Great Muslim Rulers : The myth and the reality

One of the foundations of secular Marxist history writing is glorification of certain Muslim rulers of India. The glorification happens in many ways. Sometimes, they are praised for their conquests, sometimes for their public works and charity and sometimes for their justice and fair treatment of Hindus.

This is not limited to academic matters. What we read in school or colleges is reinforced by cinema, TV serials and newspapers. Myths of their greatness are perpetuated on social media by the foot soldiers of Marxism and Islamism.

To reclaim our rightful place as Indians in the world and as Hindus in the mainstream discourse, it is important that such claims be examined closely and, if found false, be discarded. These great Muslim leaders are the false Gods we need to destroy so that the real history of India is unraveled.

In this post, I analyse policies, actions and personality of some of these ‘Great’ Muslim rulers.

‘Great’ Muslim Rulers of Delhi

Delhi was among the first places in India that came under Muslim rule in late 11th century. Before that only parts of Punjab and Sindh were under Muslims. Delhi Sultans and Mughals ruled from Delhi and are given more space in the textbooks as compared to other great and mostly bigger Kingdoms/Empires in India. In fact the medieval History of India as taught in textbooks is largely the dynastic history of Delhi Sultans and Mughals. It is as if no other Kingdom existed in medieval India or they were all inferior and subordinate to these ‘Great Muslim Rulers’.

Obviously, reality is different and much more complex. I have written a post on how Rajputs struggled against imperialist Delhi and won many glorious victories. I have written about how the Vijayanagar Empire destroyed all signs of Muslim rule in South India. I have also written about how Maharana Pratap reconquered Mewar and defeated Mughals. Unfortunately, such narrative, which represent the truth, are absent from our text books and our discourse. People who wish to state these truths are called communal.

Delhi was ruled by Muslims from 1192 to 1764. I know, you have read that Bahadur Shah Zafar was the last Mughal emperor and he ruled in 1857. The truth is since 1730s, Mughals had become so weak that they had to Marathas to keep their throne. After 1764, they became pensioners of British in the Treaty of Allahabad and after 1772, they became pensioners of Marathas. Sindhia of Gwalior kept them under control until 1803. After 1803, they were again pensioners of British. So weak were the Mughals ‘Emperors’ after 1719 that many were killed, blinded and humiliated by their own courtiers and invading armies. We shall accordingly use this period for our analysis.

I have chosen only a few of the rulers for two reasons. One, it would be an even longer post if I included all rulers. The pattern is the same for all rulers in this period, so including all would be repetitive. As this is not an academic blog, it is not required. Secondly, the rulers mentioned below are glorified more than usual. They have nice epithets, they are thought of as paragons of virtue, movies and serials are made on them and academics periodically write nice things about them in newspaper. So it is more important to show these great Muslim rulers in true light.

Qutubuddin Aibak

Great Muslim ruler Qutb -ud-Din Aibak
Slave of Muhammad Ghori : Aibak

A slave-General of Muhammad Ghori, Aibak was left incharge of Indian portion of the Ghurid empire after Second Battle of Tarain. He ruled till 1210, when he died after falling from a horse while playing Chaugan{Polo}. Much of his time was spent in war against Chauhans, who still retained some area and Gahadwal kingdom.

This is how our history books characterize him :-

  • “All contemporary chroniclers praise Aibak as a loyal, generous, courageous and just man.” – 20th century historian, academic and Chancellor of AMU Mr. K. A. Nizami.
  • Most of the other historians praise him for being generous. According to Minhaj Siraj, medieval Muslim historian, his generosity earned him the epithet “lakh-bakhs”, literally “giver of lakhs.
  • Fakhr-i Mudabbir states that Aibak’s soldiers did not dare to forcibly take even a blade of grass or a morsel of food from the peasants.
  • The 16th century Mughal chronicler Abu’l-Fazl praises Aibak stating that “he achieved things, good and great”.
  • Firishta, a historian in 17th century says, that “Aibak of the time” was used to describe generous people
  • Apart from this he constructed buildings like Qutub Minar and Adhai Din ka Jhopra.

Thus, we are led to believe that he was second avatar of Daanveer Karna. Please note that all these positive statements come from Muslim sources and these are accepted as gospel truth.

