What were the Motives of Muhammad Ghorii’s Campaigns?

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Very often religious motives are read in the campaigns of the Ghurids. However, the view of Prof. K. A. Nizami is that although Ghurid soldiers were Musalmans, they were not the representatives of Islam. While religious sentiments may have motivated their actions, they were largely inspired by political objectives.

The Ghurids employed the same tactics in India which they had applied in Persia and Central Asia. They fought the Hindus and Muslims alike. Most probably, the Ghurid armies were made up of mercenaries.

The view of Poet Saadi was that the Lashkari or professional soldier fought for the wages he got and he did not fight for the King, country or religion. The same view was shared by Mohammad Ghori. Political sagacity and not religious fanaticism and fervor guided their steps. Ibn-i-Asir tells us that even Anhilwara was restored to the Hindu rulers.

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The Ghuried soldiers were not followed by any vindictive measures inspired by religious zeal or fanaticism. They handled every situation in the light of experience and entered into a series of compromises without any religious partiality or prejudice. After conquering Ajmer, Mohammad Ghori did not take over the administration, but gave the same to the son of Prithviraj. When Delhi was conquered, Khanday Rai’s successor was allowed to rule over the territory. When the Chauhans gave trouble to the son of Prithviraj, Aibek decided on direct annexation but compensated the prince by placing him in charge of Ranthambhor.

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