22°43′31″N 75°51′56″E / 22.7252°N 75.8655°E / 22.7252; 75.8655

Indore State
Flag of Indore
Top: Flag (1732–1818)
Bottom: Flag (1818–1950)
Coat of arms of Indore
Coat of arms
Map of the territories of Indore State, some forming enclaves in neighbouring Gwalior and Bhopal states
Map of the territories of Indore State, some forming enclaves in neighbouring Gwalior and Bhopal states
StatusState Within the Maratha Confederacy (1731–1818)
Protectorate of the East India Company (1818–1857)
Princely State of the British Raj (1857–1947)
State of the Dominion of India (1947–1948)
• 1732–1766 (first)
Malhar Rao Holkar
• 1926–1948 (last)
Yashwant Rao Holkar II
• Established
29 July 1732
• Accession to
Dominion of India
1 January 1948
193125,646 km2 (9,902 sq mi)
• 1931
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Maratha Empire
Dominion of India
Today part ofMadhya Pradesh,
Republic of India
The Rajawada (Old Palace) of Indore
The Sukhnivas Palace
The Maharaja of Indore on his state elephant
Yashwant Rao Holkar and Ranjit Singh in 1805
Sir Kashirao (Dada Saheb) Holkar, KCSI, KIH, Raja Of Indore.
Maharaja Tukojirao Holkar II
Tukojirao Holkar III, Maharaja of Indore
Maharani Shrimant Chandravati Bai Sahib Holkar, First Wife of Maharaja Tukojirao Holkar III of Indore
Yashwantrao Holkar II

Indore State, also known as Holkar State,[1] was a kingdom in India. Its rulers belonged to the Maratha Holkar dynasty.[2] After 1857, Indore became a 19-gun salute princely state under the British Raj.

Indore State was located in the present-day Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, with its capital at the city of Indore. The state had an area of 24,605 km2 and a population of 1,325,089 in 1931. Other important towns besides Indore were Rampura, Khargone, Maheshwar, Mehidpur, Barwaha, and Bhanpura; there were a total of 3,368 villages.[3]


See also: Dewas Junior, Dewas Senior, Dhar State, and Gwalior State

By 1720, the headquarters of the local pargana was transferred from Kampel to Indore due to the increasing commercial activity in the city. On 18 May 1724, the Nizam accepted the rights of the Maratha Peshwa Baji Rao I to collect chauth (taxes) from the area. In 1733, the Peshwa assumed full control of Malwa and appointed his commander Malhar Rao Holkar as the subahdar of the province.[citation needed]

On 29 July 1732, Bajirao Peshwa-I granted Holkar State by granting 28 and a half parganas to Malhar Rao Holkar, the founding ruler of the Holkar dynasty. His daughter-in-law Ahilyabai Holkar moved the state's capital to Maheshwar in 1767, but Indore remained an important commercial and military centre.[citation needed]

After the defeat of the Holkar rulers in the Third Anglo-Maratha War, an agreement was signed on 6 January 1818 with the British and the Indore State became a British protectorate. The Holkar dynasty was able to continue to rule Indore as a princely state mainly owing to the efforts of Dewan Tatya Jog.

The capital was moved from Maheshwar to Indore on 3 November 1818 and the Indore Residency, a political residency with a British resident, was established in the city. Later, Indore would be established as the headquarters of the British Central India Agency. In 1906, electrical infrastructure was installed in the city while a fire brigade was established in 1909. By 1918, the first master plan of the city was drawn by architect and town planner Patrick Geddes.

During the period of Maharaja Tukoji Rao Holkar II (1852–86), efforts were made for the planned development and industrial development of Indore. During the reigns of Maharaja Shivaji Rao Holkar, Maharaja Tukoji Rao Holkar III, and Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Holkar, business flourished thanks to the railways that had been introduced in the state in 1875.

In 1926, Maharaja Tukoji Rao III Holkar XIII abdicated after being implicated in a murder case involving a court dancer and her lover.[4]

After the independence of India in 1947, Indore State, along with a number of neighbouring princely states, acceded to India. Yashwant Rao Holkar II, the last ruler of the state, signed the instrument of accession to the Indian Union on 1 January 1950. The territories of the state became part of the new Indian state of Madhya Bharat.