The Greatness of Qutbuddin Aibak:-

  • For all the praise of his generosity, Aibak never gave a single copper coin in charity to any Hindu. Charity during those times was limited to Muslims.
  • If the above statement looks like an extreme one, look at the historical evidence.
  • Chronicler Hasan Nizami, who migrated from Nishapur to Delhi during Aibak’s reign, characterizes Aibak as a devout Muslim who “uprooted idolatry” and “destroyed temples” at Kuhram.
  • He also mentions that the Hindu temples at Meerut, Banaras, and Kalinjar were converted into mosques during Aibak’s reign; these included “a thousand temples” in Banaras alone.
  • He further claims that Aibak freed the whole Kol (Aligarh) region from idols and idolatry.
  • Nizami’s claim that remains of the demolished Hindu temples were used to built mosques is corroborated by architectural remains, such as those at the Qutb Minar complex in Delhi and the Adhai Din Ka Jhonpra in Ajmer. I myself have seen these and any visitor to Qutub Minar can see the remains of Hindu-Jain temples there.
  • Aibak’s conquests involved large-scale capture of people as slaves. According to Hasan Nizami, his Gujarat campaign resulted in enslavement of 20,000 people; and his Kalinjar campaign resulted in enslavement of 50,000 people. Similar reports are from Koil{now named Aligarh} and other places.
  • During his rule, Bakhtiyar Khilji burnt down Nalanda University and massacred thousands of peaceful Buddhists. He also conquered parts of Bengal and attacked Assam. The Assamese defeated Muslim armies comprehensively and Khilji died soon after.
  • However, according to 20th century Historian Irfan Habib, from AMU, these facts, of enslavement, massacres and destruction of temples, seem to be exaggerated. The historians of AMU and JNU propagate this exaggeration theory in defense of all Muslim rulers.

Please note, how the report of positive actions by Aibak is taken as absolute truth, while his brutal actions are watered down. The reports of temple destruction and enslavement of population are dismissed as exaggeration and Aibak is Transformed from a brutal fanatic to a saint who “gave lakhs”

Ghiyasuddin Balban

Great Muslim ruler Balban
Great Muslim Ruler Balban

After Aibak, the important ruler was Iltutmish. He was a slave of Aibak and followed in his master’s steps. He shifted capital to Delhi and completed many things which Aibak started including Qutub Minar. He destroyed Mahakaleshwar temple in in Ujjain and hundreds of other temples. His daughter was Razia.

Balban became de facto ruler after 1246 when Nasiruddin Mehmud, his son in law, became Sultan. After poisioning him, Balban ascended throne in 1266.

History books are generous to him. This is how he is described:-

  • Balban’s reign, according to medieval historian Ziauddin Barani, was to install “Fear of the governing power, which is the basis of all good government.”
  • Furthermore, he “maintained that the Sultan was the ‘shadow of God’ and introduced rigorous court discipline.”
  • Balban’s military reign also distinguished with his success repelling Mongol army.
  • Balban had his nobles punished most harshly for any mishap, including severe treatment of their own slaves. One of his nobles, Malik Baqbaq, the governor of Budaun, was punished for ordering one of his slaves to be beaten to death, apparently when being drunk. Another governor, Haibat Khan, was handed over to the slave’s widow for punishment.
  • Balban sheltered at his court dozens of Princes from Central Asia, who had fallen on bad times due to Mongol attacks.
  • Balban brought law and order in the areas nearby Delhi and in Awadh.

Looks like a decent king, right? After all he punished who beat their slaves, raised the prestige of throne{be claiming descent from a semi-legendary figure}, repelled Mongols, sheltered dispossessed princes and brought law and order. The reality however is a bit disappointing:-

  • He was much obsessed with his fake ancestry, title of ‘Shadow of God’ and prestige of Kingship. He was one of the most racist of Sultans. He appointed only Turks in high positions and claimed that his blood boils whenever he sees a Hindu or a Muslim of inferior race{i.e. Indian}
  • Tughril, the governer of Bengal revolted. Balban sent an army from Awadh to suppress him. When they were defeated, the infuriated Sultan in his rage ordered the defeated generals to be hanged over the gates of Ayodhya.
  • After another campaign and killing a rebel Tughril Khan, the Sultan ordered the killing of all his friends and rebels. Returning to Lucknow, Balban took his revenge on Tughril’s associates as well. They were said to be impaled on stakes on either side of a two-mile long main bazar road in the city center. The situation has been described by Lane-poole as, “Even a beggar to whom the usurper had been kind was not spared.”
  • According to Barani, “Such punishment as was inflicted on Lakhnauti had never been heard of in Delhi nor could anyone remember such a thing in all Hindustan.”
  • Dr.V.S. Smith states, “By royal command many of the rebels were cast under the feet of elephants… Skinned from head to feet… some of them were hung over every gate of Delhi… One never heard such a tale of terror.
  • Several members of the ‘Corps of Forty’, his former friends, were done to death. The examples of his compassion above{nobles punished for mistreatment of slaves} were actually a ruse to murder his opponents.
  • Mewatis revolted during time of Balban. In suppressing their interminable revolts around Delhi, he massacred 100,000 people which caused rivers of blood to flow all around. Mangled dead bodies piled up in every town and the whole region emitted an unbearable stench.
  • He forcibly converted the Rajputs of Mewat to Islam. Even today it is a Muslim majority region and people have Rajput titles. Unfortunately, in recent years Mewatis Muslisms, who traditionally did not eat beef and were patriotic, have moved towards extremism.

