Nana Sahib

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Nana Sahib

Nana Sahib

(nä`nä sä`hĭb), b. c.1821, leader in the Indian MutinyIndian Mutiny,
1857–58, revolt that began with Indian soldiers in the Bengal army of the British East India Company but developed into a widespread uprising against British rule in India. It is also known as the Sepoy Rebellion, sepoys being the native soldiers.
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, his real name was Dhundu Pant. The adopted son of the last peshwa (hereditary prime minister) of the Marathas, his request (1853) to the British to grant him the peshwa's title and pension was refused. In the outbreak (June, 1857) of the mutiny at Cawnpore (KanpurKanpur
, city (1991 pop. 2,029,889), Uttar Pradesh state, N central India, on the Ganges River. A major industrial center, it produces chemicals, textiles, leather goods, and food products. It is also a transportation hub with an airport.
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) his men massacred the British garrison and colony. After suppression of the rebellion, he escaped to Nepal, where he probably died.


See P. C. Gupta, Nana Sahib and the Rising at Cawnpore (1963).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Nana Sahib


Born about 1824; year of death unknown. One of the leaders of the Indian Popular Uprising of 1857–59 (Sepoy Mutiny).

Nana Sahib was the foster son of a Maratha peshwa (chief minister), who was the recipient of a pension from the English East India Company. After the death of the peshwa in 1851, the company refused to continue payments to Nana Sahib. Having joined the insurgents, Nana Sahib proclaimed himself peshwa in June 1857, establishing his power in the city of Kanpur and the surrounding district. He fought the colonialists in a number of major battles. In mid-July 1857 he suffered defeat at Kanpur and retreated to Oudh. After the major centers of the uprising were suppressed, Nana Sahib hid in the jungles of northern India. His subsequent fate is unknown.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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In The Devil's Wind Manohar Malgonkar explains in his 'Author's Note' the widely held nineteenth-century British interpretation of Nana Saheb: 'Nana Saheb--infamous, dastardly, despicable, crafty demon, barbarous, butcher, and arch assassin, Nana.
"Nana saheb thought of the convenience of everybody as he wishes the best for the producer and the crew and hence felt that stepping out of the project would be an appropriate thing to do at this point of time," read his statement.