Islamic despots and demons brutally massacred Hindus in Bharatvarsa and an entirely false impression was created that they discovered no resistance at all by Hindu monarchs. This impression was been created by British Occupiers, perpetuated till date by Congress and nourished by Communists.
Hindu always fiercely resisted Islamisation of this nation unlike complete Islamisation of Persia, Egypt, Mesopotamia, Turkey, North Africa etc. In spite of recurrent Islamic invasions that continued for almost 1000 years, more than 80% of the population remained Hindu. It was only due to the bravery and fierce resistance wrought by Hindus and NOT due to any Islamic charity / benevolence, since those beastly invaders had none of these virtues at all. Islamic tyranny in Bharatavarsa was as sanguinary and insidious as it was in all other regions of the globe. Hindus suffered initial setbacks due to innocuous belief amongst them that ultimately, Muslims would behave like civilised beings after sporadic battles and brutalities. However, that was not to be. Mughals were innately mass murderers who could be restrained only by those who could outdo them. Planet Earth deserves to be saved from Islam. Crusaders, Franks and Mongols could prevail over Muslims, that too so long as they nurtured and effectively invoked Islamic mentality of being paranoid mass murderers of Muslims !!
Muslims are paranoid mass murderers even after fourteen centuries ever since the sect of Islam was founded in 622 C.E. As in all regions of the world where Muslims wantonly destroyed everything with their tyrannical habits motivated by their murderous instincts, Hindus too, suffered from mass-murders, rapes, destruction / desecration of their places of worship wrought by Islamic invaders. The only difference was that once the nightmare of Muslim tyranny began, Hindus grew wiser much faster than most of other unfortunate victims across the world, began reciprocating Muslims in their own coin albeit belatedly and intermittently. Unlike Zoroastrians, Hindus never surrendered to Muslim tyrants. They waged a relentless and violent struggle against Muslim occupiers.
It was enormously a valiant Hindu resistance that restrained entire savagery / butchery of Muslims in Bharatavarsa on Hindus. Whenever fortune favored them, Hindus returned the fire in almost equal measure and struck fear in Islamic hearts. Those were Hindu warriors like Krsna Deva Raya, Rani Durgavati, Sivaji Maharaja, Guru Govinda Singh, Banda Singh Bahadura and so many others who bravely confronted them at every point. The reason why Hindus survived thirteen centuries of tyrannical Muslim savagery was that they learned the art of survival in face of Muslim attacks and hit back equally hard. Hindu reprisals were qualitatively different from that of Muslims. Hindus slaughtered Muslims only in battlefields but never slaughtered Muslim civilians, offering the choice of Hinduism or certain death unlike the Islamic practice. Hindus never molested Muslim women en masse, nor did they destroy Masjids en masse, nor did they build temples over ruins of Masjids. Never did Hindus after victory, impose penal tax like Jaziya on all Muslims nor reduce Muslims to such an abject state of servitude that for Muslims, death might have been preferable to living under a ‘tyrannical’ Hindu rule. No record of defeated Muslims committing suicide to protect their honour is anywhere available like Hindu women immolating themselves in Jauhar.
Islamic onslaught started when a Muslim desperado Khalifa Umar invaded Sindh in 638, four years after they invaded Persia in 634. While Persia succumbed by 651, Muslims took 700 years to overrun Bharatvarsa. And even after that they could never rule over Bharatavarsa peacefully. Hindu resistance to those invasions was not only fierce but also continued rising with Marathas hunting down brutal invaders in corner and crevice. When defeated abjectly, Muslim invaders resorted to corrupt and foul means to humiliate and overpower Hindus.
Baluchistan, a Pakistani territory, still has plenty of evidence of being a Hindu region earlier. Hinglaja Mata Mandira is an ancient temple located in Baluchistan near Iran border, is also known as Nani Mata Jo Mandira. The Temple still attracts devotees among Baluch Muslim converts. It is a small temple set in a gorge, evidently shifted here to prevent the Deity being desecrated by Islamic marauders. Several other Hindu temples have been shifted to safer places to ward off tyrannical attacks of Muslim marauders. Bugti clan of Baluchs still have a Hindu sect. Jaswant Singh, ex-External Affairs Minister is a Baluch Hindu, used to visit Hinglaja Temple regularly.
Baluch Hindus had been valiant fighters, resisted invading Arab Muslims tooth and nail for a century beginning with first invasion on Baluchistan at Makara in 638 till 715 when Muslims overran Baluchistan, invaded Sindh to occupy capital town of Deval, a name derived from Devalaya whose ruins still exist 65 miles away from Karachi. After unsuccessful invasions for more than 80 years 638 C.E. onward, Muslims captured Fort of Devala by deceit, by kidnapping three children of chief guard of the fort of Devala, beheading one and threatening to behead the other two. With such devious means, they forced him to leave one of the secret doors open. Owing to this betrayal, Muslims could finally penetrate into Bharatavarsa led by a brutal and beastly leader, Mohammed-ibn-Qasim. Hindus never forgot the treachery, eventually learned a vital lesson from it. In one of the treacherous attacks, Muslims kidnapped two princesses of King Dahirsen of Debal. Leader of Muslim brigands, Qasim sent them as captives to Khilafa, as gifts with a message that they were royal virgins, meant to be ravished by Khalifa himself. Two princesses tore apart their hymen with their own hands and told the Khalifa that their modesty had already been violated by Qasim. After being convinced, Khalifa sent them back to him. Thought of being fooled so enraged the lecherous Khalifa that he summoned Qasim to present himself at Baghdad. With Qasim in chains, the Khalifa charged him of betrayal, locked him in a barrel with nails stuck on the inside and had him rolled down a hill. Thus, Qasim received a poetic justice. From century long fierce Baluch resistance, they have many success stories to their credit. Interestingly, string of reverses that Arabs suffered at Baluch hands, is derisively chronicled by Arabs by saying that Hindus of Makaran practised Voodoo and Black Magic to win wars !!! And that is why Arabs could not defeat Hindus, the way they defeated Persians and Byzantines.
Though a bit of digression, it is pertinent to mention Greek invader Alexander too, had a tough time with Hindus along the river Hydaspes, now Jhelum, his troops mutinied against him and wanted to retreat.
After occupying Sindh, Muslims attacked Punjab but were repulsed. Kings like Raja Bhoj valiantly fought back when Muslims attacked Rajputana. In Gujarat, they were defeated by Chalukyas / Solankis of Anahilwada in the battle of Mount Arbuda, now known as Mt. Abu. That Muslims could not move beyond Sindh from 715 to 980, is a testimony of bravery of Hindus. In 980, they attempted to penetrate into the Kingdom of Shahiya Upaganastan, now Afghanistan. This Muslim invasion was led Persian, Turkish and Mongol convert to Islam and not by Arab Muslims. Sabuktagin was the first Turko-Persian Muslim to attack Hindus and rule from Ghazni to the Kingdom of Afghanistan.
