Ratlam was given to Ratan Singh Rathore as a gift by Shah Jahan. Shah Jahan loved watching elephant fights and therefore held an event, choosing his favorite war elephants and inviting all the clans of Rajputana (present-day Rajasthan) to watch. From the Rathore clan, Ratan Singh was chosen. At the beginning of the festival, one of the elephants ( Keharkope ) went berserk and headed towards Shah Jahan. No one in the crowd was brave enough to move to protect him. Everyone feared for their own lives and fled except Ratan Singh, who swiftly mounted the elephant. With his katar, Singh stabbed the elephant in its head and killed it. Shah Jahan saw this and was so impressed by his bravery that he gave him the entire state of Ratlam, proclaiming him as the king.
Ratlam was a princely state in British India, part of Malwa agency of Central India. For a long period of time, the Ratlam region was under rule of the Rathore clan. The rulers were Suryavansha Rathores to which Maharaja of Jodhpur, Bikaner and Kishangarh belonged. The first Ruler was the Maharaja Ratan Singh, he married 12 wives (amongst others), including Maharani Sukhroopde Kanwar Shekhawat Ji Sahiba, daughter of Kunwar Purshottam Das of Jhajhar (Shekhawati) in Rajasthan. She committed sati in 1658. Still Shree Ji Maharajah Natwar Singh Of ratlam Is Belonging To His Family & Living In Jaipur, Rajasthan . The state had an area of 902 sq. mi., which was closely interlaced with the territories of the princely states of Sailana, Semaliya, and Kanwas.