The Chamber of Princes was an institution established in 1920 by royal proclamation to provide a forum in which the rulers of the Indian princely states could voice their needs and aspirations to the government of British India.[IN FACT IT WAS PART OF THE CUNNING "DIVIDE AND RULE "POLICY OF THE BRITISH COLONIALISTS-DIVIDE INTO MAHARAJAH RULED;HINDU RULED;MUSLIM(NOW PAKISTAN) RULED ETC

                                                                chamber of Indian princes 1932

Chamber of Princes

The Chamber of Princes was an institution established in 1920 by royal proclamation to provide a forum in which the rulers of the Indian princely states could voice their needs and aspirations to the government of British India. It survived until the end of the British Raj in 1947.
The Chamber first met in 1921 and initially consisted of 120 members. Its creation followed the abandonment by the British of their long-established policy of isolating the Indian rulers from each other and also from the rest of the world.
On 12 March 1940, the Chamber resolved:
"The Chamber of Princes, while welcoming the attainment by India of its due place among the Dominions of the British Commonwealth under the British Crown, records its emphatic and firm view that, in any future constitution for India, the essential guarantees and safeguards for the preservation of the sovereignty and autonomy of the States and for the protection of their rights and interests arising from treaties, and engagements and sanads or otherwise, should be effectively provided and that any unit should not be placed in a position to dominate the others or to interfere with the rights and safeguards guaranteed to them, and that all parties must be ensured their due share and fair play; And that, in any negotiations for formulating a constitution for India, whether independently of the Government of India Act 1935, or by revision of that Act, representatives of the States and of this Chamber should have a voice proportionate to their importance and historical position."

List of Indian princely states:-


There have been various differences in organisation before, repeatedly quite significant, during the British Raj.

[edit]Individual residencies

Princely StateNow part ofLast Ruler
In hyder1900a.png HyderabadIndia Andhra PradeshMaharastraKarnataka,IndiaAsaf Jah VII
Jammu-Kashmir-flag.svg Jammu and Kashmir (partly)India Jammu and Kashmir,
H.H.Dr.Karan Singh
Flag of Mysore.svg MysoreIndia Karnataka, IndiaJayachamaraja Wodeyar
Sikkimflag.svg SikkimIndia Sikkim, IndiaPalden Thondup Namgyal

[edit]Baluchistan Agency

Princely States of the Baluchistan Agency.
Princely StateNow part ofLast/Present Ruler
KalatFlag.gif KalatPakistan Balochistan, PakistanH.H. Ahmad Yar Khan
Flag of the State of Kharan.svg KharanPakistan Balochistan, PakistanHabibullah Khan
Flag of the State of Las Bela.svg Las BelaPakistan Balochistan, PakistanJam Ghulam Qadir Khan
Flag of the State of Makran.svg MakranPakistan Balochistan, PakistanBai Khan Baloch Gikchi

[edit]Deccan States Agency and Kolhapur Residency

Princely States of Deccan States Agency and Kolhapur Residency.
Princely StateNow part ofLast Ruler
Akalkot flag.svg AkalkotIndia Maharashtra, IndiaShrimant Rani Sumitra Bai Raje Bhonsle, Rani Saheb of Akalkot
Aundh flag.svg AundhIndia Maharashtra, IndiaHH Meherban Shrimant Bhagwant Rao Shripat Rao, Pant Pratinidhi Of Aundh
Bhor flag.svg BhorIndia Maharashtra, IndiaRaja Shrimant Sir Raghunathrao Shankarrao Babasaheb Pandit Pant Sachiv
Janjira.svg JanjiraIndia Maharashtra, IndiaHH Nawab Sidi Muhammed Khan II Sidi Ahmad Khan, Nawab of Janjira
Jath flag.svg JathIndia Maharashtra, IndiaLt. Shrimant Raja Vijaysinghrao Ramrao Babasaheb Dafle
Kolhapur flag.svg KolhapurIndia Maharashtra, IndiaHH Shrimant Rajashri Shahu II Chhatrapati Maharaj Sahib Bahadur, Maharaja of Kolhapur
KIurundwadjr flag.svg KurundwadIndia Maharashtra, IndiaMeherban Raja Hariharrao Raghunathrao [Bapusaheb] Patwardhan, co-Raja of Kurundwad Jnr
Mudhol flag.svg MudholIndia Karnataka, IndiaHH Shrimant Raja Bhairavsinhrao Malojirao Ghorpade II
Mudhol flag.svg JamkhandiIndia Karnataka, IndiaRaja Saheb Shrimant Raja PRANAY RAO PARSHURAM RAO PATWARDHAN
Phaltan flag.svg PhaltanIndia Maharashtra, IndiaMajor HH Raja Bahadur Shrimant Ram raje Naik Nimbalkar
Sangli flag.svg SangliIndia Maharashtra, IndiaCapt. HH Shrimant Raja Saheb Sir Chintamanrao II Dhundirajrao Appasaheb Patwardhan
Flag of Imperial India.svg SawantvadiIndia Maharashtra, IndiaBhonsale clan
Flag of Imperial India.svg SavanurIndia Karnataka, IndiaNawab of Savanur, Abdul Majid Khan II

