Life Sketch of Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Holkar Bahadur.
Maharajadhiraj, Raj Rajeshwar sawai shrimant Yeshwant Rao Holkar(second)Bahadur
G.C.I.E., LL.D., Honorary Field marshal, had 19 guns salute and was ruler of 1,325,000
population living in an area 9,902 square miles (1931) of Indore. He was the 14th ruler of
Holkar dynasty. He ruled the state from 1926 1947.
Three generations The Parents The Family
Childhood and Schooling 1908 - 1923
He was born on the auspicious day of Dhol Gyarus on 6th Sept, 1908. He was the eldest
child of H.H. Maharaja Tukoji Rao 3rd and Maharani Chandrawati devi. His younger
sister s name was Manorama Raje.
Born in royal family of great Maratha holkar s of Indore, he was destined to be the ruler
of the state. Keeping this in mind he was groomed and educated accordingly, by his
visionary father H.H. Maharaja Tukoji Rao 3rd Holkar. As a very young boy, he was kept
under the able guidance of Rao Bahadur Dr. Bhandarkar. This was no ordinary education.
He was taught the best of eastern and western cultures. He was an excellent shooter. His
first tiger beat was organized in 1919 at Bhanpura when he was only 11 year s old. In
1920 he was then send to England for the formal education at public school of Cheam,
Surrey. It was a very famous school for the up-coming young children for pre-school
education. Here his mentor was well-known educationist Mr. Arthur Tabor. After spending
some time here, he was then admitted to the public school of Charter house. This institution
with its strong discipline of a Boys republic and its characteristic leveling influence
made a deep impression on his mind. In his second term he was specially taken into the
Officers Training Corps so as to include him in the Shooting Eight. He represented the
school in the Country Life Shooting competition and scored 78 out of 78
Hope of Indore Brother and Sister The
On his return to India in 1923, he was first placed under the guidance of Rao Bahadur Dr.
Bhandarkar who was his old guardian. During this time he received instructions in various
branches of knowledge. The programme of his training included coaching by some
professors of the Holkar College who gave him lectures in English literature, history,
science, etc. The underlying idea was to fill his mind with all the knowledge worth
acquiring. His far sighted father kept him in company of some promising young men of
good breeding and intelligence and age.
Accession Ceremony -1926
Due to some unavoidable circumstances, at the tender age of 18, he became the Maharaja
Accession Ceremony took place on 11th March, 1926 at Juna Rajbada (Old Palace),
The prescribed rites and rituals. Once the official formalities was over, the young king went
Blessings from the family God - Kul Devta Malhari Martand and his parents at
Sukhniwas palace. In official Kharita, Viceroy Lord Irwin wrote, The life of a Ruler is
often lonely and a life beset with difficulties and disillusions. He has to walk with such
circumspection that in some respects he enjoys less personal freedom and liberty than many
of his subjects. On the other hand, there is this consolation that given the will and
character, there is no one to challenge his authority.. In reply to that H.H.Yeshwant Rao
said that, My ambition will be to fit my self for useful service to my state .
Education 1926 1929.
On 22nd May, 1926 to complete his education he retuned to England. He was accompanied
by H.H. Maharani Sanyogita Raje and his sister Princes Manorama Raje.
At his second visit, he was a young man pre pared by two years of regular and all round
edu cation in India to join a first grade college in Eng land. He passed his Responsions
and was ad mitted to Christ Church College, Oxford, for the Michaelmas term, 1926.
While at College he supplement ed his college studies by extensive and varied reading.
His knowledge of history was sound and his interests in the politics and current events of
the world were genuine. His Highness utilized the vacations which are more than six
months at Oxford in traveling over various countries of Europe. He moved like an ordinary
man and seen the life in its naked form unaffect ed by social conventions and un-
surrounded by arti ficial form and drapery. He saw life in its true colour and its different
ways. He saw the mentalities of various people of different habits under different
circumstances and under different Governments. He met people as a student and as an
ordinary traveler and acquired knowledge which helped him in ruling the million and a half
subjects of his vast dominions. He went round England, Scotland, Wales as well as various
countries on the Continent including Norway, Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland, Spain,
Greece and Austria Hungary. On most occasions he was accompanied by his sister or Her
Highness or by both. In every case he traveled without any retinue. His Highness utilized
his leisure hours in manly sports. Fond of hunting, he is a true hunter and a good
sportsman. When he went abroad during the vacations he did stag and goose shooting in
Scotland and salmon fishing in Norway.
Christ Church Oxford Cheam Public School
On 11th Nov 1929 after completion of his college education he returned to India. During
his absence the state of Indore was ably managed by a minority government with the help
of Agent to Governor general. It was headed by the prime-minister Rai Bahadur Sir S.M.
