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1st Founder of Mughal Empire | History of Mughal Empire

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Zaheer Ud Din Muhammad | Founder of Mughal Empire

Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur is known as founder of the Mughal dynasty which ruled Indian Empire for almost one hundred and fifty years and won many laurels in various domains of life.  Zaheer_ud Din Muhammad Babur, surnamed “Babur”  was born in 1483 to Omer Shaikh Mirza ( Fifth in male descendant from Taimur ) and Kutlak  Nigar Khanum ( in the 15th degree from Chingiz khan ) thus he was connected with both families of Taimur and Chingiz Khan ,thus he had in him the blood of the two great conquerors of Central Asia, “the ferocity of the Mongol, and the courage and capacity of the Turks.”

At the early age of 12, his father, Sultan Omer Sheikh Mirza  died and Babur became king of  Farghana . At the time of the accession, he was surrounded on all sides by his enemies. His uncles and cousins took advantage of his youth and inexperience and attacked him on the right and left. With the help of his experienced and wise grandmother, Ahsan Daulat Khanum , he hurriedly went through his coronation ceremony and put his house in order. Then he addressed himself to the task of saving his county from the foreign invaders. First of all he sent a message to his paternal uncle, Ahmed Mirza , to put Farghana under Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur ,but the offer was rejected  and it led to war, which resulted Ahmed Mirza‘s retreat to Samarqand . Babur‘s maternal uncle  Muhammad khan also got disheartened by the stiff resistance put up by the besieged at Akhsi and retired to his country . Farghana was thus saved.

First battle of Panipat (1526)

Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur in order to set out for the conquest of India, first of all, he had to deal with Daula Khan who had turned out Ala-ud-Din from Lahore. After defeating him, Babur advanced to Delhi. Ibrahim Lodhi came out of Delhi to give battle to Babur. The opposing armies met on the historic plains of Pani Pat. Babur had certain advantages,he sent out 4 to 5 thousands of his men to make a mighty  attack on the Afghan camp which failed in its objective. When the Afghan army came near Babur and noticed Babur’s front line defense, they hesitated and thus lost the advantage of the shock charges. Babur took the advantage of the enemy’s hesitation and directed his men to take up the offensive. Thus the superior general ship and strategy of Babur won the day. Ibrahim Lodhi was killed fighting bravely.

Zaheer Ud Din Muhammad

Major successes Victories in India

Setting out in November 1525, Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur met Ibrāhīm at Panipat, 50 miles (80 km) north of Delhi, on April 21, 1526. Bābur’s army was estimated at no more than 12,000, but they were seasoned followers, adept at cavalry tactics, and were aided by new artillery acquired from the Ottoman Turks. Ibrāhīm’s army was said to number 100,000 with 100 elephants, but its tactics were antiquated and it was dissentious. Bābur won the battle by coolness under fire, his use of artillery, and effective Turkish wheeling tactics on a divided, dispirited enemy. Ibrāhīm was killed in battle. With his usual speed, Bābur occupied Delhi three days later and reached Agra on May 4. His first action there was to lay out a garden, now known as the Ram Bagh, by the Yamuna (yamna) River That brilliant success must have seemed at the time to be of little difference from one of his former forays on Samarkand. His small force, burdened by the oppressive weather and located 800 miles (1,300 km) from their base at Kabul, was surrounded by powerful foes. All down the Ganges River valley were militant Afghan chiefs, in disarray but with a  military potential. To the south were the kingdoms of Malva and Gujrat, both with extensive resources, while in Rajisthan Ranga Saga of Mewar was head of a powerful confederacy threatening the whole Muslim position in northern India. Bābur’s first problem was that his own followers, suffering from the heat and disheartened by the hostile surroundings, wished to return home as Timur had done. By employing threats, reproaches, promises, and appeals, vividly described in his memoirs, Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur diverted them. He then dealt with Rana Sanga, who, when he found that Bābur was not retiring as his Turkish ancestor had done, advanced with an estimated 100,000 horses and 500 elephants. With most of the neighbouring stronghold still held by his foes, Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur was virtually surrounded. He sought divine favor by abjuring liquor, breaking the wine vessels and pouring the wine down a well. His followers responded both to that act and his stirring exhortations and stood their ground at Khanua, 37 miles (60 km) west of Agra, on March 16, 1527. Bābur used his customary tactics—a barrier of wagons for his center, with gaps for the artillery and for cavalry sallies, and wheeling cavalry charges on the wings. The artillery stampeded the elephants, and the flank charges bewildered the Rajputs (ruling warrior caste), who, after 10 hours, broke, never to rally under a single leader again.

Death of Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur, 1530

The circumstances leading to the death of Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur in December,1530, were such that when his son Humayun,  fell sick and it was declared that there was no possibility of his survival. It was at this time that Babur is said to have walked three times round the bed of Humayun and prayed to God to transfer the illness of his son to him. it is stated that from that time onward Humayun began to recover and condition of Zaheer ud din Muhammad Babur went from bad to worse and ultimately he breathed his last. At the time of his death Babur was hardly 48 years of age.

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