[edit]Gwalior Residency

Princely States of the Gwalior Residency.
Princely StateNow part ofLast/Present Ruler
Gwalior flag.svg GwaliorIndia Madhya Pradesh, IndiaGeorge Jivajirao Scindia
Flag of Imperial India.svg GarhaIndia Madhya Pradesh, India
Flag of Imperial India.svg KhaniyadhanaIndia Madhya Pradesh, India
Flag of Imperial India.svg RajgarhIndia Madhya Pradesh, India
Rampur flag.svg RampurIndia Uttar Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Nawab Syed Muhammad Kazim 'Ali Khan Bahadur, Nawab of Rampur

[edit]Madras Presidency

Princely States of the Madras Presidency.
Princely StateNow part ofLast/Present Ruler
Flag of the Kingdom of Cochin.svg CochinIndia Kerala, IndiaKerala Varma
Drapeau Banganapalle.png BanganapalleIndia Andhra Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Nawab Sayyid Fazl-i-'Ali Khan IV Bahadur, Nawab of Banganapalle
Pudukkottai flag.svg PudukkottaiIndia Tamil Nadu, IndiaH.H. Raja Sri Brahadamba Das Raja Sri Rajagopala Tondiman Bahadur, Raja of Pudukkottai
Sandur flag.svg SandurIndia Karnataka, IndiaShrimant Maharaj Shri Murarrao Yeshwantrao Ghorpade, Hindurao, Mamlukatmadar Senapati, Raja of Sandur
Flag of Kingdom of Travancore.svg Travancore (individual residency status under Madras Presidency)India Kerala and 3 taluks of Tamil Nadu, IndiaChithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, Maharaja of Travancore

[edit]North-west Frontier States Agency

Princely States of the North-West Frontier States Agency. Agencies included the Dir Swat and Chitral Agency and the Deputy Commissioner of Hazara acting as the Political Agent for Amb and Phulra.
Princely StateNow part ofLast/Present Ruler
Flag of Imperial India.svg AmbPakistan Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, PakistanNawab Saeed Khan
Flag of Imperial India.svg ChitralPakistan Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, PakistanH.H. Mehtar Saif-ul-Mulk Nasir
Flag of the State of Dir.svg DirPakistan Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, PakistanMuhammad Shah Khosru Khan
Flag of Imperial India.svg PhulraPakistan Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, PakistanAta Muhammed Khan
Flag of Swat.svg SwatPakistan Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, PakistanMiangul Abdul-Haqq Jahanzib

[edit]Gilgit Agency

The States of Hunza and Nagar and many feudal Jagirs (Puniyal, Shigar etc.) in the Gilgit Agency were tributary to the Maharaja of Kashmir.
Princely StateNow part ofLast/Present Ruler
Flag of Hunza.svg HunzaPakistan Gilgit-Baltistan, PakistanMohammad Jamal Khan
Flag of Imperial India.svg NagarPakistan Gilgit-Baltistan, PakistanShowkat `Ali Khan

[edit]Province of Sindh

Princely StateNow part ofLast Ruler
Khayrpur Flag.svg KhairpurPakistan Sindh, PakistanH.H. George Ali Murad Khan

