Medieval Indian History Part – 3 Arab and Turkish invasion

Arab and Turkish invasion

  • Prophet Muhammad was the founder of Islam(570-632 A.D)
  • Islam grew up in the deserts of Arabia.
  • Its first converts were the Arabs.
  • Arab conquest of Sind and Multan 712 A.D.
  • Commercial contacts prevailed between India and Arabia for a long time.
  • The Arabs were attracted by the rich ports of Sind
  • They wanted to extend their political and religious control over it.
  • They were angry with the ruler of Sind who failed to check the pirates who plundered them


  • Sent by Al-Hajjajj the Governor of Iraq
  • With the permission of Caliph Walid to conquer Sind
  • He marched against Dahir the ruler of Sind
  • Defeated him in the Battle of Rewar and captured Sind
  • He also captured Multan.
  • He got so much of wealth from Multan that he called Multan – ‘The City of Gold’.

Administrative System

  • Muhammad-bin-Qasim divided Sind and Multan into the number of Iqtas or districts
  • Arab military officers were appointed as heads of the Iqtas.
  • Local Hindu officers were allowed to administer the sub¬ divisions of the districts.
  • The Arabs imposed Jizya on non- Muslims.
  • Muhammad-bin-Qasim had an army of 25,000 troops including 6000 Syrian horses, 6000 Camels, 3000 Bactrian Camels
  • An artillery force of 2000 men with five catapults and advanced guards.

End of Muhammad-bin-Qasim

  • Caliph Sulaiman, succeeded Caliph Walid after his death.
  • He was an arch enemy of Al-Hajjaj, the Governor of Iraq.
  • He dismissed Muharrimad-bin Qasim as he was the son-in-law of Al-Hajjaj.
  • He sent him as a prisoner to Mesopotamia and tortured him to death.
  • Sind and Multan remained as part of the Caliph’s empire for more than 150 years.

Effects of Arab Conquest

  • The conquest of Sind sowed the seeds for the coming of Islam into India.
  • The Arabs learnt the art of administration, astronomy, music, painting, medicine and architecture from our land.
  • Indian Philosophy, numerals and astronomy were taken to Europe by the Arabs.

Turkish Invasion

  • The Expansion of Turks into India
  • The Turks got the upper hand over the Caliphs of Baghdad in the 8th and 9th centuries
  • They completed the work begun by the Arabs and extended their dominion beyond Sind and Multan into India.

Heroic Defence of Women

Rani Bai

  • The wife of Dahir and the other women of Sind put up a heroic defence within the Fort of Rewar.
  • When their attempt failed they performed Jauhar to save their chastity and escape from the hands of the invaders.

Brahma Siddhanta

A Sanskrit work of Brahma Gupta was translated into Arabic. Arabic works mention the names of Indian scientists like Bhala, Manaka and Sindbad. Dhana was appointed as a chief Medical officer in a hospital at Baghdad

Manaka, a physician cured a serious disease of Caliph Harun-al-Rashid.

Mahmud of Ghazni

  • He invaded India in 1000 A.D
  • He was the first Turkish invader
  • Mahmud defeated Jaipala,
  • The ruler of the Hindu Shahi dynasty
  • Fateh Daud of Multan and Anandpala of Nagarkot
  • He also crushed the Chandelas. The rulers of Mathura, Kanauj and Gwalior.
  • Returned to Ghazni with enormous wealth
  • Mahmud’s important expedition in Hindustan was against the Somnath temple in 1025 A.D.
  • This was situated on the coast of Kathiawar
  • As the ruler of Kathiawar, Raja Bhima Dev, and his followers fled from the place,

Estimate of Mahmud of Ghazni

  • Mahmud of Ghazni was one of the greatest Muslim rulers of Asia.
  • He was a great patron of art and letters and he patronised scholars like Firdausi and Alberuni

End of Ghazni’s rule in India

  • By 1186 A.D. the power of the House of Ghazni declined and that of Ghori rose up.

Muhammad of Ghori

  • Muhammad was the third important Muslim invader of Hindustan.
  • He became the ruler of Ghori

His invasions

  • As an ambitious and enterprising ruler
  • Started his attacks on India in 1176 A.D

First Battle of Tarain (1191A.D.)

  • In 1189 A.D. Muhammad of Ghori captured the fortress of Bhatinda and advanced into the kingdom of Prithviraj Chauhan
  • Prithviraj marched against him with a large force and defeated Muhammad of Ghori in the Battle of Tarain in 1191 A.D
  • Prithviraj also recovered Bhatinda, which was earlier occupied by Mahmud of Ghazni

Second Battle of Tarain (11 92 A.D.)

  • He gave a crushing defeat to the combined forces of the Rajput rulers under Prithviraj at Tarain.
  • Prithviraj was imprisoned and later put to death
  • The Second Battle of Tarain marked the beginning of the Turkish rule in the heart of Hindustan for the first time in Indian history
  • Muhammad of Ghori appointed Qutb-ud-din Aibak as his commander.

Rajput Uprisings

  • Between 1193 and 1198 A.D. there were many Rajput uprisings
  • Qutb-ud-din Aibak put them down and brought many of their territories under his control
  • Delhi was made the capital of Muhammad of Ghori’s territory in India.

Battle of Chandwar (1194 A.D.)

  • Muhammad of Ghori marched against Jaichandra, the greatest Rajput ruler of Kanauj
  • Jaichand was struck in the eye by an arrow and he was killed by Muhammad of Ghori

Conquest of Bengal and Bihar

  • Muhammad-bin-Baktiyar Khilji, one of the commanders of Muhammad of Ghori
  • Destroyed Vikramasila and Nalanda Universities in 1202-1203A.D

Death of Muhammad of Ghori

  • Muhammad of Ghori went back to Ghazrii in order to check his Central Asian enemies.
  • While he was engaged in evening prayer, he was assassinated on 25th March 1206A.D. by some Shia rebels and Khokhars
  • Muhammad of Ghori was considered to be the real founder of the Turkish Empire in India because of his various conquests and annexations of the Rajput territory in North India

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