May 31

Civil Wars and Decline of Tughluq Dynasty

The Ghiyas-ud-Din Tughluq’s, or Ghazi Malik’s, ascension to the throne in Delhi in 1320 marked the beginning of the Tughluq Dynasty, which lasted until 1413. Between 1330 and 1335, the dynasty was at its height as a result of a military campaign directed by Muhammad bin Tughluq. For this brief time, it ruled the majority of the Indian subcontinent.

The Tughluq dynasty and the Delhi Sultanate were weakened to a great extent after the death of Muhammad bin Tughluq. During his reign, the Sultanate of Delhi was sacked by two types of opposition. One was from the Hammir Singh who commanded Mewar Rajput clan, while the other was from the Harihara and Bukka tribes of South India. However, Harihara and Bukka went on to establish the Vijayanagara Empire by first subduing and then finally overthrowing the Madurai Sultanate, which had been in charge of South India's city of Madurai and its surroundings on behalf of the Delhi Sultanate. Rana Hammir Singh liberated the strategically significant Rajputana after winning the Battle of Singoli in 1336.

His successor Firuz Shah Tughluq tried to consolidate the rest of the kingdom but eventually, he made the decision not to retake territories that had seceded or prevent more areas from doing the same. While Bengal affirmed its independence, the southern states had departed from the Sultanate, and there had been uprisings in Gujarat and Sindh.

Tughluq dynasty, decline of tughluq, Delhi Sultanates, Ghiyas-ud-Din Tughluq, Ghazi Malik, Firoz Shah Tughluq, Tughluq Khan, Abu Bakr Shah, Nasir ud din Muhammad Shah III, Ala ud-din Sikandar Shah, Nasir-ud-Din Mahmud Shah Tughluq,

Civil wars

The first civil war began in 1384 AD, four years before the ailing Firoz Shah Tughluq passed away, while the second one began in 1394 AD, six years after Firoz Shah's demise.

The beloved grandson of Firuz Shah Tughluq passed away in 1376. With the aid of his wazirs, Firuz Shah thereafter searched for and adhered to Sharia more than ever. In 1384, he became sick himself. Khan Jahan II, a wazir in Delhi and the favourite wazir of Firuz Shah Tughluq ascended to power following his father's passing in 1368 A.D. The son of Firuz Shah Tughluq, Muhammad Shah, and the young wazir were open rivals. The Sultan was convinced to designate his great-grandson as his heir. Next, Khan Jahan II attempted to persuade Firuz Shah Tughluq to expel his lone surviving son. The Sultan fired the wazir rather than his son. The crisis that ensued resulted in a civil war, the wazir's arrest and death, a revolt, and a civil war in and around Delhi. In 1387 AD, Muhammad Shah was also driven out.

Firuz Shah Tughluq, the last Sultan, passed away in 1388. Tughluq Khan came into power but perished in battle. Abu Bakr Shah took over in 1389, but he also passed away within a year. Sultan Muhammad Shah allowed the civil war to rage on, and by 1390 AD, all Muslim aristocracy thought to be supporting Khan Jahan II had been captured and put to death.

Hindus had reclaimed their independence in the Lahore region and northwest South Asia (now Pakistan) in 1394. Humayun Khan served as Muhammad Shah's principal commander when he gathered an army to attack them. Sultan Muhammad Shah passed away in Delhi in January 1394 as preparations were being made. Humayun Khan, who succeeded him as ruler, was assassinated two months later. Nasir-al-din Mahmud Shah, the brother of Humayun Khan, ascended to power, although he had little help from the amirs, wazirs, and other members of the Muslim elite.

In late 1394, Tartar Khan established Nasir-al-din Nusrat Shah as the second Sultan at Firozabad, just a few miles from the former Sultan's centre of authority. The two Sultans, each of whom had a small army under the command of a group of Muslim aristocracy, asserted their legitimate dominion over South Asia. There were battles every month, amirs frequently switched sides, and the civil war between the two Sultan groups persisted through 1398, right up to Timur's arrival.

