New Delhi: Maratha ruler Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's birth anniversary is celebrated on February 19 as Shivaji jayanti.
Born in the hill-fort of Shivneri, near the city of Junnar in Pune district, he carved out an enclave from the declining Adilshahi sultanate of Bijapur that formed the genesis of the Maratha Empire. He was crowned as the Chhatrapati (Monarch) of his realm at Raigad in 1674 and subsequently, established a progressive civil rule with the help of a disciplined military and well-structured administrative organisations.
Chhatrapati Shivaji is said to have innovated military tactics and pioneered unconventional methods. At the same time, he revived ancient Hindu political traditions and court conventions. Plus, he promoted the usage of Marathi and Sanskrit and not Persian, in court and administration.
Shivaji was the first to realise the importance of having a naval force and thus is known as the Father of Indian Navy. He established a navy and forts at the coastline to defend Maharashtra on Konkan's side. Jaigad, Vijaydurg, Sindhudurg forts are a testimony of Shivaji's efforts and ideas.
Also, known as the 'mountain rat', he was known for his guerrilla warfare tactics. Some of the main battles that he fought are - battle of Pratapgarh, battle of Kolhapur, battle of Pavan Khind and battle of Nesari among others.
It is said that his mother prayed to regional Goddess Shivai and was blessed with one and so the name Shivaji.