Political system of a country indicates the structure of organizations that constitute the State and its Government. Ancient India is no different and it had also developed government and political institutions to give figure and form to the fundamental ideology. The developed political institutions in ancient India as follows:

Vedic Age[1]:  The characteristics of its government belong to the ancient Vedic age. Ancient Indian Political System goes back to about five thousand years or more. Ancient India is a land that has been shaping civilizations through settlement patterns. Therefore, history of India becomes enriched with the description of the Indus Valley civilization. The people formed urban societies with agriculture as an occupation. Moreover this pattern gave rise to large units or clans formed by a group of village. The circle continued with several clans forming the tribe and their leader was Rajan or the Vedic king. He protected his people from enemies and was accompanied with a senani or commandant, the Sabha and the Samithi in administration. However, the invasion by the Aryans had changed the whole scenario. Indian civilisation was again predominated by the nomadic culture[2].

Aryans Social Life[3]:  The Aryans can be identified as the pioneers in introducing the concept of society in Indian culture. This civilization was subjected to various forms of kingdoms with a flow of political boundaries. In the later Vedic age, the Gangetic Valley or Aryavartha became the centre of political activity.

A different concept of society in India developed with the Aryans, in the early Vedic period. The Early Vedic saw the rise of kingdom which was tribal in character. Each tribe formed a separate kingdom. The basic unit of the political organization was family and a number of families formed a Village. A reflection of the Ancient Indian Political System can be traced in the social life of the Aryans. These villages were headed by Gramani. Various Kingdoms like Kosala, Videha, Kuru, Magadha, Kasi, Avanti and Panchala came into existence. The king was the highest authority and his position was considerably supreme. Kingship became hereditary and the he was responsible for defence and maintaining law and order of their kingdoms. Moreover, they had vast empires and tried to extend their territories. In Manu Samhita the history of kingship is described. In Hinduism, Manu is considered to be the first king of the earth[4].

Concept of Dharmas[5]: In earliest Indian Political System, the king was bound by Dharma’s or rule of law which were code of duties. Though a king, yet he had limited powers. The king was required to take oath and loyalty of the people. The king was not assigned with arbitrary powers and he was functional according to the approval of the people. The king was then only a constitutional monarch and the guardian, executor and the servant of Dharma. Besides, monarchies several republics also evolved. After the Battle of Kurukshetra, large empire began to fade away and several republican states emerged. The rulers were hereditary kings or sub kings who ruled with the assistance of faithful ministers appointed by them. Ancient Indian Political System revolved round the autocracy of the king and he was assisted by councilors or ministers to share the multifarious activities of the state. The council of ministers was given great power and they continued to advice the kings on their day to day handling of administration[6].

Village and Revenue Administration: Ancient Indian village administration was a significant part of the Political System. In the Vedic period, the Aryans had built up small villages and the administration of the area was looked after by the village councils. A system of giving taxes also prevailed in the ancient society. Taxes such as Pali, Sulk and Bhaga were collected from the people. The revenue was spent for the benefit of the subjects. Mentions of village administration are found during the fourth century B.C. when republican federation existed in the society of India[7].

Panchayat System: At village level panchayat system is one of the essential democratic institutions which developed in India. Panchayat system originated in ancient India and references are found in the age of Mahabharat. This system is an institution of the Local Self Government found at the village level. It constitutes of a village council consisting of village elders. These local self governments perform administrative and judicial function. The Panchayat system used to serve since ancient times and at present it has become an integral part of Indian Administration. At present Panchayat system is a three tier institution and continues to administer the villages[8].





  1. Concept of Kingship in Ancient Indian (Vedic age)

Meaning of Kingship: Kingship means hereditary rule i.e. rule by the members of the same family. In other words in Kingship after the death of the king generally the eldest son of the king becomes the king, while in republics the people choose their representatives to rule themselves.

