his legacy and are predominantly found in central and eastern UP.