Alauddin Khilji

One of the great Muslim rulers : Alauddin Khilji
One of the great Muslim rulers : Alauddin Khilji

There is no secret that Alauddin Khilji was a greedy tyrant. However, the full scope of his evil deeds is quite unknown. Worse, the textbooks present his many positive qualities. Among his praises, one comes across the following quite frequently:-

  • Alauddin Khilji repelled Mongol invasions and thus saved India from the brutal fate that destroyed most of the Islamic Kingdoms in middle east. Recently, noted lyricist and foot soldier of Islamist- Marxist cabal, Javed Akhtar also praised him publicly on twitter on the basis of this achievement.
  • According to Ziauddin Barani, Alauddin was the first sultan to separate religion from the state. Barani wrote that he “came to the conclusion that polity and government are one thing, and the rules and decrees of shariah law are another.” On the basis of this, many modern historians consider him a secular King!
  • He implemented several reforms to be able to maintain a large army and to weaken those capable of organizing a revolt against him. According to historian Satish Chandra, Alauddin’s reforms were based on his conception of fear and control as the basis of good government as well as his military ambitions: the bulk of the measures were designed to centralise power in his hands and to support a large military. Again very secular reasons!
  • He took away all landed properties of his courtiers and nobels and cancelled revenue assignments which were henceforth controlled by the central authorities. Henceforth, “everybody was busy earning with earning a living so that nobody could even think of rebellion”.
  • Alauddin also eliminated the intermediary Hindu rural chiefs, and started collecting the kharaj directly from the cultivators
  • Alauddin implemented price control measures for a wide variety of market goods. Alauddin’s courtier Amir Khusrau and the 14th century writer Hamid Qalandar suggest that Alauddin introduced these changes for public welfare.
  • Alauddin’s government maintained a descriptive roll of every soldier, and occasionally conducted strict reviews of the army to examine the horses and arms of the soldiers.

What a reformer! Indeed historians praise him as a forerunner of Sher Shah and Akbar, themselves ‘Great Muslim rulers’. However, is greatness in working for oneself or working for the public? Have you heard of such praise for rulers like Rajendra Chola? Afterall, he also centralised power and expanded his empire. No, he is called an imperialist and condemned due to his devotion to his Guru as a casteist who promoted Brahminism. Let us see the real Alauddin Khilji and why he took the steps above:-

  • All Kings seek to preserve their kingdoms and fight for it. If Khilji did that, he did not do any favour to India. The Mongols were known to be specially cruel to the ruler, so if anything he was saving his own skin. Anyways, who was to save Indians from cruelty of Khilji himself?
  • He imposed a 50% kharaj tax on the agricultural produce in a substantial part of northern India. This was the highest in Indian history and was the highest permitted by Islamic Hanafi law. So much for secularism!
  • Alauddin’s government imposed the jizya tax on its non-Muslim subjects. In addition, Alauddin demanded four-fifth share of the spoils of war from his soldiers, instead of the traditional one-fifth share (khums). Other taxes were also imposed. This was the start of pushing Indian farmer in poverty. This pattern continued until end of British Raj.
  • Barani also attributes Alauddin’s revenue reforms to the Sultan’s desire to subjugate the Hindus by “depriving them of that wealth and property which fosters rebellion”
  • Barani suggests that the Hindu traders indulged in profiteering, and Alauddin’s market reforms resulted from the Sultan’s desire to punish the Hindus. He also ordered “to supply some rules and regulations for grinding down the Hindus, and for depriving them of that wealth and property which fosters rebellion. The Hindu was to be reduced to be so reduced as to be unable to keep a horse to ride on, wear fine clothes, or to enjoy any luxuries of life.”
  • Thus the market reforms helped his army and urban dwellers, mostly Muslims. Hindus were pushed into poverty.
  • During the Gujarat campaign, Wassaf states that “The Muhammadan forces began to kill and slaughter on the right and on the left unmercifully, throughout the impure land, for the sake of Islam, and blood flowed in torrents.”
  • Alauddin and his generals destroyed several Hindu temples during their military campaigns. These temples included the ones at Bhilsa (1292), Devagiri (1295), Vijapur (1298–1310), Somnath (1299), Jhain (1301), Chidambaram (1311) and Madurai (1311) among 100s of others.
  • Alauddin believed “that the Hindu will never be submissive and obedient to the Musalman unless he is reduced to abject poverty.”
  • The massacres of Alauddin Khilji are relatively well known. He massacred civilians in Gujarat, Chittor, Ranthambhore, and in Pandya Kingdom etc.

There is no end to his cruel hateful actions. It can fill a whole book. However the secularists suggest that his temple raids were not motivated by Islam and more by greed of gold. That is faulty understanding for two reasons. One, if this was so, what was the need to destroy temples? Who kills a hen that lays golden egg? Why not tax the temples? Second, Alauddin himself says at many places how he acts to oppress Hindus, thus his hate for Hindus is quite evident.

