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Haidar Ali

( Indian ruler of the principality of Mysore in 1761)

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Biography Haidar Ali
photo Haidar Ali
Sixties dreadful for India XVIII century. The once-mighty Mughal Emperor remained just a memory; states that emerged from the wreckage of powers, are among a bloody war. 'The noble British East India Company', . as she called herself in official documents, . gradually took possession of all the new territories, now in the hands of the British crown jewel of Mughal - Bengal, . Hindu holy city of Varanasi, . richest areas in South India,
. The rulers of princely states formally retain the independence, obediently followed in the wake of British policy, subject to the old Indian proverb: 'You live in the river - do not hate with crocodile'. Yes krasnomundirnye battalions and companies - a good ally for any of the rulers, against the neighbors and against his own subjects, when you need to 'clean up'.
It seems that no one can, and do not want to resist the triumphant march of the British colonialists, there was no one to challenge their right to control the riches of India. And the last thing one would expect that the main source of resistance would Mysore - a small South Indian principality, which occupied remote mountain plateau between the chains of Western and Eastern Ghats. Maharaja who ruled the principality from the ancient and once-glorious dynasty Vodeyarov was the ruler of the weak and cowardly, the French and the Marathas captured some fertile districts of Mysore, . treasury was empty, . army has collapsed: Soldiers, . months without receiving a salary, . half-starved and untrained, . often rebelled or deserted by hundreds, . replenishing the gang of robbers in the mountains and jungles,
. And no one foresaw the events that would change in 1760 as the fate of Mysore, and the whole of India.
Among the Mysore army commanders particularly popular Haidar Ali. A native of the common people, he began military service Naik (noncommissioned officer), but thanks to his legendary fearlessness, as well as cunning and political acumen, made a fantastic career. In 1760, skillfully maneuvering between rival for power, the first dignitaries of Mysore, Haidar Ali managed to avoid all, even the Maharaja, who until the end of the day remained an honored prisoner in his palace. So in Mysore a military coup, which was supported by the army, starving and desperate people. The former sergeant, never overpower the letter, was a talented military leader and statesman. He reorganized the army on the European style, . sharply increased its combat power and as a result of successful military operations attached to Mysore a few strategically and economically important areas, . among whom were Kurg, . Cannard and part of the Malabar coast, with its rich trading ports.,
. Haidar Ali ruthlessly suppressed mnivshih a local feudal potentates, took away their privileges, consisting mainly of law with impunity to rob the peasants - they were now, as well as artisans, paying taxes only to the State
. In the fight against corrupt officials and feudal autocracy Haidar Ali used the old, . as world, . tool - whip, . and abusers, . violence against the peasants, or disrupting military operations publicly flogged in front of the palace, . spite of their nobility and status,
. Even the son and heir, Haidar Ali, the future ruler and hero of Mysore Tipu Sultan once tasted lashes for being unable to contain the enemy's advance. But attracting people to his service, Haidar Ali was not interested in either the origin or religion, but for the faithful, brave and intelligent was not sorry the ranks and awards. The people he loved, but the old niveus know, not simply a 'upstart' his success, became a sworn enemy and Haidar Ali, and then Tipu Sultan.
. Rundown principality gradually transformed into a powerful state with a regular, trained in a European army, a rich treasury and the growing political influence
. Strengthening of Mysore could not aggravate its relations with other contenders for dominance in South India, and above all - with the Maratha confederation, principality of Hyderabad and the British. The first collision with the Marathas in 1764, Haidar Ali lost, but later, when the army got quite niveus combat experience, began to apply them, and Hyderabad telling blows. Gruff soldier who loved humor and preserved the vulgar manners, Haidar Ali was a talented diplomat: all attempts to unite against the enemies of Mysore, he is frustrated with the corruption, then by clever intrigue. In addition, all plans of the enemy immediately became known Haidar Ali, was organized with its excellent army intelligence service. Soon, however, Mysore ruler realized that the main enemy of his country, the main danger for the whole of India - is a 'noble East India Company'. The clash with the British was inevitable. First Anglo-Mysore War (1767-1769) ended in complete victory Haidar Ali. Niveus army approached the walls of Madras and laid siege to the city. Infuriating Gentlemen, maysurtsy even nailed to the wall sheets of paper with caricatures of the British military commander and obscene verses about his army. The British were forced to agree to peace, who later treacherously violated the company ...
Ten years later, Haidar Ali, who seemed able to convince the Marathas and Hyderabad in the need for joint action against the British. Three States have concluded an alliance, and the British began to suffer one defeat after another. Haidar Ali was able to subdue the richest region Carnatic. But for the Marathas and Mysore, Hyderabad intensified was terrible. Besides the noble lords led to fury the thought of an equal alliance with the plebeians, encroached on the throne of Mysore. All this is cleverly used the British: they returned to the ruler of Hyderabad captured their own land, bribed his advisers, and thus pushed the principality to secede from the Union. Soon the separate peace concluded with the English and Marathi. Now, Haidar Ali was forced to fight alone with strangers, and in addition, to suppress the uprising Mysore feudal lords who did not fail to take advantage of an opportune moment and hit in the back of the hated 'upstart'. Then, Haidar Ali drew to their side of the French, who was defeated in the struggle against England for the decisive influence in India, were eager for revenge. Moreover, Haidar Ali, generously paid impoverished French soldiers and officers. The French squadron had Haidar Ali an important aid fairly patting the English fleet. Has come December 1782. War was no end in sight, but the British and the ruler of Mysore understand that compromise is impossible. Haidar Ali was sick a long time, and illness (apparently, it was cancer) still prevailed. He is long and painfully dying in the camp of his army and before his death bequeathed Tipu Sultan, who was then in a military expeditions, the Mysore throne and a relentless struggle against the British colonialists. Subsequently, over his grave Tipu Sultan built a simple, elegant and at the same time, the majestic mausoleum Gumbaz, which was destined to become a place to soothe the last two characters - a father and son.

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