Solan History Notes

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The present district of Solan district comprises of erstwhile princely states of Baghal, Baghat, Kunihar, Mangal, Beja, Mehlog, Hindur(Nalagarh) and also some areas of Keonthal and Koti and hilly area of Punjab which were merged in HP on 1st November, 1966.

Table of Contents

Nalagarh (Hindur)

  • Ancient Name- Hindur
  • CapitalNalagarh (founded during 15th century onwards.)
  • Founder- Ajit Chand
  • It was an off-shoot of Bilaspur.
  • It was bounded on the North by Kahlur (Bilaspur), on the North-East by Baghal (Arki), on the South-East by minor states of Shimla Hills and on the South and West by the Punjab plains of Ropar.
  • According to one version- Hindur was founded by Ajit Chand and he gave it to Suchet Chand, from whom the ruling family descended.
  • Another version- Hindur was founded by Ajay Chand in AD 1100, the eldest son of Raja Kahan Chand of Kahlur.
  • Ajay Chand killed Thakur Handur to set up his authority.
  • Handu was also not popular among his subjects. They were not happy with his style of governance. That is why people readily supported Ajay Chand to capture state.
  • His younger brother Ajit Chand succeeded to the throne of Kahlur state. He started showing his authority and interest on Hindur, which was in the past under the suzerainty of Bilaspur (Kahlur) state.
  • Ajay Chand started many developmental works. After ruling for a large period of time, he died in 1171 A.D.
  • This version seems improbable and unreliable that Raja Ajay Chand ruled for 71 years.
  • The rulers (Raja) of Hindur and Kahlur, claim their origin from Chandel Rajput, who came to ‘Garh Chanderi‘.
  • In the Beginning when Hindur and Kahlur were in good relations, the capital of Hindur was at ‘Ramshahr‘.
  • From the fort of Ramshahr- view of snowy peaks of Chamba and the plains towards Ludhiana and Hoshiarpur can be seen.

Vijay Chand

  • He was only four months old at his father’s death (Ajay Chand’ death).
  • His mother took control of the stae and successfully suppressed the Kanets revolt.
  • He died at the age of 30, in 1201 AD. He died leaving behind his minor son Dham Chand.
  • During his reign Kanets again revolted, but once again they were suppressed.
  • After ruling nearly for 35 years, Dham Chand died in 1236 A.D

Laxman Chand

  • He ascended the throne when he was 11 years old.
  • During his minority, there was a revolt in the state which was suppressed successfully.

Alam Chand (1356-1406)

  • During his reign, Taimur Lang invaded India in 1398 AD.
  • After looting ‘Delhi’, ‘Meerut’, ‘Haridwar’, ‘Kiar-da-Doon’, Taimur reached the border of Hindur.
  • Raja Alam offered his full support to Taimur and saved his state.

Narayan Chand (1477-1522 AD)

  • During his period, he refused the marriage proposal from Nurpur Raja when he (Nurpur Raja) passes through Hindur to Haridwar.
  • Later, Nurpur Princess was married to the Raja of Kahlur and Raja of Nurpur made Kahlur Raja to attack Hindur.
  • Then ‘Satgarh fort‘ was ceded by the Bilaspur.

Ram Chand (1522-68 AD)

  • He was patron of architecture.
  • He built the ‘Ramgarh‘ fort.
  • He made ‘Ramshahar‘ as summer capital of the state.

Sansar Chand (1568-1618 AD)

  • He built a beautiful palace in Nalagarh.
  • He also got repaired an ancient ‘Sarovar Kala Kund‘.

Dharam Chand (1618-1701 AD)

  • He twice had war like exchange with Aurangzeb’s soldiers and both times emerged victorious.
  • In 1630 AD, Kalian Chand came to power in Bilaspur and built a fort on the border of Hindur, which caused a war between the two states.
  • In the war, Dharam Chand was killed leaving behind his infant son.
  • Then Rani took a bold step and take Kalian Chand’s protection.
  • Kalian Chand installed the infant on the gaddi and managed the state till prince came to age.

Himmat Chand (1701-1705)

  • He succeeded his father Dharam Chand.
  • During his reign, Hindur was attacked thrice by Pathans.
  • He fought bravely but died and was succeeded by Bhup Chand (1705-56).

Man Chand (1756- AD)

  • When he ascended the throne, the state was divided by factions.
  • Man Chand was supported by Kanets of Mattiana and the Padam Chand (younger brother late Raja Bhup Chand) was supported by Thuanu Kanets.
  • Padam Chand killed his nephew Man Chand and occupied the throne.
  • But he was in killed by the ‘Mattianas‘.
  • Raja Ajmer Chand of Bilaspur (1712-41 AD) built a fort called Ajmergarh on the border of Hindur.
  • It is said that with Man Chand his sons were also killed.
  • The people the state then invited Devi Chand, the Raja of Bilaspur to take over the state.
  • However, he installed Gaje Singh Hindurea, a member of the Hindur ruling family as Raja from whom descended the future Rajas of Nalagarh.

Raja Gaje Singh (1761-88 AD)

  • He was the founder of the present dynasty of Hindur.
  • He was not on good terms with his son, Ram Saran.

