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Sher Shah Suri

Sher Shah was one of the greatest administrator and rulers of the medieval India. The original name of Sher Shah, the lion king, was Farid. He was the grand son of Ibrahim Sur and the son of Hussain. His grandfather came to Indiain search of employment in the time of Bahlol Lodhi and joined services in the Punjab. Farid is said to have been born in the Punjab in 1472. After  Farid’s birth, both his grandfather and father entered in the  services of Jamal Khan in the Punjab. When Jamal khan was transferred to Jaunpur in the time of Sikandar Lodh, he granted the jagir of Sahsaran, kawnpur Tanda to Hassan in bihar. When grew up, his step brothers challenged his right to the whole of the Jagir. Farid refused to share the jagir with his brothersand took up services under Bahar Shah LOdhi, ruler of South Bihar. When he was in this helpless condition, Sher Khan joined the Mughal  services in 1527. When Babur attacked Bihar, Sher khan rendered him very valuable services, as a reward , jagir was given to him. Sher Khan spent his time in mughal administrationand military organization. Thus he had studied the weaknesses of Mughal politico_military machine and economic system with insight and in depth.

On the other hand, Sultan Mahmud, the king of the Bengal, could not tolerate his defeat in the Battle of  Shurajgarh and he wanted to wash off his slur. He entered into an alliance with the Potuguess of Chinsura and invaded Sher khan., but he was defeated n this battle,encouraged by these victories, Sher khan proceeded further and besieged the famous forte of Gaur. It was from the Forte of Gaur that the king of Bengalapproached Humayun for help. Humayun was then, busy against Bahadur Shah of ujrat, pleasures and merry making and in the meantime Sher Khan had already occupied not only the whole of Bengal but also the most famous fort of Rohtasgarh.

When Mahmood Lodhi was defeated in the battle of Ghagra in 1529, Mahmood again wanted to try his luck in 1530. He felt that time was ripe for his strength.cvHumayun, after his succession to the throne, did not take great interest in the affairs of a distant place like Bihar. Mahmood Lodhi got the help of all the Afghan chiefs. Many months were spent in preparation. In the battle of Dourah, in August,1532, the Afghans were defeatedand mahmood fled. After this success Humayun besieged the fort of Chunar which belonged to Sher Khan. However Humayun made peace with Sher khan and he was allowed to continue in possession of Chunar on the condition that he was to send a contingent of 300 troops for service in Mughal army.


When Sher khan occupied Bengal, at that time Humayun was busy with Bahadur Shah,he did not realize the magnitude of danger from the Afghan leader. Sher khan proceeded to Bengal , but there Humayun committed a fatal mistake, he wasted full six months in reducing the occupation of the fort of Chunar which was not so important achievement.Sher khan took full advantage of Humayun’s blunder, and managed to carry the families of his afghan nobles and the whole of the treasure to Ruhtas which he had occupied in 1538. Then he returned with his forces to meet the advanced army of Humayun.


Humayun in his maech towards Agra crossed the river Gangaat Monghyr and encamped himself at Chausa. Sher Khan reached this place to measure his strength with Humayun. Humayun now realized that he was in a great difficulty. He sent his agents for peace to be concluded between the Afghans and the Mughals but negotiations failed. Then all of  sudden Sher Khan fell upon the unprepared  Mughal forces. Humayun could no time to organize his forcesagainst Sher Khan. The result was that Humayun received a crushing defeat at Chausa. Humayun plunged into the river Ganga on horsebackand was about to drowned when he was saved by a water- carrier, Nizam, whom he seated on his throne for two days at agra in recognition of his services to the emperor.


Humayun was defeated by Sher khan in the battles of Chausa and in the battle of Kanauj and was forsed to fled away from the battle field. Sher Shah pursued Humayun out of the punjaband the throne of delhi passed nto the hands of the hands of the Afghans. The mughal Emperor was reduced to the position of a helpless fugitive.

Sher Khan was an ambitious person. He wanted to turn out the Mughals from India and establishedthe Afghan rule once again. His Indian emperor was broadly based upon the people’s will.  Sher khan was wise enough to realized that if he wanted to be secure on the throne and leve a permanent name in history, he must win the loyalty and affection of his peopleand eccord equal treatment to them irrespective of creed or religion. Although a strict Sunni,he was well- disposed towards other sects and religions. Though his government was a military despotism, yet he had real care for the welfare of all his people. The hindus were granted Waqfs for the encouragement of their education.  Hindus were recruited in every department of te government.


In his Central Government there were four departments as discussed below:


  1. 1.                Diwan_ I _ Wizarat.
  2. 2.                Diwan_ I_ Ariz.
  3. 3.                diwan_ i_ Risalat or Diwan_ i_ MUhtasib.
  4. 4.                Diwan _i Insha.


Provincial Administration

  1. Subha or Iqta
  2. Sarkars
  3. Parganas
  4. Village


The main sources  of income  of the state were land revenue


Sher shah showed brilliant capacity as an organizer, both in military in civil affairs. By dint of indefatigable industry and personal attention to the smallest details of administration. He restored law and order through out Hindustan in the short space of five years. He was something more than the capable leader of a horde of fierce Afghans.

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