Tipu Sultan: The Tyrant Diaries

In December 8, 1988, an old trunk was discovered in the attic of the house of Elaine de la Taille Tretinville, who died at 91 in her 14th arrondissement flat in Paris.  She was a descendant of the family of Les Ripaud Montaudeverts. Among the contents was a manuscript in the hand of the most famous of the Montaudeverts—Francois Fidele Ripaud de Montaudevert. It starts with these words (in old French): “I, Francois Ripaud, am old today, but I want to tell you the true story of Tipu Sultan.”

Born in Saffre, northwestern France, in a middle-class family, Ripaud enrolled as a sailor, aged 11, on the Le Palmier. After many adventures, he settled in Mauritius, where he married and had two children. In 1797, hearing of Le Grand Tipu Sultan, he sailed from Mauritius (then called Ile de France) to Mangalore and sought a meeting with the sultan, promising “to raise a large force in Mau­ritius and put it at Tipu’s disposal”. Tipu, who had an early connection with the French, having been instructed in warfare by French officers in the employ of his father, jumped at the idea and gave Ripaud letters of credential. On August 19, 1798, Ripaud came back to Mauritius and made a proclamation seeking volunteers for an “expedition to travel to Mysore to assist Tipu in his resistance to British encroachment in south India”. It must be noted that, two months earlier, Napoleon had invaded Egypt and dreamt of establishing a junction with India against the British, so the governor of Mauritius received instructions to collaborate and Ripaud was able to sail to Mangalore with a shipload of French soldiers who were welcomed there like heroes.

Life at Tipu’s court was a dream for our hardy adventurer, but he began to have some misgivings. In his diary entry of January 14, 1799, he writes: “I’m disturbed by Tipu Sultan’s treatment of these most gentle souls, the Hindus. During the siege of Mangalore, Tipu’s soldiers daily exposed the heads of many innocent Brahmins within sight from the fort for the Zamorin and his Hindu followers to see.” Even so, he cast his doubts aside and put up for Tipu’s benefit a dem­onstration of the egalitarian political ideas of France: in 1799, a French paper entitled ‘Proceedings of a Jacobin Club formed at Seringapatnam by the French Soldiers in the Corps Commanded by Francois Ripaud’ was found in Tipu’s palace. It listed 59 Frenchmen in the pay of “citizen Tipu” and described a “primary assembly” of May 5, 1797, to elect a president (Ripaud) and other office-bearers. The ‘Rights of Man’ were proclaimed and the sultan formally received a small delegation from the club.

After this interval, we find another diary entry in which Ripaud is appalled at what he witnessed in Calicut (Kozhikode): “Most of the Hindu men and women were hanged…first mothers were hanged with their children tied to their necks. That barbarian Tipu Sultan tied the naked Christians and Hindus to the legs of elephants and made the elephants move around till the bodies of the helpless victims were torn to pieces.  Temples and churches were ordered to be burned down, desecrated and des­troyed. Christian and Hindu women were forced to marry Mohammedans, and similarly, their men (after conversion to Islam) were forced to marry Moha­mm­edan women. Christians who refused to be honoured with Islam were ordered to be killed by hanging immediately.” These events were corroborated by Father Bartholomew, a famous Portu­guese traveller, in his memoir, Voyage to East Indies.

Another diary entry of Ripaud says: “To show his ardent devotion and steadfast faith in the Mohammedan religion, Tipu Sultan found Kozhikode to be the most suitable place. Kozhikode was then a centre of Brahmins and had over 7,000 Brahmin families living there. Over 2,000 Brahmin families perished as a result of Tipu Sultan’s Islamic cruelties. He did not spare even women and children.”

A disgusted Ripaud left Seringapatnam and went back to France, where he obtained captainship of a fine fighting ship, the Shapho. On February 23, 1814, fighting an English frigate, Ripaud had his arm ripped off by a cannon ball. He died the same evening. Even the British, his arch enemies, gave a 21-cannon salute to this brave adventurer, once Tipu Sultan’s ‘Great White Hope’.

~ Francois Gautier
(The writer is editor-in-chief of La Revue de l’Inde. This piece is based on two books: Jean Feildel’s A la Mer, en Guerre: Vie du Corsaire Ripaud de Montaudevert and Louis Brunet’sRipaud de Montaudevert: Scenes de la Revolution Francaise a L’ile Bourbon.)

