The Wars & Campaigns of Ibrahim Adil Shahi II of Bijapur 1576-1626
v.1.0 March 7, 2005
Please be aware that there is disagreement on dates. Majumdar, for example, gives Ibrahim II's reign as 1580-1627.
Bijapur formed a part of Gulbarga province of the Bahmani kingdom founded by
Alla- ud-in Hassan Gangu Bahmani in 1347. When the Bahmani kingdom lost its
power in the last decades of 15th century, the kingdom was broken up and
Yusuf Adil Khan of Bijapur was one of provincial governors who declared
independence. Bijapur, thus became a separate kingdom under the Adil Shahi
rulers in 1489. [http://kannadasiri.kar.nic.in/heritage/heritage_areas.htm]
SOURCE UNKNOWN: Kindly email us if you should know the origin of this map.
Adapted from RC Majumdar's "The Mughul Empire", which is Volume 7 in his monumental study "The History an Culture of the Indian People", pages 445-463. Bhartiya Vidhya Bhavan, Bombay. 1974.
Ibrahim II was 9 years of age when he ascended the throne of Bijapur. His uncle, Ali Adil Shahi I, ruled Bijapur before. Lacking any sons, Ali I designated Ibrahim, the son of his brother Tahmasp as his heir, and Chand Bibi, Ali I's wife, was entrusted with Ibrahim's education.
Chand Bibi's formal name was Chand Sultana, and she was the daughter of Husain Nizam Shahi I, another of the Bahmani Sultans who should have been just a governor responsible to the Bahmani Sultan at Bidar, but who broke away like all the other three governors.
Chand Bibi and Ibrahim II's Regents
The military story of Ibrahim II's early years is really the story of Chand Bibi.
The first of Ibrahim II's regents was Kamal Khan Deccani [Kamal Khan of the Deccan]. But he showed disrespect to Chand Bibi, so she plotted to have Deccani killed and replaced by Haji Kishvar Khan, who became second regent.
Like his predecessor, Haji Kishvar Khan assumed unbridled power
in Bijapur. At first he did well, defeating at Dharaseo an invasion mounted
by the Ahmadnagar Shahi sultan. The Ahmadnagar Shahis were another of the
independent Bahmani rulers during the period of the Bahmani Sultanate's
decline. The regent's victory was an overwhelming one, with all the
artillery and elephants of the invading army falling to the Bijapur forces.
Like his predecessor, Haji Kishvar Khan assumed unbridled power in Bijapur. At first he did well, defeating at Dharaseo an invasion mounted by the Ahmadnagar Shahi sultan. The Ahmadnagar Shahis were another of the independent Bahmani rulers during the period of the Bahmani Sultanate's decline. The regent's victory was an overwhelming one, with all the artillery and elephants of the invading army falling to the Bijapur forces.
already unpopular Haji Kishvar Khan had, however, made a fatal error by
jailing a person who was morally ad legally regent for Ibrahim II, even if
she looked to others to take the job. Haji Kishvar Khan was forced to flee
in the face of a joint move to replace him. He was killed in exile by a
relative of Mustafa Khan.
The already unpopular Haji Kishvar Khan had, however, made a fatal error by jailing a person who was morally ad legally regent for Ibrahim II, even if she looked to others to take the job. Haji Kishvar Khan was forced to flee in the face of a joint move to replace him. He was killed in exile by a relative of Mustafa Khan.
War Again With Ahmadnagar
Naturally, the divisions at the court of the Adil Shahis provided opportunities for their enemies. Ahmadnagar's Nizam Shahi sultan returned to the offensive against Bijapur, this time allied with the Qutab Shahis of Golconda - yet another Bahmani Sultanate province that was being ruled independently.
The joint invaders invested Fort Naldurg, to no effect. The defenders fought off every attempt to capture it, and finally the invaders lifted their siege, intending instead to strike directly at Bijapur, the Adil Shahi capital.
Only 2-3,000 troops were available at Bijapur, an insignificant number given the huge mass armies of the day. Though reinforcements flowed into Bijapur, the dissensions took their toll, with many disagreements and desertions. But the attackers themselves had problems presenting a unified front, and were delayed in their assault on the capital.
An able general named Abu-'l-Hassan now proved to be Bijapur's savior. Appointed by Chand Bibi, he called for the Maratha forces in Carnatic. These troops used the harassing guerilla tactics for which Shivaji was soon to become famous: the Marathas attacked the invaders' supply lines and succeeded to the extent the invaders were forced to retreat, facing starvation. The Marathas ignored the Ahmandnagar armies and instead pushed the Golcunda forces, according to Majumdar, to the gates of Golcunda itself.
Again, the reason for this move is not explained. Most likely, however, the Marathas made a cost-benefit judgment, and decided their chances for the most loot with the least risk lay at Golcunda.
The Rise and Fall of Dilavar Khan, Last Regent of Ibrahim II
TO BE CONTINUED
This lovely photograph of Ibrahim II's tomb likely shows the structure as it would have appeared three-and-a-half centuries ago, disregarding the intrusion of the obviously current pipe and the equipment behind-right. It is likely the benches and the approach road were added in modern times, in the latter part of the 20th century. We'd love to know who the two sentry statutes flanking the main doorway represent. Picture credit: http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/decc/hd_decc.htm Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.