She is Rani Chennabhairadevi, the queen of Gersoppa (Karnataka), who protected her kingdom from Portugese attacks and intrusion for 54 long years. She one of the longest serving queens of India, ruling from 1552 to 1606 CE! She built the robust Mirjan Fort in Uttara Kannada to check Portugese attacks. She was known as the Pepper Queen. The Portugese feared her.
During this time of October in 1505, Francisco de Almeida started office as the Viceroy of Portugese India with headquarters at Kochi. Thereafter, they started building forts in several locations and expanded their base and trading of pepper and other spices. By the time Rani Chennabhairadevi became the ruler, the Portugese had already established a strong base. She drove away the Portugese from her kingdom and involved in several wars against them, emerging victorious.
Besides the small conflicts, Chennabhairadevi involved in two major wars against the Portuguese when D Constantino de Braganza was the Viceroy and when D Luis de Ataide held that position. So badly were the Portugese defeated that they gave up the idea of attacking her kingdom. Chennabhairadevi’s story of valor is described in detail in a chapter in #SaffronSwords Vol 2 along with 51 more chapters/episodes of valor of our warrior ancestors from 8th century to Independence. It is under publication by Garuda Prakashan and will be released soon. Hitharth S Bhatt did an illustration on Rani Chennabhairadevi for the book. Saffron Swords Vol 1 link: https://www.amazon.in/Saffron-Swords-Authors-Manoshi-Yogaditya/dp/B07Q139493.
Had Rani Chennabhairadevi not shown her military might and had she not offered resistance continuously, India would have been under Portugese rule for centuries. We all know about the Goa Inquisition after Goa fell under Portugese wherein the Hindus were m@ssacred, converted and not allowed to follow rituals. Hundreds of temples were v@ndalized by the Portugese.
Attacks by Adharmics continue to this day. Self defence and retaliation is the need of the hour.
- Manoshi Sinha; attached image is the cover of Kannada book on Chennabhairadevi by Dr Gajanana Sharma.
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