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  • This is website is full of non sense and just falsehood. Promoting hatred with false claims. Shame on you guyz… Writing this false on everyone, u think that it will help to promote hinduism…

    • No one is asking you to visit the website or read its contents if you don’t like them. It seems that the current situation of India and its so called glorified politicians over the last few decades hasn’t woken up people like you to the reality of how history is tainted to suit the ruling party.

      If you don’t like this article or many others, why come and waste your breath here? Why don’t you bother doing your own research instead of expecting handouts in explanation???!!

      If you seriously want to study about the Moghuls then pick up old books that almost extinct in the market today thanks to the secular myopic mentality of India’s people, purposefully suppressed to control them. Here, let me give you onw hint on the book on Tipu Sultan, rest you should try your own time and effort to educate yourself:

      The captivity, sufferings and escape of James Scurry, who was detained a prisoner during ten years, in the dominions of Hyder Ali and Tippoo Saib (1824) – Author James Scurry

      An excerpt from the book:
      Barbarous realities of an uncivilised geographical area

      These are the kind of books which the modern generations of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh should read. For, they are being fed false stories of actually never-existed glories and fabulous knowledge and culture in their ancient ancestry. However, in the current climate of nonsensical formal education aimed at brainwashing the newer generations into false notions and unsustainable superiority about antiquity and ancestry, it is doubtful, if these books would be allowed to come into the limelight.

      People in the new nation of India are made to believe that they are in the direct linage of bloodlines commencing from Vedic culture. The fact is that no one of the current generation do have much information on Vedas, what they actually are, who wrote them, what was the machinery used for writing them, the codes in the verbal structure, and how they function, if at all there are codes within them.

      There are enough and more mention about the cruel and barbarous behaviour of Sultan Tipu (Tipu Sulthaan) and his father Hyder Ali (a Moroccan). There are unconnected evidences to support these claims. For instance, in the TRAVANCORE STATE MANUAL written by a native official of the Travancore Kingdom, there is a quote from a letter written by King Marthanda Varma, the greatest king of Travancore:


      “He (Sultan Tipu) had no business to commence a war with me, notwithstanding he did it to his own folly. Some of Usoff Cawn’s people were taken prisoners of war by me whom I treated civilly and sent them back to his camp giving them presents and money for their expenses on the road, but when he has taken some of my people he has been so base to cut off their noses and ears and sent them away disgracefully.”

      And FYI, I am a practicing Sikh so before trying to bash someone, its a good idea to learn just who they really might be! It wouldn’t hurt to have an open mind sometime instead of just devouring any information the government or current state of India throws at you!

      ~ Admin

      • Dear Admin keep doing the good work which enlightening people and awakening from a far off dream.As young boy I had to travel for work to these far off Islamic countries,what I shockingly learned about this fanatically mad group of people and put together with your articles makes me wonder,which part of Lord Shiva exist in this souls,as we read in chamakm,every living thing is Siva.

    • It is complete truth you fool! So many truths are mentioned in this website.
      Muslims have the history of stealing things and monuments from the history and making people fools by their bogus false claims. For example they even say that the site of our Holy Temple in Jerusalem is theirs.

    • Seems you have no idea of history. This fact known to all now. Why blame the website for your own poorly updated knowledge.

  • Mr. Rajesh, I think what ever written here is just only moderate, The real story goes beyond this. There are N number of authentic results available on and off line about the religious bigotry of Tipu. He was even more fundamentalist than Aurangazeb. The fractured demography of Malabar today is a result of his handi works. Read some true history before making a fake name and account and accusing some one else.

  • Mr. Rajesh, I think what ever written here is just only moderate, The real story goes beyond this. There are N number of authentic results available on and off line about the religious bigotry of Tipu. He was even more fundamentalist than Aurangazeb. The fractured demography of Malabar today is a result of his handi works. Read some true history before making a fake name and account and accusing some one else.

  • Also one thing that the article misses to comprehend is the role of Nair community. These people were the strongest opponents of Tipu and hence were the biggest losers in war against Tipu. At times they were even successful in defeating Tipu’s forces. Nairs were proud warriors of motherland and believed that live with dignity or die. Their resistence against this tyrant was the only reason Malabar never turned to a Pakistan.

  • Coorgis will tell you how Tipu took a few thousands of their men prisoners and had them forcibly converted to Islam. These men tried to reconvert after Tipu’s death but were not accepted by Coorgis. Then they went across the border to Kerala to find brides for themselves from among Malayali Muslims.