Muhammad bin Tughlaq

Muhammad Bin Tughlaq is presented in our history books as a romantic fool. Someone like Don Quixote, who makes a lot of blunders but means well and is quite harmless. All of us are aware of his famous Tughlaqi farmans like shifting of capital from Delhi to Devgiri{renamed as Daulatabad}. This is how this great Muslim ruler has been described in the old NCERT written by Satish Chandra:-

  • Muhammad Tughlaq undertook a number of bold experiments and showed keen interest in agriculture.
  • He was one of the most remarkable rulers of the age.
  • He was deeply read and had a critical and open mind.
  • Unfortunately due to his hastiness and impatience, most of his experiments failed, so he is an ‘ill starred idealist’
  • The exodus to Devgiri bridged North and South India. This led to spread of new cultural, religious and social idea in South India. So for Satish Chandra, spread of Islam in South India is a positive thing.
  • He defeated the Mongols and tried to invade Khurasan and Iraq. Here Satish Chandra says that he wanted to establish a ‘Scientific Frontier ’ at Hindukush.
  • He promoted agriculture and tried to undertake scientific research in agriculture under the state.
  • He included many Indian Muslims and foreigners in the nobility. Thus he promoted merit.
  • The disloyal nobility let MBT down.

So, we have the picture of a well-meaning wise-fool. Rahul Gandhi comes to mind here. His innumerable failures cannot prove he is incompetent, just that time and people were disloyal to him. Let us see if he really was so noble and harmless:-

  • His ‘bold experiments’ led to death and famine in the country which killed hundreds of thousands. As reported in contemporary accounts, there were dead bodies everywhere and the stench pervaded the air.
  • Ziauddin Barani observes: “Without consultation or weighting the pros and cons, he brought ruin on Delhi which for 170 to 180 years had grown in prosperity and rivaled Baghdad and Cairo. The city with its Sarais and suburbs and villages spread over four or five leagues, all was destroyed (i.e., deserted). Not a cat or a dog was left. The migration to Devgiri itself killed thousands.
  • As noted by the visitors Ibn Batuta, Nunez and Firistha, Muhammed Bin Tughlaq showed extreme intolerance to other religions, he frequently inflicted unjust, rigid, and cruel punishments to people of other faiths. For example, once he ordered the massacre of all the inhabitants of the Hindu city of Kanauj
  • Ibn Batuta who knew him for decades{having been forcibly detained by him in Delhi} writes that he was Muslim bigot. He has given a long list of the atrocities he committed all around his kingdom and describes the cruel acts that he would undertake on a daily basis in Delhi

So by the sorcery of our eminent historians, a bigoted, cruel ruler is transformed into a progressive and misunderstood great Muslim ruler.

Firoz Shah Tughlaq

Firoz Shah Tughlaq is described as a peace loving and benevolent King. The following things about him are parroted by leftist historians and their :-

  • His reign was a period of peace and quite development. He preferred peace so did not much pursue war.
  • He took a number of humanitarian measures such as banning of inhuman punishments for theft and other petty offences.
  • He set up hospitals for free treatment, provided dowries for daughters of poor and paid unemployment allowance. Thus he was a benevolent King.
  • He constructed irrigation canals and built multiple cities.

So we are introduced to a great ruler, who built ad established Firozshah Kotla, Hissar, Jaunpur etc. and like Great Ashoka, was a true humanitarian. What is the reality?

  • He was a fanatic Muslim, who oppressed Hindus. He destroyed and desecrated many temples including Jagannath Temple of Puri.
  • He preferred peace as he lost in war. During his Gujarat campaign, he suffered greatly. In his Bengal campaigns, he repeatedly failed.  So he took the ire out on helpless Hindus of his kingdom.
  • He collected Jizya in the harshest and most humiliating manner and forced thousands of  Hindus to become Muslim.
  • His charity works like free hospitals, dowries etc. were only for Muslims. No charity was done for the Hindus.
  • He persecuted not only Hindus but other sects of Muslims too. In true Talibani fashion, he imposed many disabilities on the women.
  • Wherever he attacked, he imprisoned and enslaved young Hindus and then forced them to convert to Islam. This great Muslim ruler had personal slaves in huge quantity : 1,80,000.

If such a bigoted, oppressive and fanatic person can be called humanitarian, I beg the reader to tell me what to say? Hail to our great AMU and JNU historians who make great Muslim rulers out of complete scoundrels.

Shershah : builder of GT road and great Muslim ruler

Sher shah Sur
Sher Shah

Sher Shah Suri is a much glorified Afghan King of India. Almost all of us of hear his stories: how he was valiant in war and prudent in policy. His major achievements are thus described-

  • Sher Shah Suri is named as the builder of Grand Trunk Road, the east west road, which connects Bengal to Punjab. So much is he famous for this supposed achievement, that even today, it is called Sher  Shah Suri Marg.
  • He is remembered for his revenue reforms and military reforms, which were on the same lines as that by Khilji. His reforms were refined and continued by Akbar and became the basis of administration of British Raj.
  • He is remembered as the person who introduced Mohur, Rupaya and Paisa coins. His introduction of trimetallism{three metals} was an innovation and stabilised the currency.
  • Sher Shah is known for his valour. This brave king died fighting for his kingdom at the gates of Kalinjer fort. He was just and benevolent and did not discriminate on basis of religion. He built the Purana Qila in Delhi and named it Shergarh.