Muslims studied Hindu warfare practices and derived advantage of their weaknesses to the hilt. For instance, Sabuktagin’s spies observed that Hindus battle from sunrise to sunset. Crafty Muslim chieftain decided to leverage this practice of Hindus against Hindus. He challenged Jayapala Shahiya to fight and suggested the place and date for the same, all in 980. True to his word, the Hindu King reached battle-field a day before the battle. Muslims too had assembled at the appointed field and two adversaries exchanged ambassadors and decided, hostilities would commence at sunrise next day. After Hindus merrily retired for the night into deep slumber except a few scouts, Muslim marauders attacked in that dark and stormy night. The storm effectively camouflaged Muslim charge as they stealthily crept towards Hindu camps after crossing over a few hillocks that separated two camps. Muslims muffled noise of their advance by enveloping horse-hooves with felt and cloth pieces. Dressed in dark clothes, Muslims invaded Hindu camps at 2 A.M. in dark night. Before a substantial number of Hindu soldiers could rise to don their armour and fight back, large number of them were slaughtered. By late morning, remnants of Hindu Army retreated to their capital Kubha, now Kabul with Muslims in hot pursuit. Muslims soon occupied Kabul and continued to push Hindus eastwards. On the way, Muslims overran Kubha, destroyed Hindu temples and forcibly converted Hindus who stayed behind, to Islam. After the defeat, disgraced King Raja Jayapala Shahiya was pressed by his son Anandpala Shahiya to shift capital to Udabandapura, now Und in North West Frontier Province i.e. Pakhtunistan, province of Pakhta tribe mentioned in Mahabharata and finally to Luvkushpura, now Lahore. However, Jayapala could not bear with the humiliation and immolated himself.
Muslims, now led by Sabuktagin’s son Mahmud of Ghazni, were worsted by Hindus who led attacks using armour-clad elephants. Determined to liberate their motherland, Hindus pushed Muslims up to foothills of Pariyatra Parvat i.e. Hindu-Kusha mountains. After these defeats, Muslims realized armour-clad elephants were their nemesis and postponed all invasions. As Muslims had no access to elephants, they decided to subterfuge true to their innate traits since the days of Treaty of Hudaibiya by so-called Prophet Mohammed. According to the conspiracy, Muslims conveyed to Anandpala, they wished peace and be allowed safe passage out of the country. Before departing, they wished to visit Hindu camp, share meals and seal the peace treaty. In spite of being advised to the contrary, unsuspecting Anandpala conceded to invite treacherous Muslim marauders. Lunch was organised on banks of river Ravi where his army had been camping. While moving around in Hindu cantonment, Muslims wanted to know how massive elephants were fed. In the true spirit of Atithi Devo Bhava, Hindu soldiers escorted them around the camps, Muslim Satans secretly fed those beasts fruits mixed with poppy seeds.
Muslims left for their camps while Hindus, satisfied that the battle was over and peace had been sealed, began dismantling their camps. To their shock, in next few hours, Muslim despots surrounded the Hindu camps and launched a fierce attack with shrieks of Allahuakbar. Hindus realised belatedly, they had been back-stabbed by Muslims, managed to prepare their elephants and charged at Muslims in a disorganised manner. As elephants were intoxicated, they ran helter, skelter and the entire retaliation went horribly wrong. As Anandpala was driven away by his uncontrollable elephant, he was surrounded, beheaded by Muslims, spiked his decapitated head and exhibited before his army. Majority of demoralised Hindu soldiers were mercilessly massacred in battlefield. Through a subterfuge, invincible Hindus became victims of their own innocent follies.
It should have been the last lesson about treachery of Muslims for Hindus. Alas, it was not to be. Dirty tricks were repeated by Muslims much to the brutal slaughter of Hindus and pillage of their wealth. Divinity of Hindus turned into the main factor of their mortification while encountering invading Muslim beasts.
After slaughtering Hindus through subterfuge at Lahore, Muslims began to penetrate deeper into the country. Anandpala was martyred through deceit of Muslims as had his father, Jayapala. Teenaged grandson of Jayapala Shahiya, just 17 by then, Trilochanpala Shahiya assumed reins of the kingdom. Shahiya empire, once stretched from Yamuna to Kabul was now a shadow of former glory. Trilochanpala shifted capital from Lahore to Kangra in Himachal Pradesh, relatively fortified from where he reorganized defence of vastly reduced domain. He aligned himself with kingdoms of Kashyapmeru (Kashmir) and Tibet, to eject Muslims from Punjab and Upaganasthan i.e. Afghanistan. As Mahmud Ghazni, aspired to nip those efforts in bud, he again plotted a subterfuge, sent a group of his soldiers masquerading Hindu mendicants to call on Trilochanpala. On reaching Kangra these mendicants conveyed, they came from Kubha and brought a message of peace to the young King. Thus they gained entry into Trilochanpala’s fortress of Kangra. Once in his presence, mendicants surrounded the unsuspecting young prince and brutally slaughtered him. Few days later, Muslim army invaded Kangra Valley, stormed the fort and plundered entire opulence of the Shahiya empire. That was 1020 C.E. Thus, annihilation of Shahiya empire was complete spanning a war over three generations. Few centuries later, people even doubted if Shahiyas ever existed at all !! A dynasty that had been guarding North West Frontier of Bharata since Kushanas of III Century C.E., disappeared into history. Ruins of the fortress of Kangra still exist.
Next Hindu King Maharaja Ranjita Singh of Punjab and Afghanistan ascended the throne after 800 years in 18th century. The interregnum was one of the darkest periods of Muslim tyranny during which majority of Hindus in Afghanistan, Pakhtunistan and West Punjab were converted to Islam at sword-point. Mahmud Ghaznavi plundered and destroyed Hindu shrines at Purushapura (Peshawar), Luvkuspura (Lahore), Mulasthana (Multan), Somnatha, Palitana, Sthaneswara (Thanesar), Mathura, Kannauj, Khajuraho at regular intervals. Initially he aimed to collect as much wealth and Hindu captives as possible who were later sold for slavery in Baghdad and other cities. So many of them died on the way and Muslim beasts coined the name Hindu-Kusha to the region of western Himalayas wherein Kusha means to kill in Persian while original name had been Pariyatra Parvat.
