Babur’s Conquest

Geo-strategic Significance

  • Kabul and Qandhar had always acted as staging places for an invasion in India, Babur’s advent made Kabul and Qandhar the integral parts of an empire comprising north India.
  • Babur and his successors strengthen the India security from an external invasion, which were persistent from the last 200 years.

Economic Significance

  • Geographically Kabul and Qandhar positioned in the trade route; therefore, the control of these two regions strengthened India’s foreign trade.
  • Babar attempted to re-establish the prestige of the Crown, which had been eroded after the death of Firuz Tughlaq.

Zahir al-Din Muhammad (Babur)

  • Babur born on 14 February 1483 at Andijan in Mughalistan (present day Uzbekistan).
  • Babur had the prestige of being a descendant of two of the most legendary warriors of Asia namely Changez, and Timur.
  • Babur groomed himself to his begs by his personal qualities. He was always prepared to share the hardships with his soldiers.
  • Babur was fond of wine and good company and was a good and cheerful companion. At the same time, he was a strict disciplinarian and a hard taskmaster.
  • Babur took good care of his army and other employees, and was prepared to excuse many of their faults as long as they were not disloyal.
  • Though Babur was an orthodox Sunni, but he was not prejudiced or led by the religious divines. Once, there was a bitter sectarian conflict between the Shias and the Sunnis in Iran and Turan; however, in such a condition, Babur’s court was free from theological and sectarian conflicts.
  • Though Babur declared the battle against Rana Sanga a jihad and assumed the title of ‘ghazi’ after the victory, but the reasons were noticeably political.
  • Babur was master of Persian and Arabic languages, and is regarded as one of the most famous writers in the Turkish language (which was his mother tongue).
  • Babur’s famous memoirs, the Tuzuk-i-Baburi is considered as one of the classics of world literature. His other popular works are masnavi and the Turkish translation of a well-known Sufi work.
  • Babur was a keen naturalist, as he described the flora and fauna of India in considerable details.
  • Babur introduced a new concept of the state, which was to be based on −
    • The strength and prestige of the Crown;
    • The absence of religious and sectarian bigotry; and
    • The careful fostering of culture and the fine arts.
  • Babur, with all these three features (discussed above), provided a precedent and a direction for his successors.