Rani Lakshmibai of Jhansi is among those national heroines whose name conjures up visions of tremendous bravery and dauntless courage against overwhelming odds. She was not aggressive by nature and it was only when the British threatened to annex her small kingdom that she took up arms. Rani Lakshmibai was undoubtedly one of the bravest of the leaders of the Indian Mutiny of 1857 and was always out at the forefront of every battle, encouraging her troops. She was also extremely shrewd and possessed all the qualities of a good leader. When she died fighting on the battlefield the morale of the mutiny broke and the other rebel leaders -Tatya Tope, Rao Sahib and the Nawab of Banda -were unable to offer much resistance. And so a chapter of the heroic defiance against better equipped forces came to an end. The unforgettable memory of Rani Lakshmibai of Jhansi however remained - the memory of a person of unbreakable pride and utter fearlessness.
The bards of Central India still sing of the valour and virtues of the Rani, who held her own against not only her Bundela enemies but also the mighty British.