Humayun “the Fortunate” was the eldest son of Babur.He had three brothers, kamran,askari and Hindal. He was born in Kabul in March 1508. He was the son of Mahim Begum who was probablya Shia.Young Humayun learnt Turki,Arabic and Persian. On account of his careless habits, he did not acquire the exactness of a scholar. In his early youth, he was associated by his father with the government of the country. He was appointed the governor of Badakhshan at the age of 20. On the eve of the Battle of Panipat 1526 he was sent against Hamid Khan who was defeated near Hissar Firoza. He also participated in the Battle of Kanwaha. He was given the fief of Hissar Firoza, in 1526. after the death of Babur. An attempt was made to place Mahdi Khwaja ( Brother _in_law of Babur ) on the throne of agra. He was an experienced and competent administrator. On the other hand, Humayun had not shown any outstanding traits of greatness. Inspite of that Humayun successfully placed himself on the throne of Agra on 30th December, 1530.
The throne inherited by Humayun was not a bed of roses.Babur had practically got no time to consolidate his position and authority.He inherited an ill organized empire , empty treasure , a kingdom divided into fiefs and a heterogeneous army,which was not dependable. It was a mixed body of adventyres. Some of them were Uzbeks and Mughals, other Indians, Afghans, Persians and Chaghtais. In addition of his claims of his three brothers, Humayun had to deal with many Khans and nobles. They were busy in intrigues against the new emperor and many of them did not consider the kingdom of Delhi and agra beyond the scope of of their ambitions.humayun had innumerable rivals. The Afghans were defeated in the battle of Panipat (1526) and the Battle of Ghagra (1529) but they were not completely crushed, neutralized or pacified. Moreover, they had not forgotten the days when they were the rulers of the country and aspired to restore their rule.
Humayun made a mistake of real politics in showing kindness to his brothers. In accordance with the wishes of his father, he gave Sambhal to Askari, and Alwar to Hindal. As regards Kamran, he gave him the provinces of Kabul and Qandahar. Inspite of this,Kamran was not satisfied. He attacked Punjab nd brought the whole of the Punjab under his control. Humayun did not fight with Kamran and gave the Province of the Punjab to him. This possession of vital military importance gave Kamran control over the high road between Delhi and Punjab.It was a suicide attempt by Humayun. He was deprived of the source from which he could have recruited his new army. He was left only with the empire which was newly conquered and over which his hold was not secure.
Humayun was faced with many difficulties but he could have overcome them if he had possessed tact and stronger will-power. Unfortunately, he did not possess such a character. He was not a man of moment. He failed to measure upto the task before him.
After his defeat at Kanuj at the hands of Sher shah ,Humayun crossed the river Ganga and reached Agra persistently persuaded by Sher Shah.
After having managed to collect his treasure,he straightaway reached Delhi, But found that he could not retain even Delhi on account of the uncertainty of any solid help from any quarter.
At Lahore Humayun collected all his brothers and relatives and requested them for help. Kamran was the last person prepared to help him Mirza Haider Daghlat, cousin of Babur advised humayun to retire towards Kashmir for some time and then organized his forces to attack Sher Shah.In the meantime the Mghals heard that Sher Shah had already crossed the Beas and was coming to Lahore. At last Humayun decided to proceed towards Sindh.
Passing through great hardships during his journey along the river Sindh,Humayun reached Rohri. Humayun approached the ruler of Bhakhar, Shah Hussain Arghun for help to recover Hindustan, but n vain.Then he besieged Thatta, the capital of the ruler of Sindh,but he was not successful due to the intrigues,thus he had to leave Sindh soon.
Humayun stayed with the Shah of Persiafor a long time as his honourable guest,after a long negotiations a treaty was concluded between the two,according to which the Shah promised to give Humayun 14,000 strong forces to to enable him to conquer Kabul and Kandhar,in return Humayun promised to give Kandhar to the Shah, propagating Shiasim in his new kingdom and to confirm shia faith. Thus Humayun left Persia with 14,000 strong Persian army to conquer Kabul and Kandhar. Humayun laid siege to kandhar, defeated Askari and occupied kandhar . He put Kandhar incharge of Bairam Khan, his faithfull ally who was with him throughout his exile.Humayun proceeded to take Kabul. Kamran put up resistence but ultimately he too was defeated.
Humayun had recovered the throne of Delhi after an interval of about 15 years, but he was not destined to enjoy the fruits of his victories for a long time. He died on 26th January 1556, by an accidental fall from the roof of his library and fractured his head. Speedy arrangements were made to call Prince Akbar from the Punja. For some days the news of his death was kept secret. At last, an announcement was made regarding Akbar’s accession to the delhi throne.
The name of Humayun implies “fortunate” but he proved to be one of the most unlucky monarchs who ever sat upon the throne of Delhi. Along with the empire, he inherited many difficulties for which he did not owe any personal responsibility. Humyun was a thorough gentleman. He was an ideal son, husband, father and brother. In spite of the acts of disloyalty and treachery on the part of his brother, and nobles and others, he forgave them again and again. But this virtue to a fault was the undoing of his career.