When Mahmud Ghazni’s son Masud Ghazni invaded with the intention to occupy and rule, he was spectacularly defeated at Baharaich in June 1033. He was surrounded by several Hindu armies who fought ferociously and entire Ghazni’s army was slaughtered following the tradition of Shri Rama who decimated entire army of Ravana. The battle ended on June 14, 1033 and not one Muslim soldier was allowed to go back alive. His grave is now known as Ghazi Pir Ki Mazar. Today lot of Hindus ignorantly go there in reverence to pay respects !! After this crushing defeat of Muslims, for some 150 years there were no invasions at all !! But, Hindus were and are after all, Hindus !! In this interregnum of 154 years, Hindus forgot all those agonies and treachery of Muslims they had undergone, ready to welcome several more rounds in future !! Yet another dirty trick Muslims resorted to was issuing coins with inscriptions in Samskrita using terms like Mahamada for Mohammed just to win over trust of Hindu.
Next Muslim onslaught came in the year 1187 when the Muslim chieftain of Ghor in Afghanistan, overthrew Ghaznavid ruler in Ghazni. In 1187, after a lapse of 200 years, these ex-Hindus had become cruel and merciless like any other Muslim with not a trace of their Hindu ancestry perceptible anywhere in their minds except for the name Gauri, derived from Gau i.e. cow in Samskrita. Mohammed Ghori now found his way into Bharata blocked by three powerful Hindu Kingdoms – Solankis (Chalukyas) of Anahilwada in Gujarat, Chahmanas (Chouhans) of Delhi, Ajmer and Sambhar; and Rathods (Gahadwals) of Kannauj. Mohammed allied himself with the Muslim Governor of Sindh, unleashed brutal fury of his aggression on Gujarat. To his misfortune, Solankis of Anahilwada, miserably defeated him on the plains of Mount Arbuda (Abu) and forced him to retreat across Thar desert. Thus Solankis of Gujarat once again lit the bright flame of Hindu valour in Gujarat by repelling Muslim invasion. This flame was to be lit next when they retaliated massively against Muslims who had roasted alive 59 Hindu pilgrims in a Railroad coach near Godhra Railroad Terminal when they were returning from pilgrimage from Ayodhya. The dynasty founded by Babar should be addressed as ‘Barbarians’ as they demolished temples, brutally killed Hindus cruelly raped Hindu women, slaughtered even those Hindu soldiers who had surrendered in good faith. Incidentally, Akbar had slaughtered 30,000 Rajput soldiers who had surrendered to him at Chittora.
Mohammed Ghori attempted invading Bharata from the other side of Thar deserts, domain of Maharaja of Sambhar (Shakambara) Prithviraj Chauhan, known for his bravery and chivalry. Ghori studied Hindu warfare, advanced through Punjab and laid siege of Bathinda fort on the border of Prithvitraja’s domains. Soon he had to face wrath of Rajputs at Tarain in Haryana where two armies battled furiously. Fierce onslaughts of the Rajput cavalry smashed Muslim ranks and they fled leaving their Sultan Mohammed Ghori at the mercy of Prithviraja Chauhan. Fleeing Muslim General Kutub-ud-din Aibak let loose a large herd of cows chained to each other to block the path of chasing Rajput army. With their path blocked by cows, it was impossible for Rajputs to move ahead and Muslims shrewdly made good their escape minimising their losses and preventing large number of Muslim soldiers from being captured and butchered. When the captured Mohammed Ghori was brought before Prithviraja Chauhan incarcerated in iron chains, he pretended to be repentant seething with rage at being humiliated for having been captured by a Kafir King. Mohammed Ghori begged for mercy and assured, he would never lift his eyes toward Bharata.
Those farcical entreaties turned credulous Prithviraja compassionate who ordered removal of chains. In his feigned gratitude Ghori addressed Prithviraja as his “brother” !! Ignoring advice of his friend Chandra Vardai, his General Hammira and brave warrior twins Aalaa and Udal, he ordered Ghori to be released and as a token of generosity, returned his 500 horses and 20 elephants captured in the battle. Had Mohammed Ghori not been pardoned and released, Muslim invasions would have ceased and our history would have been altogether different today. On reaching Ghor, Mohammed reneged on his promise, promptly slaughtered Rajput escorts, envoys that Privithraja had sent to accompany Mohammed to Ghor. With utter contempt, Ghori sent their severed heads as a token of “goodwill” to shocked and astonished Prithviraj. Mohammed Ghori immediately started preparing for another assault on Bharata. Going by the experience of his two defeats at the hands of Solankis and Chauhans, the wily twice beaten Mohammed decided to go by subterfuge.
Following year, Mohammed reneged on his promise, attacked Bharata once again. Two armies gathered in the same battlefield of Tarain in 1191. Rajput army had camped near a river for their morning ablutions before the battle could be resumed next morning as was decided by both rivals. Mohammed Ghori’s spies had briefed him, Hindus battled from sunrise to sunset only. Throwing all commitments to winds, Muslim army attacked at 3 A.M. before dawn when Prithviraj’s soldiers had begun their morning ablutions and some were still asleep. But they did their best to group their forces and counter-attack Muslims. The unexpected battle continued till noon, Muslims slaughtered large number of Rajputs. However Rajputs did not yield, fought bravely, slaughtered treacherous Muslims too and gained upper hand. By midday, it appeared second battle of Tarain would also go the way the first one had gone. Mohammed saw victory slipping from his hands once again. So he resorted to another patented Muslim subterfuge of single combat, Mard-o-Mard in Persian.
With the intention to humiliate Prithviraj, Mohammed sent a word that he would call off the battle if Prithviraja fought his champion Qutub-ud-din Aibak in single combat. To save lives of his soldiers and to conclude the battle, Prithviraja agreed. Rule in single combat was that when one combatant is either pinned down or killed, his army concedes defeat and retreats. No other combatant was allowed to participate in this combat, hence the name – single combat. For the insidious Mughals, no rule was valid in the battle. Prithviraja’s sword came down heavily on Qutub who resorted to a feint, cut off one of the legs of Prithviraja’s horse by whirling below his saddle. Prithviraja tripped and fell off his badly injured horse. Qutub should have also dismounted and fought Prithviraja on foot. Instead, truculent Muslim soldiers jumped on Prithviraja, pinned him down, pressed on his face a dose of hashish. They now chained drugged Prithviraja and galloped away with him before Rajputs could realize and react to this unexpected act of treachery. Captive and drugged Prithviraj was now perched on one of elephants that Prithviraj had gifted to Mohammed Ghori earlier. Muslims spread rumour that Prithviraj was dead holding aloft his ‘dead’ body to convey futility of fighting any more. When Rajputs beheld their King apparently dead with his corpse in hands of their enemy, they lost nerve and retreated to their fortified capital at Mehrauli near Delhi. Muslims retreated with the captured Prithviraj to Afghanistan.
