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Kharagpur Raj

Kharagpur Raj was a Prominent chieftaincy, founded in the early 16th century in Bihar situated mainly in modern-day Munger district. They were notable for being one of the few chieftaincies in Bihar to convert to islam and many of the rulers became firm allies of the Mughal authorities. At its peak, the Kharagpur Raj encompassed parts of the modern-day district of Munger,Bhagalpur,Jamui, Lakhisarai,Godda and Deoghar. Due to its size the Privy Council compared it with the Kingdom Of Sardinia.

Kharagpur Raj

1503-1840 AD

Kharagpur Raj

Kharagpur Raj as Part of the Jungle terry during the early 19th century

  Capital                                         Haveli Kharagpur


  • Hinduism (1503-1615)
  • Islam (1615-Onwards)


  • Independent (1503-1615)
  • Tributary to the Mughal Empire(1615 Onwards)


  • 1503                          Babu Dandu Rai (first)
  • 1840                          Rahmat Ali Khan (Last)

     Historical Era

  • Established                      1503
  • Disestablished                 1840

 Origin & History

The chieftaincy of Kharagpur Raj was founded by the Hindu Kinwar Rajput,Babu Dandu rai in 1503. The Original rulers of this region were the Khetauris. 3 Rajput Brothers Babu Dandu Rai from Bhojpuri arrived in the region and worked for the Khetauri chief Raja Sansanka. These three Brothers eventually amassed a large following of their clansmen and deposed the khetauris and murdered the entire family. They continued their expansion and gradually defeated all of the 52 Khetauri chiefs.Babu Dandu Rai being the eldest of the brothers established himself as the new territorial lord. He ruled for 22 Years before being succeeded by his sons, Narendra Shahi and Rup Shahi.

Dandu Rai;s grandson was Raja Sangram Singh who was a Contemporary of Emperor Akbar.Sangram Singh intially pledged allegiance to Akbar however from 1601 onwards he rebelled against the Mughals and attempted to declare independence with the help son Toral Mal. Mughal sources attest to sangram Singh being Killed in Battle and his  son Toral Mal converting to Islam and reaffirming his Loyalty to the Mughala.He was renamed as Roz Afzun

The Chieftaincy of Chai was a principality founded by a Branch of the Kharagpur family in the 16th  Century. Its capital was in Alamanagar in Bhagalpur district.

   Notable Rulers

  • Sangram Singh

Raja Sangram Singh was contemporary of Akbar. He intially was allegiance to Akbar and supression of Afagan rebellion but later during reign of Jahangir he rebelled against Mughal rule and killed in Battle with Mughal Then his son Todar Mal Converted to Islam and Later appointed as of Kharagpur.

  • Roz Afzun

After his conversion to Islam in 1515,Roz Afzun was considered to be a loyal sevent and commonder for the Mughal authorities. Emperor Jahangir went as to refer to him as most favourite and ordered to assist mahabat Khan in repelling an invasion by the Afghans of Balkh and dealing with insurrections by the Bundela rajputs and he was successful in these endeavours.He achieved a rank of 2,000 zat and 1000 sawar which was the highest of any chieftain in Bihar at the time.He is often referred to as an example of the Mughala Successfully intergrating a previously refractory chieftain. He died in 1631 and was succeeded byhis son Raja Bahroz.

  • Raja Bahroz Singh

Raja Bahroz Singh ruled Kharagpur Raj from 1631-1676.He earned the favour of emperor Shah Jahan by embarking on militry expedition to Khadahar to pacify the local ruler. He also participated in Expeditions against other refractory chiefs including Nazar Muhammad of Balkh and Jujhar Singh Bundela. Records from the time also attest to Kharagpur being quite prosperous during his reign. In partcular he instituted various refroms That encouraged increased cultivation.He also Established the Ghatwali System which delegated law and order in sensitive regions to Smallers land-owners.

  • Raja Tahawar Singh

Tahawar Singh (Also as Kunwar Tahawurr Asad) the Son of Raja Bahroz,ruled Kharagpur from 1676-1727 and was a contemporary of Emperor Aurangzeb.He played an active role in multiple Mughal expeditions against rebellious forces including the nearby Chero dynasty of Palamu in Modern-day Jharkhand and the Jaintia Kingdom of Sylhet. He Was noted for being an affective administratior of Kharagpur.


By the time Rahmat Ali Khan became ruler in the 1800s,Kharagpur had lost its prior position as a Prominent chieftaincy in the Mughal Empire and was now zamindari estate In financial trouble.He fell into arrears with the government revenue and was forced to sell much of his estate to the zamindars of Banaili and Darbhanga which ended a Dynasty that lasted for almost 400 years.


Shahi Maszid which was Built during the reign Of Raja Bahroz Singh


By The 17th Century,Munger was considered to be a Well fortified town with buildings in fine condition.

Francis Buchanan-Hamilton visited Kharagpur in 1811 when Raja Qadir Ali was Ruling And noted the following.

Even the houses of the Raja of Kharagpur although it contains some small portions of brick are but a sorry place. Near it however there is a very handsome mosque overhanging the Man river in a Fine situation while he is erecting opposite a building that promise to be ornamental,and it is intended to celebrate the memory of the grandson of The prophet.The vicinity is ornamented by the ruins of a house that belonged to his Grandfather and went to ruin during the insurrection which he raised against the last remnants of the Mughal force.It has been a very large building and ooks more ike an old European castle than anything I have seen.