Bahmani Kingdom

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The Karnataka High Court recently directed the Kalaburagi district authorities to remove encroachments from the historical fort of the Bahmani Sultans in the city.

About Bahmani Kingdom

  • The Bahmani Kingdom rose to power after the Turkish Governor Ala-ud-din Hassan Bahman Shan established an independent empire by revolting against the Sultan of Delhi Sultanate, Muhammad Bin Tughlaq in 1347.
  • It was the first independent Islamic kingdom in South India that rose to power.
  • It was established in present-day Karnataka, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh.
  • They set up the capital in Ahsanabad (Gulbarga) between 1347 and 1425 and later moved to Bidar.
  • There were a total of fourteen sultans ruling over this kingdom. Among them, Alauddin Bahman Shah, Muhammad Shah I and Firoz Shah were important. 
  • The Bahmani kingdom reached its peak under the guidance of Mahmud Gawan, who served with great distinction as Prime Minister of three Bahamni Sultans for about twenty-three years from 1458 to 1481 AD.
  • Mahmud Gawan extended the empire by reconquering Goa, which was under the Vijayanagar Empire at the time.
  • Administration:
    • The kingdom was divided into four administrative regions or provinces called ‘taraf’. These were Daulatabad, Bidar, Berar, and Gulbarga.
    • Each province had a tarafdar, or subedar.
    • Bahmani rulers were dependent on their amirs for military support.
    • They used gunpowder in wars.
  • Art and Architecture:
    • The Bahmanis were known to have an enthusiasm for architecture and art.
    • In architecture, the Bahmani period followed the Indo-Islamic style of architecture with a few changes.
    • Buildings were constructed using local materials. An influence of Persian architecture could be seen in the buildings of this period.
    • Examples of architecture could be found at Gulbarga (Shah bazaar mosque, Hafta Gumbaz, Jama maszid), at Bijapur (Gol gumbaz, Ibrahim roza, Bara Kaman, etc.), and at Bidar (Rangeen mahal, Janata mahal).
    • During this period, Urdu, Arabic, and Persian literature were abundant.
    • It was during this period when a new dialect, ‘Dakhini Urdu’ prevailed. 
  • Decline:
    • Around 1518, Krishnadeva Raya of the Vijayanagar Empire defeated the last ruler of the Bahmani Empire.
    • After this, the Bahmani Empire broke down into five states, collectively known as Deccan Sultanates.
    • These five Deccan Sultanates were: Adilshahi of Bijapur, Baridshahis of Bidar, Nizamshahi of Ahmadnagar, Qutubshahi of Golconda (Hyderabad), and Imadshahi of Berar.
    • These states commenced declaring independence from the Bahmani kingdom.
    • Angered by the disintegration, Bidar, Ahmadnagar, Golconda, and Bijapur together attacked Vijayanagar.
    • The latter was defeated in 1565 in what is known as the Battle of Talikota.
    • After Vijayanagar was destroyed, Bahmani did not remain in power for long. Akbar, and then Aurangzeb annexed these kingdoms into the Mughal Empire.

Q1) Who was Krishnadevaraya?

The greatest emperor in the Vijayanagar empire’s history was Krishnadevaraya(17 January 1471-17 October 1529). He presided over the Tuluva Dynasty as its third king. By overthrowing the sultans of Bijapur, Golconda, the Bahmani Sultanate, and the Gajapatis of Odisha, he rose to power.

Source: Karnataka HC asks authorities to remove encroachments of Bahmani Sultans' fort in Kalaburagi