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Delhi Sultanate: Slave Dynasty

17-JUL-2015 14:31

    Qutb-ud-din Aibak was a sipahasalar under Muhammad Ghori as well as his slave. He was born to a Turkish family in Central Asia and was sold as a slave in his childhood. As a viceroy of Sultan Muhammad Ghori, he sacked Banaras in 1194 AD. He also defeated the raja of Ajmer. He forced Raja Solankhoal to pay tribute after conquering Gwalior. Besides, he won the kingdom of Gujarat.

    Iltutmish succeeded Qutb-ud-din Aibak (1206-11) which is further followed by Razia (1236-40) and Balban (1265-85). Qutb-ud-din Aibak laid the foundation of Qutub Minar but completed by Iltutmish. Qutb-ud-din Aibak died as a result of fall from his horse while playing Chaugan.

    After Muhammad Ghori’s assasination in 1206 AD, Aibak became the Sultan of India and laid the foundation of Mameluk dynasty or Slave dynasty. In 1206 AD only, he was appointed as Naib us Sultanate (viceroy of Indian Empire of Ghori) by Muhammad Ghori.

    The major points related to Qutb-ud-din Aibak are as following:

    • He ruled for only 4 years. He died in 2010 while playing Chaughan.

    • He was the first ruler of the Delhi Sultanate.

    • He was a Turkish of the Aybak tribe.

    • Since he was very generous, He was nicknamed Lakha Baksh Sultan.

    • He was credited for laying the foundation for Qutub Minar which was named after a Sufi saint KhwajaQutb-ud-din Bakhtiyar Kaki.

    • He also commissioned Qutub Al Islam mosque.

    • He was succeeded by his son in law Iltutmish.

    • His tomb is located in Lahore, Pakistan.


    He was from the Illabari tribe of the Turks. He was the son–in–law of Aibak and succeeded him as the next Sultan of Delhi.

    He is credited with building the Hauz-i- Shamshi near Mahrauli in Delhi. He also completed the work on Qutub Minar which was started by his predecessor.

    He also introduced the Iqta system in Delhi sultanate which was a practice of tax farming. Under Iqta system, an officer was given grant of revenue from a territory in lieu of salary. However, Iqta system was not hereditary. The Iqta system connected the farthest part of the Sultanate to the central government.

    He is credited with issuing Silver Tanka and Copper Jital. The silver tanka had the weight of 175 grains.

    During the reign of Iltutmish, the Mongols had attacked India under Chengez Khan. But they soon left India and moved towards Multan, Sind and Qabacha.

    Following the death of Iltutmish, Razia became the sultan of Delhi Sultanate. But it was not easy for her. The main reason behind her becoming the sultan was that Iltutmish had found all his sons ill qualified and Razia fit all the criteria of a worthy successor to the throne. Therefore, he had declared Razia as his successor. But the Chihalgani or The Forty of the Turkish Chiefs opposed the death wish of Iltutmish and made his son Rukn ud din Firuz sit on the throne.

    Rukn ud din Firuz was incompetent and overindulged himself in sensuous pleasures and the affairs of the state were mismanaged. He was assassinated within 7 months.
    He was succeeded by Razia in 1236. She ruled for three and half years till 1240. Although, she had all the qualities of a good monarch, the Chihalgani (the group of forty Turkish chiefs) couldn’t accept the rule of a woman. They rebelled against Razia when she appointed her favourite Yakut as the superintendent of the Stables. Yakut was an Abyssinian which raised the jealousy of Turko-Afghan nobles.

    The rebel chiefs were supported by Malik Altunia, the governor of Bhatinda. Soon a battle ensued between the two rival groups following which Yakut was killed and Razia was taken prisoner.

    Razia married Altunia and they jointly tried to take the sultanate back which was captured by Razia’s brother Muizuddin Bahram Shah. However, Razia and her husband were defeated and they were forced to flee. While fleeing to Kaithal, they were captured by the Jats and assassinated.

    Muiz un din Bahram ruled for 2 years which was filled with murders and treacheries. Later, he was killed by his own army. The period ensued saw some puppet kings sitting on the throne of Delhi sultanate.

    Nasir-ud-din Mahmud, the youngest son of Iltutmish ruled from 1246 to 1266, primarily assisted by a Turk chief Balban. Balban later on succeeded Nasir-ud-din Mahmud.


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