Q45. How were the Mughal different from their predecessors?
In contrast to their predecessors, the Mughals created an empire and accomplished
what had hitherto seemed possible for only short periods of time. From the
latter half of the sixteenth century they expanded their kingdom from Agra and
Delhi, until in the seventeenth century they controlled nearly all of the
subcontinent. They imposed structures of administration and ideas of governance
that outlasted their rule, leaving a political legacy that succeeding rulers of
the subcontinent could not ignore.
Q46. How did Babur become the ruler of Delhi?
Babur, the first Mughal emperor (1526-1530), succeeded to the throne of Ferghana
in 1494 when he was only 12 years old. He was forced to leave his ancestral
throne due to the invasion of another Mongol group, the Uzbegs. After years of
wandering he seized Kabul in 1504. In 1526 he defeated the Sultan of Delhi,
Ibrahim Lodi, at Panipat and captured Delhi and Agra. He captured Delhi and led
the foundation of Mughal Empire.
Q47. Write a brief note on the Land Revenue System of Akbar.
Akbar’s revenue minister, Todar Mal, carried out a careful survey of crop
yields, prices and areas cultivated for a 10-year period, 1570- 1580. On the basis
of this data, tax was fixed on each crop in cash. Each province was divided into
revenue circles with its own schedule of revenue rates for individual crops.
This revenue system was known as zabt. It was prevalent in those areas where Mughal
administrators could survey the land and keep very careful accounts.
Q48. Give a brief account of Akbar Nama and Ain-i Akbari.
Abul Fazl wrote a three-volume history of Akbar’s reign, titled Akbar Nama. The
first volume dealt with Akbar’s ancestors and the second volume recorded the
events of Akbar’s reign. The third volume is the Ain-i
It deals with Akbar’s administration, household, army, the revenues and the geography
of his empire. It also provides rich details about the traditions and culture
of the people living in India. The most interesting aspect about the Ain-i
Akbari is its rich statistical details about things as diverse as crops,
yields, prices, wages and revenues.
Q49. Write about the Mughal
relations with other rulers.
Mughal rulers campaigned constantly against rulers who refused to accept their
authority. But as the Mughals became powerful many other rulers also joined
them voluntarily. The Rajputs are a good example of this. Many of them married
their daughters into Mughal families and received high positions. But many
resisted as well. The Sisodiya Rajputs refused to accept Mughal authority for a
long time. Once defeated, however, they were honourably treated by the Mughals,
given their lands (watan) back as assignments (watan jagir). The careful
balance between defeating but not humiliating their opponents enabled the
Mughals to extend their influence over many kings and chieftains.
Q50. Why did the peasantry suffer tremendously in the last years
of Aurangzeb's reign?
In Akbar’s reign these jagirs were carefully assessed so that their revenues
were roughly equal to the salary of the mansabdar. By Aurangzeb’s reign this
was no longer the case and the actual revenue collected was often less than the
granted sum. There was also a huge increase in the number of mansabdars, which
meant a long wait before they received a jagir. These and other factors created
a shortage in the number of jagirs. As a result, many jagirdars tried to
extract as much revenue as possible while they had a jagir. Aurangzeb was
unable to control these developments in the last years of his reign and the peasantry
therefore suffered tremendously.