Shivaji's escape from Agra, flight in the garb of a Bairagi and arrival at Rajgarh which takes Jija Bai by surprise

On 18th August 1666, Shivaji escaped from almost a fatal trap laid by the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb at Agra. He had met his arch enemy Aurangzeb for the first and the last time on the 12th May in Diwan-i-Khas. After that, net closed round him till he was entirely hemmed in a series of concentric circles of guards. His escape in these circumstances was nothing less than a miracle and a stunning blow to Emperor Aurangzeb. Which route he actually took for his flight is still debated but his safe arrival at Rajgarh, had an extremely happy and interesting ending. Dattaji Waqnis writes, "He went to the gate of Rajgarh, where his mother Jija Bai resided, and requested admittance to her presence. The guards informed her that some strangers Bairagis (religious mendicants) were at the gate of the fort and demanded to meet her. She ordered them to be admitted. When they came into her presence, Niraji Pant blessed her after the manner of the Bairagis; but Shiva came closer and threw himself at her feet. She did not recognize him and was surprised that a Bairagi should place his head on her feet. Shiva then laid his head on Jija Bai's lap and took off his cap. She immediately perceived by a mark on his head that he was her lost son, and clasped him to her bosom".

Details of the next painting

Shivaji and his son Shambhaji are being carried in large baskets out of a haveli at Agra. The guards fail to detect him and his son. Shambhaji was being left at Mathrua in safe protection of three Maharashtrian Brahmins, brothers-in-law of Moro Trimbak, the Peshwa.

A party of Bairagis seeks to meet Jija Bai at Rajgarh. Shivaji who had shaved off his head and moustaches at Mathura comes closer and throws himself at her feet. She recognizes him when he removes his cap.