Khilji Dynasty: The Delhi Sultanate

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Khilji Dynasty: The Delhi Sultanate

The Khalji community or Khilji dynasty was a Muslim dynasty, that ruled large parts of the Indian subcontinent between 1290 and 1320. The founder of the dynasty was Jalal ud din Firuz Khalji. This dynasty is precisely the second Mughal Dynasty. This event traces the formation of Khilji clan and the origin of Afghan Village.It became the ruling dynasty of India replacing the Mamluk Dynasty in the 1290 AD. Jalal us din Khilji killed the last descendant of the Mamluk dynasty and further announced himself, the sultan of the Delhi Sultanate.

Jalal ud din Khilji’s name was originally Malik Firuz and was a peaceful man. There were several instances where he showed his mercy including the incident when Balban’s nephew Malik Chhajju imposed war on Jalal-ud-din Firuz Khilji. In this war, Balban was defeated and captured alive but was forgiven by the Sultan of Delhi.

Summary on the Khilji Dynasty of Delhi Sultanate

The Khiljis served under the Ilbari dynasty of Delhi. Malik Firuz was the founder of the Khilji Dynasty who was originally the Ariz-I-Mumalik appointed by Kaiqubad during the days of the decline of the Ilbari Dynasty. He took advantage of the political vacuum and ascended the throne of Delhi as Jalal-ud-din Firuz Khilji.

The Dynasty

The Khilji Dynasty was the second dynasty of Delhi Sultanate who came from Central Asia. In course of time they adopted the Khura Sanian’s urbane culture and certain Afghan custom and social traditions from Ghaznavids. Therefore, the court of Khiljis was of multi-ethnical background with people of Persian, Indian, Arab and Turkish origin. This marked an end to the monopolization of power and racial dictatorship by Ilbari Turks and also led to the widening of the social base of the ruling class. Here, we are giving a complete detailed summary on the Khilji Dynasty of Delhi Sultanate.

Jalal-ud-din Firuz Khilji (AD 1290-96)

1. He came to the throne at the age of seventy and ruled for six years, but did not dare to sit on the throne of Balban whom he had served earlier. He made Kilokhari as his capital.

2. He adopted a conciliatory policy towards the nobles of earlier regime and even the Mongols. So, he appointed Malik Chajju who was a Balban’s nephew, as the Governor of Kara, but he rebelled later.

3. One of the most important events of his reign was the invasion of Devagiri, the capital of the Yadava king, Raja Ramachandradeva, in the Deccan, by Ali Gurshasp, the nephew and son-in-law of the sultan, and the Governor of Kara.

Ala-ud-din Khilji (1296-1316 A.D.)

In 1296 A.D. Ala-ud-din Khilji succeeded Jalal-ud-din Firoz Khilji and ascended the throne.

Ala-ud-din Khilji Invasions in the North

Ala-ud-din Khiliji’s generals namely, Ulugh Khan and Nusrat Khan conquered Gujarat.

He captured Ranthambore and killed Hamir Deva its ruler.

He also captured Malwa, Chittor, Dhar, Mandu, Ujjain, Marwar, Chanderi and Jalor.

Ala-ud-din Khilji Invasions in the South

He was the first Sultan who attacked South India.

He sent his confidante and general Malik Kafur against the rulers of the south.

Prataprudra-II of Warangal, Ramachandra Deva, the Yadava king of Devagiri, and Vira Ballala-III the Hoysala king were defeated.

He constructed a mosque in Rameswaram.

The kingdoms of the south acknowledged the power of Alauddin Khilji and paid his monetary tributes.

Domestic Policies of Alauddin Khilji

Ala-ud-din followed the Divine Right Theory of Kingship.

He introduced four ordinances to prevent repeated revolts.

He impounded pious grants and free grants of lands

He restructured the spy system.

He banned social parties and wine.

He introduced a permanent standing army.

He started the system of branding of horses and descriptive roster of individual soldiers to inhibit corruption.

He fixed the prices of necessary commodities which were below the normal market rates.

He strictly prohibited black marketing.

Revenue was collected in cash and not in kind.

He followed discriminatory policies towards the Hindus and imposed the Jizya, a grazing tax and a house tax on the Hindu community.

Marketing System

Officers called Diwan-i-riyasat were appointed in the offices called Shahana-i-mandi to standardize the market.

Merchants should have to register themselves in the office (Shahana-i-mandi) before selling their goods at the fixed rates.

Ala-ud-din-Khilji’s Estimate

He was the first to bring the standing army system.

He constructed Alai Darwaza, the Palace of a thousand pillars and the Fort of Siri.

End of the Dynasty

Ala-ud-din Khilji died in 1316 A.D.

Successors of Ala-ud-din-Khilji were weak rulers.

Eventually, in 1320 A.D. the Governor of Punjab Ghazi Malik led a group of nobles, conquered Delhi and captured the throne.

Ghazi Malik assumed the name ‘Ghiyas-ud-din Tughluq’ at Delhi and founded the Tughluq Dynasty, a dynasty of rulers.

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