Panipat Knowledge Guide
Panipat district was carved out from the erstwhile Karnal district on 1 November 1989. On 24 July 1991 it was again merged with Karnal district. On 1 January 1992, it again became a separate district. According to the legend, Panipat was one of the five cities (prasthas) founded by the Pandava brothers during the times of the Mahabharata; its historic name was Pandavaprastha (Sanskrit: पाण्डवप्रस्थ, lit. city of Pandavas) Panipat was the scene of three pivotal battles in Indian history. Panipat is first recorded in the Mahabharata as one of the five villages that the Pandavas demanded from Duryodhana. The five villages are the "panch pat": Panaprastha (now known as Panipat) Suvarnaprastha (now known as Sonipat) Indraprastha (now known as Delhi) Vyaghraprastha became Baghpat (now known as Baghpat) Tilaprastha (now known as Tilpat)The First Battle of Panipat was fought on 21 April 1526 between Ibrahim Lodhi, the Afghan Sultan of Delhi, and the Turko-Mongol warlord Babur, who later established Mughal rule in Northern Indian subcontinent. Babur's force defeated Ibrahim's much larger force of over one lakh (one hundred thousand) soldiers. This first battle of Panipat thus ended the 'Lodi Rule' established by Bahlul Lodhi in Delhi. The Second Battle of Panipat was fought on 5 November 1556 between the forces of Akbar and Hem Chandra Vikramaditya, a Hindu King of Delhi. Hem Chandra, who had captured states like Agra and Delhi defeating Akbar's army and declared himself as independent king after a coronation on 7th Oct. 1556 at Purana Quila in Delhi, had a large army, and initially his forces were winning, but suddenly he was struck by an arrow in the eye and fell unconscious. On not seeing him in his howdah on the back of an elephant, his army fled. Dead Hemu was carried to Akbar's camp where Bairam Khan beheaded him His head was sent to Kabul to be hanged outside Delhi Darwaza, and his torso was hanged outside Purana Quila in Delhi. The place of martyrdom of Raja Hemu is now a famous shrine in Panipat. The Third Battle of Panipat was fought on 14 January 1761 between the Maratha Empire and the Afghan and Baloch invaders. The Maratha Empire was led by Sadashivrao Bhau Peshwa with Dattaji shinde Dattaji and the Afghans were led by Ahmadshah Abdali. The Afghans had a total strength of 110,000 soldiers, and the Marathas had 75,000 soldiers and 100,000 pilgrims. The Maratha soldiers were unable to get food because of non-cooperation of other empires of Hindustan (India and Pakistan were not separated) and this resulted in having to eat the dead in the battle field to survive . Both the sides fought their heart out. The Afghans were supported by Najib-ud-Daula and Shuja-ud-Daula for the supply of food, and the Maratha had pilgrims along with them, who were unable to fight, including female pilgrims. On 14 January, over 100,000 soldiers died resulting in the victory for the Afghans.A few months after the third battle of Panipat, Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao died of shock.  However, after the victory, the Afghans facing a hostile North India, retreated to Afghanistan to avoid casualties. This battle served as a precursor for British Empire to establish Company rule in India as most of North and Northwest Indian princely states were weakened.