Indian History Part 82 Jahangir Section I: Early Years – Quelling a Rebellion

Canberra, 21 October 2020 The 17th century was the great age of the Mughal Empire. Akbar had reintegrated northern and central India and given it a modified Persian form. At his death, Akbar left behind an empire populated by 100 million people—at a time when the total population of the British Isles could not have […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Section VIII: Mysticism, Religion and Reason – The Divine Faith – A Universal Religion

Canberra, 21 October 2020 Even though the squabbling amongst the religious scholars and learned seers reached a crescendo that vexed him, especially in the debates in makeshift Houses of Worship, Akbar ensured that he held fast to his own vision regarding religion. While he was becoming exasperated with the differences in religious thought that erupted […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Section VIII Mysticism, Religion and Reason – The Religious Journey

Canberra, 26 September 2020 From early childhood, Akbar was a practising Muslim and continued to be one—unquestioningly—into the early years of his rule. Even so, his inherent inquisitive nature made him wonder about the deeper religious thought and its underlying philosophy. Although he questioned these overall beliefs and religious functioning only infrequently in his youth, […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Section VII – The Builder

Canberra, 19 September 2020 Around his tenth regnal year, Akbar embarked on a journey of extensive building activity, being personally involved in all aspects of the endeavour—from influencing he designs to supervising the actual construction. The earliest project was the construction of a hunting lodge in a village called Kakrali, about 10 kilometres south of […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Section VI: The Warrior-Monarch

Canberra, 5 September 2020 There is no doubt that Akbar was a rare man—he combined many virtues that together make a ‘good’ human being and he was someone of stature who would stand out from the ordinary at all times. He was also a man of contradictions; he was personally brave to a fault, impetuous […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Sect V: An Unsavoury End

Canberra, 22 August 2020 By the turn of the century, around 1600, Akbar had acquired the aura of a superhuman hero, invincible in all respects. His only worry was the behaviour of his eldest son and presumed successor, Prince Salim. In 1600, Salim was 31 years old and had waited patiently to become king and […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Sect IV The Conquering Emperor 6. The North-West and the Deccan

Canberra, 22 August 2020 Even when the rebellion in Bengal was raging without an end in sight, and it was thought that the East would be lost to the Empire, Akbar did not march to Bengal. Though all his military instincts—which were highly developed—prompted him to rush to the East, he held back, for the […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Section IV: The Conquering Emperor 5. Annexation of Kashmir

Canberra, 16 August 2020 Kashmir, the mountain kingdom resting partially on the Himalayas and flowing into its foothills, had always been a difficult place to invade and capture from the outside. Its natural ramparts had been instrumental in Kashmir preserving its independence for centuries, even when great empires had come knocking on its borders. The […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar – Section IV. The Conquering Emperor 4. Bihar and Bengal – Expanding to the East

Canberra, 1 August 2020, Saturday In ancient times, the region known as Bengal now was called Vanga and at times Gauda. Epigraphic records show that around 11th century, the region started to be mentioned as Vangala-desa, which in turn was further localised to ‘Bangal’ (Bengal) by Muslim invaders—a name that is still used today. Brief […]

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Indian History Part 81 Akbar Section IV: The Conquering Emperor; 3. The Gujarat Campaign

Canberra, 24 July 2020 Gujarat, situated to the south-west of the Mughal province of Malwa and shored by the Arabian Sea was a rich kingdom, mainly because of its seaports that facilitated a flourishing maritime trade. It was geographically large and consisted of the territories and districts of Surat, Broach, Kaira, Ahmedabad, large parts of […]

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