Gaekwad: Wikis


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The Gaekwad or Gaikwad (once rendered as Guicowar, also given (incorrectly) as Gaekwar) (Gujarati: ગાયકવાડ; Marathi: गायकवाड Gāyǎkǎvāḍǎ) was a Maratha dynasty that ruled the princely state of Baroda in western India from the mid-eighteenth century until 1947. The ruling prince was known as the Maharaja Gaekwad of Baroda, or more commonly as the Gaekwad.


History of Gaikwad's Origin

Gaikwad's are Maratha's clan and Considered as Chandravanshi Maratha's Descendants of Lord Shrikrisna Stem.

  • The Story of Name Formation :

The family name is a combination of the words gai (cow) and kavad (door). The traditional story relates that during the reign of Moguls. A Gaekwad ancestor, while in his fort, witnessed a Muslim butcher driving a cattle herd for the purpose of slaughter. Being a devout Hindu, he opened a small side door (kavad) to the stronghold for the cattle. Thereby, allowing the cows to escape their impending doom. Future generations took a great deal of pride in their roots that strongly displayed their predecessor’s religious fervor.[1]

Info of Clan

Flag of the Maratha Empire

Gaikwad / Gaykawad / Gaekwad

  • Kingdom: Ayodhya
  • current kingdom: Badoda/Baroda/Vadodara (in Gujarat)
  • Throne: Twin colours (Red and White)
  • canopy and sign: Twin colours (Red and White)
  • Horse: White
  • Heraldic sign (Nishan): Moon on flagpole
  • Clan goddess: Bhavani, Chamundeshwari ( Chamunda )
  • Clangod :- Khandoba.
  • Clan object (Devak): SuryaFul (SunFlower)
  • Guru: Vashishta
  • Gotra: Kashyapa
  • Veda: Yajurveda - Madhyandin
  • Mantra: Gayatri mantra
  • Guhyasutra :- Paraska .
  • Prawar :- Gautam, Angiras and Aoutathya.
  • Surnames: Achal, Achah, Awadhani, Asure, Adsure, Karmat, Kanle, Kawde, Karjaree, Kanjan, Kapalfhode, Kasare, Karkar, Kahar, Kajale, Kanade, Kanta, Katle, Kanhe, Kirkire, Kithe, Kode, Khare, Khapde, Garade, Gadoor, Ghadhawe,Ghenand, Gayke, Gaykee, Chandre, Gawal, Harpale, Chkrawartee, Chakrapanee, Chkrawak, Jajwaly, Jadoogeer, Jachak, Jire, Joon, Zile, Tiwte, Dige, Dukre, Dhiwar, Dhore, Talwale, Takte, Tagnaledatar, Datare, Duranga, Dewle, Dhagad, Dhagdhamale, Dhare, Dhundupal, Nakhare, Nawate, Nanwar, Nagte, Patait, Padkar, Padsare, Pawade, Pawed, Padpar, Patre, Palkar, Pure, Pendhare, Fhade, Badwe, Fhakadpale, Bama, Banasur, Bender, Belwade, Ghodke, Bhadkambe, Bhamare, Bhate, Madkar, Marathe, Mahale, Madke, Margath, Mahalunge, Mhasik, Wairkar, Maral, Mabhale, Morkar, Mase, Manse, Mare, Mhatare, Murkar, Muluskar, Mulke, Mene, Mengune, Mode, Rage, Rangole, Rande, Rodke, Lagad, Langde, Lokre, Waidya, Shankh, Shiwne, Shewde, Sansale, Sawale, Sarad, Sarte, Satag, Saple, Surkhe Sonawde, Hajare, Hame, Hamale, Hadke, Hoke, Dhage, Dhadak, Dhananjay, Kokane, Nadhe, Ozarkar, Taras (Total 129)
  • Notable's of Clan :
  • Shrimant Pilajirao Gaikawad,Sardar of Peshwa Centric Maratha Kingdom under King Shahu's Satara Kingdom.
  • Shrimant Damajirao Gaikwad.

Early history

The Gaikwad's rule of Baroda began when the Maratha general Pilaji Rao Gaekwad conquered the city from the Mughal Empire in 1721. The Gaikwad's were granted the city as a fief by the Peshwa, the de facto leader of the Maratha empire. After the Maratha confederacy was defeated by the Afghans at the Third Battle of Panipat in 1761, the Gaikwad's, along with several powerful Maratha clans, established themselves as virtually independent rulers of the further regions of the empire, while recognizing the nominal authority of the Peshwas and suzerainty of the Bhonsle Maharaja of Satara.

British suzerainty

Sayajirao with Sir Richard Temple, the Governor of Bombay and other members of the court. Circa 1880

The Gaekwads, together with the other Maratha chieftains, fought the British in the First Anglo-Maratha War. In 1802, the British intervened to defend a Gaekwad Maharaja who had recently inherited the throne against rival claimants, and the Gaekwads concluded a treaty with the British that recognized their independence from the Maratha empire and guaranteed the Maharajas of Baroda local autonomy in return for recognizing British suzerainty.

