THE BHATI JADAUNS OF KUCHELA

Historical Background of the Bhati Jadauns.

The BHATI JADAUNS of Kuchela originated from the ruling dynasty of the erstwhile princely state of JAISALMER. This state was located in an area, formerly, known as Rajputana. After Indian Independence, it merged into the Rajasthan State of India and today, it forms the western-most district of the country. The princely state of JAISALMER laid between 26°4' and 28°23' North Latitudes and 69°30' and 72°40' East Longitudes. It was ruled by the dynasty of the BHATI JADAUN rulers.

As a fitting tribute to their glorious past, the archaeological department of India, has displayed supporting historical facts and documentary evidence about this clan and dynasty, in the fort-palace-museum of contemporary JAISALMER. Historical books, currency notes, judicial and postage stamps which are on display, testify to centuries of rule which the BHATI JADAUN did over JAISALMER. This tribe claims descent from Lord Krishna who was actually a JADAUN Rajput prince. It is universally known that Lord Krishna was born in a prison to his biological mother Devaki. She had been jailed along with her husband, by her own brother and evil king, Kans. To escape the wrath of Kans, Krishna's biological father Vasudev, smuggled the new-born Krishna out of prison. He took Krishna across River Yamuna, and gave him to a couple known as Baba Nand and Mata Yashoda, to be adopted and raised in secrecy. These foster parents of Krishna, essentially kept cattle. Thus, Lord Krishna spent a sizeable part of his childhood in grazing cattle as a cowherd. Because of this reason he, also came to be known as an ancestor of Ahirs who are another primordially cowherd-clan of ancient and medieval India.

A JADAUN king named SALI VAHAN, was one of JAISALMER's early leaders. He was known to have come down to JAISALMER from PUNJAB. He defeated the Indo-Scythians in a decisive battle near Kahror (within 60 miles of Multan) in the year 76 A.D. So great was the fame of this victory that the conqueror assumed the title of SAKARI or foe of the Sakas(Scythians). This battle was more fierce and destructive than those fought by Ashoka the Great or Alexander the Great against Porus or any other famous medieval Indian rulers. To commemorate this event, a new Era was established. It was called the Saka Era or the SHAKA (SAKA) SAMWAT. It became an epoch, which has remained in use in parts of India, unto this day. It is also used in most government calendars.

SALI VAHAN the victorious had a grandson called BHATI. He too was a renowned warrior. The tribe subsequently assumed the name from him and called itself the BHATI JADAUNS. The present capital and fort were founded by a BHATI descendant called RAWAL JAISAL in 1156 A.D. The first of the BHATI JADAUN chiefs to hold his own during the Moghul rule was SABAL SINGH. The power of the state was then at its zenith. Their flag, a two hued standard with a 'chhatri,' denotes authority and they tie their turbans with its tailpiece in a 'tails-up' fashion denoting high morale and contrary to the tailpiece 'hanging-down', as followed elsewhere in Rajasthan. JAISALMER The Golden City is now remotely located. It is a popular tourist resort and is famous for its Golden Fort, Golden Havelis of the affluent Marwari business community and the Golden Sands of Village SAAM.

The Golden Fort of Jaisalmer The Flag Of The Bhati Jadaun Rulers Of Jaisalmer The Turban Of The Bhati Jadaun

The Bhati Jadauns of Kuchela.