We are led to believe that this ‘Great Muslim ruler’ was an avatar of Dharma : Kind, brave, and a great builder. The reality is far more complex, painful and for fans of Shershah, disappointing. The historical facts are:-

  • The road called Grand Trunk Road has been in use for thousands of years. It has been known as Uttarapatha to ancient Indians. It is mentioned in Mahabharata and Buddhist texts. It is reported to have been repaired by Chandragupta Maurya and Ashoka. Harshvardhana has been called Lord of Uttarapatha. It has been one of the most important routes for trade and commerce in history of India. It connected to the silk route. Of course, multiple Indian Kings made repairs to it in succeeding centuries. But Sher Shah Suri has been called builder of GT Road! What a travesty of history? He may have made some repairs, but many kings did that. He may have established some sarais, but that was an Indian custom and Ashoka famously did that. Ashoka even built hospitals on the road and planted trees along it. But even he has not been credited as building Grand trunk road. Why Shershah? He was engaged in wars during 4 years out of the 5 years of his rule. It was impossible for him to construct such a road. It is however, conceivable that he constructed some small road and made some repairs to existing trade route.
  • The much praised revenue reforms of Shershah were beneficial only to the treasury and not to the common people. The main aim was to extract as much money from peasants as possible. This pushed the common Indians into poverty, which continues to this day. Those calling these steps as reforms should rename it as Tax Terrorism. If today the government imposes 50% tax on income plus some extra taxes, would it be called a reform?
  • India already had coins of Gold, silver and copper{apart from base metals} since antiquity. Even the ‘Rupaya’ word is not new. It was used before him and stems from the Sanskrit ‘Rupya’ meaning silver. So I wonder what new thing did he do in this department? Did it lead to growth in economy? Evidence does not prove that. The growth with trade with Ottomans and later Europeans had nothing to do with his coinage because mostly India imported gold and silver and exported finished goods and other products.
  • He is said to have built the Purana Qila and established a new city there. The fact is that area around Purana Qila has been inhabited since thousands of years. It was called Indraprastha during Mahabharata. B. B. Lal carried out excavations and found evidence of settlement going back at least to 2500 years.
  • Let us examine his bravery and benevolence. in 1543, Sher Shah invaded the kingdom of the Hindu king, Puran Mal, and put his Raisin fort under siege. Puran Mal sought a safe passage for his royal family and army in case of surrender. Sher Shah agreed. So Puran Mal and his army came out of the fort and took shelter in a pre-arranged camp provided by Sher Shah, just outside the fort. In the meantime, the Pathan army started massacring the Hindus and to describe the wholesale slaughter, Abbas Khan writes, “While the Hindus were employed in putting their women and families to death, the Afghans on all sides commenced slaughtering of the Hindus. Puran Mal and his commanders, like pigs at a bay, failed to exhibit valour and gallantry, and within the twinkle of an eye, all were slain. Such of their wives and families, as were not slain, were captured. One daughter of Puran Mal and three sons of his brother were taken alive and the rest were all killed. Sher Shah gave the daughter of Puran Mal to some itinerant minstrels (bazigars) that they might make her dance in the bazaars, and ordered the boys to be castrated, so that the race of the oppressors (i.e. the Hindus) might not increase.”
  • In 1537, Humayun launched a military campaign against Sher Shah and proceeded to attack the fortress at Chunar. Sher Shah had 1,000 women in his harem in the said fort at Chunar. Apprehending the fall of Chunar fort, Sher Shah requested Raja Hari Krishna Roy to provide a safe place for his harem in the Rohtas fort. On Sher Shah’s promise by touching the Quran, the Raja agreed to give shelter. As soon as Raja Hari Krishna agreed, Sher Shah hatched a plan to capture the fort. About 1,200 dolis (palanquins) were made ready overnight and two Afghan soldiers, clad in burqas, occupied each doli. The security staff in the fort checked the first few dolis and failing to detect the conspiracy, allowed the rest to enter the fort. Nearly 2,500 Pathan soldiers succeeded in entering the fort and in the mid-night they started killing the Hindu security guards and thus occupied the fort.

So much for the brave, benevolent, just and wise King Shershah! The travesty is he is called one of the greatest Muslim rulers of India. All on the basis of such lies.

Akbar : one of the greatest Muslim rulers

Akbar
Akbar

The list of great muslim rulers of India is not complete without Akbar. Akbar is one of the most celebrated Kings in India. Akbar itself means great and he is usually spoken of as Akbar the Great. The real name of this Great Muslim Ruler was Jallaluddin Muhammad. Movies have been made on him since 1950s, with top stars playing his role. Innumerable books, articles and pamphlets have been written in his praise. Popular stories regarding him range from Jodha Akbar, Anarkali to humorous tales of Akbar-Birbal. Some of the popular narratives about Akbar in popular imagination as well as textbooks are:-

