Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj made an aggressive start to secure the northern portions of his patrimony. He deputed Pratinidhi Gadadhar Pralhad and Senapati Dhanaji Jadhav to Baglan and Khandesh with his trusted aide Balaji Vishwanath. They decisively vanquished the local Mughal officers like Karim Beg of Junnar and plundered the city of its riches.
They were asked to return for the monsoon. On the way to Panhala, Dhanaji fell seriously ill and died in June 1708 at
Wadgaon on the Warna River dealing a severe blow to Shahu Raje’s cause. Though Dhanaji’ son Chandrasen had already been conferred the position of Senapati, his allegiance lay with Maharani Tarabai.
Shahu Raje instead appointed Balaji Vishwanath as
Senakarte (organizer of forces), a new office he specially created to safeguard himself. Balaji took his new position zealously by raising funds and enlisting men and brought much-needed discipline among the ranks. He soon rose above all the ministers and helpers of Shahu Raje with remarkable efficiency and speed of execution.
Shahu Raje conferred upon him the office of Peshwa, that would dynamically change the whole structure of the Maratha administration and government and even eclipse the position of Chhatrapati.
Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath’s contribution to Shahu Raje is nothing short of outstanding. From being a clerk under Ramchandra Pant Amatya, to working as
Sar Subahdar of Poona and Daulatabad, to working as a revenue collector under Senapati Dhanaji Jadhav executing the orders of the Chhatrapati and playing a principal role in protecting the fort of Sinhgad in 1703, Balaji remained loyal to the Marathas and a staunch friend to Shahu Raje when in captivity.
Aurangzeb’s tyrannical campaign between 1699 – 1704 against the hill forts about Poona and Satara brought the two close to each other. Balaji rendered invaluable service on the eve of the
Battle of Khed and guaranteed his ascendancy to the throne and in return, was awarded the position of Peshwa after a trial, during which Balaji exhibited a rare grasp of the rapidly developing political situation between the Marathas and Mughals and an uncommon shrewdness to turn it to the advantage of the Marathas.
It is therefore justified that Shahu Raje held Balaji in high esteem and history is a witness to his significant appointment as Peshwa.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian
* Information about Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj is taken from archives
Shrivardhan, Maharashtra 402110, India
Like this: Like Loading...
October 7, 2022
Adventure/Trekking Trails, Articles in English, Historical Events of Importance, India, Maharashtra, Travel
Abdul Karim Bahlol Khan, Abdul Muhammad, Abdulla Khan, Abul Hassan, Abyssinians, Adil Shahis, Agra Fort, Ahmedabad, Ahmednagar, Ajinkyatara, Ajinkyatara Fort, Akbar, Akkanna, Akluj, Ali Adil Shah, Ali Mardan Khan, Ali Quli, Amba Ghat, Ambaji Trimbak Purandare, Amber Temple, Amritrao Kadam Bande, An Infusion of Hindavi Swarajya under Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj, An Infusion of Religious Fervour by Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj, Anandrao Makaji, Anantapur, Anjanwel, Ankola, Annaji Datto, Arni, Asad Khan, Asaf Jah I, ascetic, Aundha Fort, Aungier, Aurangabad, Aurangzeb, Aurangzeb displeased that Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj has made Gingee the new Maratha power, Ausa, Azam Shah, Azam-tara, Babaji Naik Punde, Babu Khan, Baglana, Bahadur Khan, Bahadur Shah I, Bahadurgad, Bahadurgad