Military Organization of Sher Shah Suri

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Military Organization of Sher Shah Suri

Sher Shah Suri (also Sher Khan) realized the need of a strong army and in his fight against the Mughals he relied mostly on the Afghans whom he invited from different parts of the country and employed them to positions suitable to everybody’s ability.

The Military Organization of Sher Shah Suri was based on rational policies. He also appointed Hindus in his army. He realized the weakness of a feudal army based on occasional contingents supplied by the feudal chiefs. He, therefore, followed the policy of raising a permanent army partly by grant of jagirs and partly by payment from the royal treasury.  Salaries of the troops and officers were fixed in accordance with their skill and ability. Sher Shah revived Ala-ud-din’s system of branding horses to prevent fraudulent muster of horses or their clandestine sale. Promotion in the army depended entirely on merit and actual service rendered.

Sher Shah’s army comprised 1,50,000 cavalry, 25,000 infantry, 300 elephants and artillery. At different strategic points of the empire garrisons were maintained. Each garrison was called a fauj and was under a faujdar. He took personal interest in the training and discipline of his soldiers. Transport and commissariat were in the charge of soldiers and commanders.

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