Humayun Emperor

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Humayun Emperor :: List of Mughal Emperors

Humayun (1530 – 40 and 1555 – 56) :

  • He was born to Mahim Begam and Babur. The throne inherited by Humayun was not a bed of roses.
  • Babar had practically got no time to consolidate his position and authority. Before he could put the whole country on a stable basis, he was gone.
  • He did a blunder by dividing his empire among his three brothers – Kamran, Hindal and Askari.
  • Built Dinpanah at Delhi as his second capital.
  • Defeated the Afghan forces at Daurah in 1532.

The Afghan Interlude

Sher Shah Suri History(1540 – 1545) :

  • Real name was Farid. Given the title Sher Khan by Babar Khan Lohani (Governor of Bihar) who appointed him Vakil (deputy).
  • Became the master of Delhi after the exit of Humayun.
  • Crushed the Rajput forces of Marwar at Samel in 1544.
  • Died in 1545 while campaigning against Kalinjar Fort.

Shershah’s Administration :

  • For administrative convenience, Shershah divided his whole empire into 47 divisions called sarkars, and sarkars into smaller parganas. In the field of central administration, Shershah followed the Sultanate pattern. There were – four main central departments, viz, Diwan – i – wizarat, Diwan – i – arz, Diwan – i – insha and Diwan – i – rasalat.
  • His Land Revenue System is noteworthy as he classified his land under 3 heads – good, middle and bad, and claimed 1 / 3rd of the produce. Land was measured by using the Sikandari – gaz (32 points). Todarmal contributed greatly in the development of revenue policy of Shershah. Akbar also adopted the same revenue policy, albeit with some amendments.
  • Shershah personally supervised the recruitment of the soldiers and paid them directly, He revived Alauddin’s system of branding the horses (daag) and keeping a descriptive roll of soldiers (chehra).
  • Shershah introduced a regular postal service. He also attempted to fix standard weights and measures.
  • Introduced the silver ‘Rupaya’ and the copper ‘Dam’ and abolished all old and mixed metal currency. He promoted the cause of trade and commerce by reducing the number of the customs duty collection points to just two :

1. Goods produced in Bengal or imported from outside had to pay customs duty at Sikrigali (at the border of Bengal and Bihar).

2. For the goods coming from West and Central Asia at the Indus.

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  • Shershah improved communication by building roads. The roads built by Shershah are called ‘the arteries of the empire’. Sarais were built on roads. He restored the old imperial road called Grand Trunk road, from the Indus River to Sonargaor, in Bengal.
  • Built his tomb at Sasaram in Bihar.
  • Built a new city on the bank of Yamuna River (present day Purana Qila).
  • Malik Mohammad Jaisi composed Padmavat (in Hindi) during his reign.
  • Abbas Khan Sarwani was his historian, who wrote Tarikh – i – SherShahi.
  • Sher Shah Suri gradually gained power during his time.
  • He was attacked by Sher Shah at Chausa (Battle of Chausa) in 1539, but escaped. Here Humayun was saved by Nizam, a water carrier (saqqa).
  • But in the Battle of Kannauj (also called Battle of Bilgram) in 1540, he was defeated by Sher Shah and had to flee.
  • Passed nearly 15 years (1540 – 1555) in exile.
  • First fled to Sind, which was under Shah Hussain Arghuna. In 1545, he went to the Persian emperor’s court.
  • Had the chance to return in 1555. Sher Shah, the victor of Kannauj, died in 1545. He was succeeded by his son Islam Shah, who ruled up to 1553. He was succeeded by Muhammad Adil Shah.
  • He was very fond of pleasures and left the affairs of his government in the hands of Hemu, his minister. His authority was challenged by Ibrahim Shah and Sikandar Shah. There were a large number of bloody battles among the various rivals. The net result of all this was that the Suri Empire was broken up.
  • Bairam Khan, his most faithful officer, helped him in this.
  • Died in 1556, due to a fall from his library building stairs (Sher Mandal, Delhi) seven months after he captured Delhi. It is said about him that “Humayun tumbled through life and he tumbled out of it”.
  • Gulbadan Begum, his half – sister, wrote Humayun – nama.

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