Fort, Bahadurpura village, Bahir Rao, Bahirji Bohra, Bahirji Ghorpade, Bahirji Naik, Bahlol Khan, Baji Sarzarav Jedhe Deshmukh of Kari, Baji Sharzerav Jedhe, Bakshinda Baksh, Bal Prabhu Chitnis, Balaji Avji, Balaji Vishwanath, Balaji Vishwanath and Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj, Balaji Vishwanath Bhat, Balaji Vishwanath shows his mettle, Balapur, Bangalore, Baqui Khan, Barcelore, baskets of sweets, Basrur, Battle of Barcelore, Battle of Basrur, Battle of Dodderi, Battle of Jajav, Battle of Khed. Khed, Battle of Nesari, Battle of Pavan Khind, Battle of Pavankhind, Battle of Singhagad, Battle of Singhgad, Battle of Surat, Battle of Umbrani, Battle of Umrani, Battle of Vani, Battle of Vani - Dindori, Battles of the Great Marathas, Battles of the Marathas, Benares, Berads of Wakinkheda, Berar, Bhaganagar, Bhagnagar, Bhagyanagar, Bhairagis, Bhajans, Bhima River, Bhonsles of Nagpur, Bhor, Bhor Ghat, Bijagad, Bijagarh, Bijapur, Bijapur Sultanate, Bir Hambir, Bor pass, Brahmapuri, Burhanpur, Capture of the Fort of Kopbal, Chandan Vandan, Chandwad, Chaul, chauth, Chennamma of Kelad, Chhatrapati Rajaram, Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj, Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj heads to Gingee, Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj's death, Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj's Samadhi, Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj's Samadhi at Sinhagad, Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj, Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj Samadhi, Chhatrapati Shahu, Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj, Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj's position stabilized, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj begins his conquest in North Konkan, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj tricks Aurangzeb to bring back Sambhaji, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's adventures after his daring escape from captivity, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's miraculous escape from Agra, chhatrapati-shivaji-maharaj-plunders-surat-for-the-second-time, Chidambaram, Chimnaji Damoda, Chimnaji Damodar, Chin Qilich Kamaruddin Khan, Chintamani Chintamani Parshvanath Temple, Chitnis Khando Ballal, Chokkanatha Nayak, Coleroon River, Confluence of Krishna and Tungabhadra Rivers, Conquest of the Koli territory by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Coronation of Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj at Satara, Cuttack, Dadaji Raghunath Deshpande, Dadaji Raghunath Deshpande of Mahad, Dadji Raghunath Prabhu Mahadkar, Dalpat Bundela, Daman, Datta Trimbak, Dattajipant, Daud Khan, Daud Khan Panni, Deshmukhi Vatan of Wai, deshmukhs, Dhanaji Jadhav, Dhanajipant, Dharamveer Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj, Dharmaji Nagnath, Dharmaveergad, Diler Khan, Diler Khan Pathan, Dodderi Fort, Doraha, Durgadas, Dutch, East India Company, Ekoji, Ekoji I, Ekoji I Bhonsle, English, English Factory, Escape from Agra, European traders, Fardapur, father of Zulfiqar Khan, Faujdar, Faulad Khan, Feroze Jung I, Fort of Kopbal, Fort of Panhala retaken by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Fort of Pedgoan, Fort Rohida, Francis Xavier, French, Gadadar Pralhad Nasikkar, Gadhinglaj, Galagali, Gandevi, Ganeshgaon, Ganga, Ghataprabha River, Ghatmatha, Ghazwaehind, ghorpad, Gingee, Gingee besieged, Gingee Fort, Goa, Golconda, Golkonda, Gondwana, gosavi, Governor of Aurangabad, Govind Vishwanath Prabhu Subhedar, Great Battles of India, Great