The Bhonsla Mahratta raja of Nagpur, whose dominions bordered on Bengal, was won over by the diplomacy of an emissary of Hastings.
Pearse's detachment was decimated by an epidemic of cholera.
Thus Raghoji Bhonsla established himself in the tracts lying underneath the southern base of the Satpura range (namely, Nagpur and Berar), overran Orissa and entered Bengal.
It was during the campaigns which ensued that General Arthur Wellesley defeated Sindhia and the Bhonsla raja at Assaye, and General Lake won the victories of Farrukhabad, Dig and Laswari over Sindhia and Holkar.
The three confederates, Sindhia, Holkar and the Bhonsla, concluded peace with the British government, after making large sacrifices of territory in favour of the victor, and submitting to British control politically.
Holkar and the Bhonsla committed hostile acts.
The Bhonsla raja of Nagpur died without lineal heirs in 1853, and his territory was likewise annexed.
In 1743 Raghoji Bhonsla of Berar established himself at Nagpur, and by 1751 had conquered the territories of Deogarh, Chanda and Chhattisgarh.
In Chanda and Deogarh the Gond rajas were suffered by Raghoji Bhonsla and his successor to carry on a shadowy existence for a while, in order to give them an excuse for avoiding the claims of the peshwa as their overlord; though actually decisions in important matters were sought at Poona.
Up to this time the rule of the Bhonsla rajas, rough warriors of peasant extraction, had been on the whole beneficent; but, soured by his defeat, Raghoji now set to work to recover some of his losses by a ruthless exploitation of the peasantry, and until the effective intervention of the British in 1818 the country was subjected to every kind of oppression.
In 1703 a Mussulman convert of the Gond tribe held the country, and in 1743 Raghoji Bhonsla, the Mahratta ruler of Berar, annexed it to his dominions.
The claim was contested by the Bhonsla rajas, and for more than half a century the miserable country was ground between the upper and the nether millstone.
This condition of things was ended by Wellesley's victories at Assaye and Argaon (1803), which forced the Bhonsla raja to cede his territories west of the Wardha, Gawilgarh and Narnala.
The Peshvva at Poona, the Bhonsla raja at Nagpur and the army of the infant Holkar each took up arms, but were separately defeated.
Chief among these generals were the gaikwar in Gujarat, Sindhia and Holkar in Malwa, and the Bhonsla raja of Berar and Nagpur.
Towards the east the Bhonsla raja of Nagpur reigned from Berar to the coast of Orissa.
Before the year 1803 was out, both Sindhia and the Bhonsla raja were glad to sue for peace.
The Bhonsla raja forfeited Orissa to the English, who had already occupied it with a flying column, and Berar to the nizam, who gained a fresh addition by every act of complaisance to the British government.
He was the son of Shahji Bhonsla, a Mahratta soldier of fortune who held a jagir under the Bijapur government.
The chief, who is a Mahratta of the Bhonsla family, resides at Poona on a pension, while the state is under British management.