Shivaji's Famed'Wagh Nakh'Returns Home: A Cultural Milestone

  Oct 06, 2023

Chhatrapati Shivaji:Wagh Nakh

Return of Shivaji's 'wagh nakh' (knuckle duster) from London's Victoria and Albert Museum

What is the 'wagh nakh'?

The 'wagh nakh' is a knuckle duster with metal nails resembling tiger claws.
It is historically significant as it is believed to have been used by Chhatrapati Shivaji to kill Afzal Khan, a general of the Bijapur Sultanate, in 1659.

Why is it important?

The 'wagh nakh' holds historical and cultural significance as it is associated with a pivotal event in the life of Chhatrapati Shivaji,
a prominent Maratha ruler. Its return to India is significant for commemorating the 350th anniversary of Shivaji's ascension to the throne.

Who signed the MoU for its return?

The MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) for the return of the 'wagh nakh' was signed by Maharashtra Minister for Cultural Affairs Sudhir Munganitwar and London's Victoria and Albert Museum.

Where is it currently located, and where will it be exhibited?

The 'wagh nakh' is currently in the possession of London's Victoria and Albert Museum.
It will be returned to India for an exhibition in Maharashtra to commemorate the 350th anniversary of Chhatrapati Shivaji's ascension to the throne.

How long will it remain in India?

The 'wagh nakh' will be in India for a period of three years, from November 2023 to November 2026, for the exhibition.

What is the significance of its return?

The return of the 'wagh nakh' is seen as a moment of great cultural significance for India, particularly Maharashtra,
as it allows people to connect with the history and legacy of Chhatrapati Shivaji.

What does this mean for the cultural heritage of Maharashtra?

This return and exhibition provide an opportunity for people in Maharashtra to learn about their rich cultural heritage and history,
specifically related to Chhatrapati Shivaji and his role in shaping the region.

What is the historical context of the 'wagh nakh'?

The 'wagh nakh' gained historical prominence when it was allegedly used by Shivaji to kill Afzal Khan,
which marked a crucial moment in his military campaigns and the establishment of the Maratha Empire.

How was the 'wagh nakh' acquired by the Victoria and Albert Museum?

The details of how the 'wagh nakh' ended up in the Victoria and Albert Museum's collection are not provided in the provided information.

What significance does this have for the people of Maharashtra and India?

The return of this historical artifact is likely to be celebrated by the people of Maharashtra and India as it allows them to connect with their history
and heritage, particularly the legacy of Chhatrapati Shivaji.


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