  • He was an administrative genius. He established Mansabdari system to rule the kingdom efficiently.
  • He made tax reforms and made tax collection more efficient.
  • He was fond of literature, and established many libraries. He surrounded himself with navratnas.
  • He was religiously tolerant. He abolished Jizya and Holy men of many faiths, poets, architects, and artisans adorned his court from all over the world for study and discussion.
  • Akbar was accorded the epithet “the Great” because of his many accomplishments, including his record of unbeaten military campaigns that consolidated Mughal rule in the Indian subcontinent.
  • His policy of marriage with Rajputs was for establishing peace.
  • He was a great builder who established the city of Fatehpur Sikri.
  • He was a generous King who treated people fairly.
  • He was a handsome hunk{this one due to his portrayal in movies in serials}

Some real facts about Akbar the ‘Great’:-

  • His tax reforms, suggested by Todar Mal, were to extract as much money from the peasant as possible. The fact is that due to such policies, by the end of rule of Aurangzeb, Indian Economy was irreparably in decline. The money collected from taxes was used in superfluous luxury and wars rather than for productive purposes
  • The Mansabdari system ensured the oppression of peasants. The Mansabdar was military as well as civil authority. He collected revenue and kept some for himself and remitted rest to Delhi. As they were transferred frequently, they looted as much money as possible from their subjects as possible. This is also called as ‘Crisis of Jagirs’ in 17th century.
  • Akbar was an illiterate. If he was so fond of promotion of education, it is inconceivable that he would not learn to read himself. He might be genuinely interested in having books read to him, but him establishing centres of learning is a tall tale. He was usually drunk or high on opium, so much so that he used to slip into slumber while having guests. This has been attested by multiple sources.
  • He wanted to equal the feats of Vikramaditya, so he created his own fake Navratnas. The original navratnas wrote works that are read and referred to even today by common people. Who reads works of Akbar’s navratnas now, except researchers? Fake Akbar-Birbal stories, which are actually copied from tales of Tenaliraman, were circulated to show greatness of Akbar, but so intolerant was Akbar, he would have killed Birbal had he behaved like that in real life. Afterall, Birbal was disciple of Akbar in his fake religion.
  • I have already written a post about how Maharana Pratap defeated the Mughals. Fortune favoured him in Second Battle of Panipat, else he would have lost to Hemu. Mughlas lost Rani Durgawati during his time. Akbar never led from front in any battle that could have endangered him. Almost all his military victories were earned on the shoulders of his generals.
  • The city of Fatehpur Sikri was abandoned soon after its establishment. What kind of city builder abandons his own city? The whole enterprise was a vanity project which did not work out and which cost the country quite a lot of money.
  • He sought out girls everywhere to keep in his harem. He had a harem of 300 wives and 5000 concubines and slave girls. Clearly, his harem proves that these marriages were a way for him to satiate his lust. Abulfazal notes that he used to make his courtiers send their wives in his harem for his enjoyment. He maintained a Meena Bazar to select and abduct beautiful women for his harem. Contrary to what is shown in movies, all the women he married were converted to Islam.
  • Let us now see how just and kind he was. Bairam Khan was his mentor who helped to consolidate his rule and won the Second Battle of Panipat for him . He exiled Bairam Khan and while he was going to Mecca, he was killed in suspicious circumstances. Then he married Bairam Khan’s wife!
  • At multiple points in his life, he meted out cruel punishments to his enemies as well as his servants. After he had captured Chittorgarh in 1568, he not only killed the 8000 captured soldiers, but also 30000 unarmed civilians. Following his cruel forefathers, Timur and Changez as well as Babur, he constructed multiple skull towers of massacred soldiers and enemies.
  • The so called tolerant King destroyed many temples and desecrated them. An example is the temple of Jwalaji in Nagarkot{Kangra}. Another is Eklingji temple in Mewar. He changed the name of Prayagraj to Allah-abad{fortunately, this has been undone by Yogi Adityanath} and destroyed all buildings there. There is no evidence of his abolishing Jizya although it is much praised by historians.
  • During Akbar’s rule in 1591, Islam completed its 1000 years. Many fanatics believed that it will coincide with end of times or some religiously important event. Akbar declared Din-e-Ilahi to take benefit of this situation. He pretended to have divine powers{this pretention continued upto beggar  ‘Emperor’ Bahadurshsh Zafar. All Mughal Kings claimed to be Pir or holy men} and being omniscient{according to Abul Fazal}. Only his sycophants like Birbal and Tansen believed him. Even Man Singh refused to convert to this fake religion.
  • The beauty of Akbar is described thus : “Akbar was of average height and walked with a limp in his left leg. His head was tilted on the right shoulder. His nose was small with protruding bone. His nostrils looked as if he is in anger. A wart of the size of half a pea joined his lip to the nostril. He was dark” Imagine someone describing Hritik Roshan in such a manner.

We will let the reader decide if Akbar is great.

Other Great Muslim rulers among Mughals

Other Mughals walked in the steps of their illustrious ancestors. Killing their brothers{almost all of them did that}, blinding their sons{e.g. Jehangir blinded Khusro} and torturing those who opposed them in innovative ways{Jehangir had rebels killed at stake, Aurangzeb’s cruelty is famous.} Jehangis was famously addicted to opium like his father. All of them are considered great Muslim rulers, so much so that uptil Aurangzeb, they are called Great Moghuls.