Bapna. He was supported by council of ministers. Here in India the administrative training
of maharaja began under Mr. C.U. Wills.
On 9th May 1930 he took full charge of his empire. The rituals took place at the old palace.
first investiture durbar was held at the King Edward Hall (Gandhi Hall).
In his speech maharaja said,
I am fully conscious of the grave responsibility that now devolves upon me as the Ruler
of my State. The welfare of the agriculturists of my State shall be my special care for, I feel
at the present stage of our economic development, a sound agricultural system must form
the broad foundation. I, also, recognize that my own prosperity will rest upon the
prosperity of my people.
It is my earnest desire that every effort should be made to provide adequate funds for the
development of those nation-building departments, which can foster the social happiness of
my people. I have therefore decided that for the present, my Civil List shall be limited to 11
per cent, of the income of my State; while I hope, if further experience justifies such a step,
to be able in the future to reduce my budget to an even lower percentage of the whole.
To relieve the burden on the cultivators, than whom no class is dearer to me, I shall
sanction the remission of all arrears of revenue and cases up to the end of the last
resettlement, thus foregoing a sum of about 13 lakhs of rupees. Realizing that the welfare
of my State is closely bound up with the welfare of my Jagirdars, I shall order the
remission of arrears of Tanka amounting to one lakh and eighty seven thousand rupees
outstanding against the Rampura -Bhanpura district. Further, there is a heavy sum
outstanding in the books of the old Accounts Department. Although a large part of this sum
may be irrecoverable, yet I feel that its retention in the books of account operates as a
burden on those against whose names the dues now stand. To relieve them of this burden I
have decided that these arrears to the extent of 24 lakhs of rupees should now be written
off. I am also ordering the grant of 15 bighas of Khoti land, free of assessment, to the Patel
of every Khalsa village as a personal honour and a personal gift from me. To-day I assume
full ruling powers; and I take this occasion to proclaim that it shall be my constant
endeavour to study the welfare of all classes of my subjects and to make their best interests
the first object of my care .
Address to the youth
On 13th May 1930 he organized a special meeting with the young generation of the state.
He appealed for their help in the building up of state and the country as a whole.
In his speech he said,
Brothers and Sisters.
I have asked you here today for two reasons. The first is that.I ardently wished at the
commencement of my career that you, the Youth of Indore, and I, your Maharaja, should
meet and together look into the future. The second is to ask you for your trust, your
sympathy, and your help in the great task before me.
You and I shall have to live together and the future is in our hands. With all due respect to
our elders and their achievements in past, the future is ours, not theirs. We must understand
one another and work in good accord, if we are going to achieve something. It is our duty
to go one better than our elders, otherwise the world would never progress; and he who
does not advance goes back, for there is no such thing as keeping still or remaining the
same. And when the rest of the world goes forward we must advance with it. We must
achieve something of which our children will be proud and for that we must have a Hope, a
Faith and an Aim in life.
Times are changing fast in India. Besides the orthodox minded who are content with the
state of affairs which has existed for centuries and who want no change, there are others
who are hot for immediate and radical changes, mostly inspired from abroad and for which
this country is not prepared, or shall I say, changes, which would throw India into a turmoil
of barren strifes and conflicts leading nowhere. Between these two extremes we want
progress and improvement, and the first condition for this is peace. We must work in peace,
so let us have peace and brotherhood and sink our differences, racial, religious, social and
political. A ruler can introduce no changes without the sympathy and co operation of his
people; and it is for that sympathy and co-operation that I ask you. I want you to trust me,
and believe that I am trying my best for you, always inspired by my consideration of your
welfare. And when we talk of constructing let us remember that this is not achieved by
mere talk, but by brains and hands, by actual manual work and handicraft and by bodily
exertion. So let us work more and more in the country, on the land and for the land, in the
villages and for the villages. This I am going to do, and I trust you to do the same, and help
In our hands lies the future of the State, so let us aim high, and though we may make
mistakes, to err is but human, let us keep this aim always in view and work steadily
towards it. On this, brothers and sisters, I give you my blessings, Give me yours .
Maharajadhiraj Raj Rajeshwar, Sawai, Shrimant Yeshwant Rao Holkar
The Golden Period: 1930 1937
Married to Her Highness Sanyogita Raje Ghatge in the year 1924. She was daughter of the
junior chief of Kolhapur( Kagal). Princess Usha was born on 20thOct1933 in Paris, France.