[edit]States of the Punjab

States of the Punjab States Agency (Punjab).
Princely StateNow part ofLast/Present Ruler
Bahawalpur.svg BahawalpurPakistan Punjab, PakistanNawab Sadeq Mohammad Khan V
Bilaspur flag.svg BilaspurIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Raja Kirti Chand, Raja of Bilaspur
Faridkot flag.svg FaridkotIndia Punjab, IndiaLt. H.H. Farzand-i-Sadaat Nishan Hazrat-i-Kaisar-i-Hind Raja Bharat Indar Singh Brar Bans Bahadur, Raja of Faridkot
Flag of Imperial India.svg JindIndia Haryana, IndiaH.H. Maharaja Satbir Singh ["Prince Sunny"], Maharaja of Jind''
Flag of Imperial India.svg KangraIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Raja Aditya Dev Chand Katoch
Flag of Imperial India.svg KalsiaIndia Haryana, IndiaRaja HIMMAT SHER SINGH Sahib Bahadur
Kapurthala flag.svg KapurthalaIndia Punjab, IndiaBrig. H.H. Maharaja Sri Sukhjit Singh Sahib Bahadur, Maharaja of Kapurthala
Flag of Imperial India.svg LoharuIndia Haryana, IndiaH.H. Nawab Mirza Alauddin Ahmad Khan II (alias Parvez Mirza), Nawab of Loharu
Flag of Imperial India.svg MalerkotlaIndia Punjab, India
Mandi flag.svg MandiIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Raja Sri Ashokpal Sen, Raja of Mandi
Mandi flag.svg MandiIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Raja Sri Ashokpal Sen, Raja of Mandi
Flag of Imperial India.svg KalabaghPakistan PunjabPakistanH.H. Nawab Amir Mohammad Khan
Patiala flag.svg PatialaIndia Punjab, IndiaCapt. H.H. Maharajadhiraj Shri Amarinder Singh, Maharaja of Patiala
Flag of Imperial India.svg SirmurIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaLt. H.H. Maharaja RAJENDRA PRAKASH Bahadur
Suket flag.svg Suket/ SurendernagarIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaH.H. Raja Hari Sen, Raja of Suket"
Flag of Imperial India.svg SibaIndia Himachal Pradesh, IndiaH.H.Raja Dr. Ashok K. Thakur
Tehga.svg Tehri GarhwalIndia Uttarakhand, IndiaH.H. Maharaja Manujendra Shah Sahib Bahadur

[edit]States of the Rajasthan Agency

States of the Rajputana Agency.

Princely StateNow part ofLast Ruler
Alwar flag.svg AlwarIndiaRajasthan, IndiaHH Maharaja Tej Singh
Banswara flag.svg BanswaraIndiaRajasthan, IndiaH.H. Rai Rayan Mahimahendra Maharajadhiraj Maharawalji Sahib Shri Jagmalji II Sahib Bahadur, Naresh Rajya, Maharawal of Banswara.
Bikaner.svg BikanerIndiaRajasthan, IndiaH.H. Sri Raj Rajeshwar Maharajadhiraj Narendra Sawai Maharaja Shiromani Ravi Raj Singhji Bahadur, Maharaja of Bikaner and Head of the Royal House of Bikaner.
Flag of Bharatpur.svg BharatpurIndiaRajasthan, IndiaMaharaja Suraj MalJawahar SinghMaharaja Randhir SinghMaharaja Baldeo SinghMaharaja Balwant SinghMaharaja Jaswant SinghMaharaja Ram SinghMaharaja Kishan Singh.
Bundi.svg BundiIndiaRajasthan, IndiaCol. HH Maharao Raja Shri BAHADUR SINGHJI Bahadur
Dholpur flag.svg DholpurIndiaRajasthan, IndiaRana Kirat SinghRana Pohap SinghRana Bhagwant SinghRana Nihal SinghRana Ram SinghRana Udaybhanu Singh.
Flag of Dungarp.svg DungarpurIndiaRajasthan, IndiaH.H. Rai-i-Rayan, Mahimahendra, Maharajadhiraj Maharawal Shri Mahipal Singhji II Sahib Bahadur, Maharawal of Dungarpur.
Flag of Jaipur.svg JaipurIndiaRajasthan, IndiaMaharaja Sawai Man Singh II
Jaisalmer.svg JaisalmerIndiaRajasthan, IndiaHH Maharajadhiraj Maharawal Sir JAWAHIR SINGH Bahadur
Jhalawar.svg JhalawarIndiaRajasthan, IndiaH. Maharajadhiraj Maharaj Rana Shri Chandrajit Singh Dev Bahadur, Maharaj Rana of Jhalawar.
Jodhpur.svg JodhpurIndiaRajasthan, IndiaH.H. Raj Rajeshwar Saramad-i-Rajha-i-Hindustan Maharajadhiraja Maharaja Shri Gaj Singhji II Sahib Bahadur, Maharaja of Jodhpur.
Karauli.PNG KarauliIndiaRajasthan, IndiaHH Maharaja Shri GANESH PAL Deo Bahadur Yadakul Chandra Bhal
Kishangarh.svgKishangarhIndiaRajasthan, IndiaHH Umdae Rajhae Buland Makan Maharajadhiraja Maharaja SUMER SINGHJI Bahadur
Kotah.svg KotahIndiaRajasthan, IndiaHH Maharao Shri BHIM SINGH II Bahadur
Flag of Imperial India.svgKushalgarhIndiaRajasthan, IndiaRao HARENDRA SINGH
Partabgarh.svgPratabgarhIndiaRajasthan, IndiaRaja AJIT PRATAP SINGH
Flag of Jaipur.svg Patan - TorawatiIndiaRajasthan, IndiaRao Bir Bikram Singh Tanwar
Shahpura.svg ShahpuraIndiaRajasthan, IndiaHH Rajadhiraj SUDERSHAN SINGH
Sirohi.svg SirohiIndiaRajasthan, India
Tonk.svg TonkIndiaRajasthan, IndiaNawab Muhammad Faruq Ali Khan
Mewar.svg MewarIndiaRajasthan, IndiaMaharana Sir Bhupal Singh
Flag of Imperial India.svg LawaIndiaRajasthan, India
Karauli.PNGVallabhpurIndiaRajasthan, India