When Prithviraj was presented in chains before Mohammed Ghori, he reminded him how he was presented before Prithviraja in chains and how honourably Prithviraj had released him. Mohammed and his courtiers burst into derisive laughter at Prithviraja and told him, he did not understand Islam and Muslim psyche ! When Prithviraja stared at Mohammed and his courtiers, Mohammed ordered him to lower his eyes as he was now a captive. When Prithviraja told him that Rajput’s eyes are lowered only after death, Mohammed ordered, Prithviraja’s eyes be pierced with red hot irons. He kept blinded Pritiviraja in solitary confinement and had him occasionally hauled to his court for being made fun as the “Lion of Delhi”. During this period of humiliating captivity, Prithviraja was joined by his friend and biographer Chandra Vardai who joined his master in prison after offering himself as a prisoner to Mohammed. It was in prison plan to avenge his betrayal and humiliation was hatched. Before an annual event of Buskhazi (wild sports that Muslims organised), Chandra Vardai told Mohammed, Prithviraja would like to display his skills in archery on the condition he would accept orders only from a King who had defeated him earlier. Since Mohammed was the only king who had defeated him, Mohammed Ghori himself would have to order Prithviraj to shoot the arrow to which he readily agreed !
On the designated day Prithviraja was brought to the assemblage, Mohammed ordered Prithviraja to shoot, Chandra Vardai in the following poetic stanza “Char bans, chaubis gaj, angul asta pramaan I Ete pai Sultan hai, ab mat chuko Chouhan II” (Ten measures ahead of you and twenty four feet away, is seated the Sultan. Do not miss him now, Chouhan). On hearing these words Prithviraja whirled in the direction of Mohammed and shot three arrows one after the other and wounded Mohammed fatally. Thus Prithviraja had his justice though he lost his kingdom due to the blunder and Bharata lost sovereignty to Islamic invaders.
After dubious victories over northern Bharata in Punjab and Bengal, Muslims turned towards Odisha where they met their match in Narasimha Deva in 1248 CE. Odisha was then known as Utkal, synthesis of Uttama and Kala i.e. excellent period in view of resurgence of arts and sculpture.
Brave natives of Odisha had already given very tough time to Samrata Ashoka Maurya during 3rd century BCE led by King Kumar of Kalinga before Odisha could be annexed by Mauryan Empire. In 13th century when invaded by Tugan Khan, King Narsimha Deva decided to use subterfuge against Muslims. He conveyed his resolve to surrender even without battle as done by King Lakshman Sena of Bengal. Tugan Khan had easily conquered Bengal few years ago. He found Bengal as an easy victory as the King fled from advancing Muslim armies and Bengal fell without a fight. Having tasted blood of victory in Bengal, Tugan Khan thought that conquest of Odisha would also be a cakewalk. Tugan had been bragging around, he had instilled fear of death in Hindu hearts, could overrun entire country in a single campaign. However, that was not to be. King Narsimha Deva decided to invoke well-known Muslim tool of subterfuge against invaders. He conveyed a word to Tugan that Odisha was ready to surrender without a fight which Tugan immediately accepted, asked for surrender of the city of Puri, an important holy Hindu shrine. King Narasimha Deva had his capital at Jajanagara. Tugan’s other conditions included handing over of all weapons to Muslim invaders, embracing Islam by entire population in front of Jagannatha Temple or agreeing to pay Jazia, convert Jagannatha Temple into a Mosque as an acknowledgement of submission. Much to the delight of Muslims, all these terms were readily accepted and Muslims advanced into the city blissfully unaware, shrewd Hindu King had laid a trap for them. On orders of King Narasimha Deva, bustling city had been completely evacuated of pilgrims, soldiers from all over the kingdom had occupied every nook and cranny of the city, hidden inside closely built houses across welter of narrow lanes. Once Muslims were inside the city, they had to disperse into unfamiliar narrow lanes and bylanes where they had to dismount from their horses to advance in a single file towards central square where surrender ceremony was supposed to be staged. As planned, suddenly temple bells started ringing loudly and Hindus pounced upon Muslims. The battle lasted entire day and night pierced by shrieks of deeply wounded and dying Muslims. Entire Muslim army was slaughtered like flies / mosquitoes and hardly anyone could escape. Muslims had not known this strategy, were trounced very badly. Odisha thus, remained a Hindu bastian for several centuries. Even today percentage of Muslims in Odisha is low as compared to Bengal where the then King had surrendered abjectly like a coward before invading Mughals. Sun Temple was erected by King Narsimha Deva in Konark i.e. ‘Essence of the Corners’ designed as a chariot to commemorate the historic victory of valiant Hindus over beastly Muslim invaders. The Temple is a marvel of astronomy, favourite discipline of study of the King.
Kings of Vijayanagar and Rajputana too, often used to invoke subterfuge to conquer invading Mughals. Vijaynagar was the first Hindu kingdom that gave up Hindu practice of not engaging with non-combatants and survived from 1331 to 1565. Whenever Vijaynagar army overran any Bahamani town or village, they torched it to ashes. With this they instilled mortal scare deep into Muslim minds and soon, Adilshahi and Nizamshahi Sultans begged for a treaty with Vijaynagar that would proscribe slaughter of civilians by either side. The treaty was followed by Hindus and Muslims till Vijaynagar was finally defeated in the battle of Talikotai, then savagely destroyed by Muslims as they repudiated the treaty just as their founder had repudiated the treaty of Hudaibiya. Muslims now indulged in brutal slaughter of all Hindus in Vijaynagar. They killed everyone they could lay their hands on and not a single person was allowed to survive in that beleaguered city. Invincible empire of Vijayanagar was reduced to ruins within six months.
All these historical events imparted two precious lessons to natives of the country –
Only when Muslims are reciprocated in the same coin, they come to their senses albeit temporarily. However, Muslims cannot be trusted since commitment is only a matter of expediency and convenience. Whenever fortune favors them, they renege on their pledge unhesitatingly !
Founder of Islam set a precedent for them with repudiation of the Treaty of Hudaibiya with Quraish of Makkah !!
In the same wisdom, when non-Muslims are constrained into an agreement with Muslims, non-Muslims must repudiate any treaty with Muslims and fight back to destroy as there is no other way for mankind to survive the creed of Islam.
Marathas under visionary leadership of Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj liberated their province of Maharashtra from Muslim tyranny and took the flame of fearless freedom all over the country. Shivaji epitomized successful Hindu onslaughts on Mughals where he outdid Mughals in their sport of deceit, treachery, subterfuge, all packaged into guerilla warfare that left Mughals sleepless and terrified. Astute Marathas succeeded in limiting Mughal marauders to a great extent. Marathas marched towards northern Bharata to throw away Mughals from Delhi in 1720, then via Punjab into Attock in Pakhtunistan by 1756. It was Mughal tyrant Aurangzeb who realised it as demise of Islamic power in Bharata. With them it appeared, wisdom had finally dawned upon some of Hindus to counter-attack Mughals successfully. By practising deceit and cruelty as a rule against Mughals, Marathas looked poised to dislodge Mughal power from Bharata.