This was the golden period of the young master s life. Fully contended with the power in
hand, the whole fortune of Holkar s in his possession. Blessings from loving parents and
the residents of whole holkar state. He had unconditioned and selfless love of his wife, who
was fully devoted to him. H.H. Maharani Sanyogita Raje was a very beautiful and
intelligent lady. During this time the day to day management of the state was done by
locally elected staff of ministers and British Agent to Viceroy. So he was free to implement
his ideas into action.
Ideas into Action
Manik bagh palace-Garden of jewels
H.H. Maharaja Yeshwant Rao was a born artist. Art was his favourite subject second only
to the history of India. During his education at Christ Church, Oxford he met many artist of
Many young artist were attracted towards him for patronage. This was the time he met
This young German architect Eckart Muthesius received the commission from Maharaja to
build and furnish a palace in India :Manik Bagh - Jewel Gardens . This palace developed
into an interior design work of art, representing the International Style of the 1930s with
elegance and a cool functionalism in a tropical climate. Maharaja was an art enthusiast,
influenced by the Western avant-garde in Paris, friend and patron of the sculptor Brancusi,
had the palace designed with technical and aesthetic refinement by Eckart Muthesius. The
palace had darkly tinted and clear window panes in metal frames for regulating the light of
day, the first air conditioning system in India, unusually simple furniture of wood and
metal, figurative carpets, lighting fixtures in the shape of sculptures, walls treated in
alternating colours, screens arranged like three-dimensional cubist paintings. Technical
equipment, even marble flooring, furniture and lamps were made to the architect's designs
and instructions in Germany. In addition, furniture from the avant-garde designers of
Berlin, London and Paris were acquired, including an amazing number of serial production
pieces: tubular steel chairs by the architect brothers Wassili and Hans Luckhardt, the chaise
lounge by Le Corbusier/Charlotte Perriand, the ebony, chrome and leather armchair Tran
sat by Eileen Gray in Paris, tubular steel furniture by the PEL company in London. Money
was no problem. It is said that furniture worth 4 million dollars were shipped to India from
Germany. He never believed in any thing less than perfect.
Manik Bagh Palace Today Holkar Logo
Manik Bagh aroused much interest in the early thirties. Photographs of the residence, its
architect and also its inhabitants, were published in the international press. Magazines like
Fortune, The Illustrated Times of India and also the Berliner Illustrierte printed
photographic reports on this unusual palace. The Indore palace remained an isolated
example of German architecture and interior design which was to have no successors and
was forgotten for decades.
Ball Room Study Room Palace at Night
Bed Room Billiard Room Guest Room
Tiger in Cage Rajamata and Princes Usha Manorama
Spirituality into form and shape
. He was a man of extra-ordinary artistic taste, with a unique combination of spirituality.
His understanding of form and shape and ability to linked it with spirituality was of highest
Maharaja s frequent visits to France, Rumania, Germany, and England brought many
antiques to his palace of jewels. From early childhood he had a habit of keeping a small
notebook in his pocket and taking notes whenever required. Those who are honest to
themselves are the only one who can maintain a dairy writing. During these visits he used
to take notes of things of his liking. He was very much impressed by Romanian sculptor
Constantin Brancusi. Maharaja commissioned him to make a design of temple of
meditation . His study table, library and guest room had a display of articles made by
sculptor Brancusi. The most famous one was Bird in Space . The bird was a central
theme in Brancusi's oeuvre. Brancusi was inspired by the legendary Pasarea maiastra
(Master bird), a magic bird in Romanian folklore famed for its radiant plumage and
marvelous song, a messenger of love who guided and protected Prince Charming in his
search for his Princess.
Adam & Eve King of Kings bird in space Guard Dog
bird in space
Temple of Meditation,. Although never realized, the temple conceived as a windowless
chamber (save for a ceiling aperture) with interior reflecting pool, frescoes of birds, and an
underground entrance would have embodied the concerns most essential to Brancusi s
art: the idealization of aesthetic form; the integration of architecture, sculpture, and
furniture; and the poetic evocation of spiritual thought.
Luxury State Coach
In 1936, Gloucester Railway Carriage and Wagon Company, (of whom it was once said
- quot;every carriage and wagon is, yet another Ambassador for British Craftsmanshipquot;) was
ordered to make a Luxury State Coach. This was probably the most luxurious railway
carriage ever built and was the largest ever to be constructed in Britain at that time. Built to
run on 5 6' gauge tracks it measured 68' long by 10' wide and weighed over 50 tons. The
Art Deco interior was designed by the Maharajahs Swiss-German architect Herr Eckart
Muthesius and built with sycamore wood, chrome, pink mirrors and an internal telephone
system. Air blown over ice was used to keep the vehicle cool while the under frame and
bogies were valenced over, giving the carriage a smart and very modern appearance. At
least one earlier Indian Royal vehicle had included a bell code system for summoning the
harem member of the Maharaja s choice, and on this job a small boy had to be sent up
into the ceiling to connect the gas and water pipes. He gifted an air conditioned railway
coach made in England to the first president of India Dr. Rajendra Prashad.
