Of Jhansi State
Newalkar’s sons and grandsons served the Peshwas, who were so impressed with them that they rose to high positions in the army. It was the great-grandson of the Newalkar patriarch, Raghunathrao, who was sent by the Peshwa to Jhansi to quell a rebellion that had broken out there. Raghunath Rao re-established Peshwa rule and, as a reward he was given Jhansi as a jagir and was made Subedar of the principality in 1769 CE. Jhansi remained peaceful during his reign. When he died in 1796 CE, he was succeeded as Subedar by his brother Shivraobhau. During the decline and eventual demise of the Maratha Empire (around 1818 CE), Shivraobhau decided to take advantage of the confusion and stopped sending administrative reports and taxes to Pune, the seat of the Maratha Empire. Shivraobhau declared the quasi-independence of Jhansi state and himself as the first Raja of Jhansi.
Shivraobhau (r. 1796 to Nov. 18, 1803) signed a treaty of friendship with the British on 18th November 1803; and on Feb 6, 1807 he signed a second treaty wherein Jhansi was not to enter into relations with any other foreign power.
During his reign, relations with the British were cordial. He suddenly fell ill in 1814. Realising he would not survive long, he named his grandson Ramchandrarao, son of his deceased eldest son, Krishnarao as his successor.
Shivraobhau then retired to the banks of the Ganga to spend his last days as an ascetic, and he died soon after.