As we know that, of the Undecipherment of Indus valley script we can not say with authority about Kingship and Republic in Indus valley period. Various kind of dominance is required to govern the people, to run a society or an Institution. Rig Vedic Aryans were semi nomadic people who probably came from central Asia around 1500 B.C. and settled down in the north western region of India, Saptsindhu means the area of seven rivers[9].

Aryans came to India for two causes. a. Population force b. Paucity of grazing land. The idea of kingship not only arises after the formation of tribes or rashtra but if we go back in time we find that the concept of kingship perhaps took birth simultaneously with the rise of any culture and civilization. Aryan society was a rural society and family was the basic unit of the society. Family was headed by Kulpati. Gram was headed by gramini. Vish was headed by vishpati. Jana was headed by Janapati.

Essential purpose of all was to protect their community. We see it was the need of the time as mentioned in Aiterya Brahman. There was a war between gods and demons in which gods were defeated. They realized that their defeat was because they had no King. The god said let us elect our king. Here the institution of Kingship created because of the situation of the gods. Prajapati installed Indra as a King because he was strong and powerful. Kingship was normally hereditary but there are occasional references to the selection of the ruler through their choice, but usually from the imperial family.

Kingship in Vedic Age:  Kingdom was traditional but elective monarchy or election of the king was also there from, the majestic family was also there. King’s command was checked by Sabha, council of elder people and Samiti council of common people plus gana and vidath. King was helped by a few officials-Purohit, Senani and Gramini. No regular taxation was th6~re but people voluntary offered Bali (a sort of tax). The King had no right over the land. There was no officer for administering justice and it was: discharged by the King himseij. There was no standing army and the military functions were performed by different Trribal groups, Vidhth, Gana etc.

Kingship in Later Vedic Age: Traditionaly monarchy continued Sabha, Samiti lost their importance. The term Rashtra which indicates territory first appeared in this period. Now the wars were fought for territories not for cows. The term Rashtra appears for the first time in this period. The King’s influence was strengthened by rituals like Ashwamedha[10], Rajasuya[11], Vajapeya[12] etc.



  1. Kingship in Ramayana Period

Ramayana was written by Balmiki in that Lord Rama of Ikshwaku family (Dynasty) son of king Dashratha has been explained in detail. The king Dashartha Kingdome belonged to Awadh state.  His capital was Ayodhya and Rama’s rule is well-known for the golden age.  In Ramayana we obtain a reasonable idea about their rule and the ruling policy. In Ramayana we see that relevance of a state depends upon the existence of the king and the expansion of a state depends upon the power of the king. A strong king would have a large area and a weak king would have a small area. It seems that the source of the state depends upon the theory of survival of the fittest. Existence of the state depends upon the power of the king. That is why on the death of the King Dashrath the priests asked Vashisth that on the same day there must be a new King of Ishwaku family. In the absence of a new king, the state could not continue to exist even a single day. Guru Vashisht says that people should always be aware of the seven parts of the state[13]. After the death of king Dashrath there arose the question who would be the king and this question was placed in front of Vashist. Generally the eldest son in succession would become the King, who was well versed in Vedas, far sighted respected by people, popular in the entire three worlds, indulged in religious ceremony and rituals, strong, brave and who was always ready to protect his people. In Ramayana fine and accountable of Kings are follow the religious practices, moral values and patronage to knowledge.

According Ramayana there were two kinds of state a. Sovereign state b. Dependent state.

