Chuar rebellion or Chuar revolt, also known as Jungle Mahal movement was a series of peasant movements between 1767 and 1833 by the tribal inhabitants of the countryside surrounding the Jungle Mahals settlements of Dhalbhum, Midnapore, Bankura and Manbhum against the rule of the East India Company(EIC).[1][2][3]

Chuar people Edit

The literal meaning of Chuar or Chuad or Chuhad is a barbaric, an uncultured or a robber. During the British rule, the Bhumijas of the Jungle Mahal area were called chuars (low caste people), their main occupation was hunting of animals and birds and farming in the forests, but later some Bhumij became zamindars and some started working as Ghatwals and Paiks (soldiers).[4] When the East India Company started collecting revenue for the first time in 1765 AD in the Jangal Mahal district of Bengal, then in this conspiratorial way of the British, the water, forest, land grab activities were first opposed by the people of Bhumij tribe and the revolution was blown against the British rulers in 1769 AD. When the Britishers asked who these people were, their stoic landlords addressed them as 'Chuar' (meaning rude or wicked in Bengali) out of hatred and contempt, after which the name of that rebellion was 'Chuar Rebellion'.

Rebellion Edit

In 1767, the tribal revolt started in Dhalbhum and Barabhum and later spread to Manbhum, Midnapore and Bankura districts of Jungle Mahal. Jagannath Singh Patar at Dhalbhum, Subal Singh at Kuilapal and Shyam Gunjam Singh at Dhadka led this rebellion in 1767-71. The Chuar people intensified this rebellion in the surrounding areas of Manbhum, Raipur and Panchet. In 1782-85, Mangal Singh along with his allies also led this rebellion. The Chuar Rebellion was at its peak in 1798–99 under the leadership of Durjan Singh, Lal Singh and Mohan Singh, but was crushed by the British Company's forces.

In early 1799, the Chuars were organized at three places around Midnapore: Bahadurpur, Salboni and Karnagarh. From here they launched gorilla attacks. Among these was the residence of Rani Shiromani in Karnagarh, who actively led them. According to the letter written by the then collector, the Chuar rebellion continued to grow and by February 1799, they had occupied a continuous wide area of many villages around Midnapore. In March, Rani attacked with about 300 rebels and looted all the weapons of the Company's soldiers in the garh (local fort) of Karangarh. This sequence of attacks and plunder continued till December 1799. It was later led by Jagannath Patar's son Baidyanath Singh and grandson Raghunath Singh. Later, other zamindars, along with the Ghatwals and Paiks, spread this revolt to the entire Jungle Mahal and the surrounding areas, which lasted till 1809. Even after this, the rebellion continued in some areas of Bengal in a sporadic form.

In 1832–33, again the Chuars of Barabhum, Manbhum, Dhalbhum, Raipur and Midnapore parganas started revolting against the East India Company, under the leadership of Ganga Narayan Singh.

Leaders Edit

Bhumij zamindars Jagannath Singh Patar of Dhalbhum, Rani Shiromani of Karnagarh, Durjan Singh of Raipur, Subal Singh of Kuilapal, Shyam Ganjam Singh of Dhadka, Lakshman Singh of Barabhum, Ganga Narayan Singh of Barabhum, Baidyanath Singh of Dhalbhum, Raghunath Singh of Dhalbhum, Madhu Singh of Manbhum, Mohan Singh of Juriah, Mangal Singh of Panchet, Lal Singh, Sunder Narayan Singh, Fateh Singh, Achal Singh, Gobardhan Dikpati and others led this peasant rebellion at different times.

The Chuar Mutiny, led by Durjan Singh, was at its height in 1798-99, but was crushed by the Company's army.

See also Edit

References Edit

  1. ^ "Adivasi Resistance in Early Colonial India Comprising the Chuar Rebellion of 1799 by J.C.Price and Relevant Midnapore District Collectorate Records from the Eighteenth Century". Retrieved 2022-05-27.
  2. ^ Bhattacharyya, Ananda; Price, J. C (2017). Adivasi resistance in early colonial India: comprising the Chuar Rebellion of 1799 by J.C. Price and relevant Midnapore District Collectorate records from the eighteenth century. Manohar. ISBN 978-93-5098-167-2. OCLC 982448451.
  3. ^ Ray, Nisith Ranjan; Palit, Chittabrata (1986). Agrarian Bengal Under the Raj. Saraswat Library.
  4. ^ "चुआर या चुआड़ विद्रोह Chuar rebellion". Retrieved 2022-06-04.

Further reading Edit