Short biography of Burhan Nizam Shah (A.D. 1509—A.D. 1553)


During Burhan’s infancy the dominions were governed by the Peshwa and ivazir Mukammal Khan and his son Aziz-ul-Mulk. The tyrannical rule of the latter led to the conspiracy among many nobels who wanted to get rid of Burhan and places his younger brother Rajaji on the throne.

But their plot was foiled and the nobles took refuge with Imad Shah of Berar who suffered a severe defeat. Meanwhile the regent of Bijapur, Kamal Khan by name occupied Sholapur which was held by Zain Khan, a Nizam Shahi Commander.

Burhan was unable to recover it. But he took his revenge by inflicting a crushing defeat on Ala- ud-din, Imad Shah, an ally of the Bahmani. A little later he also occupied Mahur and Pathri, a border town belonging to the Imad Shahi rule. Thus Mukammal Khan was able to restore the prestige of the Nizam Shahi ruler.


But the conduct of Burhan in marrying a courtesan and spending his time in wine and women greatly infuriated the old ivazir who resigned which led to the further deterioration in the affairs of the state till the reins of the Governments were taken over by Shah Tahir in 1520 A.D.

Meanwhile, however, Ismail Adil had taken steps to forge an alliance with Nizam Shah against Vijayanagar and Ali Barid, the arch men of Bijapur. To cement the ties, he gave his sister Bibi Mariyam in marriage to Nizam Shah. His refusal to give Sholapur in dowry as promised by his zvazir Asad Khan, however, strained their relations for some time.

Ismail Adil Khan wanted to keep Burhan engaged and therefore he urged Ala-ud-din Imad Shah to recover the town of Pathri. But Burhan with the help of Ali Barid defeated Imad Shah and his ally Muhammad Shah Faruqi of Khandesh.

The situation took a serious turn when Imad sought the help of Bahadur Shah of Gujarat. Nizam Shah signed an offensive and defensive alliance with the Portuguese. He gave them the permission to erect forts at Ravendanda and Chaul.


At the same time Burhan sent his emissaries to Sultan Bahadur Shah of Gujarat who were able to convince him that the aggressor was Imad Shah. The Sultan, therefore, withdrew and there was a truce between the parties.

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