Gehlot Girdharsingh (V.1552) had plenty of money, but he spent all the money, leading a life of sensuality, and of luxury, and became poor. Then he went in search of Yogis, hermits, and monks so that they might make him a wealthy person by means of mantras. By chance he met Acharya Jinhansh Suri. He prayed the Acharya to make him wealthy. Acharya placed the condition, namely, to leave his own caste and convert himself to an Oswal. He agreed and became Oswal. Then the Acharya warned him to spend money only for the welfare of the needy, and gave him a little powder. Acharya said, “You pour this powder on a heap of bricks. You would be surprised to see that all the bricks are converted into gold.”
He was amazed to know that a heap of 5000 bricks was lying in front of the house. He put the bricks in the godown of his house and poured the powder. It was a miracle that all the bricks became golden bricks. Now the king Girdharsingh became a very wealthy person.
Girdharsingh had a son named Gelaji. He was unsophisticated. One day a few boys said to him, the horses of we poor people eat grass, but you are a wealthy person, so your horse must eat gold. He went inside, and offered gold to his horses. Due to such silly acts people named him “Gelda”.
Kuldevi of this gotra is Shri Ashapura Mata.
Gelda Jagat-Seth Manakchad
Jagat Seth Manakchand was 7th in the pedigree of Gelaji. Shri Hiranand Gelda was residing at NAgour district. He was very poor and also very simple. He was a devotee of a Jain Yati. He spent most of his time in the service of Yatiji. Whenever he came home, his wife advised him to go to the East to earn money. He tried to calm her down with the saying that he was an illiterate fellow. One day he was very sad. Yatiji enquired about his sadness. He replied, “I am very poor and my wife presses me to go to the east to earn, but I am an illiterate and know nothing.”
After a few days suddenly Acharya ordered him to proceed towards the East.
With the blessings of yatili he started his journey. When he was croosing the gate of city he saw a huge snake outside the gate. He was frightened and come back cobra was lying outside the gate. Yatiji told him, “If you had gone, you would have become a king, but even now there is time, you may proceed.
Hiranand ji reached the river ganga. He continued the journey towards East, and went on worshipping Mata Ganga. Mata Ganga was pleased and one day she appeared before him and said, “May son! I am pleased at your devotion, so you may demand any thing and you will get what you desire.” Hiranand said, “Oh mother! you have called me son then you are my mother. What and when I need some thing, I would let you know.” She blessed him and disappeared.
Now Hiranand became rich and called his family, and lived happily. He had six sons. The fourth son was Seth Manikchand. He was the most talented, and intelligent and was a devotee of Ganga Mata. Goddess Ganga was also pleased with him. He was a best friend of Nawab Mursheed Kuli Khan. Many Nawabs. Diwans sardars and even high ups in English company used to go to his house for consultation on political and other issues. He had an army of 2000 soldiers for his security and services.
Once when mursheed kuli khan became the Nawabs of Bengal, he advised him to change the capital from Dhakaa and establish a new capital near Calcutta. Nawabs replied, “Treasurary does not allow him. He has not enough money.” Seth Manikchand assured him, that he would himself see to it and establish a new city on the bank of rever Hoogly.” A nice well planned city was crested on both the banks of rever Hoogly, and then capital was transferred. In new city and named it Mursheedabad.
This city was so beautiful and grand that at one place Lord Clive wrote, “London is the biggest and grand city of the world but if we compare it with Mursheedabad we would find that mursheedabad is much more beautiful. As London lies on both the banks of river Thomes in the same way Mursheedabad lies on both the banks of river Hoogly. Even we cannot deny that roads, bunglows, are more flourished and prosperous, than those of London.
When Farukhshyar became the Emperor, he wa influenced by the English people and gave them an authority letter addressed to the Nawab to hand over 40 villages to the English Company. On the advice of Seth Manikchand he returned the order of handing over of the land of Bengal in the hands of Nawab. Then Seth Manikchand immediately reached Delhi and placed before the Emperor the whole situation and so impressed with Seth manikchand, that the offered him the post of Nawab, but he refused the offer and requested him to keep the post with Mursheed kuli Khan. Emperor of India honoured him with the title of ‘Jagat-Seth’ and sent a circular to the Nawab of Bengal asking him to do every thing with the advice of the Jagat-Seth.
Jagat-seth established his foundry in Mahimapur, where coins were moulded and become general currency for the whole country. In ‘Mukhtareen a Muslim writer wrote that Jagat Seth had so much money that he could build a golden bridge on river Ganga.’
After Farukhshyar, Mahammadshah assended the throne. He also honoured Jagal Seth by making him sit on the left of the Nawab and presented a Kundal of pearls, a elephant and palanquin.
Jagat Seth had two wives named manikdevi and Sohagdevi. Manikdevi built a grand Jain temple on the bank of River Hoogly of black touchstones. For collecting these touchstones she spent so much money in which she could have built another temple of gold.
Unfortunately, must of the part of the temple has been swept away in the flow of ricer Ganga, even then the remaining portion tells us so much of its magnificence. Jagat Seth had no son, so he adopted his nephew (his sister’s son) Shri Fatehchandji
Jagat Seth Khushalchand
He was son of Jagat Seth Mehtabchand. Emperor Shah Alam awarded him the title of ‘Jagat Seth’ Due to lack of money and also to young age he could not maintain the status of Jagat Seth. Even then he constructed 108 tanks for the general public. He made a park named ‘Khushal Bagh’ near his house. He had no son so he adopted his nephew Shri Harakchandji.
Lord Clive also made him his Banker. He built many temples at Samet Shikhar. He also built 108 water tanks for the general public at separate places. He also created ‘Khushal Baug’ near his places.
Shri Harakchand adopted Vashnav religion. His son was Inderchandji. After Inderchandji his son Govindchandji became Jagat-Seth. He adopted Seth Gulabchand and his son was Jagat-Seth Fatehchand. He was the last Jagat-Seth.
Jagat Seth had no son so adopted his nephew (his sister’s son) Shri Fatehchandji.
The palace of Jagat Seth was a place of consultation amongst Mahraja Tilokchand of Vardhman. Rajvallabh Nawab of Dhaka, Rai Aalamchand Haji Ahamed etc.