In 1312, Gujarat was overrun by Mughal tyrants who had a century earlier occupied Delhi. As usual, Mughals slaughtered countless Hindus after every victory. They also carried away scores of beautiful women and handsome young men as captive sex slaves. One such handsome man was Khusro Khan, who belonged to Makwana sub-caste of northern Gujarat. All captives were forcibly converted to Islam and brought up as slaves. After 15 years in captivity Khusro Khan forgot even his original name, faintly recollected he had a different childhood which he shared with other captives from Gujarat. His stunning features and fair complexion evoked perverted lust of his captor Sultan Allaudin Khilji’s perverted son, Qutbuddin Mubarak Khilji. Qutbuddin Mubarak had fondness for his teenage slave Khusro Khan who was sexually abused by Qutbuddin Mubarak for eight years while Khusro seethed in anger for revenge against the barbarity that robbed him of his childhood and youth. In 1320, Qutbuddin killed his ageing father Allaudin and crowned himself Sultan. By then, Khusro had gained influence over Qutbuddin. Khusro had also used this influence to gather other captives like him, armed them to become Qutbuddin’s bodyguards. During struggle for power in 1320, opportune moment arrived for Khusro when he was appointed in charge of guarding royal quarters. Qutbuddin Mubarak had dismissed all men appointed by his slain father in palace and army. Khusro killed Qutbuddin Mubarak Khilji, crowned himself Sultan and assumed the title of Khusro Khan. It was a tremendous shock for Mughals occupying Delhi when Khusro declared himself to be a Hindu again !! When he ascended the throne, Khusro Khan was only 19. Muslims were shell-shocked, stunned into inaction by trusted aides of Khusro. However, they began plotting overthrow of Khusro Khan as he was a Murtad abjuring Islam. Eventually after a year, Ghazi Malik slew Khusro, re-established Muslim rule in Delhi and founded Tughluq dynasty.
However, the event was a great morale booster for Hindus which proved, determined Hindus with grit and shrewdness could overturn Mughal rule in Bharata. On 24th January 1556 CE, Mughal ruler Humayun slipped while climbing down steps of his library and fell to his death. Akbar was enthroned as emperor on Feb. 14, 1556. Hemu Vikramaditya as main threat to Akbar, was chief minister of Afgan Prince Adil Shah who led a surprise attack on Delhi in October 1556. Mughal forces under Tardi Beg Khan panicked and fled from the battlefield. It was Hemu’s twenty second victory in successive battles. After capture of Delhi, Hemu crowned himself sovereign ruler with the title of ‘Raja Vikramaditya’. At this juncture, Akbar and Bairam Khan decided to press forward against Hemu’s superior forces on Nov. 5, 1556 at Panipat. First battle was lost by Mughals while in second, brave Hemu veered too close to enemy ranks atop his elephant when an archer pierced his eye and cerebral cavity leading him to unconsciousness. As Hemu slumped in the howdah of his famous elephant Hawai, Akbar’s General, Shah Quli Khan captured the elephant with the coveted occupant and presented before Akbar. Bairam advised Akbar to perform the ‘holy act’ of slaying the infidel to earn Islamic title of ‘Ghazi’. Amidst self-congratulations, Akbar severed head of unconscious Hemu with his saber to complete the gory ‘holy’ work. Hemu’s head was sent to Kabul as a sign of victory to women of Humayun’s Harem while Hemu’s torso was sent to Delhi for exposure on a gibbet. Iskandar Khan chased Hemu’s fleeing army, captured 1500 elephants, brutally slaughtered all those who were captured and following custom of his ancestors Taimur / Chengiz Khan, Akbar had a victory pillar raised with severed heads of slaughtered Hindu soldiers perched on top. British traveller Peter Mundy visiting Mughal empire some 75 years later (during reins of Jahangir / Shah Jahan), found such towers were still under construction. Hemu’s wife escaped from Delhi with the treasure, could not be captured by Pir Mohammad Khan’s troops in spite of intensive chase. Hemu’s aged father was captured and on refusing to accept Islam, executed.
So is the reality of so-called ‘glorious’ history of Akbar’s victory in Panipat. Akbar displayed his “glorious greatness” again when he ordered cold blooded slaughter of 30,000 Rajput soldiers who had surrendered before him after the battle of Chittora.
Mughals made many attempts for long to swallow Assam but Ahom Kings of Assam bravely / stoutly defeated every Mughals incursion into Assam. Finally, Mughals raided Assam with a huge force during the reign of Aurangzeb. Shrewd Assamese King laid a trap for Muslim invaders at Saraighat on Bramhaputra riverbank. Battle of Saraighat was fought in 1671 between Mughals and Ahoms led by Lachit Borphukan, Governor of Guwahati at Saraighat near Guwahati. In spite of being weaker than Mughals, Ahoms defeated the Mughal with a combination of guerrilla tactics, psychological warfare and military intelligence. In a surprise attack during night, Lachit Barphukan dramatically captured crucial Mughal post in north Guwahati thereafter, their fort in south Guwahati. Their deadly cannons were disabled by Lachit’s subordinate Bagh Hazarika by pouring water into cannon’s barrels to destroy entire stock of gunpowder, then bombarded their fort with their cannons. After heavy fire, Mughals were trounced and they abandoned Guwahati. Lachit Barphukan now expected a heavy retaliatory attack by Mughals, undertook all necessary preparations, raised hurdles and Garhs i.e. earthen walls around Guwahati relying upon surrounding hillocks with Brahmaputra river as a natural barrier. Lachit was thorough in his approach and ruthless in preparing for defence. He even went to the extent of beheading his uncle for neglecting his responsibilities. When Lachit asked his uncle why the work was not progressing as expected, his uncle complained of boredom. Lachit in a fit of fury beheaded his uncle and declared “my uncle is not greater than my country.” Mughals struck back in March 1679 with an army of 30000 infantrymen, 15000 archers, 18000 Turkish cavalry, 5000 gunners, more than 1000 cannons and a large flotilla of boats. They employed Portuguese and other European sailors to manage the fleet and sailed on Brahmaputra from Dhaka to Guwahati. Lachit’s spies kept him posted about their advances. Mughals then, laid siege to Guwahati that lasted more than a year. Lachit fought hiding behind barriers conscious of his small cavalry confronting huge Mughal cavalry. His guerrilla attacks against Mughals were highly effective inflicting heavy casualties. Several Mughal efforts to bribe Lachit with power, position and treasure as done successfully with some Rajputs, failed to tempt him. Every such attempt to corrupt him was responded scornfully. In spite of several desperate efforts, Mughals failed to defeat Lachit to capture Guwahati. By now the Ahom King became impatient, ordered Lachit to attack Mughals on open ground. Lachit reluctantly followed this command, attacked Mughals in Allaboi. After initial success in Ahoms capturing Mughal Commander Mir Nawab, Ahom army was decimated by the Mughal cavalry on open plains with casualties running into 10,000 troops approximately. Lachit succeeded in withdrawing his forces and retreated with no other option left to reckon with at that moment. Mughals could not penetrate the defence, launched a massive assault from the river at Saraighat. They had huge boats, some carrying as many as sixteen cannons. Ahom soldiers were demoralised after losses at Allaboi and their Chief Lachit Borphukan was seriously ill. At the sight of massive Mughal fleet, they lost their will to fight and commenced retreat. Lachit had been observing all these developments from his deathbed. Despite having high fever, he advanced head on against Mughal fleet followed by seven other boats. The bold move inspired his retreating army to rally behind him. Fierce battle that ensued on Brahmaputra witnessed Ahoms outmaneuvering large, sluggish Mughal boats with the river littered with drowned Muslim soldiers. Mughals were thus, decisively defeated, forced to retreat from Guwahati and entire Ahom territory up to Manas River. So ended the Battle of Saraighat annointing Lachit Barphukan as a legend in Assam and the battle is remembered as a glorious Ahom victory.