  1. Sovereign State: Sovereign were those which where strong, prevailing and used to collect taxes and gifts from the reliant states. In Ramayana, King and state were two sides of a single coin and the existence of the state lay in the existence of a king. To enlarge their area of influence they acted according to religion and moral values. And there was also control and power on the position of the king who used to rule according to the desires of the people and there are instances when an evil King was disposed by public.
  2. Dependent state:  A dependent state does not exercise the full range of power over external affairs. The controlling or protecting state may also regulate some of the internal affairs of the dependent state. Formal treaties and the conditions under which the status of dependency has been recognized by other states govern the balance of sovereign powers exercised by the protecting state and the dependent state.
  1. Balkand: Balkand is first chapter of Ramcharitra Mans which is written by Tulsi das, in this chapter of Balkand Vishvamitra advises Ram to kill Tarka because to kill her would be a victory of good over evil and to kill demons (mischief sprite) to defend general people or community is not a sin but a decent act and above all it’s the obligation of the King to protect his public.
  2. Ayodhya Kand: Ayodhya Kand is second chapter of Ramcharitra Mans, in Ayodhya kand make out how a king should run his administration when Ram says to Bharat his younger brother, that an emperor should be pious and regimented (disciplined). Valmiki[14] said that relation between the King and his subject was not of a master and slave but, which followed parental principle. Public protested when Bharat was being coronated as the King instead of Ram, which shows that people had influence in royal affairs and even the opinion of the representative of people was measured.

III. Kishkindaha Kand:  Kishkandaha Kand is another chapter of Ramcharitra Mans, in this chapter when Rama hurt Bali with an arrow, Bali says to Ram that he is from a dignified family, pious who acted according to time, need and religion, helpful to needy and he has all the required character of an emperor.

  1. The Lanka kand: In this chapter Ramcharitra Mans gave idea how was kingship of Ravana in Lanka. Ravana was great king and Ravana’s ten heads represent the ten crowns he wore as a result of his being the sovereign of ten countries. According to Ramayana, ‘Sone ki Lanka’ or Golden Lanka was the place where the demon king Ravana dwelled in the “Treta yuga.” Lanka flourished under his rule and Ravana had proceeded on a series of campaigns conquering humans, celestials and demons. It is said that Ravana ruled Lanka for several hundred years prior to the times of Ramayana, when he was killed by prince Rama for kidnapping his wife Sita. he pushpaka vimana or the aeroplane which he flew is held as an example of great scientific achievements made during his regime while Ravana also holds a high position as a physician and there exists, to this day, seven books on Ayurveda in his name. He is also believed to have authored Ravana Sanhita, an anthology of Hindu astrology and his description as a ten-headed person, Daśamukha or Daśagrīva, is believed to be a reference to his vast knowledge and intelligence. His Kingdom had mainly concentrated around the Eastern and Southern corners of the country and believed to have been lost to the sea with the years[15].

Conclusion:  After going through different chapters of Ramayana and Ramcharitra mans like Kishkindakand, Ayodhyakand, Balkand, lankakand etc. in Vedic Age, I bring to a close that Hereditary Monarchy was generally famous there. The impious king was removed by the people. King was controlled by sabha and Samiti and helped by Senani, Gramini, and Purohit. But in later Vedic age, Sabha and Samiti lost importance. Hereditary Monarchy was there besides this there was an important factor the spirituality of the King was added in which King was assumed as the God himself. After observation of different chapters it’s can say that King would rule accordingly to religion, moral values welfare of the people and state punished the wicked to protect the common people. In other word, it can say that the benefit of King existed in the benefit of the state and people and lord Rama left no stone unturned in establishing his state as an ideal state, through his character of Kingship.



Mahabharata consists of eighteen chapters and about one lakh couplets and consists of twenty thousand slokas or verses. Mahabharata written by Ved Vyas[16]. According to the orthodox view, Mahabharat belongs to Dwapar Age[17]. But the modern historians believed that it was written in 950 B.C. According to a tradition view Krishna passes away at the commencement of the Kalyug after the lapse 36 years from the Mahabharat War. During this there were a large number of states in India and normal form of government was Kingship but there were republics also which got developed form in Buddha age. The King was compulsory to act according to rule of fairness and ethics.