Due to its fertile black soil, lush forest and vast treasury (the rewards of numerous military campaigns) Baroda was the wealthiest of the Maratha states. Cotton was a mainstay of Baroda’s economy, which helped fill its coffers with copious amounts of currency. Because of their British allies, the Gaekwars were able to retain power of` this state. In return the British received a share in the state revenue and required representation, a British resident, be at the Maharajah’s court.[2]

Maharaja Sayyaji Rao III, who took the throne in 1875, did much to modernize Baroda, establishing compulsory primary education, a library system and the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. He also encouraged the setting up of textile factories, which helped create Baroda's textile industry. He is well known for offering a scholarship to study at Columbia University to one of the most prominent Indian Bharat Ratna Dr. B. R. Ambedkar.

Upon India attaining its independence in 1947, the last ruling Maharaja of Baroda acceded to India. Baroda was eventually merged with Bombay State, which was later divided, based on linguistic principle, into the states of Gujarat and Maharastra in 1960.

Gaekwad, or Gayakwad, also survives as a fairly common Maratha surname, found mainly in the Indian state of Maharashtra.

Baroda Treasury

Indian tradition had several of the rulers of the dynasty on a frenzy of jewelry purchases. Khande Rao purchased the large Brazilian diamond named the Star of the South. The prince was so enthused, that he staged a massive celebration to welcome his new acquisition that included a parade of his elephants weighed in their finest gilded arrays.He had four large carpets made of precious and semi-precious gems to serve as a canopy for the prophet’s tomb in Medina. They were referred to as pearl carpets, but they included diamonds, rubies, emeralds and turquoise that were sewn onto silk. Four gold posts were to be manufactured to serve as support for the canopy. But the posts were unfinished when the maharajah died. His successors didn’t share his enthusiasm for the project and the carpets remained in the treasury. On 20 March, 2009 the rug, called Pearl Carpet of Baroda, was auctioned for $5.5m in Doha, Qatar. Khande Rao in a flamboyant display added two solid silver cannons to his armory.[3] Not to be out done, his brother & successor, Malhar Rao, commissioned a pair of solid gold cannons that weighed 280 lbs. each. He also ordered a pearl carpet be made for a local temple. He was so pleased with the carpet that he kept it for himself.[4] The Gaekwads also possessed the legendary Akbar Shah - a 70 carat diamond, rumored to be one of the eyes from the Moguls’ solid-gold Peacock Throne.[5]

One of those successors, Maharaja Sayyaji Rao III, took his guest, the Reverend Weeden, on a tour of the stately treasury underneath the Nazar Bagh Palace in 1909. The reverend was impressed by the sheer size and vast amounts of all the silver, gold and jewels. He reported seeing bejeweled vessels and ornamentation crammed into every nook of the guarded vault.[6]

Gaekwad Maharajas of Baroda


Present Line of Succession to the Baroda Throne

The Gaekwad dynasty follows the standard of male primogeniture in matters of succession. The present line of succession is as follows:

  • 1. Yuvraj Samarjitsingh Gaekwad, Yuvaraj Sahib of Baroda (25 April 1967-). Only son of Ranjitsinh Pratapsinh Gaekwad, the present Maharaja Has one daughter, Padmaja Raje (b 2006)
  • 2. Shrimant Maharajkumar Sangramsinhrao Gaekwad, the Heir Presumptive (6 August 1941-). Younger brother of the present Maharaja.
  • 3. Shrimant Maharajkumar Pratapsinhrao Sangramsinhrao Gaekwad (31 August 1970-). Only son of Sangramsinhrao Gaekwad. No issue.
  • 4. Shrimant Rajkumar Sayajirao Khanderao Gaekwad (6 April 1947-). Great-grandson of Maharaja Sayajirao III by the Maharaja's younger son Shivajirao (1890-1919) and through Shivajirao's son Khanderao (1916-1991). Has two daughters.
  • 5. Shrimant Rajkumar Anandrao Khanderao Gaekwad (28 September 1948-). Younger brother of Sayajirao Khanderao Gaekwad. Has two sons.
  • 6. Shrimant Shivajirao Anandrao Gaekwar (21 September 1983-). Elder son of Anandrao Khanderao Gaekwad.
  • 7. Shrimant Udaysingh Anandrao Gaekwar (3 December 1990-). Younger son of Anandrao Khanderao Gaekwad.


  1. ^ Maharanis : a family saga of four queens / Lucy Moore, New York : Penguin, 2006 pg 32 ISBN 0143037048
  2. ^ The Maharajas by Geoffrey C. Ward – 1983 Stonehenge Press Inc. Library of Congress catalogue card number 82-50161 ISBN 0-86706-022-0 ISBN 0-86706-049-2 (lib. blg.) ISBN 0-86706-075-1 (retail ed.)
  3. ^ Maharanis: a family saga of four queens / Lucy Moore, New York: Penguin, 2006 pg 30 ISBN 0143037048.
  4. ^ Maharanis: a family saga of four queens / Lucy Moore, New York: Penguin, 2006 pg 31 ISBN 0143037048
  5. ^ Maharanis : a family saga of four queens / Lucy Moore, New York : Penguin, 2006 - pg 37 ISBN 0143037048
  6. ^ The Maharajas by Geoffrey C. Ward – 1983 Stonehenge Press Inc. Library of Congress catalogue card number 82-50161 ISBN 0-86706-022-0 ISBN 0-86706-049-2 (lib. blg.) ISBN 0-86706-075-1 (retail ed.)

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