Well-known historian and one of the pre-eminent authorities on Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, Balwant Moreshwar alias Shiv Shahir Babasaheb Purandare breathed his last today morning in Pune. Prime minister Narendra Modi, Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshiyari, chief minister Uddhav Thackray and other eminent dignitaries have expressed grief over the demise of the noted historian. He was 99. His last rites were performed at Vaikunth crematorium at 10 AM.

In his condolence message, PM said, the demise of Shivshahir Babasaheb Purandare leaves a major void in the world of history and culture, it is thanks to him that the coming generations will get further connected to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. PM Modi said, Shivshahir Babasaheb Purandare was witty, wise, and had a rich knowledge of Indian history and he had the honour of interacting with him very closely over the years. He furthers adds, in this sad hour, his thoughts are with his family and countless admirers.

Babasaheb Purandare breathed only for spreading the noble works of Shivaji Maharaj. He was born on 29 July 1922 and since an early age, had started writing stories related to Shivaji Maharaja’s life and times. His 900-page magnum opus Raja Shivchatrapati was published in 1950 in two parts. It has been a staple in lakhs of Marathi households and it has reached the pinnacle of popularity. It has been reprinted several times. Purandare had also conceived and directed the play on the life of Shivaji Maharaj named Janata Raja in the eighties which had also been immensely popular. Thousands of its shows had been organized in the country and abroad getting tremendous responses from spectators. Purandare was associated with Bharat Itihas Sanshodhak Mandal from an early age. He was awarded Padma Vibhushan in 2019 and earlier, he was also the recipient of Maharashtra Bhushan, the highest state award. Owner of great oratory skills, Purandare had given thousand of lectures on the life of Shivaji Maharaj in the entire country. He had made historical research for seven decades. He had deeply studied forts in Maharashtra and historical documents in the Maratha empire. For his historical research, he had been awarded Padma Vibhushan in 2019.