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Friday, October 21, 2016


1206 – 1526 AD

Rise of Delhi Sultanate:
Muizuddin Mohd. Ghori, the last Turkish conqueror of north India, defeated Prithviraj Chauhan, the Chauhan ruler of Ajmer, Delhi and parts of the Punjab, in the second battle of Tarain in 1192 and occupied his vast territory up to Delhi. He also defeated the Gahadavala ruler Jai Chandra, the ruler of Kannauj, in the battle of Chandawar in 1194, capturing his territory up to Varanasi. Mohd. Bin Bakhtiyar Khalji, one of the commanders of Mohd Ghori conquered Bihar from the later Palas in 1197 and Bengal from the last Sena ruler Lakshaman Sena in 1199. Muizuddin Mohd. Ghori had no sons. He didn’t nominate any particular one as his successor. Mohd. Ghori’s sudden death in 1206 resulted in a scramble for supremacy among his three important generals – Qutbuddin Aibak (a viceroy of Mohd. Ghori and commander of his army in India), Tajuddin Yalduz (ruled Karman and Sankuran between Afghanistan and Sind), and Nasiruddin Qubacha (held Uchh). The assumption of sovereign powers by Qutubuddin Aibak in 1206 is regarded as the foundation of the Sultanate of Delhi and the first ruling dynasty of the sultanate.
There were 5 dynasties during Delhi Sultanate period (1206 – 1526 AD):
·         Mamluk dynasty (12061290)
·         Khilji dynasty (12901320)
·         Tughlaq dynasty (13201413)
·         Sayyid dynasty (14141451)
·         Lodi dynasty (14511526)
Mamluk Dynasty 1206 – 1290 AD
Mamluk Dynasty is commonly known as the Slave Dynasty (Also called as ‘the early turk’, and ‘the ilbari’). Mamulks had a Turkish origin. It was the first dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate. Mamluk Dynasty was established by Qutubuddin Aibak who was a slave and general of Muhammad Ghori. Aibak took control of Ghori’s territories in the Indian region after his death.
Important rulers of the Mamluk dynasty:

QutubuddinAibak (1206 - 1210AD):
·         The first Muslim ruler who ruled South Asia from South Asia. He is known as "Lakh Baksh Sultan" for his generosity.
·         He started the construction of Qutub Minar in New Delhi after the name of the famous Sufi saint Khwaja Qutbuddin Baktiyar Kaki.
·         He built security towers, check posts, tax posts and forts in the most important cities of his empire.
·         He died in 1210, from the injuries received while falling from horse in a game of Chaugan (polo). His rule lasted only 4 years.
·         Aibak was succeeded by his son Aram Shah, who proved to be incompetent.
Shamsuddin Iltutmish (1211-1236):
·         Turk nobles invited Iltutmish, one of the slaves and son-in-law of Aibak, to assume charge of the state affairs.
·         Iltutmish was the Governor of Badaun when he deposed Qutubuddin's successor Aram Shah and rose to power in 1211.
·         He made Delhi as his capital.
·         Iltutmish devouted the first 10 years of his reign to securing his throne from rivals particularly Tajuddin Yaldaz and Nasiruddin Qubacha – who were the surviving officers of Mohd. Ghori in the Punjab. He defeated both of them in 1216 - 17, and thus made his position secure.
·         In the meantime, he received the alarming news of the Mongol menace in central Asia under the leadership of Chengiz Khan, the founder of the Mongol empire. It is to the credit of iltutmish that, by his diplomatic skill, he saved the infant kingdom from the fury of the Mongol invasion.
·         He conquered Multan and Bengal in 1227 - 28, reasserted his authority in Bengal and Bihar in 1229, and conquered Ranathambhor and Mandor in Rajastan.
·         In 1234 – 35, he led an expedition against Malwa and conquered Bhilsa. Ujjain was also conquered and the ancient Mahakal temple was desecrated.
·         It was he who gave the country a capital, a sovereign state, a monarchial form of govt and a governing class or nobility, known as Turkan-i-chahalgani or Chalisa (a group of 40). The majority of the nobles in iltutmish’s nobility were Turks followed by Tajiks.
·         Iltutmish divided his empire into numerous big and small iqtas, as assignment of land in lieu of salary, which he distributed to his Turkish officers.
·         He introduced the silver tanka and the copper jital –the two basic coins of Delhi Sultanate.
·         Iltutmish deviated from the normal practice of selecting his eldest surviving son as his successor and declared his preferences to his daughter Razia.
·         After his death, Shah Turkan, the mother of Iltutmish’s eldest son, with the help of the Ulema and Turkish nobles, raised his son Ruknuddin Firuz to the throne, but he could not manage the affairs of state.
·         The Qutub Minar was finally completed under Iltutmish.
Razia Sultana (1236-1240):
·         She was the first and only Muslim lady who ever ruled India.
·         She used to rule without the veil.
·         She further offended the nobles by her preference for an Abyssian slave Yakut.
·         The wazir of Illtutmish Junnaidi revolted against her but was defeated.
·         There was a serious rebellion in Bhatinda. Altunia, governor of Bhatinda refused to accept suzerainity of Razia. Razia accompanied by Yakut marched against Altunia. However, Altunia got Yakut murdered and imprisoned Razia. Subsequently, Razia was married to Altunia and both of them marched towards Delhi as nobles in Delhi raised Bahram Shah (3rd son of Illtutmish) to throne.
·         In 1240 AD, Razia became the victim of a conspiracy and was assassinated near Kaithal (Haryana).
Bahram Shah (1240 - 42):
·         Iltutamish‘s third son Bahram Shah was put on throne by powerful Turkish council Chalisa.
·         He was killed by Turkish nobles.
Allauddin Masud Shah (1242 - 46):
·         He was son of Ruknuddin Feroz.
·         He was disposed after Balban and Nasiruddin Mahmud‘s Mother, Malik –ae -Jahan, conspired against him and established Nasiruddin Mahamud as the new Sultan.

Nasiruddin Mahmud (1246 - 66):
·         He was the eldest son of Illtutmish.
·         Minaj-us-Siraj has dedicated his book Tabaquat-i-Nasiri to him.
Ghiyasuddin Balban (1266-1287):
·         After the death of Nasiruddin; Balban ascended the throne in 1266.
·         He broke the power of Chalisa and restored the prestige of the crown. He made kingship a serious profession.
·         The Persian court model influenced Balban‘s conception of Kingship. He took up the title of Zil-i-ilahi (Shadow of God).
·         As a Sultan, Balban adopted a blood and iron policy.
·         He introduced Sijda (prostration before the monarch) and Paibos (kissing the feet of monarch) as the normal forms of salutation.
·         Divine right of the king was emphasized by calling himself Zil-i-ilahi.
·         He gave great emphasis on justice and maintaining law and order.
·         He established a department of intelligence. He spread his spies to gather information about all political developments and conspiracies in the state.
·         He established the military department Diwan-i-Arz.
·         In his last days he overlooked Sultanate affairs due to death of his eldest and most loving son Muhammad, and rebellion by his closest and most loved slave, Tughril. Muhammad died fighting Mongolians in 1285 and Tughril was captured and beheaded.
Kaiqubad: (1287 - 90):
·         He was the grandson of Balban and was established on the throne by Fakruddin, the Kotwal of Delhi. But Kaiqubad was killed by nobles.
·         Kaimur was the minor son of Kaiqubad who came to throne at an age of 3. He was the last Illbari ruler. The Khalji nobles revolted against him and he was killed within three months.



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