BIKANER

The Rathore Dynasty

GENEALOGY

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1887 - 1943 General H.H. Sri Raj Rajeshwar Maharajadhiraj Narendra Maharaja Shiromani Sir Ganga Singh Bahadur, Maharaja of Bikaner, GCSI (12.12.1911, KCSI 24.6.1904), GCIE (1.1.1907, KCIE 24.7.1901), GCVO (1.1.1919), GBE (m 1.1.1921), KCB (m 1.1.1918), KIH 1st Class (23.5.1900). b. at Bikaner, 13th October 1880, third son of Maharaj Sri Lall Singh Sahib Bahadur, by his second wife H.H. Maji Sri Chandrawatiji Sahib, educ. Mayo Coll., Ajmer. Succeeded on the death of his brother and adopted father, 19th August 1887. Ascended the gadi at the Karan Mahal, Junagarh, Bikaner, 31st August 1887. Received administrative training 1896-1898. Reigned under a Council of Regency until he came of age and was invested with full ruling powers, 16th December 1898. Attached as acting 2nd-Lieut. the Deoli Regt., IA 1898, cmsnd. as Hon. Maj. 13/6/1900, served in the China expedition in cmnd. Ganga Risala 1901 (rcvd: MID, KCIE, China medal), prom. Hon. Lieut-Col. 1/1/1909, and Hon. Col. 3/6/1910, served in Great War in France and Flanders 1914-1915 (rcvd: MID twice, KCB), prom. Hon. Maj-Gen. 1/8/1917, Hon. Lieut-Gen. 1/8/1930, and Hon. Gen. 5/11/1937. Hon. Col. 2nd Royal Lancers (Gardner's Horse), IA 30/12/1919 and Hon. Col. 1st/141st (Bikaner) Infantry IA 10/1/1919. Colonel-in-Chief Ganga Risala (Bikaner Camel Corps), and the Sadul Light Infantry. Hon. Extra ADC to the King-Emperors George V 3/6/1910-1936 (and as Prince of Wales 2/8/1902-1910), Edward VIII 1936, and George VI, 23/9/1936-1943. Attended the Coronations of the King-Emperors Edward VII 1902, George V 1911 and George VI 1937, and the Silver Jubilee Celebrations of George V in 1935. Visited the War front in WW2. Hon. Sec-Gen. Princes' Conference 1916-1921, Mbr. Imperial War Cabinet 1917-1919 (signed the Treaty of Versailles on behalf of India 28th June 1919), Chancellor of the Chamber of Princes 1921-1926, Indian representative at the Imperial Conferences in London 1917, 1919, 1922 & 1930, and at the League of Nations in Geneva 1924, Leader of Indian delegation to the League of Nations 1930, and Indian States representative at Round Table Conferences of 1930 & 1931. Founded the Badge of Honour (later the Order of the Star of Honour) on 30th October 1937. Pro-Chancellor Benares Hindu Univ. 1922-1929, and Chancellor 1929-1943. Hon. LL.D. (Cantab. 1911, Edinburgh 1917, Benares Hindu Univ. 1927, and Osmania Univ., Hyderabad), Hon. DCL (Oxon. 1919), Freeman of the Cities of London, Edinburgh, Manchester and Bristol (all 1917). Patron Sri Bharat Dharam Mahamandal; Vice-Presdt. East India Assoc., and the Royal Colonial Institute; Hon. Life Mbr. American Museum of Natural History (New York); Mbr. Indian Red Cross Soc., Indian Army Temperance Assoc., Gen. Cncl. of Mayo and Daly Colls., Indian Soc. of Oriental Art, Bombay Natural History Soc., Indian Soc. (London), Marlborough, Western India Turf, Willingdon Sports (Bombay), Rajputana (Mount Abu), and Indian Gymkhana Clubs, etc. Rcvd: DGBStJ (25.11.1914), China (1901), Coron. (1902), Delhi Durbar gold (1903), Coron. (1911 with Durbar bar), 1914 Star, British War and Allied Victory medals (1918), Silver Jubilee (1935) and Coron. (1937) medals, 39/45 and Africa stars, British War and IGS medals (posthumously 1945), GC of the Orders of Philip the Magnanimous of Hesse (3.2.1903), and the Nile of Egypt (1918). m. (first) at Partabgarh, 7th July 1897, H.H. Maharani Ranawatiji Sri Vallabh Kunwarji Sahib (d. at Lakshmi Niwas, Lallgarh Palace, Bikaner, 19th August 1906), eldest daughter of H.H. Maharawat Sri Sir Raghunath Singh Bahadur, Maharawat of Partabgarh, KCIE, by his first wife, H.H. Pisangan Maharani Bapu Sahiba Sri Ugam Kunwarji Sahib, elder daughter of Raja Sri Pratap Singh, Thakur of Pisangan, in Ajmer. m. (second) at Keri, 26th May 1899, H.H. Tanwarji Maharani Sahib (d.s.p. at Lakshmi Niwas, Lallgarh Palace, Bikaner, 21st June 1922), daughter of Thakur Sri Sultan Singh, of Sanwatsar, in Bikaner state. m. (third) 3rd May 1908, H.H. Bhatianji Maharani Sri Ajab Kanwarji Sahib, CI (1.1.1935) (d. at the Lallgarh Palace, Bikaner, 21st November 1945), rcvd: GC of the Order of the Star of Honour (30.10.1937), Delhi Durbar (1911), Silver Jubilee (1935), Coron. (1937), Sadul Singh Golden Jubilee (1937), and Accession (1943) medals, daughter of Thakur Sri Bahadur Singh, of Bikamkore, in Marwar. He d. at Bikaner House (Devi Bhavan), Bombay, 2nd February 1943 (cremated at Devi-Kund-Sagar, Bikaner), having had issue, four sons and two daughters:
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* This succession of Maharajkumar Bijey Singhji is viewed by some adherents of the family as a formal "adoption" and given as a reason for excluding his line from the succession. However, the sole purpose of the exercise was to distribute the property of the late Maharaj Lal Singhji, who had died intestate. There were no members of Maharaj Lal Singhji's family capable of making an adoption alive at the time and Bijey Singhji's eligibility for the succession remained unaffected by the procedure. His father, Maharaja Ganga Singhji expressly stated this in his communications to the Government of India at the time. This is further confirmed by the events of 1926. The Maharaja then intended naming Bijey Singhji as his heir and successor, following recent disagreements with his elder son, who had recently resigned from all his public offices. The Maharaja and members of the State Council, including several of the most senior nobles of the state and bayads of the Royal family, signed the documents sent to the Government of India for that purpose. This could not have been considered, had an actual adoption occurred.
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Copyright©Christopher Buyers, February 2001 - August 2013