The Mughal Empire- Polity
- Defeated Ibrahim Lodi at Panipat in 1526.
- Was a descendent of Timur on his father’s side and of Chengiz Khan on the side of his mother.
- Umar Shaikh Mirza was his father.
- After defeating Ibrahim Lodi he had won a decisive victory against the Afghans.
- Defeated the Rana of Mewar, Sangram Singh or Rana Sanga on March 16, 1527, at Khanua.
- In 1528, he captured Chanderi from a Rajput Chief Medini Rai and a year later he defeated the Afghan chiefs under Mahmud Lodi in the battle of Ghagra in Bihar.
- A detailed record of Babur’s career is found in his autobigraphy—Tuzuk-i-Baburi or Baburnamah—which he wrote in his mother-tongue (Turki).
- Humayun ascended the throne at Agra, on the 29th December, 1530 A.D.
- Humayun gave large territories of his father’s dominions to his three brothers and two cousins.
- Karan was confirmed in his possession of Kabul and Qandhar.
- Askari got Sambhal. Alwar and Mewat were allotted to Hindal.
- His first step was the seizure of kalinjar.
- He defeated the Afghans in 1532 A.D. at the battle of Dauhria.
- Sher Shah proved to be the most formidable enemy of Humayun, and after defeating the latter at Chausa and Kanauj in 1540, completely shattered his prospects.
- After his final defeat at the hands of Sher Shah Suri the Mughal empire in India was temporarily eclipsed and Humayun had to pass nearly fifteen years (1540-55) in exile.
- But shortly after regaining the empire Humayun died in an accident.
- Akbar was coronated at Kalanaur.
- Within a few months of Akbar’s accession, Hemu, the wazir of Muhammad Adil Shah, occupied the country from Bayana to Delhi, including Agra, and assumed the title of Vikramaditya.
- In November 1556, the Mughal army under Bairam Khan moved towards Delhi and defeated and killed Hemu in the second battle of Panipat.
- During the years 1556-60 Bairam Khan enjoyed the supreme position in the state as the emperor’s guardian and Prime Minister.
- Concentration of power in his hands, his arrogance and arbitrary methods led to the fall of Bairam Khan in 1560.
i. Malwa was conquered in 1561 from Baz Bahadur.
ii. Fortrees of Merta in Marwar was captured after a brief seige in 1562.
iii. Chandrasen, the ruler of Marwar, submitted to Akbar in 1563.
iv. In 1567 Akbar himself conducted the seige of the fort of Chittor, fell next year (1568) after a desperate resistance.
v. Ranthambhor submitted in 1569 and Marwar and Bikaner in 1570.
vi. Battle of Haldighati between Rana Pratap Singh and Akbar in 1576.
vii. Akbar himself led an expedition to Gujarat in 1572 and completed it by the seige of Surat in 1573.
viii. In 1574-75 Bihar and Bengal were conquered from the Afghan chief Daud.
ix. After the death of Muhammad Hakim in 1586, Kabul was annexed to the Mughal empire.
x. In 1586, Kashmir too was annexed to the empire, and in 1593, as a preclude to the conquest of Kandhar, the whole of Sindh was annexed.
xi. In 1594 Kandahar was conquered from Persia.
xii. In 1601, the fort of Asirgarh was captured and Khandesh was annexed to the Mughal empire.
His liberal measures
i. In 1562 he passed a decree that in course of war the Hindu non-combatants and the families of Combatants were not to be made prisoners, reduced to slavery or converted to Islam.
ii. In 1563 he abolished the pilgrim tax.
iii. In 1564 he abolished Jeziyah
iv. He opened a translation department for translation of Sanskrit and other works into Persian.
v. The use of beef was forbidden and later, in 1583, killing of certain animals on particular days was forbidden.
The movement of non-sectarian path: preached by Dadu in Gujarat; his refusal to identify himself either with Hindus or Muslims; his assertion of indivisibility of the Supreme Reality.
Satnami Movement: Foundation of a new sect, called Satnamis (their god being Satnam) by Birbhan. Their rejection of caste system, idol-worship, and their maintenance of high standards of morals.
Narayanian Movement: Founder-Haridas; their belief in one God, Narayan or the supreme being.
Dharma Movement: In Maharashtra by several saints who worshipped Vithoba; their rejection of the caste system.
Sufi Movement: Belief in Tauhid or in the unity of Godhead; role of Dara Shikoh in spreading the idea of Tauhid.
Reactionary Movements: Among the orthodox Hindus spearheaded by Raghunandan of Navadwipa in Bengal; among the orthodox Muslims-spearheaded by Shaikh Ahmad Sarhindi.
for the general welfare and better government of the country.
- Rebellion of Jahangir’s son Khusran at Lahore (1606).
- The rebellious prince was captured, blinded, confined and subsequently killed by Khurram in 1622.
- The fifth Sikh Guru Arjan with whom the rebel prince had stayed at Tarn Taran and also received his blessings, was first fined by the government, but as he refused to pay the fine he was sentenced to death.
- The first military expedition undertaken by Jahangir was against Rana Amar Singh, son of Rana Pratap of Mewar.
