The young traveler arrived in India by way of Afghanistan’s high mountains, trailing the route of a Turkish warrior who, took control of the Hindu farming people of India and founded the Sultanate of Delhi a century ago.
The first group of Muslim soldiers ransacked towns and destroyed the Hindu believers image of gods. Later on, warrior kings established a tax system instead of slaving the peasants. They substituted the residing Hindu leaders with Afghan Turks and took over a big expanse of the area just about the tip of the subcontinent.
The Muslim sultans in Delhi, however, are unsafe. They are continuously challenged by oppositions from India’s Hindu majority who fought back against the conquerors and were compromised with continuing Mongol invasions coming from the north. Approaching India, Ibn Battuta paid a visit to Chagatay Khan who occupied Indi and made threats to Delhi, the new capital city. However, Sultan Muhammad Tughluq’s defense force pushed them back to Indus River.
India has gradually taken under the control of Muslim leaders. Hindus even converted to Islam and looked for work in the new government. They have acknowledged the economic advantages of being a Muslim – way lower tax and advancement opportunities but there were also some who remained Hindu in countryside areas, hating the imposed Muslim government.
The Sultan required more scholars, judges, and administrators to solidify his control of India. He all the more so needed poets, writers, and performers to honor and amuse the new leadership. He looked upon foreigners to occupy these positions. He does not trust Hindus and is afraid they would protest against him. He enlisted foreigners and compensated them with grand gifts and big salaries. Turks, Persians, and other Muslims assembled to the new kingdom for rewards. The language of the influential government was Persian which set it apart from the capital city. Ibn Battuta aimed to find work from Sultan Muhammad Tughluq.
Muhammad Tughluq was known in history as a ruler who is erratic, eccentric, and violent. The sultan was actually viewed as a very intelligent man as he was able to learn how to write Persian poetry and acquired skills in calligraphy art. He can also carry out legal debate and religious concerns with scholars. He studied Arabic to be able to read sacred texts like the Koran and he distributed presents on scholars and Muslims he trusts. However, he went beyond his power and made several terrible choices such thinking which battles to fight, the place to establish his government capital, decisions with respect to the economy which almost destroyed his treasury, and how to control justice. He was recognized as a mean person, even for the Middle Ages! He was the reason for having not just thieves and rebels punished with cruel deaths, but Muslim scholars and holy men too – any person who only cast doubt about his rules or happens to be a friend of someone who did. He was full of paranoia and feared any criticism.
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