Hardly any account is known about Muslim attacks on Nepal and Tibet. Flushed with comfortable successes Mohammad bin Tughlak, Mughal maniac decided to conquer Hindu Kingdom of Nepal and Buddhist Tibet, convert Gurkhas and Tibetans to Islam. In 1402, Tughlak launched first assault on Himalayas. Nepalese King knew fate of Hindu Kings, refused to confront Muslims in Nepalese Terai. Shrewd Nepalese King withdrew his army into snow covered Himalayan forest, joined Tibetan forces as Tughlak had made it obvious to overrun Tibet after conquest of Nepal. Muslims marched through deserted Nepalese villages, burnt fields and ransacked villages. Fatigued Muslims marched on albeit reluctantly, on the orders of Mohammed bin Tughlak. As Muslims went deeper into Himalaya, they were forced to march in small units across valleys when joint Nepalese Tibetean forces pounced upon them beyond Pokhra. In those snow clad barren terrain, battle used to be joined by hardened Gurkhas on the way and they all butchered wearied Muslim troops mercilessly. Invading Muslims were brutally slaughtered and only a few stragglers could return to plains to tell the sorry tale of this ignominious defeat. After this massacre of Islamic brutes, no Muslim ruler ever dared to attack Nepal. So Nepal remained a Hindu Kingdom along with Assam and Orissa all through seven hundred years of Mughal tyranny in north. It is this glorious victory that preserved Hindu character of Nepal intact. Had Muslims been able to overrun Nepal, they would have forcibly converted Gurkhas to Islam and today we would have seen Muslim Gurkhas wielding their Khukhris to terrorize remaining Hindus in Nepal to convert them into Islam, indulge in terror attacks against Bharata. Mandirs of Pashupatinath, Bhaktapur, Patan and Hanuman Dhokha, all would have been converted into Masjids as at Kashi, Ayodhya, Mathura and several other places.
In Punjab, Hindus resisted Islam by eradicating deficiencies and by outmatching Islamic ruthlessness. Guru Arjan Dev Ji was the first Guru to be martyred during reign of Jahangir who sentenced Guruji to be beheaded after being tortured for days. After being savagely tortured, he expressed his last wish to bathe in river Ravi before being beheaded. Guru Arjan Dev Ji went into the river and disappeared in swirling currents never to return. Thus he was the first Sikh Guru to lay down his life due to Mughal oppression. Sikhism came to rise as a militant wing of Hindu community and Sikhs being defenders of Hinduism was strengthened during tenures of 9th and 10th Gurus, Tegh Bahadur and Govind Singh. During their tenure, nature of Sikhism underwent fundamental changes, transformed into an aggressive military theocracy.
Aurangzeb unleashed a wave of severe oppression on non-Muslims to Islamize the country. As Mughal oppression found tough resistance from Sikhs, they became favourite target of Mughals. Guru Tegh Bahadur was approached by a group of Kashmiri Brahamans for protection from Mughals. Thereupon the Guru decided to approach the fanatical Mughal occupier Aurangzeb himself for redressal of grievances where he was abused, threatened and told to accept Islam at the pain of death. To prove his word the Mughal occupier Aurangzeb tourtured members of his entourage to death one after the other. However, Guru Tegh Bahadur maintained his composure and calmly demanded halt to repressive measures. Aurangzeb, The Monster decided to teach him a lesson and present an example to his followers. He ordered the Guru to be beheaded. Thus after Guru Arjan Dev, Tegh Bahadur was the second Sikh Guru to meet a violent death at Mughal hands. When Guru Tegh Bahadur was martyred, his son Govindrai became Guru Govind Singh, determined to carry out the struggle against Mughal oppression. He radically transformed Sikh sect which led to first major split among Sikhs.
Transformation of Sikhism into Khalsa Panth was formally initiated by Guru Govind Singh Ji on Baisakhi, 1699. Newly founded community was anointed as Khalsa Panth i.e. Holy Sect and their followers were mandated to be far more strict in adhering to principles of the sect.
Adherants of the Khalsa were required to wear five visible symbols on their persons –
Unshorn Hair (Kesha), curved dagger (Krpana), comb (Kangha), steel bangle (Kada) and a pair of shorts (Kachha).
All members of the sect were ordained to suffix their name with ‘Singh’ meaning ‘lion’. Guru Gobind Singh’s goal in constituting the Panth was to raise a militarized community capable of resisting Mughal oppression. An anecdote about his forming of Khalsa army is worth recalling.
