UPSC : Cause Of The Decline Of Mughal Empire UPSC Notes | EduRev
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- Aurangzeb’s religious persecution of the Hindus in the shape of demolishing their temples, imposing Jaziya and custom duties, dismissing Hindus from posts, forbidding the early celebration of their fair and festivals, subjecting them to a number of social and political disabilities, persecuting them in so many harsh and cruel ways coupled with his ill-treatment of the Rajputs and the Marathas were the most potent causes of the downfall of the Mughal Empire.
Fig. Decline of Mughal Empire
- The rising of the Jats under Gokla, which was the direct result of the destruction of the temple of Mathura was only temporarily suppressed.
- The trouble began in 1686 and lasted throughout the reign of Aurangzeb seriously impairing the prestige of the empire besides causing it a great loss in men and money.
- The haughty attitude of Aurangzeb towards Shivaji when he paid a visit to Agra after the treaty of Purandhar turned Shivaji all the more against him.
- His undignified treatment of the Marathas turned them into strong enemies of the Mughal empire; his excecution of Teg Bahadur, the ninth Guru of the Sikhs, led to the rise of the Sikh power which offered a strong opposition to the Mughal empire and became the deadly enemy of Islam.
- Aurangzeb’s long wars with the Marathas and the conquest of Bijapur and Golconda, two Shia kingdoms, proved very expensive and harmful.
- These wars ruined the emperor’s health, the morale of the army and the finances of the State.
- Aurangzeb was suspicious by nature and rarely trusted anybody. He tried to do everything himself. But it was humanly impossible for one single man, however great a genius he might be, to supervise the affairs of an empire as extensive as that of Aurangzeb.
Points To Be Remembered
- Puran Chand was the dewan of Nizam-ul- Mulk.
- Ramjivan was the favourite of Murshid Quli Khan.
- The highest post in Safdar Jang’s Government was held by a Hindu, Nawab Rai.
- Ajlaf Muslims were the lower class Muslims.
- In Kerala, the family was matrilineal.
- Ahilya Bai administered Indore successfully from 1766 to 1796.
- Najib Khan, the Rohilla chief was the confident of Ahmad Shah Abdali.
- Prasuram Bhau was a Maratha General of the 18th century.
- Music made great progress during the reign of Muhammad Shah, the Mughal emperor.
- Mirza Ghalib belonged to the 19th century.
- Mir Sauda and Nazir were famous Urdu poets of the 18th century.
- There was a revival of Malayalam literature under Martanda Varma and Rama Varma.
- The Padmanabhan palace with its remarkable architecture and moral paintings was also constructed in the 18th century.
- Wealth, luxury and the influence of climate brought general degradation of the Mughal nobility and the laxity of discipline and disorganisation weakened the Mughal army.
- The mansabdari system proved disruptive in its effects. The luxury, corruption and oppression by the officers of the State seemed to have been a permanent defect in the administration.
Fig. Mansabdari System
- In the time of the later Mughal emperors the great nobles or officers of the empire turned the lands or jagirs with which they maintained troops into their hereditary property. Thus the empire had no strong body of personal troops with which to assert its authority.
- The vast extent of the Mughal empire rendered it almost ungovernable under medieval conditions without satisfactory means of communication.
- The prolonged anarchy involved in the repeated wars of succession was a potent influence in bringing about the ruin of the imperial fabric.
- The successors of Aurangzeb were weak and incompetent rulers and were mere puppets in the hands of their selfish and unscrupulous ministers. They had little personal ability and no strength of character.
- Nadir Shah’s invasion in 1739 weakened the tottering Mughal empire and he carried away money in crores besides a vast quantity of precious stones, the famous Koh-i-Noor and Peacock Throne.
- Ahmad Shah Abdali’s repeated invasions of India completed the devastation of remnants of the Mughal empire which was begun by Nadir Shah.
Facts To Be Remembered
- Tayaumanavar (1706-44) was one of the best exponents of sitar poetry, in Tamil.
- Heer Ranjha was composed by Warris Shah.
- Shah Abdul Latif composed Risalo, a collection of poems.
- Raja Sawai Singh was a distinguished statesman, lawmaker, a social reformer and a great astronomer. He founded the city of Jaipur.
- Saadatullah Khan, the nawab of Carnatic, freed himself of the control of the viceroy of the Deccan and make his office hereditary by making his nephew Dost Ali his successor without the approval of the Nizam.
- The Sarkar of Guntur was the bone of contention between Nizam Ali, the ruler of the Hyderabad, and the English. For the Nizam it was the only outlet to the sea; for the English its possession was necessary to connect their possessions in the north with those in the south.
- Chin Qulich Khan better known as Nizamul- Mulk founded the state of Hyderabad.
- Ranjit Singh acquired the world famous diamond the Koh-i-nur from Shah Shuja when the former gave him shelter when he was driven from Afghanistan (1813-14 A.D.).
- Nadir Shah carried with him the peacock throne and the Koh-i-Nur. Ahmad Shah Abdali was one of the Nadir Shah’s ablest generals.