  • Tippu captured 60000 christian civilians in mangalore and made them walk to sreirangapattanam as slaves. Most of them died enroute .just 15000 returned alive after the war.
    Farmers were levied absurdly high tax that farmers had to abandon their farm and abscond . The abandoned farm land were forced upon remaining farmers and made to pay tax for abandoned land.
    My family is one of the victim of Tippu’s harassment of farmers in mangalore region

  • It appears that Bhagwan Gidwani’s book is quite unresearched.

  • we have have a colleague in our office whose ancestral temple was looted and burnt down by the army of tippu sultan. Now in its place a mosque stands. Yep…tippy was a very noble king…

  • How far the Ripaud’s writtings are true, I don’t know but, I do agree with my fellow readers of this topic.
    some of the Muslim kings were very rude and they were highly fundamental. They killed many innocent people and apprehend them to convert to Islam. But, the French and British people never respected Islam or Hindu except their religious people. What about Moghul emperors? In this country religion has played a major roll in its culture and prosperity. History should not be repeated by digging and re-turning the old pages to create panic, hatred amongst present generation. Unfortunately it was happened and lets live together rather scratching the old wounds and making the same mistake again by some fundamental political parties by publishing and raising the havoc amongst people of India. Jai Hind.

    • As much as you mean good – the majority in your community feel other way – God Bless You – I am Christian from the religion of my parents – we are originally Hindu from Maharashtra – Mysore and Tamilnadu – this has all vanished after I get christianity – am not against religion but against the way it is breaking down ancient heritage and dividing people – the religion is only for a way of life and all have used it to control people and civilizations – can you let us know why muslims dont want to follow a uniform civil code in India – they want to have their way in everything which is not possible and will we will never ever let that happen again with our life and blood as a promise to our mother land which we love – Jai Hind !

    • Unless Hindus take lessons from such barbarian Muslim kings, Kashmirs will keep happening in today’s world. Muslims talk of harmony and peace when they are in minority, and change colors quickly when they get power. Pakistan is a good example where minorities are being exploited, their women abducted and forced to convert and the State or the law does not do anything. So Hindus be ware of this religion of peace.

  • Sheikh, I am a Sindi who lost his motherland in 1947 to the muslims just because my ancestors were Hindus and they used to live in Sindh long before even the grandpaas of prophet of Islam were born.
    Please get me my lost land and I will forget everthing and will live happily making merry.

  • @Shaik: The point in this discussion here is about the history which we have been distorted during schooling and other educational institutions. The history is soo distorted that we can’t even think of these atrocities committed by these noble kings. “History should not repeat” – absolutely yes, and we need to know about these atrocities to avoid repetition. The actual amount of many (referrence to “They killed many innocent people …. “) – is infact in Lakhs and Lakhs. Almost equal to destruction of an entire race of humans. How exactly do you do justice to the barbaric acts of these noble kings – by celebrating his Jayanti?

  • All Muslims staying in India and Pakistan can trace back their ancestor of Hindu religion. In over 1000 years history n number of proofs are available that right from Afganisthan to Knaykumai in Hindusthan Hindues were killed, temples were destroyed and forcibly converted to Islam. Men killed and their women raped.There is saying, ” Jeenko apani aan shan pyari thi unone Katyee apni Man( Gardan), Jeenko pyari thi Jaan wo bangaye Musalman”. No body has accepted Islam because it was a superior religion. Let the true history come to lite
    I am sure any one having little sence will reconvert to Hindu Dharma.

  • thank you for giving us such a valuable information. it’s very much usefull to me and my sons to know about the history .every one must share for their children.

  • Good information…every one must know….

  • You was a tyrant and a cruel man is well known but Government of Karnataka wants to celebrate Tipu Jsyanti..which it thinks will give them electoral advantage from Muslims …
    People must stop this wastage of public money.

  • Invaders from North West plundered our country for almost 1000 years. Very little is mentioned about Nadir Shah. One of his famous loot is Peacock Throne which can still be found in Iran. Kohinoor is another example. Perhaps all these are mentioned in school history books but the amount of torture and injustice those invaders inflicted upon local Hindus are barely highlighted. It is time to rewrite the history books with real facts and figures. Hindus must unite or face extinction in near future.

  • Keep posting such article with reference to sources so that more and more people are convinced. THANK YOU.

  • The Indian history seems to have been deliberately distorted and presented in a very biased manner by the Marxist historians, under the patronage extended to them by the great Jawaharlal Nehru pariwar and the Indian National Congress. There is no use in hiding factual history under some false pretexts; it has to be told to the Indian public in a very truthful way without exaggeration. Depradations of Tippu Sultan mainly affected earstwhile Mysore, other parts of Karnataka and the present state of Kerala. Truth has not been made known to the people if Kerala as well.