Escape from Agra, guerrilla warfare of the Marathas, Haibatrao Nimbalkar, Haji Kasim, Haji Saiyad Beg, Hambirrao Hansaji Mohite, Hamid-ud-din Khan, Hamiduddin Khan, Hansaji Mohite, Himmat Khan, Hindavi Swarajya, Hiroji Farzand, Historical battles of India, Hoskote, Hubli, Hubli raided by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Hukeri, Husain Ali Khan, Hyderabad, iguana, Ikhlas Khan, Inayatulla Khan, Ismail Khan Maka, Jaffar Khan, Jagannath Pandit, Jagannath Pant, Jagdevgad, Jai Singh, Jajav, Janjira, Jashwant Sinh, Jasvant Sinh, Jaswant Singh, Jawahar, Jawhar, Jijabai, Jinji, Jotyaji Kesarkar, Junnar, Jyotirlingas, Kadapa, Kam Bakhsh, Kanchan-Manchan, Kanchana Fort, Karad, Karinja, Karnala Fort, Karwar, Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Kashipant, Kavi Kalash, Keladi Chennamma, Keshav Rai Temple, Keso Trimal Pingle, Khan-i-Zaman, Khanazad Khan, Khanderao Dabhade, Khanderi, Khandesh, Khavaspur, Khawas Khan, king of Devgad, Kohoj, Kolaba, Kolaba Fort, Kolar, Kolhapur, Koli region, Koli territory, Kollidam River, Kolwan, Kondaji Ravlekar, Kondana Fort, Konkan Coast, Koregaon, Krishna River, Krishnajipant, Kurnool, Lal-Tekdi, Lohagad Fort, Madan Pant, Madanna, Madari Mehtar, Madras, Mahabat Khan, Mahadaji Krishna Joshi, Maharaja Som Shah, Maharaja Soma Shah, Maharaja Vikaramshah I, Maharani Ambika Bai, Maharani Rajas Bai, Maharani Tara Bai, Maharani Tarabai, Maharani Tarabai leads the Marathas, Maharani Tarabai opposes Aurangzeb, Maharani Yesu Bai, Maharani Yesubai, Maharashtra, Mahuli, Mahuli Fort, Mallikarjuna, Maloji Ghorpade, Malwan, Manaji More, Manes, Manganga River, Maratha Forts, Maratha Navy, Maratha Palace, Marathas, Marathas fight back at Jinji, maritime fortress, Matabar Khan, Mathura, maval, Mavali, Mavalis, Mir Shahâb ud-Din Siddiqi titled Farzand-i-Arjumand, Mirza Raja, Mohabat Khan, Moors, Moropant Peshwa, Moropant Pingle, Mughal Governor of Thalner, Mughals, Muhammad Akbar, Muhammad Azam Shah, Muhammad Ismail, Muhammad Kam Bakhsh, Muhammad Mu'azzam, Muhammad Murad Khan, Mukaham Singh, Mukne kings, Mulher, Nabishahdurg, Nagoji Pandit, Nandgiri, Nandurbar, Nandyal, Narmada river, Naro Ram, Nashik, Nashik District, Nasir Muhammad Khan, Nawab Ghazi ud-din Khan Siddiqi Bayafandi Bahadur, Nayak of Madurai, Nayak of Tanjore, Nemaji Shinde, Nemaji Sinde, Nesari, Netaji Palkar, Nilopant, Nimbalkars, Niraji Raoj, Niraji Raoji, Nivritti, Nizam I, Nizam-ul-Mulk, Noor-e-Satara, North Konkan, Nusrat Jung, On the history trail, On the history trail: An Infusion of Hindavi Swarajya under Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj, On the history trail: An Infusion of Religious Fervour by Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj, On the history trail: Aurangzeb displeased that Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj has made Gingee the new Maratha power, On the history trail: Chhatrapati Rajaram Maharaj's reign, On the history trail: Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj betrayed and captured by Aurangzeb at Sangameshwar, On the history trail: Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj captured, On the history trail: Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj plunders Surat for the second time, On the history trail: Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's adventures after his daring escape from captivity, On the history trail: Muhammad Akbar rebels against Aurangzeb and seeks refuge in Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj, On the history trail: The Battle of Umrani and the sacrifice of Senapati Prataprao