- Name of the Battle: Timur invades India
- Venue: Delhi
- Year: 1398
The reasons that led to the battle
After his victorious win over Persia and Mesopotamia and other areas in the west and the south, Timur, the great conqueror turned his attention to India. The main reasons for his conquest of India were:
- To destroy and plunder the massive wealth of India
- To fight a "Holy war" against the infidels
- To destroy the temples and the idols and make people believe in Islam
The Strength of Warring Forces
Historians say that in 1398, when Delhi was attacked by Timur, he had 92 regiments of 1000 horsemen each.
Aftermath of the battle: winner and loser
- Winner: Timur
- Loser: Tughlaq Sultan Mahmud Shah
The larger implications of the battle
More than lakhs of Hindus were taken as prisoners before he entered Delhi. To provide protection to the elephants in the war, Timur made a defence camp with brushwood and trees, followed by huge stones, cattles and the Hindu women. His army were kept with the women prisoners, where they were tortured and raped . Before leaving for the battle, all of the 1 lakh men, who were supposed to be the infidels, were ordered to be killed brutally. These included both the Muslims and the Hindus. Timur's conquests of India brought a huge scale devastation to the country. Whichever place he went, he reduced it to ruins. Many people were massacred. Thousands of villages were burnt and destroyed completely. The cities with riches were extensively plundered. Even after capturing Delhi, the bloodshed continued for many days. The towns of Jahanpanah and Siri were completely demolished by Timur. It is said that the army of Timur could not be brought under anyone's control and they went on killing, looting, plundering, and making prisoners.
The overall place and significance of the battle in the Indian history
The invasion of India by Timur had a great significance in the Indian History. In history, Timur is known as a ferocious ruler who did not hesitate to massacre the inhabitants of his conquered cities. Timur's invasion of India led to the destruction of the agricultural fields and crops, granaries were plundered, trade and commerce fell. There was a terrible famine in Delhi after the war. The whole suburbs became infectious due to the massacre of the people with bloods and bodies laid all over. A large number of people were butchered . The north western provinces were ravaged and laid in waste. The Tughlaq Empire was completely liquidated. Delhi lost its richness, its glory, its people, and its rule. All builders, stone-masons and craftsmen were taken as prisoners to build Timur's seat of his empire, Masjid-i jami, in his capital city Samarkand, which was one of its kind in the country.
According to Historians, one of Timur's greatest achievements was the capture and invasion of the Delhi Sultanate. This conquest had undoubtedly surpassed other great invasions of India, such as that of Alexander the Great or Genghis Khan. The reason being, it was this invasion of Delhi which took away the entire richness of the city and harsh conditions were inflicted on the people. After Delhi was conquered by Timur's army, few uproars took place by the people against the Turkic-Mongols. But, these led to more bloody massacre within the city. Timur destroyed the entire Delhi Sultanate and also the Tughlaq dynasty. It is said that Delhi took almost a century to recover and emerge again from this great loss.
Last Updated on : January 2, 2015