Jyotiraditya Scindia has finally resigned from the primary membership of Indian National Congress, which pushed the Madhya Pradesh government to face its worst crisis. While Scindia is tipped of joining BJP after his hour long meeting with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the move is the reminder of a popular urban myth, when his ancestors betrayed Rani Lakshmi Bai of Jhansi by providing her with a “weak horse", during the revolt of 1857.
While there isn’t any historical evidence, the references are drawn from a poem and Kangana Ranaut’s magnum opus Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi.
Indian poetess Subhadra Kumari Chauhan (1904-1948) wrote a poem titled Jhansi ki Rani in the Veer Ras style in Hindi that read:
Rani badhi Kalpi aayee, kar sau meel nirantar paar,
ghoda thak kar gira bhoomi par, gaya swarg tatkaal sidhaar,
Yamuna tat par angrezon ney phir khayee Rani sey haar,
vijayee Rani aagey chal di, kiya Gwalior par adhikar.
Angrezon key mitra Scindia ney chhodi rajdhani thee,
Bundeley Harbolon key munh hamney suni kahani thi,
Khoob ladi mardani woh to Jhansi wali Rani thi.
The English translation for this poem has been provided by Manjula Reddy which goes as following:
Wounded and bruised she carried on
Until a wide canal she came upon
The new untrained horse that she rode
Tried to leap across but could not cope
Surrounded by the enemy she faced a noble warrior's end
Outnumbered this lioness fought, to become a legend
The Bundelas and Harbolas told this story of grit
Of how she fought like a man every bit
A woman fearless and defiant was she
This brave warrior
Our Jhansi ki Rani
Jyotiraditya is related to the same family and represents the Guna constituency of Madhya Pradesh. According to the film, shows Rani Lakshmi Bai calling out the Maharaja of Gwalior for bowing down to the British oppressors. "Jo apni maa ka sauda kar de, woh mar chuka hai. Aur main murdo par talwar nahi chalati," says the queen (People who sell their motherland are dead inside and I don't draw my sword to kill the dead).
While there hasn't been an official record of betrayal, the Scindias were patronised by the British, as evidenced by the huge Gwalior fort which houses the prestigious Scindia School.The Scindias' proximity to the British earned them several rewards and Jayajirao received the rank of a general and a 21-run salute from the Empire in 1877.