Saloon Air Craft
Eckart Muthesius, also furnished two air crafts which were commissioned by the
maharaja. He was appointed as a chief architect of the Holkar state. He designed the
hospital buildings and was preparing a country house, and a floating boat in Kashmir lakes.
For some reason Herr Eckart had to returned to Germany in 1937.
Indore Air Port.
Tata & Sons send Mr. Vincent in 1934 for the suitable place for the construction of an
airport at Indore. Maharaja Yeshwant Rao took personal interest in this project and the
Bijasen Tekari was selected for the desired Run way. Although the construction started in
1935, it took nearly 13 years for completion. Indore was connected to Bombay Delhi by
air on 26th July 1946. This air port was handed over to the central government on 1st April
Commander in chief: During second world Maharaja Yeshwant Rao openly supported
the British government not only by but also by sending troops of highly trained soldiers.
The Troop was posted at Iraq and Iran border. Maharaja him self took the command and
visited the border area, during the war.
The turning point. 1937 - 1943
He lost his beloved wife in July 1937 following an accident in Paris. This was the turning
point in his life. After this accident the Maharaja was never same. He became more
introverted. All the planning for modernization became stand-still. Maharaja has lost the
peace of mind and was constantly now moving out of India. His dream world was lost. His
sole concentration was now focused on his 5 years old daughter Usha. His health also
deteriorated. He was getting frequent attacks of asthmatic bronchitis. During these restless
travels he was accompanied by Marguerite Branyen Lawler who was acting as governess to
the little princess Usha. The little girl was very friendly with her governess. Finally He
married Marguerite Branyen on Sept. 19th 1938 and spend some time at Santa Ana, a
picturesque place 65km away from Los Angeles California U.S.A. The marriage did not
lost long and broke in 1942.
The Maharaja then got married to Euphremia Watt Crane (Fay) on 6th July 1943 who gave
birth to Prince Richard (Shivaji Rao - second) on 18th May 1944. Princess Usha Raje
returned to India at the age of 10 years. After the birth of Prince Richard, things started
settling for him. The peace of mind was returning. But the enthusiasm for renovation, his
interest in art collection, and antiques was lost.
With H.H.Maharani Sanyogita Raje With H.H.Maharani Fay Sahiba
Patriotism and Freedom Fighter
The world climate was getting worm. The world was preparing for second world was. As a
voracious reader he was watching all the events going on around him. Now he was
devoting most of his time in reading. His personal library was full of interesting books on
politics and it is said that he has gone through each and every book connected with Indian
States. Nearly 40 news papers were delivered daily to manik bagh palace from all over the
world. In 1941 US President Franklin D. Roosevelt defines American goal of Four Freedoms:
freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear. He closely
observed President Roosevelt (U.S.A.) and his views of colonial rule. Highly Impressed by
President Roosevelt, Maharaja Yeshwant Rao wrote a long personal letter to him,
requesting America s intervention with the help of China, in the fight for freedom in
India. Unfortunately the letter was intercepted by British authorities.
Maharaja Yeshwant Rao, was not a man who can be brushed off. He had already
announced his intensions by attending the Round Table Conference at England, in
1931. He was born free personality. A lion can not be contended. He has seen and tasted
the sweetness of freedom. He openly expressed his views on the colonial rules. He
discussed this changing scenario in a meeting with all sardars, jagirdars and patels of his
state. He was the first ruler who announced publicly his desire to live like a common man
in free independent India. He wrote few letters to Sardar Patel, and Pandit Nehru regarding
his views on the merger of states and formation of Indian Union. It was said that there was
some dispute on modus-operantice. But to safe guard the interest of his people was the
prime concern of any ruler.
Transfer of Power
Maheshwar, Choli, Indore, Harsola, Ba
Hatod, Mahidpur, Rampura and Bhanpu
On Thursday 27th May 1948:
Shrimant Address to his beloved citizens:
It is not proper to think on the change in the history of our country at this moment. A new
foundation is being laid down of this grate nation, for the very fast and complete
development. I give grate importance to the changes which had occurred and which are
occurring. I am not only concerned with the justice to the citizens of Holkar State, but they
should be benefited and developed in all branches, was always the prime concern of the all
the Holkar rulers. With the blessings of Devi Shri Ahilya Mata, I am proud of our services
rendered for the citizens of Holkar state. The current changes are deeply affecting my
heart. But even in this changing scenario, the people of Holkar state will continue to have
the services of Holkar rulers.
