A numerous number of people who are familiar with the Hindi literature have known and read the poem Padvamat but only a handful of people actually know about the person who was the inspiration behind the poem. Rani Padmavati was the Queen of Chittor who was married to King Ratansen. Padmavati was a very sought after princess and was one of the most beautiful and alluring princess of her kingdom. She was the daughter of the King of Sinhala.
People tend to judge her existence as a mere piece of fiction and imagination but there are a number of proofs that give evidence about her possible existence back in the days. The poem Padmavat was released after around 240 years of her alleged “existence” and it was written by Malik Muhammad.
Excerpts about her early life
There are little no excerpts or citations about the childhood or adolescent phase of Rani Padmavati. She spent her entire childhood under the strict eye and guidance of her parents, Gandharvsena who was her father and Champavati who was her mother. Anyone who has read the poem is very well aware of the talking parrot that was in Padmavati’s possession whose name was Hiramani.
Due to lack of information, there are little to nothing that we can indulge in that count as a part of her early life except for marriage. Back in those days, the princesses were married off to the best suitor who was eligible for marriage. Rani Padmavati’s swayamvar was a matter of great hype and kings from all over the country came to participate in the event and prove their capabilities.
The final countdown and face-off came down to two people who came to the ceremony, Malkan Singh and King Rawal Ratan Singh who was the king of Chittor. Rawal Ratan Singh who wanted a good amount of dowry for the marriage was set on winning both the dowry and the princess and so he did. Ratan Singh’s first wife who stayed back in Chittor was Nagmati.
Alauddin Khilji and Padmavati – Story
Rawal Ratan Singh’s main aim from the marriage was not just because he likes Padmavati enough, but the dowry. He received an ample amount of dowry which was a great kick-start to the Chittor revenues which was on the path to bankruptcy. His brother, Chetan and Raghav wanted a share for themselves from the amount and that was the reason they got banished from the land of Mewar and the periphery.
That was when they took off to Delhi to meet Ala-ud-din Khilji to spike him to attack Chittor and take power from their brother. During chalking out a plan to attack Chittor, Raghav and Chetan kept praising Padmavati’s beauty to Khilji and he was keen on not just meeting her but making her his.
The Nawaab who claimed his throne following beheading his own uncle, wanted to spread out his territory and listening to the beauty that was Padmavati, his want and fire just grew. He was all set to claim his territory over Mewar and make Padmavati his mistress. Khilji chalked out a plan to attack Mewar.
It was the year of 1303 that Khilji marched towards Mewar with his entire army to attack Rawal Ratan Singh and hold him captive. Owing to the strong security, Khilji couldn’t go forward as per his plan but had to chalk out an impromptu plan to get himself and his army inside the fort.
Khilji offered Ratan Singh that he wouldn’t attack the fort only if he got to see Padmavati’s face. With no way to get through, Ratan Singh agreed to the proposal but on one condition that Khilji would only be allowed to see the Queen’s reflection.
After seeing the Queen’s reflection, he was transfixed and he wanted nothing else but to make Padmavati his. He held the King captive and took him away to their forts. Later, Khilji sent a messenger with the news that he wanted Rani Padmavati instead of the King’s freedom.
Padmavati consulted her uncle and his son, Gora and Badal who were in the King’s army for help. They together chalked a plan out and the next day a message was sent out that Padmavati would visit Khilji with her retinue.
200 and more Palanquins set to journey the next day and Rani Padmavati was not in them but armed soldiers were. A war ensued after they reached the castle where Khilji stayed and the King was rescued from them but Gora and Badal along with a number of soldiers had to sacrifice their life in the process.
How did Padmavati die?
Due to the deteriorating condition of the revenues in Chittor, the King announced a suicide attack on the invaders who were trying to attack them. In order to save themselves and their pride and dignity, all the women in the castle along with the Queens, Padmavati and Nagmati performed the act of “Jauhar” and embraced death jumping into an open fire pit.