KANKER (Princely State)




AREA: 3,706 km2 PRIVY PURSE: 68,700Rs ACCESSION: 1st January 1948
STATE: Madhya Pradesh DYNASTY: Chandra RELIGION: Hindu



PRESENT RULER: Maharajadhiraj
B.A. (Hons.), M.A., M.Phil., present Maharaja Saheb of
Kanker since 2001.



born 27th November 1970 in Dhamtari, Chattisgarh; educated at
Rajkumar College, Raipur and at St Stephen’s College (B.A. (Hons. in
History)) and at Delhi University (M.A. in History, M. Phil. in
History), he is a Historian
with the faculty of St. Stephen’s College,
University of Delhi, presently (2009) studying for his Ph.D. from Emory
University, Atlanta in the
United States (research on Chhattisgarh), he has also been part of the
Indian delegation to the 33rd UNESCO Conference in Paris (2005) and has
been an Exchange Scholar at Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island,
U.S.A. (2007).



traditional history of Kanker goes back to 106AD when Raja Satkarni
of the Satavahan dynasty ruled Kanker. Afterwards the Chalukya rulers
added Kanker to their empire where it remained till 788AD. A succession
of dynasties then controlled Kanker till the end of the Kandra
dynasty in 1385. The
present ruler belongs to a very old Rajput family, and according to
his ancestor, Raja Veer Kanhar Dev, formerly the abdicated ruler of
Jagannath Puri, was raised to the throne by a vote of the people and
ruled till 1404. Under
the Marathas, the Kanker State was held on condition of furnishing a
contingent 500 strong whenever needed. In 1809, the Chief was deprived
of Kanker, but was restored to it in 1818 by the British Resident on
of a tribute of 500Rs. Rulers were…

  • Raja GOOR SAI DEO, Raja of Kanker -/1729, married
    and had issue. He died

    • Raja Harpal Deo (qv)
    • Rani (name unknown),
      Dev of Bastar, and
      had issue.
  • Raja HARPAL DEO, Raja of Kanker 1729/1775, died
  • Raja DHIRAJ SINGH DEO, Raja of Kanker 1775/-
  • Raja RAM RAJ SINGH DEO, Raja of Kanker
  • Raja SHYAM SINGH DEO, Raja of Kanker -/1802
  • Raja BHOOP DEO, Raja of Kanker 1802/1809 (first



  • Raja BHOOP DEO, Raja of Kanker 1818/1839 (second
    time), married and had
    issue. He died 1839.

    • Raja Padma Dev (qv)
  • Raja PADMA DEO, Raja of Kanker 1839/1853,
    constructed a temple devoted to
    the goddess Durga, married and had issue. He died

    • Maharajadhiraj Nahar Deo (qv)
    • Rajkumar Laxman Dev
    • Rajkumar Shiv Charan Dev
    • Rajkumar Ghanshyam Singh Dev
    • one of these brothers was the father of
      Maharajadhiraj Komal Deo
  • Maharajadhiraj NAHAR DEO, Maharaja of Kanker
    1853/1903, born 13th May 1850,
    he succeeded to the gadi as a
    minor on 5th December
    1853 (#1), he was
    granted the right of adoption by the British authorities, and
    acknowledged their supremacy; during his reign he constructed a number
    of temples, a library and a Palace, he established a new town named
    Narharpur near
    Kanker; he married
    Maharanidhirani Padmalaya
    Devi, daughter of Raja Bhairam Deo of Bastar,
    He died
    May 1903.

    • Rajkumar (name unknown),
      died vpsp aged 14 years.
    • Rajkumar (name unknown),
      died vpsp aged 16 years.
  • Maharajadhiraj KOMAL DEO, Maharaja of Kanker
    1903/1925, born 1873, succeeded
    9th May 1903, during his reign he
    established one high school, one Girls
    school and 15 primary schools as well as two hospitals (in Kanker and
    in Sambalpur). He established a new town near Kanker named
    Govindpur, which he wanted to make his capital; he married three times
    and had issue, one daughter. He died spm
    8th January 1925
    and was succeeded by his nephew (or relative).

    • Maharajkumari Govind Kumari
  • Maharajadhiraj BHANU PRATAP DEO,
    Maharaja of Kanker 1925/1969,
    adopted from Ratu (Chhota Nagpur), born
    September 1922 and succeeded
    8th January 1925, Kanker was initially administered by Shri Raghuveer
    Prasad Yadhav while the young ruler was educated at Rajkumar College,
    Raipur and later at Mayo College, Ajmer (B.A. and I.C.S. examination);
    also studied in England; in 1944 he was granted full ruling powers;
    M.L.A. (Madhya
    Pradesh) for two terms in 1952/1957 and 1962/1967; he established a new
    town named Bhanupratappur and constructed a cinema in Kanker; he was
    instrumental in founding a new degree college in Kanker in 1962 to
    which he donated furniture and books; he married in 1944,
    Maharanidhirani Amulya
    Prabha Devi, daughter of HH Maharaja Shri Sudhansu Shekhar Singh Deo of
    Sonepur, and his wife, HH
    Maharani Shrimati Khirode Kumari
    Devi, and had issue.
    died 14th August 1969.

    • Maharajadhiraj Udai Pratap Deo (qv)
    • Maharajkumari Manjushree Devi, married Kumar Shri
      Mahirajsinhji Surendrasinhji of Sayla,
      and has issue.
  • Maharajadhiraj UDAI PRATAP DEO, Maharaja of Kanker
    1969/2001, he was an avid
    conservationist and was President of the General Council, Rajkumar
    College from 1988 to 1993; married
    Maharanidhirani Tripureshwari Devi, daughter of Thakore Saheb Surendra
    Singh of Sayla, and his wife,
    Thakorani Manishwari Devi, and had
    issue. He died 2001.

    • Maharajkumari Anuradha Devi
    • Maharajadhiraj Aditya
      Pratap Deo (qv)
    • Maharajkumar Surya Pratap Deo (Prince Jolly), educated at
      Rajkumar College, Raipur; he is presently (2009) actively involved in
      heritage tourism; married
      29th January 2007,
      Kumari Rajeshwari Singh Jhala, daughter of Kumar Mahipal Singhji Jhala.
    • Maharajkumar Ashwini Pratap Deo B.Com. (Prince Jai),
      educated at Rajkumar College, Raipur and Zakir Hussain College, Delhi
      University (B.Com).
  • Maharajadhiraj ADITYA
    , Maharaja of Kanker (see above)


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