Gujarat States Agency and Baroda Residency

Noor Mahal, the official residence of theNawabs of bahawalpur

Districts of Gujarat

[edit]States of Central India Agency

Map of British India, 1909

Subhash Marg, Indore

Bhil tribe girls in Jhabua

Orchha Palace, Madhya Pradesh

[edit]States of the Eastern States Agency

Faiz Mahal, Khairpur

Palace in Cooch Behar

The 19th century Ujjayanta Palace, now used as the meeting place of Tripura's State Legislative Assembly

Girivilas Palace in Sarangarh

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Indian Princely States

Last modified: 2010-08-21 by ian macdonald
Keywords: india | princely states |
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As far as I have learned from reading, the princely flags are banned. State flags for the modern Indian states do not exist save for Jammu and Kashmir. Even use of the national flag of India is restricted. If I recall, Whitney Smith told me that the average Indian citizen may only fly the national flag on certain prescribed holidays. Use on other days is a civil offence.
Don Healey, 1 July 1996
Now, the current usage: The "ex-princely" families still use the flags, although the central government doesn't like it (the provincial governments, especially in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Gujarat look gleefully the other way). Most of the residences of the ex-rulers still fly the State flag, for example Gwalior or Jaipur, those rulers who still own their "houses" in New Delhi (sort of "high commissions" until 1950 or so, when some [Hyderabad] were taken as government ministry buildings [Hyderabad House became the Railway Ministry]) still fly the flag (Alwar comes in particular to mind here). Even some of the rulers (well, ex-rulers) fly their flags over their own private houses in Delhi (H.H. Dhrangadhgra flew a gigantic Dhrangadhra State flag over his house, two blocks from the Chinese embassy!).

None of this is legal, as such, but little of it is restrained. As the "pre-1947 generation" passes, this practice is falling into abeyance (and the pre-47 flags fall apart in the Indian climate!). Also, in some cases, the State flags have been used by members of the royal houses standing for election to parliament (as in the recently-concluded elections). (I'm trying to get together some postings on the political party flags used in that contest.
Ed Haynes, 1 July 1996
In Murray's Handbook for travellers in India (&c) there is a curious passage (at least to me): 'The Nizam succeeded his grandfather in 1967 (!)'... Does anybody know what his position then was? I don't suppose he had (has) the right to hoist his own flag?
Jarig Bakker, 13 November 1998
In 1956 the Nizam officially became a private citizen of India (as did all the princes). Unofficially many of the princes continued to hold court, maintain ceremonial bodyguards, and fly their flags. In some cases this provides valuable tourist revenue for India. I believe the official position of the government of India is to frown on continuing vestiges of the princely states, but in practice I think the government is hoping that attrition (e.g. the passing of the 1947 generation -- both the princes and the people who validate their existence) will solve the problem. Considering that many of these states existed for centuries, it may take more than a generation to erase regal behaviour (especially considering that many princes remain in their palaces -- unlike former European monarchs who are exiled from their countries.)
In short, many Indian States flags probably still fly, but not beyond palace grounds; and India wishes they would go away.
Todd Mills, 14 November 1998
While the Government of India does not "officially recognise the princes anymore and does not grant ordinary citizens the right to fly their own flags, many of the former princely families here, including the Patwardhans, fly their flags in their home states.

Flags are used by the princely families on Ceremonial occasions like marriages and during funerals. When my grandfather the Late His Highness Shrimant Madhavrao Raosaheb Patwardhan, Raja of Miraj, passed away, the State Government gave him a state funeral.
GG Patwardhan, 5 Jun 1999
The two terms "British India" and "Princely State" are mutually exclusive. If somewhere was in British India it was not a Princely State, and if it was a Princely State it was not in British India. British India was Bombay, Sind, British Baluchistan, North West Frontier Province, Punjab, United Provinces, Central Provinces, Madras, Bihar, Orissa, Bengal and Assam. The 140 large, and 420 small states that made up the rest of India were not part of British India.
David Prothero, 30 April 2002


Below, the states are ordered by the old British system of the numbers of "guns" in a ruler's salute. The "major" states are 21-, 19- and 17-gun states.

