Modern Indian History-Events and Personalities

Who was Tilka Manjhi?


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Tilka Manjhi

Mains level: Tribal Revolts during colonial times

The Nation is remembering revolutionary freedom fighter and tribal leader Tilka Manjhi on his 272nd birth anniversary.

Tilka Manjhi (1750-1785)

  • He organized Adivasis into an army and led the famous Santhal Hool in 1784 against the exploitative British.
  • In 1770, there was a severe famine in the Santhal region and people were dying of hunger.
  • Tilka Manjhi looted the treasury of the East India Company and distributed it among the poor and needy.
  • Inspired by this noble act of Tilka, many other tribals also joined the rebellion.
  • With this began his Santhal Hool, the revolt of the Santhals.
  • He continued to attack the British and their sycophantic allies.
  • From 1771 to 1784, Tilka Manjhi never surrendered.

Offensive with the colonists

  • Tilka Majhi attacked Augustus Cleveland, an East India Company administrator and fatally wounded him.
  • The British surrounded the Tilapore forest from which he operated but he and his men held them at bay for several weeks.
  • When he was finally caught in 1784, he was tied to the tail of a horse and dragged all the way to the Collector’s residence at Bhagalpur, Bihar, India.
  • There, his deeply wounded body was hung from a Banyan tree.

Try this question from CSP 2018:

Q.After the Santhal uprising subsided, what was/ were the measure/measures taken by the colonial government?

  1. The territories called ‘Santhal Paraganas’ were created.
  2. It became illegal for a Santhal to transfer land to a non Santhal.

Select the correct answer using the code given below:

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2


Post your answers here.
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