28th May 1948
20th April 1948 the Holkar state finally merged into the united India. The formalities were
completed and it was formally announced by Pundit Jawahar Nehru on 28th May 1948. On
this particular day the last durbar was held. All sardars, jagirdars and patels were invited.
The Flag of the mighty Holkar s dynasty was kept on an elephant. All sardars, Jagirdars
and patels paid their respect by offering safas and dupattas. All paid their respect to H.H.
Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Holkar by formal Mujara. The procession reached to Lal bag
palace. Here H.H. Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Holkar paid his respect to the Flag three times.
21 guns were fired. After this H.H. Maharaja Yeshwant Rao never attended any public
gathering. A privy purse of Rs.15 Lacs was decided in his favour, which was later on
abolished in 1971(26th constitutional amendment).
In the newly formed Madhya Bharat he was appointed as Deputy-Governor of the state.
Indore was summer capital of Madhya Bharat. With the formation of Madhya Pradesh in
1956, Bhopal became the permanent capital of the new state.
After the merger of Holkar state in the Union of India, he devoted most of his time at
palace by reading and by playing bridge. In 1953 he made his trust in the name of his
beloved daughter Usha.
By this time Princess Usha was a grown up lady. She started helping her father in all
In 1948, Maharaja Yeshwant Rao sustained a injury to his left hip. It was quite painful
condition. He went to U.S.A. for the surgical treatment. All over Holkar State every body
prayed for his quick and complete recovery. People observed fast and bhajans were
organized for him. When he returned, though he was not the official ruler, but the city of
Indore observed public holiday. No other person was so much loved and respected by the
local people. It is said that even the visit of Gandhiji and Nehru did not attracted that much
crowed as was gathered on Maharaja s safe return.
The Thought Process- The king and his vision 1941-1943
Some abstracts from his speeches:
Democracy- February 24th, 1941.
Having a democratic constitution does not mean that we have a democracy. After
the last World War the victorious nations granted democratic constitutions to all those
nations which they freed from the despotic rule of Germany and Austria Hungary, as well
as to Germany and Austria themselves. But the Allies and these nations did not realize that
democracy is not something which results from handing over power to the people and
that it is something to be attained only by degrees and as the result of much pain and
difficulty. You, in the College, must benefit by their mistake and realize that is a spirit and
not a form, and that it is the way in which it is worked that makes it a blessing or a
curse. Democracy requires tolerance, broad-mindedness, self-discipline and the
determination never to sacrifice the well being of the whole to the wishes of a part,
however large that part may be.
communalism- November 23rd, 1941
I have followed with keen interest the controversy over the pent-angular Cricket
Tournament held in Bombay every year and I must say that I am against not only
communal cricket, but communal spirit that exists in India. Communalism is being placed
before the interest of the country as a whole. I know for certain that its tentacles are
spreading into all institutions devoted to learning and therefore devoted to sports. Are some
of us so blind as not to recognise the fact that communalism can only harm the educative
system and there fore the future of India as a whole?
The making of India - November 28th, 1941
I lay the greatest emphasis on the community life of this college. It should be the
endeavour of all the inmates of this institution to liquidate from their midst such short
comings, or shall I say - evils, as mutual ill-will, communalism and other things which are
labelled as provincialism. You have the excellent opportunity of surmounting these,
provided you approach every problem with an impartial and unbiased mind. Nothing is
more degrading to a scholar than to possess a prejudiced frame of mind. I repeat again that
intellectual integrity and impartiality are the greatest acquisitions of a civilised person.
The making of India is in the hands of the youth; all of you can fit in provided you
have the proper outlook of country above party. It is for you now to show what you can do
and even give a lead to other colleges in India by sinking your differences and pulling as a
Teacher s conscience- December 20th, 1941.
With the modern facilities of communication, not merely a limited number of
individuals but all the races of men have come close to each other. If they fail to unite in
truth, then humanity must flounder at the bottom of a surging sea of mutual hatred and
suspicion. Most problems today have become international problems, and yet the
international mind has not yet been framed, the modern teacher s conscience not having
taken its responsibility to invoke it.
Donation to China s Red Cross - February 26th, 1942.
As a token of my feelings of gratitude to the people of China for all that they are
doing in the struggle for the survival of a free world I have already contributed a sum of
Rs. 75,000 to the Chines Red Cross Fund I confidently 1 to respond to H. Excellency the
Viceroy s appeal and contribute their share to the special fund ear-marked for help to
Social Solidarity - March 1st, 1942.
