DELHI SULTANATE – MAMLUK DYNASTY

Mu’izz al-Din, whose reign began the Delhi Sultanate. Aibak was of Cuman-Kipchak origin, and due to his lineage, his dynasty is known as the Mamluk (slave) Dynasty (not to be confused with Mamluk dynasty of Iraq or Mamluk dynasty of Egypt). Aibak reigned as the Sultan of Delhi for four years.

After Aibak died, Aram Shah assumed power in 1210, but he was assassinated in 1211 by Iltutmish, his son in law.  Iltutmish’s power was precarious, and a number of Muslim amirs (nobles) challenged his authority. Some supported Qutbuddin aibak. After a series of conquests and brutal executions of opposition, he consolidated his power. His rule was challenged a number of times, such as by Qubacha, and this led to a series of wars.  Iltumish conquered Multan and Bengal from contesting Muslim rulers, as well as Ranthambhore and Siwalik from the Hindu rulers. He also attacked, defeated, and executed Taj al-Din Yildiz, who asserted his rights as heir to Mu’izz al-Din Muhammad. Iltutmish’s rule lasted till 1236. Following his death, the Delhi Sultanate saw a succession of weak rulers, disputing Muslim nobility, assassinations, and short-lived tenures. Power shifted from Rukn ud din Firuz to Razia Sultana and others, until Ghiyas ud din Balban came to power and ruled from 1266 to 1287. He was succeeded by 17-year-old Muiz ud din Qaiqabad, who ordered the poisoning of Nizam-ud-Din and appointed Jalal-ud-din Firoz Shah Khilji as the commander of the army. Khilji assassinated Muiz ud din Qaiqabad and assumed power, thus ending the Mamluk dynasty.

Qutb-ud-din Aibak initiated the construction of Qutub Minar  and the Quwwat-ul-Islam (literally, Might of Islam) Mosque, now a UNESCO world heritage site. It was built from the remains of twenty seven demolished Hindu and Jain temples, and completed by Muhammad-bin-Sam. The Qutub Minar Complex or Qutb Complex was expanded by Iltutmish, and later by Alauddin Khalji in early 14th century.  During the Mamluk dynasty, many amirs (nobles) of Afghan and Persia migrated and settled in India, as West Asia came under Mongol siege.