Battle of Raichur

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Battle of Raichur
DateMay 1520[1]
LocationRaichur, Karnataka, India
Result Decisive Vijayanagar victory
Vijayanagara flag.png Vijayanagara Empire Sultanate of Bijapur
Commanders and leaders
Vijayanagara flag.png Krishnadevaraya[2] Ismail Adil Shah[3]

Modern estimates
70,000 infantry
30,000 cavalry
550 war elephants[4]

Contemporary source
732,000 soldiers (consists of 32,000 cavalry and 550 elephants)

Modern estimates
14,000 (composing infantry and cavalry)[5]

Contemporary sources
140,000 soldiers (consists of cavalry and infantry)
Casualties and losses
16,000 soldiers killed (contemporary sources) Unknown but heavy

The Battle of Raichur was a battle fought between the Vijayanagar Empire and the Sultanate of Bijapur in 1520 CE in the town of Raichur, India. It resulted in a decisive victory for Vijayanagar forces and the Bijapur ruler was defeated and pushed across the river Krishna. [6] This battle had far-reaching effects; it weakened the power and prestige of the Adil Shahi and got the ruler to make alliance with other Deccan sultanates powers to take on Vijayanagara and defeat it at the Battle of Talikota.[7]


The fort of Raichur was built by Kakatiya king Rudra in 1284 CE which passed on to the Vijayanagar kingdom after the decline of Kakatiyas. Ever since, the fort has been under dispute for nearly two centuries. The fort was captured by Bahmanis in 1323 CE. Saluva Narasimha Raya expressed a wish in his testament that the city of Raichur be recaptured. This has been in the mind of Krishnadevaraya since his coronation in 1509. In the year 1520 Krishnadevaraya sent Seyed Maraikar, a Muslim in his service to Goa with a large sum of money to buy horses. Maraikar instead went to Adil Khan with the money and offered his services. Krishnadevaraya made a demand that Maraikar be returned along with the money which was duly refused. During the period of peace Krishnadevaraya made extensive preparations for a grand attack on Raichur doab. After the court decided that Raichur should be attacked the king invited all commanders (Nayakas) in his service to take part in the battle.


The battle was fought in Raichur between the armies of Krishnadevraya and Sultanate of Bijapur where the armies of Bijapur crushed by the armies of Vijaynagar Empire. Both the armies have large number of cavalry , infantry and elephants. Some sources claims that Matchlocks also have been used by the army of vijaynagar as obtained from the Portuguese through trade. While some of the Portuguese source claims that cannons are also deployed by the sultanate of Bijapur during the battle.

The aftermath[edit]

When the city of Raichur surrendered Krishnadevaraya made a triumphal entry into it, and treated the garrison with kindness and consideration[citation needed].But Krishnadevaraya was brutal towards Bahamani Generals of Raichur as they had violated human rights by killing many people belonging to Hindu community. Many Bahamani Generals lost their lands. The other Muslim kings sent envoys to the emperor on hearing of his success and received a haughty reply. Krishnadevaraya then returned to Vijayanagar and held a great celebration. An ambassador arrived from the defeated Shah and was treated with scant courtesy for more than a month. The king sent an answer that if Adil Shah would come to him, do obeisance, and kiss his foot, his lands would be restored to him. The submission never took place. Krishnadevaraya now led his army as far north as Bijapur and occupied it. He took prisoner three sons of a former king of the Bahmani dynasty, who had been held captive by the Adil Shah and he proclaimed the eldest as king of the Deccan. This attempt to subvert the rule of the five Sultans who had established themselves on the ruins of the single Deccan sovereignty only resulted in stiffening their hostility towards their common foe. Krishnadevaraya began to make preparations for an attack on Belgaum, which was in Adil Shah's possession. Soon after, he fell seriously ill to carry out his project and died at the age of forty-five years, in the year 1530 CE. He was succeeded by Achyuta Deva Raya.

Political consequences[edit]

The battle of Raichur had far-reaching effects. The Hindu victory weakened the power and prestige of the Adil Shah. He turned his attention to make alliances with the other Muslim neighbours. The victory also caused other Sultans in Deccan to come together and consider a combination by the aid of which the Vijayanagar Empire was finally overthrown. The war also affected the fortunes of the Portuguese on the west coast. Goa rose and fell simultaneously with the rise and fall of the Vijayanagar dynasty because their entire trade depended on Hindu support. This is a point frequently left unnoticed by writers on Portuguese colonial history. When Vijayanagar, with its grandeur, luxury, great wealth and its enormous armies, was at the height of its power, the foreign traders were eminently successful and when Vijayanagar fell, and the city became desolate and depopulated, the foreign traders had no market for their goods, and trade decayed.


  1. ^ Vikas Khatri (2012). World Famous Wars and Battles. Pustak Mahal.
  2. ^ Ivana Elbl (2009). Portuguese Studies Review. The Portuguese Studies Review at Trent University.
  3. ^ Ivana Elbl (2009). Portuguese Studies Review. The Portuguese Studies Review at Trent University.
  4. ^ Vikas Khatri (2012). World Famous Wars and Battles. Pustak Mahal.
  5. ^ Vikas Khatri (2012). World Famous Wars and Battles. Pustak Mahal.
  6. ^ Krishna Reddy (2008). Indian History. Tata McGraw-Hill.
  7. ^ Vikas Khatri (2012). World Famous Wars and Battles. Pustak Mahal.
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(ISBN 0-8248-1495-9). (

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