Still, our eminent historians give a rosy picture to us. We are told Jehangir was so fond of justice that he installed a bell of justice. No one tells how many, if anyone, rang that bell. We are told that Shah Jehan built Tajmahal for his beloved wife Mumtaj Mahal. No one tells us that she was not his first or last wife, that he had scores of other concubines and that money on Taj Mahal was spent, in place of food, at a time when there was a great famine in the country. Of course, there are doubts, whether he built it or acquired it from Jaipur Maharaja. After all capturing buildings of Hindus and repurposing it has been one of the great pasttimes of great Muslim rulers.

Aurangzeb’s depredations are quite well known. How he broke the temples at Kashi Vishwanath and Mathura apart from hundreds of others, how he oppressed Hindus, killed and converted them and how he ravaged Maratha lands for 25 years. The traits of great Muslim rulers were magnified in Auangzeb, so he must me the greatest! Apparantly, many enterprising Marxist historians, specially Ram Puniyani think so, and have tried to prove how he was a great emperor.

Great Muslim Rulers who ruled from other places

Some Muslim kings who ruled from other places are also sometimes glorified and called great Muslim rulers. Havng discussed Delhi’s Great Muslim Rulers briefly{this is a long blog post, but discussing acts of these Great Muslim rulers will take multiple full sized books}, we will discuss two much praised rulers. Both of these have been made icons of Indian resistance against British. Both of these have been depicted on small screen and are celebrated by the Islamist-Marxist crowd. First let us discuss Tipu Sultan.

Tipu Sultan

Tipu was the ruler of Mysore after his father Hyder Ali died in the middle of 2nd Anglo Mysore War. His father had usurped the throne from the Wodeyar family. We are told these facts in praise of Tipu :-

  • Also said to be the Tier of Mysore, he was a patriot who tried to expel English from India. For that he also tried to make alliance with foreign countries and modernised his army.
  • He was a secular ruler, who treated everyone fairly and even donated to the Sringeri Math and Srirangam temple.
  • He promoted agriculture, silk production and trade in Mysore. He also introduced Rockets in warfare.

Let us come face to face with this Great Muslim ruler :-

  • In his many letters, Tipu lays bare his soul and shows what a bigot he was. I have quoted some of these here. “Over 12,000 Hindus were honoured with Islam. There were many Namboodri Brahmins among them. This achievement should be widely publicised among the Hindus. Then the local Hindus should be brought before you and converted to Islam. No Namboodri Brahmin should be spared. ”  
  • ” I am sending two of my followers with Mir Hussain Ali. With their assistance, you should capture and kill all Hindus. Those below 20 may be kept in prison and 5000 from the rest should be killed from the tree-tops. These are my orders.”
  • “Don”t you know I have achieved a great victory recently in Malabar and over four lakh Hindus were converted to Islam? I am determined to march against that cursed “Raman Nair” very soon (reference is to Rama Varma Raja of Travancore). Since I am overjoyed at the prospect of converting him and his subjects to Islam, I have happily abandoned the idea of going back to Srirangapatanam now”.
  • In this manner, this great Muslim ruler converted lakhs of Malyalis by force. Ironically, these areas are now the stronghold of Islamists and produces most ISIS terrorists. Some communities in Kerala and Tamil Nadu do not celebrate Diwali even today as he did a great massacre on that day. J. Jaylalita was from one such community.
  • He committed the same atrocities on Christians too. Hindus and Christians were also persecuted in Mangalore, in Bidnur, and in Coorg.
  • He invited French to invade India. Had he succeeded, English would have been replaced by French. Far from being a patriot, he just cared for his power. Here is a sentence from his letter to the French : “Since I manifested my friendship in writing to you, my messengers have arrived with the following intelligence which will not be displeasing to you….I inform these events in order to prove to you that it is now the moment for you to invade India. With little trouble we shall drive the British out of India. Rely on my friendship.”
  • Tipu Sultan’s steel Sword was the following inscription : “My victorious sabre is lightning for the destruction of the unbelievers. ….. And moreover, he destroyed the wicked race who were unbelievers….” Clearly, he did not wish non-Muslims well.
  • He destroyed thousands of Hindu temples and hundreds of Churches. He donated to the temples during 1790s as he needed Hindus to fight with him. He had been recently defeated by the Marathas and a war was ongoing with British, so in keeping with the practice of al Taqia, he pretended to care about Hindus.

His contribution to cultivation of silk in Mysore is quite important. However, the economy of Mysore was already quite good during Wodeyar rule. The fact that he introduced important innovations in rockets is also true. However, these positives can never make up for his barbaric and bigoted conduct.