The kings of Indore held the title of 'Maharaja' Holkar. The rulers of the state were entitled to a 19 gun salute by the British authorities.[5] The Holkar State Darbar (Court) was composed of many Jagirdars, Sardars, Istamuradars, Mankaris and Zamindars.[6][7]


Name Birth Death Reign
Malhar Rao Holkar I 1694 1766 1731 – 20 May 1766
Male Rao Holkar II 1745 1767 20 May 1766 – 5 April 1767
Ahilya Bai Holkar (III)(f), regent 1725 1795 April 1767 – 13 August 1795
Tukoji Rao I Holkar IV 1723 1797 13 August 1795 – 29 January 1797
(also listed as co-ruler from April 1767)
Kashi Rao Holkar V ? 1808 29 January 1797 – January 1799
Khande Rao I Holkar VI 1798 1806 January 1799 – 1806
Yashwant Rao I Holkar 1776 1811 1806 – 27 October 1811
(regent from January 1799)
Malhar Rao III Holkar VII 1801 1833 November 1811 – 27 October 1833
Maharani Tulsi Bai (f), regent ? 1817 November 1811 – 20 December 1817
Martand Rao Holkar VIII 1830 1849 27 October 1833 – 2 February 1834
Hari Rao Holkar IX 1795 1843 2 February 1834 – 24 October 1843
Khande Rao II Holkar X 1828 1844 24 October 1843 – 17 February 1844
Maharani Maji (f), first regency ? 1849 24 October 1843 – 17 February 1844
Tukoji Rao II Holkar XI
(knighted 25 June 1861)
1835 1886 27 June 1844 – 17 June 1886
Maharani Maji (f), second regency (s.a.) ? 1849 27 June 1844 – September 1849
Shivaji Rao Holkar XII
(knighted 30 June 1887)
1859 1908 17 June 1886 – 31 January 1903
Tukoji Rao III Holkar XIII
(knighted 1 January 1918)
1890 1978 31 January 1903 – 26 February 1926
Yashwant Rao II Holkar XIV
(knighted 1 January 1935)
1908 1961 26 February 1926 – 15 August 1947
Usha Devi Holkar 1961 present

Diwans of Indore

Prime ministers

British Residents

British Residents of the Indore Residency.[10]

British Agents

HH Maharaja Sir Jayaji Rao Scindia of Gwalior State, General Sir Henry Daly (Founder of The Daly College), with British officers and Maratha nobility (Sardars, Jagirdars & Mankaris) in Indore, Holkar State, c. 1879.

Agents to the Governor-General for the Central India Agency. The headquarters of the agent were at Indore.

Orders of chivalry

The Royal House of Indore awards the Order of Ahilya Holkar Sultanat, which is awarded in three classes. It was founded on November 22, 1900 by Maharaja Sir Tukojirao III Holkar XIII.[11]

See also


  1. ^ Princely States of India
  2. ^ Cotton, James Sutherland (1911). "Indore" . In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 14 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. pp. 500–501.
  3. ^ Great Britain India Office. The Imperial Gazetteer of India. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1908.
  4. ^ Jhala, Angma Dey (2016). Courtly Indian Women in Late Imperial India ("The Body, Gender and Culture") by. London New York: Routledge. p. 125. ISBN 978-1138663640. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  5. ^ "Indore Princely State (19 gun salute)". Archived from the original on 6 June 2018. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
  6. ^ Madan, T.N. (1988). Way of Life: King, Householder, Renouncer : Essays in Honour of Louis Dumont. Motilal Banarsidass. p. 129. ISBN 9788120805279. Retrieved 4 July 2015.
  7. ^ Russell, Robert Vane (1916). "Pt. II. Descriptive articles on the principal castes and tribes of the Central Provinces".
  8. ^ a b c Laurd, C. E. (1908). Indore State Gazetteer Vol II. Calcutta: Superintendent Government Printing. p. 43.
  9. ^ a b Rulers, Leading Families and Officials in the States of Central India. 1935. p. 24.
  10. ^ Princely States of India
  11. ^ Encyclopaedia Indica: Princely States in colonial India. Anmol Publications. 1996. p. 104. ISBN 978-81-7041-859-7.