- Rana Amar Singh came to terms with the Mughals in 1615.
- The greatest failure of Jahangir’s reign was the loss of Kandahar to Persia.
- In 1613, Nur Jahan was promoted to the status of Padshah Begum, coins were struck in her name and on all farmans her name was attached to the imperial signature.
- Nur Jahan's influence secured high positions for her father who got the title of Itimaduddaulah.
- Jahangir’s reign has been vividly portrayed by two representatives of King James I of England, namely, Captain Hawkins (1608-11) and Sir Thomas Roe (1615-19).
- They visited his court to gain favourable concessions for English trade with India.
- As a result of the efforts of Thomas Roe English factories were established at Surat, Agra, Ahmedabad and Broach.
- At the time of Jahangir’s death in October 1627, Shah Jahan was in the Deccan.
- The first three years of Shah Jahan’s reign were disturbed by the rebellions of the Bundela Chief Juhar Singh and of Khan Jahan Lodi.
- He ousted the Portuguese from Hugli and occupied it in 1632.
- During his period the Nizam Shahi Kingdom of Ahmadnagar was finally annexed to the Mughal empire .
- In 1636 Aurangzeb, son of Shah Jahan, was appointed the Mughal viceroy in the Deccan.
- The territories in his charge were divided into four subahs.
(a) Khandesh (b) Berar (c) Telengana (d) Ahmadnagar.
- In 1639, Ali Mardan Khan the disgruntled Persian Governor of Kandahar, delived the fort to the Mughals without fighting.
- In 1649 Shah Abbas II of Persia wrested Kandahar from the Mughals.
- Seige of Golconda and Bijapur in 1656 and 1657.
- At the time of Shah Jahan’s sickness in September 1657, his eldest son Dara was at his beside in Agra, Shuja was governor in Bengal, Aurangzeb was viceroy in the Deccan and the youngest Murad was governor in Gujarat.
- Many foreign travellers who visited India during the reign of Shah Jahan, have left a vivid account of his reign.
- Of these two Frenchman Bernier and Travenier and an Italian adventurer Manucci, the author of the Storio Dor Mogor, are specially noteworthy.
- Aurangzed had claimed the throne as the champion of Sunni orthodoxy.
- In 1659 he issued a number of ordinances to restore the Muslim law of conduct according to the teachings of the Quran.
- He discontinued the practice of inscribing the Kalima on the coins and abolished the celebration of the new year’s day (nauroz).
- Muhtasibs were appointed in all big cities to enforce the Quranic law and put down the practices forbidden in it.
- The ceremony of weighing the emperor on his birthdays and the practice of Jharokadarshan were also discontinued.
- In 1668 the observance of Hindu festivals was prohibited.
- In 1679-70 the Jat peasantry of the region of Mathura rose under the leadership of Gokala.
- In 1672, the Satanami peasants in the Punjab, and the Bundelas under the leadership of Champat
Facts To Be Remembered
- Maham Anaga was Akbar’s foster-mother.
- Akbar was successful in crushing a rebellion led by Uzbek nobles.
- Abdul Nabi was the corrupt chief qazi of Akbar.
- Chavand was the new capital of Rana Pratap.
- Chandrasen, the ruler of Marwar, waged a guerilla warfare against Akbar.
- Singhasan Battisi, the Atharva Veda and the Bible were translated into Persian during the reign of Akbar.
- The Kabul-Ghazni-Qandhar line was established by Akbar.
- The peasants who owned the land they tilled were called Khudkasht.
- Population in India at the beginning of Seventeenth century was about 125 million.
- During Akbar’s reign, Rajputs formed the largest section of the Hindu nobility, and among Rajputs, the Kachhwahas predominated.
- Hindus formed 33% of Aurangzeb’s nobility. Of the Hindu nobles, the Marathas formed more than half.
- Jahangir introduced the fashion of wearing costly jewels in their ears after piercing them.
- During Mughal India, the Chettis formed the trading community of South India.
- The fifth Guru Arjun Das started a system of collecting offerings from the Sikh at the rate of one-tenth of their income.
- Fobidden cesses were called abwabs under the Mughals.
- Jagannath and Janardan Bhatta were famous musicians who belonged to Shah Jahan’s court.
- Akbar gave Raja Birbal the title of Kavi-priya.
- Bihari Lal was the poet of Shah Jahan’s reign. He wrote Satsai which is a collection of 700 dohas and sortas.
- An important historical work of Shahjahan’s reign is the Amal-i-Salih of Muhammad Salih.
- Mirza Hossain Ali composed songs in Bengali in honour of Goddess Kali.
- If on earth be an Eden of Bliss
- It is this, it is this, none but this” —Amir Khusrau
Rai and Chhatrasal Bundela in Bundelkhand.
- These rebellions were the outcome of the agrarian tension and the reactionary policies of Aurangzeb.
- Aurangzeb caused serious rift in the Mughal-Rajput alliance by his policy of annexation of Marwar in 1679.
- In 1675 he ordered the arrest and execution of the ninth Sikh Guru Teg Bahadur, which led to the creation of Khalsa and the growth of Sikh military under the Sikh Guru Govind Singh.