Sunday, May 6, 2012

Bikaner Cash Coupon - WW2

Today's post is on another princely state cash coupon issued during WWII. Bikaner was a 17-Gun salute princely state of British India and now part of Indian state of Rajasthan. It bordered on the north and west by Bahawalpur; on the southwest by Jaiselmer; on the south by Jodhpur; on the southeast by the Shekawati district of Jaipur; on the east by oharu and Hissar; and on the north east by Ferozpore. It was part of Rajputana (Western Rajputana States Agency). It acceded to India in 1949.

The state was ruled by Lt.-Gen. HH Maharajadhiraj Raj Rajeshwar Narendra Shiromani Maharajah Sri Sadul Singhji Bahadur G.C.S.I., G.C.I.E., C.V.O., 22nd Maharaja of Bikaner 1943/1950 during WW2 period after demise of his father Maj.-Gen.HH Maharajadhiraj Raj Rajeshwar Narendra Siromani Maharaja Sri Sir Ganga Singhji Bahadur.

Ganga Singh who ruled from 1887 to 1943, was the best-known of the Rajasthan princes and was a favourite of the British Governors-General. He was appointed a Knight Commander of the Order of the Star of India, served as a member of the Imperial War Cabinet, represented India at the Imperial Conferences during the First World War and the British Empire at the Versailles Peace Conference.

Sadul Singh accompanied his father on important Imperial and International conferences including the peace treaty at Versailles in 1919 and the League of Nations Session. Since second World War was still going on with full vigour when he succeeded to the Gaddi, following his father's tradition he offered his sword and personal services in the cause, and expressed his desire for an opportunity to proceed on active service. He also repeated the offer in his letter dated 25'h July 1943 after becoming the Maharaja. The offer being accepted this time, the Maharaja, accompanied by his second son, Maharaja Kumar Amar Singh, left Bikaner on 26 October 1943, and visited the Sadul Light Infantry stationed in Persia, the 49 (Bikaner) G.P.T. Company stationed in Iraq as well as certain other units of other States Forces and Imperial and Allied troops including the 4th Indian Division and the 3 Indian and Armoured Division. He returned to India in November, 1943 and on his way to Bikaner visited the Ganga Risal which was then stationed in Sind.

In November 1944 Maharaja proceeded to the Assam-Burma war theatre where the Bikaner Bijey Battery was engaged in active operations against the Japanese and returned to Bikaner in December 1944. While passing through Calcutta on his return home, the Maharaja received a tumultuous reception by a lac or more people of Bikaner settled in Calcutta in pursuit of business. The Maharaja and his staff were the recipients of the 1939-45 Star, Burma Star, Defence Medal and the War Medal.

Shown above is three of cash coupons issued by Bikaner estate during WWII. All the cash coupons mention Govt. of Bikaner in front and Sadar Treasury with Chief Treasury's signature on the reverse.

First one (on left) was issued with denomination of 1 anna. It shows a windy circular print-drawing which was later used for 10 paisa coin by Govt of India. It has been recorded as number 6.2 in Indian Paper Money Catalogue by Kishore Jhunjhunwalla.

The one at center was issued with denomination of 1 paisa. It shows a circular print-drawing with Govt. of Bikaner symbol. It has been recorded as number 6.1 in Indian Paper Money Catalogue by Kishore Jhunjhunwalla.

Other one (on right) was issued with denomination of 2 annas. It shows square print-drawing. It has been recorded as number 6.3 in Indian Paper Money Catalogue by Kishore Jhunjhunwalla.

The catalogue mentions another cash coupon which is missing in my collection. It was issued with denomination of 4 Annas and recorded as 6.4.
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