Sirajuddaula

Sirajuddaula is another favourite of Islamist-Marxist cabal. It is said that Sirajuddaula was one of those great Muslim rulers, and was a freedom fighter and a patriot. A serial has been made on him and he is contrasted with Mir Zafar, synonymous with treachery now in Bengal. I present some facts about cruelty of Siraj:-

  • “Before the death of Ali Vardi Khan the character of Siraj-ud-Daulah was reported to be one of the worst ever known,” Jean Law, who knew Siraj as chief of the French East India company in the West Bengal city of Cossimbazar, wrote in his memoir.
  • “In fact, he had distinguished himself not only by all sorts of debauchery, but by a revolting cruelty……. women were accustomed to bathe on the banks of the Ganges. Siraj-ud-Daulah, who was informed by his spies which of them were beautiful, sent his satellites in disguise in little boats to carry them off.”
  • The British would refuse him admission into their Cossimbazar factory and their houses, he wrote, “because, in fact, this excessively blustering and impertinent young man used to break the furniture, or, if it pleased his fancy, take it away.”
  • A Muslim historian of the time, Ghulam Husain Tabatabai, said the following about Siraj-ud-Daulah: “Making no distinction between vice and virtue, he carried defilement wherever he went, and, like a man alienated in his mind, he made the house of men and women of distinction the scenes of his depravity, without minding either rank or station. In a little time he became detested as Pharaoh, and people on meeting him by chance used to say, ‘God save us from him!’”
  • Siraj’s alleged pastimes were:-  “pulling the wings off birds or watching boats deliberately overturned so that he could watch the occupants drown”
  • Contemporary Muslim historian Ghulam Hussain Salim: “Owing to Siraj-ud-Daulah’s harshness of temper and indulgence, fear and terror had settled on the hearts of everyone to such an extent that no one among his generals of the army or the noblemen of the city was free from anxiety. Amongst his officers, whoever went to wait on Siraj-ud-Daulah despaired of life and honour, and whoever returned without being disgraced and ill-treated offered thanks to God.”

Siraj was killed when he was only 20 years old. But even at this young age, his cruelty was remarkable as friends and foe both made mention of it. He would probably have achieved the level of Tipu Sultan had he lived longer!

Conclusion

It seems in history, just like present, Muslims are treated differently. They have lower standards of decency, glory and greatness. Whenever they did something, albeit rarely, that is expected of any King, they become great Muslim rulers; they are praised as if they are Gods. Of the hundreds of Muslim Kings, only some were genuinely good. The name of Zain ul Abedin of Kashmir comes to mind in this context. But such Kings were very few and far between. Zain ul Abedin’s father had persecuted Hindus in a terrible manner. He corrected some of his father’s mistakes : another great Muslim ruler.

Compare these to Hindu rulers. No Hindu ruler ever converted Muslims to Hinduism, nor banned practice of their religion, nor destroyed any mosques. Most Hindu rulers promoted education and donated liberally without distinction of religion. However, not all of those are great.

It is time that history books reevaluate the acts of these so called great Muslim rulers. The lie that bigotry and communalism in India started only after 1857 needs to be dispelled. Only then will we be able to deal with the religious issues our current society faces.

Pawan
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14 Replies to “Great Muslim Rulers : The myth and the reality”

  1. Excellent write up👌👌 Please continue researching and writing. All these will come to help in rectifying the historical distortions!

  2. Nice write up.
    it would be nice if you add a section for Sources and provide some sources you referred. so that when we refer your article we can talk about the sources of this article.

  3. I work I knew this when I was in school. I hope BJP will change the course and introduce the real history of our country. How these Muslim, Christian invaders looted our wealth to build their harems, ships, how they aquired all those slaves, how they sloughtered babies n the parents. All this has to be revealed, they may day this may lead to communal hatred, but with out all this knowledge there is an underlining communal differences between all the religions in India I feel. We keep our communal differences aside and let the next generation know that really happened and let them decide what to do with all the real history of Bharathvaraha. With this communal feelings we are deliberately insulting those great kings, queens, kingdoms and those people who fought and sacrificed fighting tyrants of Muslim world invading our country. This collective knowledge is very much needed to unite Hindus from.cast and creed. Jaihind. There is a saying in English, who control your past, controls your future.

    1. Dear Pavan ji,
      You can use the email button above for sending it to your own email id.
      Thank you for reading,
      Regards,
      Pawan Pandey

  4. Very well structured sir. Yes it’s our mistakes that even today our basic textbooks don’t showcase these tyrant rulers. Any govt. Untill now is able to take hold on the myth, which was spread by the Marxist historians.
    Even I have done my graduation & Pg in modern history from AMU aligarh.

    1. Vishal ji,
      Thank you for reading and the kind words.
      This is one of the tragedies of Indian Education system. Unfortunately, nothing has changed in this area in last years.
      Regards,
      Pawan

  5. I like the way in which you have organized the content here. It can serve as a quick reference. People like you can pool your talents and start an online academy of history for school and college students.

    1. Krishna ji,
      Thanks for reading and for the appreciation. I would certainly like to collaborate with like-minded people. However, I am fairly new to this and I think it will take some time before people would like to work with me. Hopefully, by next year, this blog will be well established.
      Regards,
      Pawan

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