Gujar, On the history trail: The Grand Meeting of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and Ekoji I (Vyankoji Bhonsle), On the history trail: The Karnatak Campaign by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Orchha, Orchha State, Padmadurg, pagodas, Pandharpur, Panhala, Panhala Fort, Parali Fort, Parashuram Trimbak Pratinidhi, Parenda, Parner, Parshuram Pant Pratinidhi, Parsoji Bhosle, Pathans, Patta Fort, Pen, Persoji Bhosle, Peshwa Balaji Vishwanath Bhat, Peshwa Jagannath Pant, Pitambar Shenoi, Ponda, Portuguese, Portuguese of Chaul, Prachandagad, Prahlad Niraji, Prahlad Niraji Pratinidhi, Pratapgad, Prataprao Gujar, Prataprao Sarnobat, Prayag, Purandar, Purandar Fort, Purandares, Puri, Qutb-ud-Din Muhammad Azam, Qutub Shah, Raghumitra, Raghunath Ballal Korde, Raghunath Pant Hanumante, Raghunath Pant Hanumate, Rai Bagan, Raibag, Raigad, Raja Bulund Bakht, Raja Serfoji, Rajapur, Rajaram Raje, Rajgad Fort, Rajkot, Rajput Rebellion, Ram Chandrapant, Ram Singh, Ramchandra Pant, Ramchandra Pant Amatya, Ramnagar, Ramnagar Fort, Ramsej Fort, Rangana Fort, Rani of Bednur, Rani Shrimant Akhand Soubhagyavati Tarabai Raje Sahib Bhonsle, Rao Amar Singh Chandawat, Rao Dalpat Bundela, Ratnagiri, Rayaji Malge, Rewa River, Rohida Fort, Ruhulla Khan, Rupaji Bhosale, Rustumrav Jadhav, Sack of Surat, Sadashivgad Fort, Saf-shikan Khan, Sahabuddin Khan, Sahyadris, Saint Francis Xavier, Sajjangad, Salhar, Salher, Salher Fort, Salheri, Samarth Ramdas, Sambhaji, Sambhaji Maharaj, Sambhaji Raje, Sangam, Sangameshwar, Sangameshwar Temple, sannyasi, Sant Ramdas, Santaji Ghorpade, Santaji Ghorpade Senapati, Sar Subahdar, Sarfaraz Khan, Sarjekot, Satara, Satara Fort, sea forts built by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Sea forts built by the Marathas, Sea Power, Sea Power of the Marathas under Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Second Sack of Surat, Senapati Dhanaji, Senapati Prataprao Gujar, Shah Alam, Shahaji, Shahu, Shahuji I, Shahuji I Bhonsle, Shaikh Nizam, Shaista Khan, Shankaraji Narayan Sachiv, Shankarji Malhar Sachiv, Shekh Mira, Sher Khan Lodhi, Shiha, Shihab-ud-din Khan, Shirkes, Shirol, Shirwal, Shivaji, Shivaji Maharaj, Shivneri Fort, Shree Dharamveer Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj, Shrivardhan, Shriwardhan, Siddi Faulad, Siddi Kasam, Siddi of Janjira, Siege of Janjira, Siege of Jinji, Siege of Panhala, Siege of Ramsej, Siege of Wagingera, Sindhudurg, Singhagad Fort, Sinhagad Fort, Sinhgad Fort, Sipah Salar, Sira, Sironj, Sonda, Sondhe, Srikalahasti, Srisailam, Sujansingh Rawal of Lambkani, Sultanpur, supa, Surat, Surya Rao Kakde, Suryaji Malusare, Suryaji Pisal, Suryaji Pisal of Wai, Suvarnadurg, Swally, Tana Shah, Tanaji Malusare, Tanjore, Tapti River, Tarabai, Tarbiat Khan, The Battle of Kondana, The Battle of Salher, The Battle of Umbrani, the Bokils, The Fortress of the Sea, The legendary guerrilla warfare of the Marathas, the sacrifice of Senapati Prataprao Gujar, Thiruvadi, Timmanna Naik, Tirumalavadi, Tirupati, Torna Fort, Trimbak Fort, Trimbak Sondev Dabir, Trinomali, Tungabhadra River, Uday Bhan Rathod, Umarani, Umbrani, Umrani, Vadhu Village, Valikandapuram, Vandavasi, Vani - Dindori, Varanasi, Veer Durgadas Rathore, Vellore, Vellore Fort, Vichitragad Fort, Vijaydurg, Vikramshah I Mukne, Virudhachalam, Visajipant, Vishalgad, Vithal Pildev Atre, Vithoji Babar, Vithoji Chavan Himmat Bahadur, Vyankoji Bhonsle, Wai Fort, Wakinkheda, Wandiwash, Warana River, Warna River, Western Coast, Western Khandesh, Yamuna, Yesaji Kank, Yesubai, Zulfiqar Khan, Zulfiqar Khan Nusrat Jung