The fifth release function in 2016 saw the release of a coin commemorating the 200th Birth Anniversary of Tatya Tope. This would be the first time a coin of denomination Rs 200 was released.
Technically Tope's Birth year is 1814 and hence the 200th year should have started in 2014 and completed in 2015. The coins finally released in 2016 on Martyr Day.
The details are as below;
The Minister of State for Culture (Independent Charge), Tourism (Independent Charge) and Civil Aviation, Dr. Mahesh Sharma releasing a Commemorative Coin of Rs.200/- and a Circulation Coin of Rs.10/- on Tatya Tope, on the occasion of his Martyr Day, in New Delhi on April 18, 2016. The Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Shri Narendra Kumar Sinha and other dignitaries are also seen.
Ramachandra Pandurang Tope (1814 – 18 April 1859) was an leader in the Rebellion of 1857 and one of its notable generals. He is better known by his nickname Tatya Tope, which is also transliterated as Tantya Tope or Tantia Topi
A personal adherent of Nana Sahib of Bithur, he progressed with the Gwalior contingent after the British reoccupied Kanpur and forced General Windham to retreat from the city. Later on, he came to the relief of Rani Lakshmibai of Jhansi and with her seized the city of Gwalior. However, he was defeated by General Napier's British Indian troops at Ranod and after a further defeat at Sikarabandoned the campaign. He was executed by the British Government at Shivpuri on 18 April 1859.
Tatya Tope was Nana Sahib's close associate and general. During the Siege of Cawnpore in 1857, Nana Sahib's forces attacked the British entrenchment at Kanpur in June 1857. The low supplies of food, water and medicine added to the misery of the British Forces who accepted Nana Sahib offer of safe passage to Allahabad.
Many of General Wheeler's men were either killed or captured. The surviving British women and children were moved from the Savada House to Bibighar, "the House of the Ladies", a villa-type house in Rajasthan.
Nana Sahib decided to use the captives for bargaining with the British. The Company forces from Allahabad, under the command of General Henry Havelock, advanced relentlessly towards Cawnpore. Two forces sent by Nana Sahib to check their advance were defeated. When it became clear that the bargaining attempts had failed, an order was given to murder the women and children imprisoned at Bibighar, on July 15. The details of the incident, such as who ordered the massacre, are not clear. The sepoys refused to kill the captive women and children, but some of them agreed to remove the women and children from the courtyard, when Tope threatened to execute them for dereliction of duty.
The Company forces reached Cawnpore on July 16, and captured the city. Both Nana Sahib and Tope escaped from the city. While Nana Sahib fled to an unknown place, Tope continued the fight against the British. In November 1857, he gathered a large army, mainly consisting of the rebel soldiers from the Gwalior contingent, to recapture Cawnpore. By November 19, Tope's advance guard of 6,000 dominated all the routes west and north-west of Cawnpore. However, his forces were defeated by the Company forces under Colin Campbell in the Second Battle of Cawnpore, marking the end of the rebellion in the Cawnpore area. Tope then joined Rani Laxmi Bai at Kalpi.
After losing Gwalior to the British, Tope and Rao Sahib, nephew of Nana Sahib, fled into Rajputana. He was able to induce the army of Tonk to join him. Tope was defeated at several places
Tope escaped alone into the jungles of Paron. At this point he met Man Singh, raja of Narwar and decided to stay with them. The British forces had failed to subdue Tope for over a year.
Tope was however betrayed into the hands of the British by his trusted friend, Man Singh, while asleep in his camp in the Paron forest. He was captured on 7 April 1859 by a detachment of native infantry from British General Richard John Meade's troops led to him by Singh and escorted to Shivpuri where he was tried by a military court. Tope admitted the charges brought before him saying that he was answerable to his master the Peshwa only. He was executed at the gallows on 18 April 1859.