21-gun states:

19-gun states:

17-gun states:

15-gun states:
13-gun states:

11-gun states:
9-gun states:


Below, the states are ordered alphabetically, including those for which the number of guns is unknown.


Below, the states are ordered administratively, according to a map of british India that can be found here. Other geographical information comes from several modern atlases.

As far as I could understand, British India was divided into two different types of organization: the Provinces, directly ruled by the British crown either through a governor or a Chief Commissioner, and further subdivided in other territorial entities (Ed's site has some information on this, but I found it somewhat confusing and did not understand it enough to say anything), and the agencies and residencies, that where the British organisms that superintended the issues relative to groups of princely states. There where also some special areas, on whose organization I have no information.

Jorge Candeias, 2 May 1998

Chota Udaipur
Sanjeda Mehvassi


In many cases, Filcher (1984) shows a more elaborate "state" flag with coats of arms, etc. Based on my personal observation in many of the erstwhile states and conversations with the some of the ex-rulers, these elaborate flags usually existed on paper only and more simple ("civil") flags were more common.
Ed Haynes, 3 April 1996


The term "Native States" was used in official correspondence about the defaced Red Ensigns instead of "Princely States" under the heading "India"; in the National Geographic Magazine of September 1934, they are called, "Native Indian States". Anyway, the States in this context were those on the western seaboard of India which were protectorates of the Government of India.
In 1917 it was reported that vessels from these States, which flew their own State flag when within the territorial waters of India and other parts of the British Empire, were flying the British Red Ensign on the High Seas and in foreign territorial waters.
The inhabitants were not British subjects and were not legally entitled to fly the Red Ensign. It was decided that they could be authorized to fly a Red Ensign defaced with the badge of the appropriate State, as had been done for British North Borneo.
A problem arose because flying any form of Red Ensign made the ships subject to the Merchant Shipping Act of 1894. This imposed certain regulations to which the States objected. However after negotiating for three years an agreement was reached. As one Board of Trade official cynically wrote, "..the Act created liability to penalties but did not require enforcement."
On the 14th July 1921 an Order in Council authorised the application of Section 74 of the Merchant Shipping Act 1894, and a General Warrant, covering all twelve States as a group, was issued by the Admiralty on 2nd August 1921, with a request for sketches of revised designs, as the flags then in use were not suitable for use as badges on the Red Ensign.
The States submitted some interesting designs, of unacceptable proportions, canton size and badge size, but after another three years of protracted correspondence the individual Warrants were finally issued on the 10th October 1924.
The Office of Lord High Admiral issued the Warrants which all began,
"Red Ensign with the badge of said state on fly thereof ....."
and ended
" be worn by vessels belonging to the ruler or subjects of ...(named state)"

  • Baroda: "... a mounted trooper and a scimitar and the word BARODA in white on a rectangular field of red ochre with a white margin .."
  • Bhavnagar: "...a crimson shield bearing an eagle in gold and in the first canton a crimson lion on a gold field supported by bulls with crest a galley: below the motto, [translates as], 'Man Proposes, God Disposes'.."
  • Cambay: "...a green shield bearing two galleys and a tower in white supported by angels, a portcullis as crest with helm and mantling ..."
  • Cochin: "... a palanguin in gold and red, a lamp in gold, an umbrella in red, and a conch in white in a white circle ..."
  • Janjira: "... a crescent moon and a five pointed star in white above a fort in black and white, or a crescent moon and star alone ..." [Jafrabad]
  • Junagadh: "... three bezants and three mountains in green and above the words JUNAGADH STATE BADGE in red in a white circle ..."
  • Kutch: "... a crescent moon and sun and words KUTCH STATE in white ..."
  • Morvi: "... a shield in gold bearing an oval badge charged with the sun, crescent moon and stars and the words MORVI STATE, with sword and lance on either side above supported by tigers and surmounted by a crown, below the motto, [translates as], 'Valour With Forgiveness' ..."
  • Navanagar: "... a shield bearing three fish above and a galley, supported by antelopes with crest a lion: below the motto, [translates as], 'Victory Be To Shrijam' ..."
  • Porbandar: "... a figure of Hanuman flying and having in his hand a club and a mountain ..."
  • Sachin: "... a right hand in green ..."
  • Travancore