After the death of King harsh, the new ruling class emerges in the Indian Subcontinent i.e., Rajput. The myriads of Rajput dynasties carved a new dimension to the politics of the Indian subcontinent. Here, we are giving a complete overview of the political condition of the Rajputs, which will help the readers to their general knowledge about this warrior clan of early medieval India.
Feudal System: The political structure of the Rajput States was based on the feudal character just like Europe. The king grants land and received grants as tax on behalf of the land. When Zamindar received a king's grant of land for the service and the land was called his Jagir. The Zamindar who takes care of the King’s land called Jagirdar and they have to maintain a small army, according to the charger so that they can help the king at the time of war. The King’s power lies on the Zamindar and also this army was not regularly trained.
This system only strengthens the feudal lords i.e. Zamindars and Kings were nominal head to whom they pay tribute. When a foreign power invaded, the king had to seek the help from them. Often the Zamindars befriended the enemies and rebelled against their masters. The king had to face rebellion in place of help. Whenever the king was weak or the war of succession was continuing, such events occurred. If the king became weak, the feudal lords declared their independence as they had enough time to strengthen their power. It was the general system.
Small States: The small and disintegrated state was the main features of the early medieval India and this was just because of political disunity among the Rajputs states and as a result they fought among themselves. The most prominent among them were —Chauhan, Rathore, Chandel, Solanki etc. This was the reason that even in the face of foreign aggressions; they did not jointly face them and could not save the nation from defeat.
War-Ridden: The Rajputs states were running with quarrelsome trait and tendency and hence, for them the wars were just a game. Their love of war never allowed them to sit in peace. It led to mutual wars and the enmity always increased among them, even on small issues.
Lack of Political Farsightedness: The Rajputs were courageous, brave, zealous and patriotic, but they lacked political farsightedness. They believed that war should fit within the realm of ethics which means- fleeing enemy and unarmed enemy must not attack. They could protect the ethical and the glory of Rajputs but they never help other rulers who faced foreign attack. The foreign aggressors took full advantage of these customs. They exploited this moral mentality of the Rajputs and used their own diplomatic skill to conquer them.
Army: The Rajput army consisted of Infantry, Cavalry and Elephantry. The use of elephant in the war sometimes strengthens the army, but in many occasions, these elephants trampled their own army. Hence, this was one the reason of defeat at a time when they had the upper hand. About half of the revenue was spent upon the army because King’s maintain its own army and yet he had to depend upon army of feudal lords.
Administration: The administration was moving around the norms of feudal system, but the ultimate supreme power was in the hands of the king. He used to assume the titles of `Parambhattarak', `Parmeshwar' and `Maharajadhiraja’.
In the above overview on the Political Condition of the Rajputs Ruling States, it is noteworthy that Rajput emergence was the outcome of disintegration of the Pushyabhuti dynasty rule, but these small states carved out niche to give new dimensions to Indian politics.
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