Raja Todar Mal was a warrior, an able administrator and an exemplary finance minister. He was one of the ‘Navratnas’ of Akbar’s court. He introduced an excellent land revenue system. In 1582, the title Diwan-I- Ashraf was bestowed upon him by the Emperor.
Born to a Khsatriya family of Uttar Pradesh, he joined the services as a clerk in Akbar’s court. Akbar was impressed with his administrative capability and presented him the post of ‘Wazir’. As a finance
minister he transformed the land revenue collection and assessment into a systematic process. He
reconstructed the land tax structure and introduced compensation for crop damage. His systems were so effective and modern that the others and even the British followed it later on.
Todar Mal sharpened his administrative skills while working under Sher Shah. In 1582, the title Diwan-I- Ashraf was bestowed upon him by the Emperor. Apart from his ministerial brilliance, he was an able soldier and General. He accompanied Raja Man Singh to crush the Afghan rebels in Bengal.
He foresighted the significance of a common language for all administrative works and promoted Persian as the language for official purpose. He breathed his last in the year 1659.