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Indian History Part 83 Shah Jahan Section III: The Deccan Campaign

Canberra, 30 November 2020 Prior to Shah Jahan’s accession, Mughal interest in the Deccan had waxed and waned in direct proportion to the stability and turmoil in North India. Akbar had started a concerted effort to bring the Deccan under the Mughal flag and in 1569 had conquered Khandesh. By 1600, parts of Berar had […]

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Indian History Part 83 Shah Jahan Section II: An Emperor’s Ambition Laid Low

Canberra, 22 November 2020 Even after the Khan-i-Jahan Lodi was chased down and killed, the Deccan campaign continued. Gradually all the major Shahi kingdoms—Ahmadnagar, Bijapur and Golconda—were involved in the conflict in different ways and to different extent. The fortunes of these three kingdoms and that of the Mughal forces in the Deccan ebbed and […]

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Indian History Part 83 Shah Jahan Section I: Early Years

Canberra, 11 November 2020 Although it was common knowledge that Emperor Jahangir had been gravely ill for some time and the possibility of his death was very real, the actual event on his way back from Kashmir came as a great blow to Nur Jahan. Her absolute hold on power and personal enthusiasm had emanated […]

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Indian History Part 82 Jahangir Section IV: An Assessment

Canberra, 04 November 2020 ‘What is immediately striking as we look at the portraits of Jahangir and compare his face with that of his father is the contrast between the two. Akbar appears self-contained; there is about him the inner orientation of a man who has to prove himself to no one but himself. In […]

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Indian History Part 82 Jahangir Section III: Intrigue, A Coup and the Death of an Emperor

Canberra, 02 November 2020 Shah Jahan was humiliated at the abject failure of his revolt and Nur Jahan overjoyed at having come out the ‘victor’ in the power struggle. However, the wheels of fortune were continuing to rotate and Mahabat Khan emerged as the most powerful noble, having been instrumental in crushing Shah Jahan’s rebellion. […]

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Indian History Part 82 Jahangir Section II: A Queen Rules and a Prince Rebels

Canberra, 02 November 2020 After successfully subjugating his eldest son Prince Khusrau’s rebellion and imprisoning him, Jahangir turned to consider ways to consolidate his power over the vast Empire that he had inherited. His son’s rebellion had made Jahangir inherently insecure; he had started to distrust his own strength and judgement, and he was apprehensive […]

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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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