History subject : History (For under graduate student) Paper No. Paper II history of India Topic No. & Title : Topic 12 Early Medieval Administration Lecture No. & Title : Lecture 2 The Administrative System of the Delhi Sultanate faqs

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History of India

Subject : History

(For under graduate student)

Paper No. : Paper - II

History of India

Topic No. & Title : Topic - 12

Early Medieval Administration

Lecture No. & Title : Lecture - 2

The Administrative System of the Delhi Sultanate

1. Name some sources which tell us about the administrative system of the Delhi Sultanate.

Some sources that tell us about the administrative system of the Delhi Sultanate are, Abul Hasan al Marawdi’s Akham-i-Sultaniya, Nizamuddin Tusi’s Siyasat Nama, Fakhru Mudabbir’s Adab-ul-Harb-wo-Shujaat, and Ziauddin Brani’s Tarikh-e-Firozsahi and Fatawa-e-Jahandari

2. What is the meaning of Jahandari and the Zawabit?

Jahandari may be described as the good sense, better judgment, wisdom, and experienced ideas of the Sultan, while Zawabit refers to a collection of ordinances, laws and regulations promulgated by the Sultan. Jahandari therefore found expression through the Zawabit. Both the concepts formed the foundation of the administration of the Sultanate.
3. Name the four main departments in the central administration system which had the Sultan at the centre.

The four main departments in the central administration system with the Sultan at the centre were the Diwan-i-Wazirat, Diwan-i-Arz, Diwan-i-Insha and the Diwani-i-Rasalat.

4. State the importance of the department called the Madad-i-Maash .

The department called Madad-i-Maash, dealt with grants and endowments to religious people like the ulema, the scholars, and the religious leaders, and was headed by the Sadar-us-Sadar, who was an eminent person belonging to the ulema. This was the only department where a person not from amongst the Maliks and Amirs but from among the ulema, was appointed as officer.

5. Who was the Caliph?

The Caliph was regarded as the universal, social, political, religious and cultural leader of Musalmans all over the world. The Delhi Sultans acknowledged the existence of the Caliphs. Iltutmish, had felt the necessity of seeking the Caliph’s recognition as a means of legitimizing his position, and was rewarded in return with the chaddar and a darvish in recognition of his power.

6. Write about the provincial administration in the Sultanate regime.

In the Sultanate regime, provincial administration overlapped with the revenue system. In the time of Iltutmish, the few areas that were conquered were called iqtas, and were governed by the maqtis or walis, who were given the right to collect revenue. Later with the expansion of the territorial limits of the Sultanate, provinces were formed. The divisions within the provinces were called parganas, or shiqs, and the lowest unit was called the dehi (village). There were several provincial officers in the parganas like the kanungos, amins, shiqdaars. The lowest units comprised the dehi or village where the patwari or village chief was assigned the responsibility of administration.

7. What were the main kinds of taxes?

The main taxes that were imposed were, Ushar, a land revenue that collected from the Muslim subjects, Kharaj, also a land tax, collected from non-Muslim subjects, Khaams or war booty, a major portion of which went to the Sultan’s treasury and the smaller portion was distributed amongst those soldiers who had participated in a particular battle, Zaqat, a religious tax collected solely from the Muslim subjects, and Jizya, was a tax on non-Muslims or zimmis, for their protection in a Muslim land.

8. How do we know that the Sultanate army was heterogeneous in nature?

We know that the army was heterogeneous in nature because the army consisted of the Turks, Afghans, Persians, Abyssinians and Hindus from contemporary sources.

9. Who was the first Muslim ruler to realize the importance of elephants?

Mahmud of Ghazni was the first to realize the importance of elephants, because they created a sense of awe among the enemy soldiers. The book Zafarnama, particularly refers to elephants often being used to carry loads, and of their use while capturing a fort.

10. How do we know that the Sultanate administration was influenced the Persian culture?

Persian culture was brought into India by the Turks and though almost all the Sultans were Turks, apart from the Lodis who were Afghans, they were overwhelmingly influenced by Persian culture. According to historian K.A. Nizami, this was the time of Persian Renaissance. Persian was the official and the court language. All records and documents were written in Persian, along with inscriptions on coins. Persian dress became the court dress of the Sultanate.
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