Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq

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Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq (died in c.1325[1]) was the founder of the Turkic Tughluq dynasty in India, who reigned over the Sultanate of Delhi from 1320 to 1325. He founded the city of Tughluqabad. His reign was cut short after 5 years when he died under mysterious circumstances in 1325. He was succeeded by Muhammad bin Tughluq[2]

Early life and origin[edit]

Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq [3][4] was born as Ghazi Malik in an economically poor Qarauna family. His father was a Turk and mother was a captured war booty slave Hindu Jat forced to convert to Islam.[5] 'Tughlaq' is said to have originated from an obscure tribe 'Qaraunah' originally of the 'Gujjar' tribe. The origin and development of which is a matter of conjecture among the historians and Ibn Battuta discards the fact that 'Qaraunah' was a Mongol or a Turkic tribe, although he generally accepts that the Tughlaqs originally belonged to that tribe. Marco Polo ascribes the 'Qaraunah' tribe to a mixed breed which developed exclusively in India.

Beginning of the reign[edit]

Silver Tanka of Ghiyasal-Din Tughlaq Dated AH 724

Ghazi Malik was a provincial governor under the Khiljis. Alauddin Khilji had prepared an expedition of 10,000 men under Ghazi to go to Debalpur to fight against the Chagatai Khanate Mongols. Ghazi secured Multan, Uch and Sindh at a time when Khilji died and Aláuddín Khilji’s sons proved incapable and caused confusion in the affairs of the kingdom. Alauddin Khilji’s son Qutb ud din Mubarak Shah was removed from the throne of Delhi by Khusro Khan. But he was unpopular with the Muslim nobles due to perceived liberality towards Hindus. Ghazi Malik and his Fakhr Malik collected the forces of Sindh and Multan and overthrew Khusro Khan. In 1320, Ghazi Malik was crowned as the Sultan of Delhi with the title of Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq and his son Fakhr Malik was given the title of Muhammad Shah Tughluq.


He founded the Tughluq dynasty and reigned over the Sultanate of Delhi from 1320 to 1325.[6] Ghiyas's policy was harsh against Mongols. He had killed envoys of the Ilkhan Oljeitu and punished Mongol prisoners harshly. He had fought various campaigns against the Mongols defeating them in 1305 at the Battle of Amroha. When Ghiyath Tughluq proceeded from Multan to Delhi, the tribe of Soomro revolted and took possession of Thatta. Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq appointed Tajuddin Malik as governor of Multan and Khwájah Khatír as governor of Bhakkar and he left Malik Ali Sher in charge of Sehwan. In 1323 he appointed his son Muhammad Shah as his heir and successor and took a written promise or agreement to the arrangement from the ministers and nobles of the state. He constructed the city of Tughlaqabad.

Ghiyath al-Din Tughlaq's Tomb In Delhi


In 1324, Tughlaq turned his attention towards Bengal where an independent principality ruled and the sultan aimed at asserting his supremacy over the region. He set out an expedition with a large army towards Bengal, having left his son Jauna Khan (later Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq) in charge of the kingdom. After a victory, on his way back to Delhi, the sultan also subjugated the King of Tirhut region in North Bihar. On his return journey, he had suspicions on his son's intentions and about a general disquiet in Delhi. Ibn Batuta narrated that the sultan ordered a wooden palace to be built in Afghanpur, before he would reach Delhi. According to Batuta, the place was designed so that when an elephant would pass through that wooden structure, the whole project would tumble down. So when Ghiyath was requested by Jauna Khan to have an elephant ride, the total construction collapsed upon him and his other son Mahmud. According to Batuta, he heard a huge uproar as he was performing the evening prayer, he left the prayer, came and saw the blunder with the whole structure having tumbled down on Sultan, his son Mahmud and 5-6 of his followers. The rescue was deliberately delayed Jauna Khan, who ordered the rescuing process only after the sunset. Ghiyath's body was carried in the course of night to the tomb beside the city of Tughlaqabad.[7][not in citation given]


  1. ^ Peter Jackson, The Delhi Sultanate: A Political and Military History, (Cambridge University Press, 1999), 330.
  2. ^ Tughlaq Shahi Kings of Delhi: Chart The Imperial Gazetteer of India, 1909, v. 2, p. 369..
  3. ^ Vincent Smith, Template:Google Books, Oxford University Press, pp 81-82, Quote - "Ghiyas ud-din. The new sovereign is said to have been the son of a Turk slave of the Sultan Balban by a Hindu Jat mother."
  4. ^ Radhey Shyam Chaurasia, History of Medieval India: From 1000 A.D. to 1707 A.D., (Atlantic Publishers, 2002), 50.
  5. ^ History of medieval India, page 50
  6. ^
  7. ^


  • Atlas of World History, General Editor Prof. Jeremy Black, Dorling Kindersley
  • Futuh-us-Salatin by Isami, edited by Agha Mahdi Husain and was also published from Aligarh in three volumes (1967-77 ce)
  • A Critical Study of Futuh-us-Salatin by Aziz Bano, Head of the Persian Department, Moulana Azad National Urdu University, Hyderabad, India
  • Lucy Peck. Delhi - A thousand years of building, Roli Books, ISBN 81-7436-354-8

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Khusro Khan
Sultan of Delhi
Succeeded by
Muhammad bin Tughluq
New dynasty Tughluq dynasty