Tukoji Rao Holkar Biography | Maratha empire

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Tukoji Rao Holkar was a great warrior who took the charge of Malwa Kingdom after the death of Ahilyabai Holkar in 1795. He was the adopted son of Subedar Malhar Rao Holkar who was a brilliant warrior under Peshwa Bajirao


Tukoji Rao Holkar ( Holkar Dynasty )

Born date

26th June 1723


Shrimant Taniji Holkar

Name of Wives

Radhabai Holkar and Rakhmabai Holkar

Adopted by

 Malhar Rao Holkar

Handled the administration of 

Became king on



15th August 1797 AD

Tukoji Rao Holkar was born in Holkar clan in 26th June 1723. He was the son of Shrimant Taniji Holkar, nephew of Malhar Rao Holkar. Later , he was adopted by Malhar Rao Holkar as a son who played a significant role in managing the administration of Malwa Kingdom during the reign of Ahilyabai Holkar and also after succeeding Ahilyabai Holkar in 1795 . Unfortunately he died after showering his two years of conduct as a ruler of Malwa. 

People of his Kingdom were blessed to have such a great ruler under whom they felt heaven after the death of compassionate and saintly Ahilyabai Holkar. 

Tukoji Rao Holkar had two wives named Radhabai Holkar and Rakhmabai Holkar. He was blessed with four sons – Kashi Rao,  Vithoji  Rao, Yashwant Rao and Malhar Rao Holkar II. 

Malhar Rao Holkar had great faith in Tukoji Rao Holkar . Malhar Rao was aware of the capabilities and brilliancy of him which was a great need for  a great warrior. When Malhar Rao was on his death bed, he had praised Tukoji Rao Holkar with great regards  on which Tukoji Rao stood loyal in his later life. He stood like a wall with Ahilyabai Holkar and vanquished the enemies like never before. 

Tukoji Rao Holkar faithfully carried out the orders of Ahilyabai Holkar and discharged his army and military duties in consonance with her directions. He had worked a longer period of 30 years with Ahilyabai Holkar but not even a single difference occurred between them which shows the kind of faith both had for each other. 

He had run multiple expeditions under the order of Peshwa Madhav Rao for the expansion of the Maratha empire . Even after the death of Madhav Rao in 1772 , he successfully did his services fearlessly. 

Expansion of Maratha empire

Peshwa Madhavrao sent Tukoji Rao Holkar on a major expedition where an offer had been sent by Najeeb Khan to defeat Zabitah Khan. It was a golden opportunity for marathas to expand its territories and its wealth . 

Tukoji Rao Holkar went through a negotiation under the guidance of Mahadji Scindhia and Visaji Krishna. Soon after the negotiation, Maratha Warriors attacked Rohilkhand and smashed the hopes of Pathan and rohillas to defeat marathas.

Zabitah Khan after facing the brutal defeat fled to Phatargarh where he was pursued and Vanquished and the huge wealth and large territories came into the possession of Marathas. 

Military campaign

  • In 1769 , after getting the order of Peshwa Madhava Rao, Tukoji Rao Holkar joined the expedition against the Rohillas and subdued the jats. 
  • 2. He also accompanied Ganesh Pant in an expedition against Tipu Sultan. 
  • 3. He had participated in conquering Punjab and fought vigorous battles of Attock, Peshawar and Lahore.
  • 4. Tukoji Rao Holkar was directed by Peshwa Madhavrao to join the Sardar to retrieve the marathas power all over India.
  • 5. Tukoji Rao Holkar and Mahadji Scindhia went on expedition from Malwa to subjugate Rohilkhand in 1768 on order of Peshwa Madhavrao.
  • 6. He had defeated Jahan Khan and taken the charges of Jalalabad. 


He died on 15th August 1797 AD near Kirki . He was succeeded by his son Yashwant Rao Holkar . The cenotaph of Tukoji Rao Holkar was started by his son Yashwant Rao but completed by Krishna Bai Holkar . The central hall of cenotaph  contain Shiv-linga and the idol of Tukoji Rao Holkar with his two wives .

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