Badwaji, a clan of family historians, still live in Rajasthan. One Devi Singh from this clan, visits Kuchela intermittently. The documented records in his family's possession show the family tree of the Bhati Jadauns of Kuchela, as direct descendants of the Bhati Jadaun chiefs of Jaisalmer. The name of HAPU SINGH features in their chronicles as the earliest in their lineage. Records show that two princes left Jaisalmer to find a better fortune for themselves. The duo set forth, due EAST and came to the banks of the River Yamuna where they set up camp and began a ritual of bathing and chanting hymns. Unfortunately, Emperor Akbar had decreed that only his favorite court singer Tansen would be allowed to sing in his kingdom. Having caught these princes and their entourage, in the process of chanting hymns; some royal soldiers arrested them and threw them in prison. The two princes languished in Mughal Jail untill their families appealed to (Baijnath)Baiju Bawra for help. Baiju, who had just won the king's favour after defeating Tansen in a singing duel, took a promise from the king to allow everyone in his kingdom to sing freely and to release all those who had been jailed for this 'crime'. Akbar the Great agreed readily. The princes were set free, but only after they attended a customary, farewell, formal, meal with the Royal Jail Guard. While one prince ate their food, the other feigned illness and refused to eat. Nevertheless, the two were set free. To settle down permanently, they moved further East and came to the Indo-Gangetic Plains or what is now known as, Uttar Pradesh or the erstwhile, Northern Province. A reconnaissance party of Brahmins was sent ahead. They reported back with a doctored feedback. They said that Javapur was a good place to settle but was very small; just as small as the size of a grain of barley or 'Jaw' and was barely enough to meet the Brahmin's needs. Kosma, on the other hand and true to its name, was large enough for the Rajput princes as it was spread over many a Kos. A Kos was equal to two statute miles. These gullible princes, took the word of the Brahmins for granted, as usual. They settled down at Kosma. The Brahmins instead, settled down at Javapur. One day, while at Kosma, the wives of the two princes, fought bitterly. One accused the other of having converted to Islam by virtue of having formally dined with Muslims of the Royal Prison Guard!! Consequently, the prince who had not so dined, grew wary and migrated along with his family, to a place approximately 50 kilometers away, called Kuchela. The name Kuchela is used for Sudama, who was the colleague of Lord Krishna. 'Ku' means bad, 'chela' means student. This family bought land and became the modern day Zamindars and feudal lords of the place. Thus was born Kuchela, the village complex. The family of the other brother, who stayed on at Kosma, adopted Islam as a religion. They still follow traditional family rituals of the Bhati Jadaun. They have since, bred into a unique community, with an identity of their own. They are the original settlers of Kosma and can still be found there. They still attend functions of their estranged Bhati Jadaun brotheren, when invited on reciprocal basis. The Bhati Jadaun family of Kuchela, initially owned 12½ villages. That is why the entire Kunba is known to comprise 'Saade Barah Gaon' or 'Twelve and a Half Villages' and no family dispute can be considered as 'settled' unless representatives of all 12½ villages attend the proceedings. The concept of formal dining (Puree) is still prevalent among them. The meal lasts for several days. Anyone who is excommunicated from the community is not invited until a meeting of representatives from all 12½ villages pardons them. The act of excommunication is known as 'Chhekna'. It is the most ignoble of all punishments and all social interaction is inter woven around it.

Kuchela - The Village.

Kuchela today, is a complex of 8 to 9 Hamlets called Naglas. Incidentally, this complex also has a Nagla called Kuchela!! Named after one Kuchel Singh? The people living in this complex belong to various castes, communities, classes and religions. Scheduled Castes, a class of people, recognized by the government as deserving many forms of government aid' comprise the majority. Then come the Ahirs who are a declared Backward Class of erstwhile shepherds and cattlemen, the Brahmins or the learned, the Baniya's or the traders and finally the Thakurs, Rajputs or Kshatriyas or the warrior/ruling class. A Bhati Jadaun prince named PHOOL SAHAI SINGH, took up residence in a Nagla which was named Nagla Phool Sahai Singh, after him. This hamlet is now called Nagla Phoolsahai. One neighbouring Nagla called Bhuri, named after BHURI SINGH is the site of an ancient Hindu temple . It could easily be called the Leaning Temple of Kuchela because it is leaning to the South by almost the same number of degrees as the Leaning tower of Pisa!!! Local belief has it that this temple will not fall as long as Aarti is offered in it. So Aarti is offered in it everyday without fail.

The Leaning Temple of Kuchela.

Nagla Phoolsahai is the main village hamlet. It approximately has a hundred houses. This hamlet also enjoys the presence of facilities like a college of education, a few schools, a hospital, a seed store, a veterinary hospital and a cooperative bank. It also boasts of a 400 line, Rural Telephone exchange and a Post Office which connects it to the outside world. The postal address is, Village and Post Office Kuchela, District Mainpuri (UP) and the Pin Code is 205119. The telephones can be accessed internationally by dialing 91-5672-followed by the subscriber number. Some grocery shops have proliferated over the years. A metalled road links this place to the nearest district town of Mainpuri which is approximately 15 kilometers away to the Northeast. Commuting is done by privately owned buses, jeeps and tempos. Some cellphone providers have this village covered too.

A Low Cost Habitat The Microwave Tower Temple As Seen From Nagla Phoolsahai
Some Shoppers outside A Village Shop A Kirana Shop

The main occupation of the villagers is agriculture and soldiering. Some people have, however, begun to explore better opportunities outside the village and district. Teaching, has somehow, also attracted the youth. They believe that it is the least taxing of all professions!! Nagla Phoolsahai is proud of a Thakur family called Chaughara, from one branch of which have emerged many senior army officers, including some Generals. This branch belongs to Thakur Gokul Singh. The remains of his vandalised tomb are still visible near the local Intermediate College.

