Brief History of Mandu (in Madhya Pradesh)

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Brief History of Mandu (in Madhya Pradesh)


Mandu, also known as Mandav, rose into prominence in the eleventh century when Malwa became an independent kingdom under the Paramars. Their rule came to an end in 1304 when the Khiljis defeated the Paramars and Malwa was annexed to the Khilji Empire.

In 1401 the provincial governor Dilwar Khan Lodi declared his independence of Delhi. From 1401 to 1526, first the Ghoris and then the Khiljis ruled over Malwa, with Mandu as their capital. This period witnessed Mandu’s spectacular development. The elaborate fortifications, the seven-storey tower of victory, the marble Ashrafi Mahal, the great Jami Mosque, Hoshang Shan’s Tomb and the magnificent Jahaz Mahal were built. Then followed the conquest and annexation of Malwa, first by the Muslim rulers of Gujarat for a brief spell and then by Akbar the great Mughal.

Mahmud Shah (1436-1469) spent the major portion of his reign in wards against his neighbors, the rulers of Gujarat, Deccan, Jaunpur and Delhi. So great was his power that the Caliph of Baghdad and the sovereigns of Central Asia sent their embassies. He built several magnificent buildings including his own tomb, now styled as Ashrafi Mahal. But so incompetent were his architects and so hurried was the construction that his death was shortly followed by their disintegration.

His son and successor, Ghias-ud-Din, was so unfavorably impressed by his father’s fighting career that he swore never to wage wars. His reign of 31 years was devoted to peaceful pursuits.

In 1561, one of the great generals of Akbar defeated Baz Bahadur and occupied Mandu.

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