Kalinjar Fort

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Kalinjar (Hindi: कालिंजर) is a fortress-city in the Bundelkhand region of central India. Kalinjar is located in Banda District of Uttar Pradesh state, near the temple-city and World Heritage Site of Khajuraho. The fortress is strategically located on an isolated rocky hill at the end the Vindhya Range, at an elevation of 1,203 feet (367 m) and overlooks the plains of Bundelkhand. It served several of Bundelkhand's ruling dynasties, including the Chandela dynasty of Rajputs in the 10th century, and the Solankis of Rewa. The fortress contains several temples dating as far back as the Gupta dynasty of the 3rd-5th centuries.

Quotes[edit]

  • In 1195 when Raja Bhim of Gujarat was attacked, 20,000 prisoners were captured, and in 1202 at Kalinjar 50,000, “and we may be sure that (as in the case of Arab conquest of Sind) all those who were made slaves were compelled to embrace the religion of the masters to whom they were allotted.” Ferishtah specifically mentions that on the capture of Kalinjar “fifty thousand Kaniz va ghulam, having suffered slavery, were rewarded with the honour of Islam”. According to Ferishtah three to four hundred thousand Khokhars and Tirahias were also converted to Islam by Muhammad Ghori.
    • Firishta, quoted in Lal, K. S. (1990). Indian muslims: Who are they.
  • …Upon this, Sher Shah turned again towards Kalinjar… The Raja of Kalinjar, Kirat Sing, did not come out to meet him. So he ordered the fort to be invested, and threw up mounds against it, and in a short time the mounds rose so high that they overtopped the fort. The men who were in the streets and houses were exposed, and the Afghans shot them with their arrows and muskets from off the mounds. The cause of this tedious mode of capturing the fort was this. Among the women of Raja Kirat Sing was a Patar slave-girl, that is a dancing-girl. The king had heard exceeding praise of her, and he considered how to get possession of her, for he feared lest if he stormed the fort, the Raja Kirat Sing would certainly make a jauhar, and would burn the girl...
    • Tarikh-i-Sher Shahi of Abbas Khan Sherwani in Elliot and Dowson, History of India as told by its own Historians, Volume IV, pp. 407-09. Quoted in S.R.Goel, The Calcutta Quran Petition
  • “It is related in the Akbar ShahI, that when Sher Shah rendered up his life to the angel of death in Kalinjar, Jalal Khan, his youngest son, was in the town of Rewan, in the province of Bhata, and his eldest son ‘Adil Khan, the heir-apparent, in the fort of Runthur (Ranthambhor). The nobles perceived that ‘Adil KhAn would be unable to arrive with speed, and as the State required a head, they despatched a person to summon Jalal Khan who was nearer. He reached Kalinjar in five days, and by the assistance of ‘Isa Hajjab and other grandees, was raised to the throne near the fort of Kalinjar, on the 15th of the month RabI’u-1 awwal, 952 A.H. (25th May, 1545 CE). He assumed the title of Islam Shah… “After his accession, he ordered the Raja of Kalinjar, who had been captured with seventy of his adherents, to be put to death, and directed that not one of them should be spared…”
    • Tarikh-i-Daudi of ‘Abdullah in Elliot and Dowson's History of India as told by its own Historians, Volume IV, pp. 478-79. Quoted in S.R.Goel, The Calcutta Quran Petition
  • " In the year A.D. 1202, when Qulb-ud-Din captured Kalinjar, after the temples had been convened into mosques, and the very name of idolatry was annihilated, fifty thousand men came under the collar of slavery and the plain became black as pitch with Hindus. "
    • Dr. Murray Titus quoted from B.R. Ambedkar, Pakistan or The Partition of India (1946)
  • In 1195 when Raja Bhim was attacked by Aibak 20,000 slaves were captured, and 50,000 at Kalinjar in 1202. “The temples were converted into mosques,” writes Hasan Nizami, “and the voices of the summoners to prayer ascended to the highest heavens, and the very name of idolatry was annihilated.”... Farishtah specifically mentions that during the capture of Kalinjar “fifty thousand kaniz va ghulam, having suffered slavery, were rewarded with the honour of Islam.” Thus enslavement resulted in conversion and conversion in accelerated growth of Muslim population.
    • Hasan Nizami, Taj-u-Maasir, E.D., II, 231. Farishtah, I, 62. quoted from Lal, K. S. (1994). Muslim slave system in medieval India. New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan. Chapter 5
  • “Thou didst depart with a thousand joyful anticipations on a holy expedition, and didst return having achieved a thousand victories… On this journey the army destroyed a thousand idol-temples and thy elephants trampled over more than a hundred strongholds. Thou didst march thy arm to Ujjain; Malwa trembled and fled from thee… On the way to Kalinjar thy pomp obscured the light of day. The lip of infidelity became dry through fear of thee, the eye of plural-worship became blind…”
  • The fort of Kalinjar which was celebrated throughout the world for being as strong as the wall of Alexander was taken. 'The temples were converted into mosques and abodes of goodness and the ejaculations of the bead-counters and the voices of the summoners to prayer ascended to the highest heaven, and the very name of idolatry was annihilated.' 'Fifty thousand men came under the collar of slavery, and the plain became black as pitch with Hindus.' Elephants and cattle, and countless arms also, became the spoil of the victors.
    • Kalinjar (Uttar Pradesh) . Hasan Nizami: Taju’l-Ma’sir in Elliot and Dowson, Vol. II : Elliot and Dowson, History of India as told by its own Historians, 8 Volumes, Allahabad Reprint, 1964. pp. 231 Also quoted in Jain, Meenakshi (2011). The India they saw: Foreign accounts.

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