Sayyid Dynasty: List of Rulers
Confusion was prevailing in India after the last Tughlaq, Nasir-ud-Din Mahmud Shah Tughlaq died. At this time Timur’s deputy in India and the Governor of Multan, Khizr Khan marched to Delhi and defeated Daulat Khan, the military head and occupied the throne. This led to the rise of the fourth dynasty in power of the Delhi Sultanate. The family asserted themselves as the descendants of Muhammad (Sayyids).
Khizr Khan, who founded the Sayyid Dynasty and took over as the first ruler in 1414, originally did not take the title of sultan and continued to be Rayat-i-Ala or Vassal (feudatory with mutual obligation to the ruler in exchange for certain privileges) of Timurdis. As a mark of recognition to his dedication, the name of Mongol ruler Shah Rukh (the fourth son of Timur lane) was suffixed to his name.
He appointed Malik-us-Sharq Malik Tuhfa as the wazir of his court and gave him the title of Taj-ul-Mulk. With his help, Khizr khan opposed the rebellion of Har Singh, the Raja of Katehar. He not only successfully united Punjab with Delhi and but was also regulated the rebellions of the governors of several fiefdoms such as Mewat, Gwalior, Etawah and many more under his rule.
Takhrikh-i-MubarakShahi by Yahya Sirhindi states that Khizr Khan was a descendant of the Prophet of Islam. His son, Mubarrak Khan, took the throne after his death. He ruled from 1414-1421 and was succeded by Mubarak Shah (the son of Khizr Khan).
Mubarak Shah took over the throne in 1421 with a vision of expanding the empire but he faced the opposition and revolts of the nobles. Despite the opposition, he was an efficient ruler and retained his rule from 1421-1434.
Mubarak Shah undertook expeditions to suppress rebellion and reinstate order through different parts of the kingdom. While he was successful in Bhatinda and the Doab, the Khokhars of Punjab could not be suppressed. He named himself Muizz-ud-Din Mubarak Shah and minted coins with this name. To collect revenue and keep anarchy in check, he adopted the practice of invading his fiefdoms using coercion tactics. New city called the Mubarakabad was set up by him on the banks of the Yamuna River in 1433 and personally planned the architecture of his tomb: ‘Mubarak Shah’s Tomb’ during his rule.
His war campaigns had several setbacks and in1443 one of the annoyed former Minister Sarvar-ul-Mulk, plotted to kill him with the help of other Hindu courtiers. He was brutally assassinated while preparing for his prayers. Muhammad Shah (The son of his brother) was enthroned, since Mubarak Shah did not have a son.
Muhammad Shah ruled from 1434-1444. He lost the trust and support of the Nobles as he was an inefficient ruler who misused his power and authority. Wanting to have a pleasurable life he was extremely lethargic. He could not control and check the internal-rebellion among the nobles in the court and eventually his authority of rule was just a meager area of around 30 miles while the rest of the Sultanate was ruled by the nobles. His death in 1444, led to the succession of his son Alam Shah.
Alam Shah like Muhammad Shah, Alam Shah was also an incapable ruler; he spent his entire life in Baduan, a place he thoroughly loved as a visitor. The advantage of his weakness and lack of control in Central Authority got Bahlol Lodhi, (the governor of Lahore and Sarhind) to gather strength and take control over Delhi in 1447 by replacing Alam Shah. Alam Shah stayed in and ruled Baduan till 1478 and his death marked the end of the Sayyid dynasty.
Conclusion: The dynasty established by Khizr Khan, and led forward by Mubarak Shah, started getting disintegrated after the rulers Muhammad shah and Alam Shah ascended the throne and the sultanate was voluntarily abdicated to Bahlol Khan Lodi due to their incompetence.