The Only STD Booth Principal Netrapal Singh With His Staff/Students
Pandit Girjanandan Misra's Handpump Polio victim PATHRA(He needs Help)

The weather of Kuchela is typically North Indian. It is 'extreme', to say the least and requires fans and heaters. Many people have electric connections. Electricity is supposed to be provided for 12 hours a day followed by 12 hours at night, alternately, each week.

Kuchela House Ms Bhoopat In A Typical Dress
A.K. Misra, The Deisel Shop Owner Crowd Watching The Kuchela Cricket Team

The main crop is wheat and rice, sown only twice a year. Some people find potato, onions and garlic, financially profitable. The nearest 'Mandi' or wholesale market place is at Mainpuri. The nearest railway station is Tindauli, which is 4 kilometers away; but the main one is Mainpuri. A railway line is planned to pass Kuchela, along the Karhal Road, to big-town Etawah. A bus service to Delhi has also started. The nearest airport is Agra. Kuchela is located at 78° 55' East of Greenwich and 27° 10' North Latitude.

Peacocks Roam Freely In Kuchela Community Kitchen For A Function Called PUREE Feeding Brahmins, For Peace To The Departed Soul.
Villagers Frying PUREES Teachers Of Subira Devi Memorial School Principal, Staff & Some Students of The School

The First Family of Kuchela.

The Bhati Jadaun clan of Kuchela is a deprived lot, to say the least. Most of them took to soldiering and agriculture. The soldiers out-did the agriculturists, in the long run. The reason was that India , especially the Northern Province or Uttar Pradesh of India, being very fertile, was easy game for the agriculturists who, became lazy and idle. The soldiers, on the other hand, rose to every occasion and shone in many spheres. The most illustrious family, that really stood taller than the rest was, the family of THAKUR GOKUL SINGH the Zamindar of Kuchela. His son MAHARAJ SINGH was captured by the British when he was unjustly and erroneously framed in a train dacoity case during the days of the Indian Mutiny of 1857. His devoted wife, managed to fight the court case and had him released after putting in a herculean effort. During the case, she walked 120 kilometers or so all the way to Agra and then walked back, alongwith her two sons NIRPAT SINGH and GIRDHARI SINGH, in tow. Unfortunately, the case left them in dire straits and the two sons grew up fending for themselves. They set out to find their fortune. Unfortunately, all that they could manage for themselves was a job as the Coachwaan or the Footboard Riders in the court of the Dewan Sahib of Oel which was a small state or Riyasat in U.P. under the patronage of the British. The two brothers refused to be so employed and finally were offered a job as Sowars or mounted soldiers in the Gwalior State Army. Being of royal blood and endowed with the true Bhati grit and determination; these two brothers worked their way up through the rank and file, to become Captains in the Gwalior Army. Both of them were excellent horsmasters and horsemen and had no equal in the martial arts of Swordsmanship, Marksmanship and Cavaliership. There are many stories about these two great warriors that are still doing the rounds of Kuchela hamlets and the local region. The younger brother GIRDHARI SINGH, who was posted closer to the king MADHAV RAO SCINDIA (the first); won his favour through many heroic deeds done by him on many an occasion and rose to the rank of Colonel. He was later also awarded the 'Order of British India' and 'Order of the British Empire' and bestowed with the title of Sardar Bahadur, Muzzaffar Jung Bahadur. He was also appointed as the Quarter Master General of the Gwalior Army. Realizing that his elder brother would now have to salute him; he persuaded his elder brother NIRPAT SINGH to quit service prematurely and look after the estate at Kuchela.

A View of Kuchela House Facade of Kuchela House

The two also bought lands at Nakodi in Gwalior District and the entire village of Chhauda, a village near Kampoo, which is a suburb of Gwalior town. A large spread of land was also bought by them at Chanderi in the State of Madhya Pradesh.

Captain Thakur Nirpat Singh Ji, 2nd Gwalior Mounted Infantry Colonel Sardar Bahadur Muzzaffar Jung Bahadur Thakur Girdhari Singh, O.B.E, O.B.I.

NIRPAT SINGH had three sons viz, RAGHUNATH SINGH, HARNATH SINGH and KESHAV SINGH (pet named 'BAAL'). GIRDHARI SINGH had a son named YADUNATH SINGH.