Later rulers of the Tughluq dynasty

Tughluq Khan

Tughluq Khan was the grandson of Firoz Shah Tughluq and the son of Fateh Khan. In 1388 C.E., he took the throne. With the help of his brother Zafar Khan's son Abu Bakr Khan, Muhammad Shah ibn Firoz Shah staked his claim, however, and a succession crisis quickly arose. Tughluq Khan sent men in pursuit of his uncle at the base of the Sirmur hills.

After a brief skirmish, Muhammad Shah Tughluq bin Firoz Shah sought refuge in the Kangra Fort, and Tughluq Khan's army left for Delhi without pursuing him further because of the difficulty of the mission and the terrain. Though eventually, some amirs conspired to assassinate Tughluq Khan alongside Abu Bakr Khan, the grandson of Sultan Firoz Shah Tughluq and son of Zafar Khan. Tughluq Khan ruled for five months and eighteen days starting in 1389 until he was cornered, killed, and had his head hung over the Delhi city gate.

Abu Bakr Shah

He was the son of Zafar Khan and the grandson of Sultan Feroze Shah Tughluq. Abu Bakr took over as head of the Tughluq dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate when Tughluq Khan was assassinated. But Muhammad Shah, his uncle, also aspired to be king and fought Abu Bakr for the right to the throne. To seize the crown, Muhammad Shah assaulted Delhi in August 1390. After Abu Bakr was overthrown in August 1390, Muhammad Shah became king and ruled from 1390 to 1394. Abu Bakr was detained in the Meerut fort following his defeat and passed away shortly after.

Nasir ud din Muhammad Shah III

When Sultan Abu Bakr Shah Tughluq assumed control of the Tughluq dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate, Muhammad Shah, who was Abu Bakr's uncle, resisted him and fought him for the throne. He attacked Delhi in August 1390 and fought Abu Bakr Khan for the kingdom of Delhi. After Abu Bakr was ultimately vanquished, Muhammad Shah became king and ruled from 1390 to 1394. Muhammad Shah captured Abu Bakr after his loss and kept him in the Meerut fort, where he shortly passed away. Before passing away on January 20, 1394, Muhammad Shah governed the Delhi Sultanate for a period of four years.

Ala ud-din Sikandar Shah

Sultan Muhammad Shah Tughluq's son Ala ud-din Sikandar Shah, also known as Humayun Khan, was born. On February 1st, 1394 CE, he succeeded to the imperial throne as Ala-ud-din Sikandar Shah since he was the heir apparent. Although he was a pious and devout king who never skipped namaz prayers, he passed away from natural causes after one month and sixteen days.

Nasir-ud-Din Mahmud Shah Tughluq

Nasir ud din Muhammad Shah III, who ruled the Delhi Sultanate from 31 August 1390 to 20 January 1394, was the father of Nasiruddin Mahmud. After his passing, his younger brother Nasiruddin Mahmud succeeded him as sultan, followed by his older son Ala ud-din Sikandar Shah, who passed away on 8 March 1394 due to sickness. However, his relative Nusrat Shah (also known as Nasrat Khan) contested the succession, starting a three-year succession war that lasted from 1394 to 1397. During this time, Nusrat Shah ruled from Firozabad and Nasiruddin Mahmud ruled from the capital city of Delhi.

Timur the Chagatai attacked India in 1398, under Nasiruddin Mahmud's control. Near Delhi, they engaged in a decisive battle. Timur finally triumphed, invaded the city, and murdered the populace there. He acquired a substantial collection of riches from the Delhi court that had been amassed for more than 200 years by the Turco-Afghan ancestors. The Tughluq dynasty started to fall soon after Timur's conquest and finally ended.


In February 1413, Mahmud Shah Tughluq passed away. Khizr Khan, the first of the Sayyid dynasty, succeeded as the sultan of the Delhi Sultanate. Timur personally named Khizr Khan, the ruler of Multan, to be the Sultan of Delhi. However, Khizr Khan was required to pay homage to the Timurids in Samarkand.

Ocean Media
© 2024 Ocean Media. All Rights Reserved.