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Hari Singh (September 1895 – 26 April 1961) was the last ruling Maharaja of the princely state of Jammu and Kashmir in India. He was married four times. With his fourth wife, Maharani Tara Devi (1910–1967), he had one son, Yuvraj (Crown Prince) Karan Singh.

Contents

1 Early life 2 Education and preparation for the throne 3 Reign

3.1 Seal of Maharaja Hari Singh

4 Family 5 Honours 6 References 7 External links

Early life[edit] Hari Singh was born on 23 September 1895 at the palace of Amar Mahal, Jammu, the only surviving son of General Raja Sir Amar Singh Jamwal (14 January 1865 – 26 March 1909), the brother of Maharaja Pratap Singh, the then Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir. Education and preparation for the throne[edit] In 1903, Hari Singh served as a page of honour to Lord Curzon at the grand Delhi Durbar. At the age of thirteen, Hari Singh was dispatched to the Mayo College in Ajmer. A year later, in 1909, his father died, and the British took a keen interest in his education and appointed Major H. K. Brar as his guardian. After Mayo College, the ruler-in-waiting went to the British-run Imperial Cadet Corps at Dehra Dun for military training.[citation needed] Pratap Singh appointed him as commander-in-chief of the state forces of Jammu and Kashmir in 1915.[1] Reign[edit]

The last Maharaja of Kashmir

Following the death of his uncle Pratap Singh in 1925, Hari Singh ascended the throne of Jammu and Kashmir. He made primary education compulsory in the state, introduced laws prohibiting child marriage, and opened places of worship to the low castes.[2] His ascent was despite misgivings concerning "youthful escapades", including him having paid £300,000 when he was blackmailed by a prostitute in Paris in 1921. That issue had resulted in a court case in London in 1924 during which the India Office tried to keep his name out of proceedings by arranging for him to be referred to as "Mr. A."[1] Singh was hostile towards the Indian National Congress, in part because of the close friendship between Kashmiri political activist and socialist Sheikh Abdullah and the Congress leader Jawaharlal Nehru. He also opposed the Muslim League and its members' communalist outlook, as represented by their two-nation theory. During the Second World War, from 1944–1946 Sir Hari Singh was a member of the Imperial War Cabinet.[citation needed] In 1947, after India gained independence from British rule, Jammu and Kashmir had the option to join either India or Pakistan or to remain independent[citation needed]. Hari Singh originally manoeuvred to maintain his independence by playing off India and Pakistan. There was a widespread belief that rulers of the princely states, in deciding to accede to India or Pakistan, should respect the wishes of the population, but few rulers took any steps to consult on such decisions[citation needed]. Jammu and Kashmir was a Muslim majority state, and Pashtun tribesmen from Pakistan invaded Jammu and Kashmir under the impression that Hari Singh would accede to India. Hari Singh appealed to India for help.[3] Although the Indian Prime Minister Nehru was ready to send troops, the Governor-General of India, Lord Mountbatten of Burma, advised the Maharaja to accede to India before India could send its troops. Hence, considering the emergency situation, the Maharaja signed an Instrument of Accession to the Dominion of India.[4] Hari Singh signed the Instrument of Accession on 26 October 1947, joining the whole of his princely state (including Jammu, Kashmir, Northern Areas, Ladakh, Trans-Karakoram Tract and Aksai Chin) to the Dominion of India.[5][6] These events triggered the first Indo-Pakistan War. Pressure from Nehru and Sardar Patel eventually compelled Hari Singh to appoint his son and heir, Yuvraj (Crown Prince) Karan Singh, as Regent of Jammu and Kashmir in 1949, although he remained titular Maharaja of the state until 1952, when the monarchy was abolished. He was also forced to appoint Sheikh Abdullah as prime minister of Kashmir. He had a contentious relationship with both the Congress Leaders and, at the time, their most favored and popular politician in the area, Sheikh Abdullah.[7] Karan Singh was appointed 'Sadr-e-Riyasat' ('President of the Province') in 1952 and Governor of the State in 1964.[7] Abdullah would later be dismissed from his position as prime minister of Kashmir and jailed by Karan Singh, son of Hari Singh.[8] Hari Singh spent his final days at the Hari Niwas Palace in Jammu. He died on 26 April 1961 at Bombay. As per his will, his ashes were brought to Jammu and spread all over Jammu and Kashmir and immersed in the Tawi River at Jammu.[9][not in citation given] Seal of Maharaja Hari Singh[edit]