Once the Guru was delivering an inspiring speech before a group of Sikh youths on the necessity of every youth in the community to be ready to sacrifice everything including his life for the cause of his faith. Response of youths was enthusiastic and many expressed their readiness to get enrolled in Khalsa Panth. However, Guru’s standards of integrity were very high, demanded heads of those who wanted to join Khalsa. He pulled out his sword and beckoned enthusiastic youths to come forward and lay down their lives there and then. Youths were stunned, speechless and nobody volunteered to sacrifice his life while the Guru waited with his unsheathed sword in his hand. Finally, one youth turned up and offered his head to the Guru saying, his head already belonged to the Guru and he could have had it if he so desired. Guru caught hold of the youth, led him inside the sacrificial tent that had been erected for the reckoning. After a few moments, piercing shrieks rented the sky while the Guru emerged from tent, his hand held a blood-stained sword. Guru now demanded next head. His audience was benumbed at the gruesome scene and many devotees fled the place in fear exclaiming, the Guru had gone mad ! Those five in number, who had offered their heads to the Guru, were the first Panj Pyaras. Contrary to the impression that he created, after leading every youth into the tent, Guru embraced each of them and installed them as his select soldiers who were to raise Khalsa Army. Guru decided to have Panj-Pyaras observe 5 Kakkars which included wearing Kada signifying bangle, as a symbol of unfulfilled commitment of overthrowing Mughal tormentors. This aspect of Kada signifying feminine shame was later ignored for obvious reasons in Sikh legends. So spurred to avenge their oppression by Muslims finally led to successes under Maharaja Ranjit Singh in 1799.
Banda Bairagi became a Keshadhari and anointed as Banda Singh Bahadur by the Guru. Banda Singh Bahadur fought relentlessly against Muslims. After leading a traumatic life full of nerve-rattling adventures, he was brutally slaughtered after being captured by Muslims and forced to swallow flesh of his sons butchered in front of him. Banda died a heroic death fighting Mughals.
Afghan King Ahmed Shah Abdali invaded Bharata in 1759, burnt down Harmindar Saheb Gurudwara at Amritsar on his way to Delhi. As he was planning to settle in Bharata, he was challenged by Marathas who were then, on their ascendance. From 1740 to 1760, battle between Afghans and Marathas for domination of northern Bharata continued. With defeat of Mughal Mohammed Shah by Nadir Shah in 1740, whose general was Ahmed Shah Abdali, Mughal power steadily declined and their space was usurped by Rohillas who were led by an ambitious and ruthless chieftain named Najib Khan. Najib’s ambition was to supplant Mughal Occupier and crown himself as the ruler of Bharata by capturing Delhi. Growing power of Marathas in their northward expansion, stood between Najib and his ambition. To defeat Marathas, Najib invited Ahmed Shah Abdali from Afghanistan in 1755 to help him and crown himself ruler of Bharata. He was thwarted by Marathas who defeated Rohillas and Afghans near Delhi in 1756. The defeat was so decisive that Najib Khan surrendered to Marathas and became their prisoner. Maratha forces were led by Shrimant Raghunath Rao and Malhar Rao Holkars. After defeating Afghan-Rohilla forces, Marathas pursued Afghans in Punjab upto Khyber Pass. Last frontier of Marathas was Attock in today’s NWFP i.e. Paktoonistan on Afghan border. Thus, 800 years after last Punjab King Tirlochan Pal Shahi had been defeated by Mahmud of Ghazi in 1020 C.E., did that region of Bharata reverted to a Hindu King in 1756 with the liberation of Punjab by Marathas. Meanwhile with false promises, conspiracies and treachery, Najib Khan influenced Malhar Rao Holkar and secured his release. Thereafter, Najib undermined Marathas once again and treacherously killed Dattaji Shinde (eldest brother of Mahadji Shinde) . Najib continued to battle Shindes till 1757-58 and re-invited Ahmed Shah Abdali to invade Bharata.
When Abdali invaded second time in 1759, Marathas allied with the Jat King Suraj Mal of Bharatpur led by Sadshiv Rao and Vishwas Rao, sons of Peshwa Balaji Baji Rao and registered spectacular victories, captured Delhi and Kunjapura where Afghan treasury and armoury were located. The alliance ran into problems due to Maratha insistence on pursing a head on confrontation with Abdali instead of following Jat King’s advice to wage guerilla warfare against them, destroy them from rear and deny them sustenance, supplies from Muslim Rohillas. Suraj Mal advised Marathas to leave their women, courtiers, retainers in Bharatpur fort and fight without so many encumbrances. However, Rao brothers were egged on by Maratha womenfolk and declined the counsel. The Council appealed to Sujan Singh (Maharaja Suraj Mal) to express his views –
“Honourable Chairman ! Principality of our country is in hands of Peshwas these days. Mughals are nominal emperors. Their court has become an arena of clowns and jokers. This time you come here as leader of Maharasstra Mandal sent by Peshwa. You have travelled a distance of thousands of miles to save the country and religion. All our wealth and lives are dedicated to you. Do not fear Abdali. We stand for the prestige of the Peshwa. These days the Peshwa is like a sheet to cover Hindu faith. You are his brother and you have a keen desire to strengthen Bharata. You are our representative. We, on behalf of all Hindus of Bharata, offer you respect equal to the Peshwa. First you are a Brahmana, then you are a crown of Hindus. We shall sacrifice our everything for you. My 25,000 soldiers, 60 cannons and entire army of Sarv-Khap Panchayat of Haryana will be in your service. Think a little over my views and rest is up to you to accept it or not. You are elder and elders may only be beseeched. My suggestions are as under –
- Before the battle, provisions should be accumulated in a safe place like Brij or Bharatpur.
- By accompanying ladies in the battle, our strength shall be divided. They should therefore be kept in the fort of Deeg.
- Establish the centre for heavy weapons and other articles at a distant place and fight the battle with a guerilla strategy.
- Involve Abdali’s army in a battle till summer falls, then launch a vigorous attack.
- Do not harm a place of Mohammedan worship. Call a council in the court and choose a Mughal Prince as your Chief to gain their sympathy. Do not touch precious articles kept in the fort so that Mohammedans may not use this opportunity to do propaganda against us. Invite as many Chiefs as possible to join you and do not divide the organization.
- All Mohammedans of Bharata will remain with Abdali. Mughal courtiers are involved in conspiracies. You must not trust them, yet you must listen to them.
- It is my special appeal to your chief commandant Ibrahim Gardi that he should consult me for war strategy. For five to six months, guerilla attacks should only be made that too, only now and then. Maintain your contact with Delhi.
- Heavy losses in the battle of Kunjpura has familiarized Abdali of our power. For some time Abdali had been collecting provisions and troops from Rohilla State. So the battle is to be fought decisively. Victory or loss is in hands of Ishvara.”
