Page:A Brief History of the Indian Peoples.djvu/127

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ALA-UD-DIN IN SOUTHERN INDIA. 123 Afghan King of Delhi. Three great waves of invasion from Central Asia had created a large Muhammadan population in Northern India. First came the Turkfs, represented by the house of Ghaznf ; then the Afghans (commonly so called), repre- sented by the house of Ghor ; next the Mughals, having failed to conquer the Punjab, took service in great numbers with the Sultans of Delhi. Under the Slave Kings the Mughal mer- cenaries had become so powerful as to require to be massacred (1286). About 1292, three thousand Mughals, having been converted from their old Tartar rites to Islam, received a suburb of Delhi, still called Mughalpur, for their residence. Other Mughals followed. After various plots by them, Ala-ud- dfn slaughtered 15,000 of the settlers, and sold their families as slaves (131 1 a.d.). The unlimited supply of soldiers which he could thus draw upon from the Tiirkf, Afghan, and Mughal settlers in Northern India and from countries beyond, enabled him to send armies farther south than any of his predecessors. But in his later years the Hindus revolted in Gujarat ; the Rajputs re- conquered Chitor; and many of the Muhammadan garrisons were driven out of the Deccan. On the capture of Chitor in 1303, the Rajput garrison had preferred death to submission. The peasantry still chant an early Hindi ballad, telling how the queen and thirteen thousand women threw themselves on a funeral pile, while the men rushed upon the swords of the besiegers. A remnant cut their way to the Aravalli hills ; and the Rajput independence, although in abeyance during Ala-ud- • din's reign, was never crushed, Having imprisoned his sons, and given himself up to paroxysms of rage and intemperance, Ala-ud-dm died in 13 15, helped to the grave, it is said, by poison given by his favourite general, Kafur. A Renegade Hindu Emperor, 1316-1320.— During the four remaining years of the house of Khilji, the actual power passed to Khusru Khan, a low-caste renegade Hindu, who imitated the military successes and vices of his patron, the General Kafur, and in the end murdered him. Khusru became all in all to the new Emperor, the debauchee Mubarik; then slew him, and seized the throne. While outwardly professing Islam, Khusru desecrated the Kuran by using it as a seat, and