Detail of the Seal of Maharaja Hari Singh as printed on the Civil List of his government

The British Crown was at the top, representing the Emperor of India, whose Resident was posted in Kashmir. A katar or ceremonial dagger sat below the crown. Two soldiers held flags. An image of the sun was between them, that symbolised his Rajput lineage from Lord Surya, the Hindu Sun God. Family[edit]

Dharampur Rani Sri Lal Kunverba Sahiba; married at Rajkot 7 May 1913, died during pregnancy in 1915. No child. Chamba Rani Sahiba; married at Chamba 8 November 1915, died 31 January 1920. No child. Maharani Dhanvant Kunveri Baiji Sahiba (1910–19?); married at Dharampur 30 April 1923. No child. Maharani Tara Devi Sahiba of Kangra,(1910–1967); married 1928, separated 1950, one son:

Yuvraj (Crown Prince), i.e., heir-apparent Karan Singh (born 9 March 1931)

Honours[edit]

Titles of Maharaga Hari Singh and Yuvraj Karan Singh on the first page of his Civil List of 1945

(ribbon bar, as it would look today; incomplete)

Delhi Durbar Medal-1903 Delhi Durbar Medal-1911 Prince of Wales Visit Medal-1922 Knight Grand Commander of the Order of the Indian Empire (GCIE)-1929 (KCIE-1918) Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown of Italy-1930 Knight Grand Commander of the Order of the Star of India (GCSI)-1933 King George V Silver Jubilee Medal-1935 King George VI Coronation Medal-1937 Hon. LL.D from Punjab University-1938 Grand Officer of the Legion d'Honneur-1938 1939-1945 Star-1945 Africa Star-1945 War Medal 1939-1945-1945 India Service Medal-1945 Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO)-1946 (KCVO-1922) Indian Independence Medal-1947

Hari Singh Dogra dynasty Born: 23 September 1895 Died: 26 April 1961

Regnal titles

Preceded by Pratap Singh (as Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir) Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir 1925–1947 Succeeded by Abolished

References[edit]

^ a b Snedden, Christopher (2015). Understanding Kashmir and Kashmiris. Oxford University Press. p. 128. ISBN 978-1-84904-342-7.  ^ Anand, Ragubhir Lal (2014-02-01). IS God DEAD?????. Partridge Publishing. p. 26. ISBN 978-1-48281-823-9.  ^ Maharaja Hari Singh's Letter to Mountbatten ^ Ramachandra., Guha, (2008-01-01). India after Gandhi : the history of the world's largest democracy. Harper Perennial. ISBN 0060958588. OCLC 474262656.  ^ Justice A. S. Anand, The Constitution of Jammu & Kashmir (5th edition, 2006), page 67 ^ Kashmir, Research Paper 04/28 by Paul Bowers, House of Commons Library, United Kingdom. Archived 28 July 2004 at the Wayback Machine., page 46, 30 March 2004 ^ a b Ramachandra., Guha, (2008-01-01). India after Gandhi : the history of the world's largest democracy. Harper Perennial. p. 92. ISBN 0060958588. OCLC 474262656.  ^ Ramachandra., Guha, (2008-01-01). India after Gandhi : the history of the world's largest democracy. Harper Perennial. p. 262. ISBN 0060958588. OCLC 474262656.  ^ "J&K power defaulters cocking a snook at CM". Daily Pioneer. 18 January 2013. Retrieved 16 February 2013. 

India portal Politics portal

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Hari Singh.

Proclamation of 1 May 1951 on Jammu & Kashmir Constituent Assembly by Yuvraj (Crown Prince) Karan Singh (Son of Maharajah Hari Singh) from the Official website of Government of Jammu and Kashmir, India Conflict in Kashmir: Selected Internet Resources by the Library, University of California, Berkeley, USA; University of California at Berkeley Library Bibliographies and Web-Bibliographies list V Sundaram. "Salutations to Guruji Golwalkar – IV". Archived from the original on 4 December 2008.  The role of Shri Guruji Golwalkar (Sarsanghchalak of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh – RSS) Nehru, Abdullah betrayed Maharaja Hari Singh

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 37725585 LCCN: n89234244 ISNI: 0000 0000 2881 8876 GND: 119390183 BNF:

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