Kehlur state was founded near Satluj in (697-730 AD) by Bir Chand Chandel.
Bir Chand waged many wars during 33 years of his reign. He subjugated more than fifteen neighbouring states. Bir Chand and his descendants took tribute from Jubbal, Keonthal, Dhami, Kuthar, Baghat, Bhajji, Mehlog and Mangal & Balsan till almost 1815 AD.
Raja Kahal Chand (8th King from 894-902 AD): He built the KotKehlur fort after his name, and the State consequently derived its name from him (Kahal=Kehlur).
Kahan Chand (1057 to 1099 AD) : He was the 11th Raja and had three sons Ajit Chand, Ajai Chand, and Tegh Chand.
After Kahan’s death, they captured state of Hindur (Nalagarh).Hindur was ruled by a Brahman Thakur, called Handu who was displaced.
Ajit Chand succeeded Bilaspur kingdom, his brother Ajay Chand (1100 AD), is known as founder of Nalagarh principality.
Raja Sangar Chand (16th King, 1197-1220 AD): He had 10 sons, seven of whom founded Jagiri families in the state of Kehlur.
Raja Gyan Chand (1518 to 1555 AD): He was the 28th King of Bilaspur. He lost battle against Muslim Governor of Sirhind and was imprisoned. Governor was impressed by Gyan Chand, and married his daughter to him. Moreover, Gyan Chand was persuaded to convert to Islam.
He died in 1555 and was buried at Kiratpur.
Raja Bikram Chand (1555 to 1593): He was the elder Son of Rattan, who remained under the Hindu faith and fled across the Satluj to a place called Sunhani and won kingdom after battle with his Muslim kins.Kehlur became a tributary to the Mughals during the region of Raja Bikram Chand in 1570 AD.
Raja Kalyan Chand (1630-1645 AD): He was the 30th Raja of Kehlur and married daughter of Raja Shyam Sen of Suket.On trivial reason, he fought with his father- in- law and consequently lost his life.In 1645, Queen committed Sati after the death of the Kalyan.He gave the land to Guru Har Govind Singh ji at Kiratpur & Kalyanpur.
Raja Deep Chand (1653 to 1665 AD): Deep Chand was the 32nd Raja of Kehlur.
He shifted his capital from Sunhani to a place close to temple of Rangnath-Shiv and cave of Rishi
Vyas. This capital was named “Byaspur”, which later was corrupted to Bilaspur. The Raja of Kangra poisoned him at Nadaun.
Raja Bhim Chand (1665 to 1692 AD): He was born in 1651 and became a king when he was minor of 14 years.He resisted attack of Kangra, to save his position from his rebel uncle, Manak Chand.
He along with Raja of Kangra & Guru Govind Singh ji defeated the Mughal Governor Alif Khan in a battle.
Raja Bhim Chand developed bad terms with the Guru and lost few battles against him, including battle of Bhangani in 1686 AD.
Bhim Chand spent last few years of his life as a fakir after abdicating in favour of his son, and died in 1712 AD.
Raja Ajmer Chand (1712 to 1738 AD): Ajmer Chand was the 34th Raja of Bilaspur.
He was a strong ruler and took tribute from nearby states.He married daughter of Raja Fateh Shah of Garhwal and Battle of Bhangani, 1686 AD occur during his marriage. He died in pilgrimage to Kashi.
Raja Devi Chand (1738 to 1778 AD): He helped Ghamand Chand of Kangra against Abhai Chand of Jaswan. He built a fort and tank at Mahal-Morian in Kangra, fort of Bhamaikot/Dhawaikot.
Raja Devi Chand was married to Katoch Princess called Nagar Devi and both had a son, named Mahan Chand (born 1772 AD), Raja die when Mahan was of 6 years.
Raja Mahan Chand (1778 AD to 1824 AD): Mahan being a minor, his mother and Ramu Wazir (Raman of Darol family) carried on administration for some time.
Kangra and Kehlur had boundary disputes, which made Rajamata to support Mughal Governor of Kangra fort, against MSC (Maharaja Sansar Chand).
MSC was angry with Kehlur for supporting Mughal Governor Saif Ali Khan, during Kangra fort seized laid by him in 1781-83 AD.In 1793 AD, MSC beat Mahan Chand of Kehlur. Moreover, Rajmata invited Raja Dharam Prakash (brother-in- law of MSC) and cave assurance of the payment of Rs. 50,000.After beating Kehlur, MSC constructed ‘Chhatipur’ fort (fort on chest of Bilaspur) on Chanjiar Dhar (CD). Rani Nagar Devi died shortly afterwards.MSC in 1805 AD, attacked Kehlur and captured pargana of Batee in Mahal Morian.
Frustrated, Mahan Chand invited Gorkha, Amar Singh Thapa (Gorkha) in 1805, but after intervention of MRS, Gorkhas were compelled to retire across 0the Sutlej in 1809.During Anglo-Gorkha war in 1814 AD, Mahan Chand helped Gorkhas, but later conceded to British and got Sanad on 6th March 1815 AD.
Moorcroft visited Bilaspur in 1820 AD.
Raja Kharak Chand (1824 to 1839 AD): He was born in 1813 got reins at age of 11 years, and ruled for period which is called as darkest hour of Bilaspur state.He was indulgent and cruel, and use to publicly hang people without any reason.The German traveller Warren Hegel (1835) and G. T Vigne (1839) had visited Kehlur.
Raja contracted smallpox and died in 1839, at the early age of 26 years.
Raja Jagat Chand (1839 to 1850 AD): Kharak Chand died issueless and his Wazir Mian Jangi (Jagat) was made king.A Rani of Kharak Chand tried to revolt but was unsuccessful.Later in 1835 & 1839 AD, French Traveller, Vigne passed through Bilaspur and met Raja Kharak Chand.
Raja Hira Chand (1850 to 1882 AD): In 1867, the long strip of territory called Kot Dhar, which had been occupied by the Sikhs in 1819, was restored to Bilaspur.
Lord Mayo visited Bilaspur in 1871 AD. Hira Chand attended proclamation Darbar of 1877, and got a medal.He also started building new palace in Bilaspur at Sandhu near Satluj.
He died due to illness, while his way back from Shimla.
Raja Amar Chand (1883 to 1888 AD): Raja Amar Chand was installed in January 1883, and had a short reign of 6 years.
Amar Chand abolished beggar.He constructed a suspension bridge across the Satluj at Bhajwani. He died in 1888 at the age of 31 years.
Raja Amar Chand (1883-88 A.D.) of Bilaspur introduced system of confiscation of Shashanas (revenue free grants), which led to the Jhugga movement in 1883-84.
Raja Bijai Chand (1889 to 1927 AD): Bijai Chand of 16 years was made next chief, and he got majority in 1893.In 1927, he abdicated in favour of his son Anand Chand, and again retired to Banaras.He built the ‘Rang Mahal’ the Raja also an estate at Banaras called ‘Bilas-Bhawan’
Raja Anand Chand (1933 to 1948 AD): He married Princess Umawati of Jubbal (1931 AD) and ‘barat’ met Gandhiji who was on his way to meet the Viceroy Lord Irwin (for Gandhi-Irwin Pact).
Anand Chand became Chief Commissioner of Bilaspur on 12th of October 1948 AD, which was made a part ‘C’ state.He handed over the charge of Chief Commissioner to Chand Chabbra, who continued till 1953 ultimately submitted reins to Major Gen Himmat Singh. On 1st July 1954 Bilaspur was merged within in HP.
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