Allauddin Khilji succeeded his uncle Jalal-ud-din Firuz Khilji to become the second Ruler of the Khiji Dynasty (1296-1316). Allauddin's real name was Juna Khan. Allauddin Khilji led a tumultuous yet successful reign during his era. He led the Khilji Dynasty to hold a renowned place in the chronicles of Indian history.
Alauddin Khilji was appointed the governor of Kara, near Allahabad city, by his uncle, and it was only after the invasion of Bhilsa and Devagiri Allauddin longed to become the next Sultan. His dramatic march to Delhi with his uncle's head on a pike was terrifying. He ordered the blinding of both of Jalaluddin's sons, Arkali Khan and Rukunuddin, along with the imprisonment of his widow, Malika Jahan, and accquired the wealth of nobles through force. He even visualized himself as the 'Second Alexander' and dreamt of founding a world-wide empire, which is depicted in his era's coinage.
Allauddin Khilji led many conquests during his reign, of which, his most illustrious included the plundering of Gujarat in 1297 AD, carried out by his generals Nusrat Khan and Ulugh Khan, who even went on to loot the Somnath temple and desecrate the sacred Shivalinga. It was here when Allauddin Khilji, who is regarded to be a homosexual, purchased a slave boy, Malik Kafur, who became Khilji's lover and a general in his army, helping him in his future conquests. Allauddin's next major conquest was against Hammir Deva at Ranthambhore, who sheltered Allauddin's rebel general, Muhammad Shah. After an unsuccessful attempt in 1299, Allauddin himself led a victorious siege in 1301 AD against the fort and Hammir, who was betrayed by his generals- Ratipal and Ranmal. Simultaneously, the Khilji dynasty also successfully thwarted several Mongol invasions, from 1297 to 1305 AD, however losing a dedicated general in Zafar Khan in 1299 AD, whose valor proved immaculate. In 1303 AD saw Allauddin engage in battle owing to his interests in Rani Padmini, which resulted in defeat for her husband and then Chittor ruler, Rana Rattan Singh.
Allauddin went on to conquer several kingdoms in the North including Malwa in 1305 and a fort in Sivana, Rajasthan in 1308. Thus, now with a desire to expand his empire, Khilji set south for his next biggest conquest. Allauddin, assisted by his general Malik Kafur surged ahead. The peninsular India saw the sack of Madurai, invasion of the Hoyasala kingdom of Dwarasamudra in 1310 AD, the Pandya kingdom in 1311 AD, as well as Devagiri's annexure to Delhi in 1313 AD.
Allauddin Khilji died of edema in 1316 AD, leaving behind the great Khilji dynasty to his successor Qutb-ud-din Mubarak Shah. Amongst the numerous contributions of the Khilji dynasty, the great work of the prominent Persian poet and laureate of Alauddin's court, Amir Khusro is famous. Khusro contributed in the creation of new Ragas, Talas, new instruments and laid the the foundation of Hindustani music.
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