Raja Ram Saran (1788-1848)

  • He succeeded his father Gaje Chand Singh.
  • He had long reign and died at the age of 86 in 1848.
  • In a alliance with Sansar Chand of Kangra, he annexed a part of Kahlur state and burnt Bilaspur town.
  • When Kangra was invaded by the Gurkhas in 1805, he sided with Sansar Chand and resisted the Gurkha forces.
  • For three years, he was besieged in his capital.
  • Then, he had to flee to ‘Basal‘ in Hoshiarpur. He then settled at Palasi, a fine fort on the plains between Nalagarh and Ropar living there for ten years.
  • Raja of Kahlur and Gurkhas jointly broke Ram Saran’s power. The Gurkhas and Kahlurias besieged the fort of Ramshahr.
  • While Ram Saran was residing at Palasi, General Ochterlony and his forces a fought a battle near ‘Ramshahr‘ in 1814 and finally defeated Gurkhas at ‘Lahar Ghati’ near Malaon Fort.
  • Ram Saran also joined General Ochterlony when war was declared. He remained very loyal and disciplined with the British.
  • After the war, his ancestral estate was restored to him.
  • He also returned Satgarh fort to Bilaspur.
  • He died in 1848 and was succeeded by his son Raja Bije Singh.
  • Raja Bije Singh died in 1857.
  • From 1857 to 1860, the state remained under British.

Raja Ishwari Singh (1878-1912 AD)

  • He was not a capable ruler.
  • During his period, state was administered by a council of three members, whose conduct of affairs greatly improved the finances of the state.
  • He died in 1911.

Raja Joginder Singh (1911-1946 AD)

  • He helped Brithish during the World War-I.
  • In 1918 a revolt took place in Nalagarh, which was suppressed by the Raja with the help of British.
  • He raised the status of Ishwari Singh High School and also opened an Allopathic dispensary in Ramshahr.

Raja Surendra Singh (1946-1948 AD)

  • On 15th July 1948 Nalagarh was merged with PEPSU.
  • In 1966, on linguistic basis Nalagarh was merged with Himachal Pradesh and became a tehsil of Solan district.


  • Area-36 square miles
  • Name derived from the word ‘Bau’ means many and ‘Ghat’ means pass.
  • In the erstwhile Baghat state, there are certainly many places known as Ghat.
  • The founder- ‘Basant Pal’ or ‘Hari Pal’ came from Deccan in late 14th century.
  • He settled at a place and named it Basantpur (now known as ‘Bassi’)
  • He took Keonthal Pargana from Mavi by force of arms.
  • His son Baksh Pal annexed the pargana of Basal, Bhauchali and Gharoli. Rana Bhavani Pal added pargana of Bachharang of the then Patiala state and the territory of Rana of Kasauli.
  • Rana Inder Pal annexed parganas of ‘Basal, “Ghar’ and Taksal (Patiala).
  • The state was named Baghat by Inder Pal and it continued so till its merger with Himachal Pradesh in 1948.

Rana Janmai Pal (Dalel Singh)

  • He was 68th ruler from Basant Pal, is stated to be a very great man.
  • He was presented Khillat by Emperor of Delhi.
  • It is not known how and when Bhawana detached from, Baghat.
  • Rana Sarandhar Pal, grandson of Janmai Pal fought with Singhpuria Sirdar, to whom he lost ‘Ghar’ and ‘Taksal’ but subsequently he recovered both the places.
  • The state regained its independence from its feudatory Bilaspur state sometime in the year 1790 A.D.

Rana Mahender Singh

  • During Gurkha invasion, Rana Mahender Singh sided with Bilaspur and his state remained undisturbed during 12 years of Gurkha rule.
  • Also, he had set up family relations with Amar Singh Thapa.
  • When Gurkhas were drove out by General Ochterlony, after the war, eight parganas were taken from him and sold to Patiala for Rs 130,000.
  • This reduced the area of Baghat state considerably.
  • He died issueless in AD 1839 and state then lapsed to government and pension of Rs. 1282 was provided to late chief family.

Rana Vijay Singh

  • In 1842, brother of Mahender Singh, Vijay Singh was restored to throne.
  • During his period, Kasauli area was purchased by British for a sum of Rs. 5,000/-.
  • In 1849, Vijay Singh died without male issue and under the doctrine of Lapse Baghat was annexed by British.

Rana Umed Singh

  • After death of Vijay Singh, Umed Singh (cousin of Vijay Singh), then set up a claim and represented, his case to England.
  • On recommendations of Lord Canning, the claim of Umed Singh was recognised in 1862.
  • After 13 years of waiting, he died after few hours of the good news.

Rana Dalip Singh (1861-1911 AD)

  • He was recognised as the successor to Rana Umed Singh on 31st January 1862.
  • He was only two years old, when appointed to the gaddi. In 1862, a new sanad was issued to him, imposing an annual tribute of Rs. 2,000.
  • In 1901, land within the state required for the Kalka-Shimla Rail line and Solan and Kasauli cantonments and Subathu and Dagshai waterworks.
  • Due to these concessions, the tribute of Rs. 2,000/- was gradually reduced and the state paid no tribute by 1931.
  • The Rana was provided same administrative powers like other Shimla chiefs.
  • Rana Dalip Singh was well educated and proficient in administrative matters.
  • He received the K.C.I.E. in 1904.
  • He was succeeded by his son Durga Singh (minor).

Durga Singh

  • He was Rana of Baghat from 1911 to 1948 and was granted full ruling powers in September 1922.
  • He died on 30th March 1977. Raja Durga Singh was the last ruler of the state to enjoy the privilege of having the title of raja conferred on him. Baghat maintained 36 Armed Police force.

More Coming soon….

Read Also : Bilaspur History Notes

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