I want to point out with all the emphasis at my command that it is impossible to
evolve a sound body politic on democratic lines in this country unless we achieve social
solidarity among ourselves. In achieving this we must, in the first place, liquidate the very
word untouchable from our vocabulary, and venture to establish some form of equality,
irrespective of caste or creed among the people. This vast anonymous mass of humanity
which has been suffering under the yoke of caste Hindus has been the greatest charge that
can be levelled against us, and in this changing world where revolutionary and dynamic
forces are at work such disparities cannot be tolerated on grounds of caste or religion.
The historic role of the educated classes in building up a new India, for which we
are all working, will not for a minute tolerate the disabilities which so many of our people
have suffered and are still suffering on grounds of caste, creed or religion, Neither will the
India of the near future tolerate the selfish opportunism of certain politicians to divide this
country into hostile communal camps. To achieve this, the educational system of the
country has to keep pace with modern times. The schools and colleges are more than
institutions for higher learning and professional training. They are called upon to educate
the younger generation, to for its character, and create a new type of intellectual leader.
To Villagers - August 16th, 1942.
It is my firm determination that every village shall have an adequate supply of good
water and reasonable sanitary conditions. Added to this I intend to order that the pace of the
expansion of educational facilities should be increased and I shall see that as soon as
possible every group of villages has free educational facilities and every opportunity for
their cultural and spiritual advancement.
We have no guns, you say. True, but you have hearts and souls, and if you use
these to think and pray for your peasant brothers who are waging righteous war, you will
be helping them more than you can imagine. A man s body may be killed, hut if he sets
his heart on a thing, his spirit becomes invincible, and it is that spirit that I want you an all
my people to develop from this time forward. If we won t be beaten, we can t be beaten,
and if our spirits become unite for the achievement of a common cause we shall be
releasing a tremendous force for good, a force that has no limitation of space or time.
You see this flag, our Bhagwa Jhanda; I wish you to swear allegiance to that flag,
and never let your spirits waver. Give me a promise that will endure all through this
struggle until-we have gained the aim for which I am asking you on behalf of the United
Nations, because I feel you will never let down the great cause of human liberty and
freedom. Such a message I will send on your behalf to all the people that are making such
tremendous sacrifices and on hearing that it will raise their hearts, their spirits far above all
sacrifices even unto death.
Has anyone thought of the fact that the great strength existing in the Indian States is
based on the principle that an Indian Prince, whether he be a Mohammedan or a Hindu, is
impervious to religious or communal differences? To him all his people, whether they be
Hindus, Mohammedans, Christians, Parsises, Buddhists, Sikhs or Jains are all alike and no
discrimination is entertained in his mind on religious, racial or communal grounds towards
Difference between British India and Princely India - September, 9th 1942.
Has it ever struck anyone that the essential difference between British India and
Princely India lies upon tolerance in the States and the fact that in Indian States the Rulers,
whether Hindus or Mohammedans, share and take an active part in the festivities and life of
all communities, as if they were their very own: while in British India the Government does
not do this but rather keeps aloof. What a change it could make for the better, if the
Government of India at the centre and the Governments in the British Indian Provinces
looked upon communal and religious differences in the same light as the Princes do. This is
the main reason why one hears seldom of communal clashes in Indian States, while in
British India such clashes seem to be of frequent occurrence,
Hoarder - October, 18th 1943.
The hoarder is a conscienceless enemy of mankind and those who form slackness or
selfishness obstruct the distribution of grain in other ways are little better. On this subject
also propaganda is valuable in order to create a public feeling against the hoarder and at the
same time to convince people of the utility and importance of dividing what we produce
among all so that no one should suffer from want.
A letter to Sardar Patel on co-operative farming. 1948
My dear Sardar Patel,
While drawing attention during your recent visit to Gwalior to the ever-increasing
and vital need for more food for the country, you made a positive suggestion that
something tangible might be done to show to cultivator what improved and intensive
forming is and can mean for him and the community.
I have been very taken up with the idea ever seen and would like to do something about it.
Owing, however, to my own personal resources being far from unlimited and otherwise
also, I should think that a co-operative effort in this direction would probably produce the
best results. If a Farm, to begin with on a moderate scale, with the object in view could be
organized on a co-operative basis somewhere near Indore. I should be able to take personal
interest in its development. There is the advantages besides of an existing agricultural
research station and school at Indore the results of whose working could be continually
used for demonstration and development on the proposed farm. If this idea meets with your
approval and I could have an assurance of the Government of India consistent support
which may be necessary in more than one way, I would take steps to approach such Princes
and Industrialists who might like to contribute to such an effort. With your blessing to a
Project like this there should be adequate and quick enough response to an appeal for
support to it.
The implementation of the Holkar Maharaja s State policy 1936 -1938.
