Tughlaq dynasty

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The Tughlaq dynasty also referred to as Tughluq or Tughluk dynasty, was a Muslim dynasty of Turko-Indian origin which ruled over the Delhi sultanate in medieval India.


  • After Alauddin’s death (C.E. 1316) most of his measures seem to have fallen into disuse, but the peasants got no relief, because Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq who came to the throne four years later (C.E. 1320) continued the atrocious practice of Alauddin. He also ordered that “there should be left only so much to the Hindus that neither, on the one hand, they should become arrogant on account of their wealth, nor, on the other, desert their lands in despair.” In the time of Muhammad bin Tughlaq even this latter fear turned out to be true. The Sultan’s enhancement of taxation went even beyond the lower limits of “bare subsistence.” For the people left their fields and fled. This enraged the Sultan and he hunted them down like wild beasts.
    • Lal, K. S. (1992). The legacy of Muslim rule in India. New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan. Chapter 7
  • Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq issued an ordinance which proclaimed that “there should be left only so much to the Hindus that neither on the one hand they should become intoxicated on account of their wealth, nor on the other should they become so destitute as to leave their lands and cultivation in despair”. His son, Muhammad bin Tughlaq, enhanced the land revenue in a very steep manner. Barani reports: “The taxation in the Doab was increased ten and twenty times and the royal officials consequently created such abwabs or cesses and collected them with such rigour that the ryots were reduced to impotence, poverty and ruin… Thousands of people perished, and when they tried to escape, the Sultan led expeditions to various places and hunted them like wild beasts.” Ibn Battutah who visited Delhi during Muhammad bin Tughlaq’s reign, reports in his Rehla an Id celebration in the Sultan’s palace: “Then enter the musicians, the first batch being the daughters of the infidel rajas captured in war that year. They sing and dance, and the Sultan gives them away to his amirs and aizza. Then come the other daughters of the infidels who sing and dance, and the Sultan gives them away to his relations, his brothers-in-law and the malik’s sons.” At a later date, “there arrived in Delhi some female infidel captives, ten of whom the vazir sent to me”. Again, the Sultan sent to the emperor of China “one hundred male slaves and one hundred slave songstresses and dancers from among the Indian infidels”. He also reports how the Muslim commandant of Alapur “would fall upon the infidels and would kill them or take them prisoner”. The scoundrel was killed by the Hindus one day. His slaves fell upon Alapur, and “they put its male population to the sword and made the womenfolk prisoner and seized everything in it.”
    • Quoted from Goel, Sita Ram (2001). The story of Islamic imperialism in India. ISBN 9788185990231
  • At the close of the Khalji regime, Ghiyasuddin declared himself as a champion of the faith, because the Ulama had been dissatisfied with Alauddin’s policies and Ghiyasuddin with the activities of Nasiruddin Khusrau. “The slogan of ‘Islam in danger’ so common yet so effective in the history of the Muslims, was started.” And this to a great degree won Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq the throne.
    • K.S. Lal. The Legacy of Muslim Rule in India (1992)
  • Not a week passed without the spilling of much Muslim blood and the running of streams of gore before the entrance of his palace. This included cutting people in half, skinning them alive, chopping off heads and displaying them on poles as a warning to others, or having prisoners tossed about by elephants with swords attached to their tusks.
    • — Ibn Battuta, Travel Memoirs (1334-1341, Delhi) in : Ross Dunn (1989), The Adventures of Ibn Battuta: A Muslim Traveler of the 14th Century, University of California Press, Berkeley,
  • The Sultan was far too ready to shed blood. He punished small faults and great, without respect of persons, whether men of learning, piety or high station. Every day hundreds of people, chained, pinioned, and fettered, are brought to this hall, and those who are for execution are executed, for torture tortured, and those for beating beaten.
    • — Ibn Battuta, Chapter XV Rihla (Delhi) Ibn Batutta, Travels in Asia and Africa, 1325-1354, Translated by H Gibb, Routledge, ISBN 9780415344739, p. 203
  • Not a day or week passed without spilling of much Musalman blood, (...)
    • — Ziauddin Barni, Tarikh-I Firoz Shahi. Tarikh-I Firoz Shahi Ziauddin Barni, The History of India by its own Historians - The Muhammadan Period, Volume 3, Trubner London, pages 236-238
  • Tomb of Ghiyãsu’d-Dîn Tughlaq: Similarly, Sayyid Ahmad notices this tomb in some detail but does not describe its Hindu features.395 Khaleeq Anjum, however, says in his introduction that “corridors inside this tomb have been constructed in the style of Hindu architecture, and the pillars as well as the beams in the corridors are fully of Hindu fashion.” He repeats the same comments in his notes at the end.”
    • Ãsãru’s-Sanãdîd by Sayyid Ahmad Khãn, cited and quoted from Shourie, A., & Goel, S. R. (1993). Hindu temples: What happened to them.

Tughluq Khan[edit]

  • “In the meanwhile Delhi received news of the defeat of the armies of Islãm which were with Malikzãdã Mahmûd bin Fîrûz Khãn… This Malikzãdã reached the bank of the Yamunã via Shãhpur and renamed Kãlpî, which was the abode and centre of the infidels and the wicked, as Muhammadãbãd, after the name of Prophet Muhammad. He got mosques erected for the worship of Allãh in places occupied by temples, and made that city his capital.”
    • Sultãn Ghiyãsu’d-Dîn Tughlaq Shãh II (AD 1388-89) Kalpi (Uttar Pradesh) Tãrîkh-i-Muhammadî in S.A.A. Rizvi in Tughlaq Kãlina Bhãrata, Aligarh, 1957, Vol. II, pp. 228-29.

Nasir-ud-Din Mahmud Shah Tughluq[edit]

  • “Historians have recorded that in the auspicious year AH 792 (AD 1389-90) Sultãn Nasîru’d-Dîn got founded a city named Muhammadãbãd, after the name of Prophet Muhammad, at a place known as Kãlpî which was a home of the accursed infidels, and he got mosques raised in place of temples for the worship of Allãh. He got palaces, tombs and schools constructed, and ended the wicked ways of the infidels, and promoted the Shariat of Prophet Muhammad…”
    • Sultãn Nasîru’d-Dîn Mahmûd Shãh Tughlaq (AD 1389-1412) Kalpi (Uttar Pradesh) Tãrîkh-i-Muhammadî in S.A.A. Rizvi in Tughlaq Kãlina Bhãrata, Aligarh, 1957, Vol. II, pp. 27ff
  • “He laid waste KhaNdaut which was the home of infidels and, having made it an abode of Islãm, founded Mahmûdãbãd after his own name. He got a splendid palace and fort constructed there and established all the customs of Islãm in that city and place.”
    • Khandaut (Uttar Pradesh) Tãrîkh-i-Muhammadî in S.A.A. Rizvi in Tughlaq Kãlina Bhãrata, Aligarh, 1957, Vol. II, pp. 27ff
  • “The Sultãn moved with the armies of Islãm towards Prayãg and Arail with the aim of destroying the infidels, and he laid waste both those places. The vast crowd which had collected at Prayãg for worshipping false gods was made captive. The inhabitants of Karã were freed from the mischief of rebels on account of this aid from the king and the name of this king of Islãm became famous by this reason.”
    • Prayag and Kara (Uttar Pradesh) Tãrîkh-i-Muhammadî in S.A.A. Rizvi in Tughlaq Kãlina Bhãrata, Aligarh, 1957, Vol. II, pp. 27ff

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