KESHAV SINGH died in his teens. He was a great shikari. RAGHUNATH SINGH's son Kr RANJIT SINGH joined the Indian Army and rose to the rank of a Colonel in the Corps of Engineers (Bombay Sappers). Kr RANJIT SINGH and his wife UMA SINGH had two daughters, viz, RITU BATI and ADEETI BHATI; both of whom, became Management Consultants.

HARNATH SINGH was one of the few Gwalior State Cadets to receive army officers training at the Indian Military Academy, Dehra Dun, U.P., India, from where he passed out in 1939. He joined the Gwalior Army (as Adjutant of 1st Gwalior Lancers and was later the Commandant of 3rd Gwalior Lancers until it was disbanded after India gained independence from British rule. HARNATH SINGH fought the Second World War with this cavalry unit in Burma and received a shell wound in the arm. He was awarded the 'Order of the British Empire' and 'Member of the British Empire' awards. He later transferred to the Indian Army as a Major of 18th King Edward VII's Own Cavalry. He was also appointed as Military Secretary to Shri Pattabhi Sitarammaiyah and Shri Hari Vinayak Pataskar, both, Governers of Madhya Pradesh. Major HARNATH SINGH started a school (in the name of his late wife Subira Dev), for the underprivileged youth of the area. It is named The Subira Devi Memorial School and has classes upto 10th Class. It is purely a private institution and runs without any aid from the government. It has attracted students and staff from all castes and communities, transcending barriers of caste and divisive forves. It is a living example of national integration and pride of the Village of Kuchela. With the help of his son and grandsons, relatives and friends, a whole lot of children enjoy the benefit of scholarships in this school.

Major. Th. Harnath Singh, O.B.E.,O.B.I. Rajkumari Subira Devi of Dhirpura Principal, Staff & Students of Subira Devi Memorial School

His son HARISH CHANDRA SINGH, vsm, was commissioned as an Officer in his father's Regiment, The 18th King Edward VII's Own Cavalry. He commanded the 68 Armoured Regiment, rose to the rank of Brigadier and raised The 12 Sector, Rashtriya Rifles in Kashmir Valley. He was awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal by President of India, for distinguished service in the Kashmir Valley where he established many unbeatable records in Counter Insurgency Operations. JAYSHRI SINGH, the wife of HARISH CHANDRA SINGH has had enormous educational and organizational qualification and experience. She has been actively associated in bringing up the standard of Subira Devi Memorial School, to its present enviable state and has made it the best-run institution, in its category, in the area.

Brigadier. Th. Harish Chandra Singh,V.S.M. Thakurani Jayshri Singh

YADUNATH SINGH, the eldest of the brothers, earned a King's Commision from Sandhurst, UK, and came, to join the Indian Army as an Officer in the 4th Battalion, the Kumaon Regiment which he later commanded. He was appointed Colonel of the Kumaon Regiment, The Rajput Regiment and The Corps of the Military Police. He also commaded 26 Infantry Division and retired as a Major General. He helped Shri Vinobha Bhave (a Gandhian), in his efforts to make the Dacoits of Madhya Pradesh surrender. He succeeded in a big way. Dacoit Lokmanya was one of the main surrenderees. Later he was appointed as the Honorary Chairman of the Jammu and Kashmir Public Service Commission. He was also the Military Secretary to Dr RAJENDRA PRASAD, The President of India. He was decorated with the award of the Mahavir Chakra for his heroic acts of gallantry during the Liberation of Kashmir in 1947. His daughter MALA married a lawyer Dr ADARSH SEIN ANAND, who rose to become the Chief Justice of India and Chairman of the National Human Rights Commission. They had three daughters, SHABNAM, MUNISHA and JYOTIKA. The daughters of the remaining two brothers; RAGHUNATH SINGH called VEERA, and HARNATH SINGH, called PRARTHNA and BHAVANA, as also their children and cousins, did exceedingly well in their own spheres. They married into affluent and influential families of repute. Presently RANJIT SINGH, HARISH CHANDRA SINGH, their sisters and their children, are keeping the flag of this family flying high.

The torch bearers of this great family are Kr RAHUL SINGH and Kr VISHAL SINGH. Both are the sons of HARISH CHANDRA SINGH. While Kr RAHUL SINGH is a Software Engineer, his wife Kunwarani SHILPA SINGH is a Creative Director of Graphics Designing. His younger brother is Kr VISHAL SINGH, who is a M.B.A. from Cornell University and is a Management Consultant.

The last but not the least of this illustrious family, as of date (13 Sept 2005) is, RIA SINGH. She is the two and a half years old daughter of Kr RAHUL SINGH & Kunwarani SHILPA SINGH.

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