Abstracts from Sir S.M. Bapna s speeches as prime minister of Holkar state:
Constitutional changes which will have far reaching effects on the future of the Indian
States are projected under the Government of India Act of 1935. The British Indian
Provinces will become autonomous units from the 1st of April 1937. It is also intended to
bring into being of Federation of India comprising the British Indian Provinces and such of
the States as desire to enter the Federation..His Highness the Maharaja and his Government
know how important are the issues involved, and I can assure you that in making his
decision His Highness s chief care will be to safeguard the interests of his State and his
Before I pass on to other aspects of our financial position I am sure you will all rejoice to
learn that in spite of the increase in the total revenue, His Highness the Maharaja has
retained the amount of his Civil List at Rs.11 lacs instead of at the usual 11 per cent. of the
total revenues of the State.
His Highness has also limited the expenditure of the Army to a fixed sum of Rs.ten and a
half lacs which, having regard to the dignity and political status of Indore, is moderate in
comparison with the military expenditure of other Indian States of equal importance.
It has been the constant endeavour of His Highness s Government to reduce the Law s
delays and expense and inconvenience to the litigant public. While it is realised that these
are very necessary qualities of any judicial system, every attempt has been made to ensure
that the chief quality of all, the impartiality and efficiency of work in the Law Courts of the
State remain unimpaired. The Courts of the Magistrates have been so placed that no one
has to travel so far in order to get justice as to deter him from seeking legal redress of his
More and more, it is being realised throughout the world that social and economical
problems depend largely for their successful solution upon the type and quality of the
education imparted by a State to those who will be its citizens tomorrow. These are days in
which the specialist far outstrips the general handyman and the Education Department of
the State is doing its best to give a vocational bias to primary as well as to secondary
education. This applies both to rural and to urban schools and agriculture is being
introduced as a definite part of the primary school curriculum.
But a child requires more than a knowledge of the three R s the true object of education is
to build character and character to a far greater extent than is generally realised depends
upon a child s health. Not only is physical hygiene regularly taught in our schools but
every boy at school in Indore City is medically examined once a year; so beneficial has this
proved that the practice has now been extended to girls schools also and will soon, I
hope, reach out into the districts.
.Success of social legislation depends essentially upon education; only as people become
advanced both physically and intellectually are the true aims of social and sumptuary laws
perceived; having given the strongest possible lead Government demands and rightly
demands that all who are educated, all who have the welfare of the people at heart, shall
assist it in every possible way in its endeavour to lead Indore as far as possible along the
path of social reform.
The extent to which the forces of reaction can go is some times surprising and amazement
is not too strong a word to press my feelings when I received representations against the
Public Trusts Registration Bill, the Select Committee s Report on which is before you for
It is for you, gentlemen, to give by your whole hearted support of advanced legislation,
whether that legislation is a Usurious Loans Act, a bill to control money lending in the
rural areas, or a bill for the control of public trusts, it is for you gentlemen. I repeat to give
the clearest and most determined lead to the public and to show both in this Council and in
your private lives your resolution to make of Indore a State which will command the
respect and admiration of all enlightened people.
Charter of liberty for Harijans
His Highness s proclamation reads as follows:
1. All State temples within the limits of the State be thrown open to Harijans for darshan
according to the rules that may be laid down by us.
2. All existing public wells as well as all wells constructed by the State hereafter be
invariably open to all classes alike. This is our policy, but in enforcing it in regard to the
existing public wells the District Officers will act in their discretion according to the local
needs and circumstances.
3. All concerned should make it possible for the Harijans to have an unrestricted use of
public places such as hotels, restaurants and public conveyances.
4. Our Minister 1/C Municipality should, subject to his discretion in the light of the
conditions and require ments of a particular locality, allow Harijans to build or own houses
in all areas open to higher castes and communities.
5. Full and hearty effect be given to the existing orders relating to the unrestricted
admission of the Harijans children into State Educational Institutions.
6. There shall be no restrictions in the matter of recruitment to State services, except where
the incumbent has essentially to be recruited from a particular class or community.
7. All State public offices and buildings are open to Harijans for entry.
8. There shall be no restrictions on the wearing of ornaments, the taking out of processions
and performance of ceremonies .
Harijans and advanced and progressive minded Hindus all over India welcomed this
measure with the warmest enthusiasm and work for the uplift of the former was started
immediately and vigorously in the State. District Boards and Pergana Committees have
been formed to assist in the work and Pracharaks have been appointed to visit Harijan
localities and to give them all possible instruction and aid to enable them to raise their
standard of living.
In keeping with the policy which His Highness has steadfastly pursued since he ascended
the throne was the important order he passed early this year that wherever it is possible
articles of indigenous manufacture are to be used in all State departments.
