Shivajiraje Bhosle was born in 1630 and was formally crowned “Chhatrapati” in 1674 for being the valiant leader that he was. He espoused the ideology of Indian Self Rule and fought against the Sultanates, the Mughals and the British. His strong beliefs and warrior code of ethics, exemplary character and spiritual values led him to protect all faiths, oppose slavery and forced religious conversions. and treat all with equality and justice. For his tactics in the battlefield, the Mughals referred to him as the “Mountain Rat”. He built up a strong navy along the western coastline of his kingdom, and successfully kept foreign naval ships of British, Dutch and Portuguese away. He, thus, earned the name “Father of Indian Navy”. His confrontations with Aurangzeb and Afzal Khan display the clever moves he made in deceiving the enemy.
A revered figure in India and particularly in Maharashtra, Shivaji remains an idol of Hinduism.