Refusal of Sadashiv Rao Bhau to accept Suraj Mal’s sagacious advice finally split the alliance and Suraj Mal withdrew. Marathas consequently marched upto Panipat, stayed at Panipat blocking the way of Afghans back to Afghanistan instead of fighting Abdali and Najib. Afghans now became restless and they in turn, decided to block the way of Marathas back to Deccan. This stand-off continued for one whole year from Jan. 14, 1760 to Jan. 14, 1761. Morale of stranded Marathas declined and it led to their defeat in Panipat. Afghans with Najib Khan also recaptured Delhi and Kunjpura. On the decisive day of Jan. 14, 1761, Marathas decided to break-through Afghan blockade and re-enter Deccan. The battle was a disaster and 1 lakh Maratha soldiers were slaughtered in just 8 hours. However, Afghans too suffered heavily and decided to return to Afghanistan never to come back. In spite of the split in Jat-Maratha alliance, 25000 Jats from the Sarv Khap fought against Muslims alongside Marathas at Panipat and attained martyrdom. Abdali never returned to Bharata but his decscendants did. Invasion of Abdali’s grandson Sher Shah was one such attempt. Now the invader was challenged by Sikhs. Sher Shah could not proceed beyond Lahore due to the challenge of Sarbat Khalsa. It was the last Muslim invasion to be defeated by the people of Punjab.
Maharaja Ranjit Singh was born in 1780 and witnessed these turbulent times in Punjab’s history. By 1799, Maharaja Ranjeet Singh started his attempt to unify different Sikh sects that grew into a powerful Sikh Kingdom till his demise. Sikh Kingdom was the last one that held out against Mughals and British. After Afghan exit, Sikhs reasserted themselves in Punjab and Maharaja Ranjit Singh organised a kingdom with Lahore as their capital. His Kingdom extended beyond Hindu Kush into Afghanistan. Hari Singh Nallua, one of his brave generals, pushed frontiers of Kingdom deep into Afghanistan, brought back the original gate of Somnath Temple desecrated by Mahmud of Ghazni during 11th century. Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s reign marked consolidation of Bharata’s sovereignty in Punjab after first Islamic invasion in 1020. Marathas had broken continuous Muslim occupation of Punjab by liberating it in 1756 and Maharaja Ranjit Singh consolidated Bharatiya rule in Punjab a few years later. Kingdom established by Maharaja Ranjit Singh successfully resisted Afghans, Rohillas and out-manoevred new imperialist power of British successfully till he was alive. On his deathbed, Maharaja warned about impending British invasion. During the reign of Maharaja Ranjit Singh Harmindar Saheb Gurudwara at Amritsar was renovated and gold-plated completely.
Now we move to south where Marathas were the first to cross Mughal invader Malik Kafur’s path in C.E. 1314. They were then led by the last scion of Yadava dynasty, Ramdev Rai Yadava who ruled from Devagiri i.e. Daulatabad. In their first battle with Muslims, Marathas lost to invaders, accepted the status of being vassals and mercenaries for their tyrannical Muslim masters. Shivaji’s mother Jijabai was a direct descendant of Yadav dynasty of Devagiri. She nursed deep in her mind burning desire of reclaiming freedom from Mughal rule which her Yadav forebears lost in 1318. As a child, he used to play games in which he used to attack and capture forts held by the enemy alongwith his friends. He was just 17 when he decided to enact what were till then his childhood games. Encouraged by Jijabai and his Guru Dadaji Kondse, he swore to free the country from Mughal tyranny in 1645 in a small Shiva temple. It was beginning of a long and arduous Maratha-Mughal battle that continued into next century culminating in defeat of Mughals and emergence of Marathas as the dominant power till British occupiers entered the scene.
When Shivaji captured Torana fort, the victory shocked Adil Shah at Bijapur as here was a Hindu chieftain daring to challenge might of a Muslim occupier. Adil Shah sent most fearsome general, Afzal Khan to capture Shivaji dead or alive. Afzal Khan was more than six feet tall with a massive body, destroyed Hindu temples at Tuljapur, Pandharpur and Shikhar Shinganapur in order to lure Shivaji into plains. The strategy failed and Shivaji stuck to Sahyadri hills. Shivaji even sent a letter to Afzal Khan praising his strength and well-known fearlessness. Shivaji even addressed him as his uncle and mentioned, he feared Afzal Khan, requested him to come into hills to meet him with not more than few select soldiers. Proud Khan believed, Deccan-Ka-Chuha i.e. rat of Deccans as Muslims scornfully addressed Shivaji, had really lost courage. Shivaji’s ensnaring and slaying of Afzal Khan established, Hindus had finally come of age in reciprocating Mughals in their tricks of subterfuge. Khan’s army waiting in the valley, was ruthlessly massacred by Marathas hiding in every crevice in densely wooded jungles around the fort. At the place where the encounter took place on 10th November 1659, there stands today a grave erected by Shivaji for the slain Khan to rest in peace. Once again, a Hindu warriar outwitted a Mughal twice as strong and a towering giant. Pigeons of Muslim subterfuge had come home to roost and with a vengeance now. Shivaji’s assault on Afzal was a pre-planned one invoking Mughal practice of slaying enemies even if there is no provocation. On hearing Shivaji’s depredations, Aurangzeb was furious and desperate to crush him. He sent mighty Shaista Khan with a massive army to kill Shivaji. Shaista Khan raided Maharashtra devastating towns, villages, agro-fields, temples, forts and everything that came on his way. One night, Shivaji sneaked into his palace alongwith his soldiers and attacked Khan in his bedroom. The Mughal lost his fingers in the fight, was spared on very emotional pleadings of his wife. Shaista Khan later chased Shivaji yet could not capture him, returned to Delhi without his fingers in April 1663. Unfortunately, not many Hindu Kings followed those sparks of bravery rendered by Shivaji and consequences are here for everyone to be seen in the country even today.
Marathas after Shivaji managed to reach Delhi in 1720 and by 1756 they occupied entire Punjab to reach outskirts of Afghanistan. However, none of them could match Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaja in bravery and dare-devilry. Marathas under their Prime Ministers called Peshwas opened negotiations with Mughals at Delhi, battled on their behalf against other Muslim invaders like Nadir Shah of Persia and Ahmed Khan Abdali of Afghanistan. It was disastrous as Maratha Hindus became tools in hands of Muslims and suffered many defeats with the most debilitating one being at Panipat in 1761. Where Marathas stopped, Sikhs took over and they carried the saffron flag of Bharata into Afghanistan and hoisted it at Kabul in 1820, city which Hindus lost in 980.
After liberating large tracts of the country from Muslim occupation, neither Marathas nor Sikhs followed the illustrious example of Spanish Reconquistadors of reconverting Muslims to their original faith, Hinduism in this context. It was only because three alternatives of re-embracing Christianity, leaving Spain or facing death offered by Reconquistadors to defeated Spanish Moriscos (Moors or Muslims), that Spain regained their original Christian character. Very unfortunately, Marathas accepted Mughal customs, their attires, habits except converting to their religion. That is how Marathas failed to consolidate their military victories while Spanish Reconquistadors succeeded. For all their valour and expertise on battlefield, Marathas could not visualise devious nature of the Muslim threat.
But for the fierce Hindu reprisals that helped Hinduism to survive in the country and prevented complete Islamisation of Bharata !!!