Industry (Textile Mills)
Mills now provide better medical facilities for the laborers and better arrangements for
meals and bathing water. Some of the mills are installing air-conditioning plants. In general
the workers now receive their wages on or about the tenth of every month. All this is most
gratifying, the mills of Indore will set an example to the whole of India.
Speeding up of cases in the Courts
Another step likely to assist in the quick disposal of cases is the rule issued this year that
copies of orders passed by the presiding officer of every Court must be submitted to the
Chief Justice whenever a Civil case which has been pending for more than one year, or a
Criminal case for more than four months, is adjourned.
Constantly with the policy of bringing education in the State up to-date a policy which has
been steadily pursued for many years the Primary School Curriculum has been completely
revised and reorganised and many new subjects have been introduced, among them
practical hygiene, agriculture, nature- study, sanitation, and social service; while as an
experiment handicrafts are being taught in 4 selected vernacular Middle Schools. Should
this latter prove a success it will be extended as soon as possible to other schools.
Recent years have been a growing realisation on the part of Governments almost
throughout the world of the value of bodily fitness among their citizens. Indore cannot yet
claim to have regimented its people into 5 physical culture classes such as are popular in
certain parts of the Continent of Europe, but a great deal of attention is in fact being paid to
the health and physique of school children and to this end teachers are being sent to
physical training centres outside the State in order that they may have the benefit of
learning the most modern methods. The Education Department is also carrying on uplift
work in the villages both through the schools and in other ways. Efforts to improve the
health and physique of children are not confined to physical culture and in certain selected
schools in Indore germinating gram, milk, and Soya beans are being given experimentally
at mid-day ; this form of tiffin will be extended to other schools if it results in an
improvement in the general standard of health among the school children to whom it has
Society now-a-days is realising that the mere confinement of criminals behind bars is no
solution to the problem of crime; everywhere prison administrations are concentrating more
and more on the transformation of the forbidding old type of prison into what amounts to a
specialized educational institution wherein those convicted of offence against the State may
be educated to fit them in later life to be useful citizens.
As a sport s Man:
H.H. Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Holkar was in true sense a great all-rounder. In his young
day he had played all out door games, particularly Hockey, Cricket, and Tennis. His for
very fond of swimming. But his most favourite sport was Hunting. Due to time constrain
from his busy schedule, and the physical health, he restricted him self to playing Bridge.
He was strong proponent of Goren System of bidding. He purchased number of books on
Bridge and gifted them to his team mates.
Holkar cricket team 1940 1961
This was formed in 1940 by H.H. Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Holkar. The Team had world
famous cricketers like Col. C.K.Nayudu, C.S. Nayadu, Mushtaq Ali, Balasahib Jagdale,
Heeralal Gaikwad, C.T. Servate, Mr. Bhaya, and Dr. Dixit. Many players played for
holker s and made world records. Mr. Nimbalkar made 443 unbeaten in a first class
match,where the opponent team walked off just to prevent Nimbalkar to brake the world
record of Sir Don Bradman of 445, in a first class match. Vijay Hazare also played for
Holkar. The Team won many Ranji Trophy tournaments. Many players from Holkar team
were included in the Indian National Team subsequently. Holkar Team is also on record for
scoring 912 runs for 8 wickets in a first class match. It was four times Ranji Trophy
champion. The team has visited many countries like England, and Cylon (Shri Lanka).
Bridge 1930 - 1961
Due to his interest in the Bridge, the whole Holkar state used to play bridge. The remote
places like Khargone, Badwani, Khilchipur, Mahidpur, Ratlam and Ujjain were constantly
engaged in competitive challenge matches.
Bridge at the Palace was an experience in itself. It was practically everyday, mid-afternoon
to evening. Most of the time, it was duplicate bridge. Maharaja mostly played with Mr.
C.G. Matkar and Dr. R.M. Bhandari. Other team members were Prof. Borgaonkar, Dr. L.V.
Karandikar. Teams were rewarded for making game or slam. This was a tradition, which
was later on discontinued. His table manners were excellent. He never lost his temper
during play. No hard drinks were served during play. The bridge was played in the Royal
family much before maharaja started playing in public. At Santa Ana the bridge was known
as Indore Game. In Paris, the bidding system was popular as Holkar convention. He like to
play Goren convention. He had fantastic collection of books on bridge. To gift books to his
friends was his hobby. He used to financed many small clubs for bridge promotion. His
constant companions were D.I.G Rai sahib Bram swaroop, advocate Firojuddine
Choudhary and Chief Engineer Khod Sahib. Her Highness Maharani Fay was his regular
partner during his trips abroad.
On 5th Dec. 1961 he finally succumbed to a long illness at Breach candy Hospital,