Mahabharata is related to the feud between the Kauravas (the hundred sons of Dhitrastra) with their capital at hanstinapur and the pandavas (the five sons of Pandu).the Pandvas became the heirs to kuru throne, since Dhritrastra was blind and therefore not eligible to rule. The Pandvas were resented by the Kauravas, who plotted against them and finally forced them to leave the country. Dhritrashstra divided the kingdom and gave half to the pandvas, who rulled from indraprashta. But this arrangement did not satisfy the Kauravas and they invited Pandvas to a gambling match. Pandvas lost their kingdom. Pandavas went into exile for thirteen years as a compromise to get back their kingdom. The Kauravas refused to give back not only the kingdom but even five villages. A famous struggle at Kurukshetra lasted eighteen days and fuslulted in the annihilation of the Kuravas. We find all the tribes and people of the sub-content participated in the battle[18].

Mahabharat believes the divine theory of kingship i.e. the King is an ambassador of God. In the Mahabharat Shantiparv, Bhishm says that kingship is of divine source and the king as a God is come in person form. The King should not at all be insulted, because Agni, Aditya, Vayu and Kuber all exist in inside the King. The King should forever indulge in interests and prosperity of citizens. The importance of a king depends upon the value of administration. A King who is not competent of fulfilling his duties is liable to be deposed by public or even could be killed by the people, for example a emperor named Ven, father of Venya, was killed by seers because he was not able to rule efficiently. In brief, it can say that during this period the king was not an autocrat but an ambassador of the people. The people played an important role in appointing or deposing King.

Administration:  The King was head of the government or state who was the head of justice and military department. In Shantiparv of Mahabharata Bhishm says that basically it is riot possible to have all the character in a single person. That why require of a council of ministers i.e. Sabha arose. In Mahabharat there is refer to of appointment of Brahamans who skilled in medicine, scholars, and of fine moral principles, and character, eighteen & shatriyas’ who are versed in war affairs and twenty one vaishyas who are economically sound and three Shudra who are well versed in serving and a scholar of mythology. These forty seven members of sabha perform the administrative purposes but the ultimate authority was vested in the Rashtra.

It can state that in monarchical shape of government the King would be the center of and power and the common people have personally no right in the appointment and deposition of the King but this right was enjoyed by members of royal family and people of upper strata of the society. In the administration, Amatya, Sabha, Rashtra, Janpad all played important role and Brahaman played a chief role.

Law and Justice:  In Shantiparv of Mahabharat, Bhishm says that the safety of the state and his people is stranded on the rule of law that’s means state should be governed according bylaw and fairness. Fountain head of was justice King, in the administration of justice punishment of Dand always played an essential role. And the purpose of punishment was to punish the guilty and to save from harm the innocent without any

prejudice, so that crime should be restricted. In brief, it can say that during Mahabharat age position of law and justice was satisfactory.


  1. Republic State in Ancient India

Character of Republics: In Chapter 107/108 of the Shantiparv of Mahabharat, Yudhishtar asked to Bhishm “Your Excellency, I want to have facts about the character of republics, is how they come in existence, how one could save them from inner confliction and how they should over come their opponenties”. Bhishma said, voracity, desire and anger among the emperors of the republics produce confliction among them and after that they usually leave no stone unturned in getting satisfied their selfish means. Republics split mainly because of disunity between the republics. That is why republics ought to try to unite themselves in the confederation of republics by which they get the monetary prosperity and maintain of other republics. They could development only if they pursue the path of Dharma. The rulers of the republic should keep their Kings under their control by following the path of Dharma and religion. Republic should follow the diplomatic policy to settle issues with their enemies. As soon as the conflictions emerge among the republics their heads and other elders should find the solutions at once”. That is why he laid importance on the unity of the republics for their continued existence. Bhishm in Shantiparv favours the thought of unity and this idea of unity is definitely relevant to present time history too[19].

Concept of Republic in Vedic period:  In relation to republic in Vedic Age, different academics have given views. Some academics articulate that monarchy was the only form of government known to the public of earliest India. And what are maintained to be republics, were nothing more than tribal states. But this view was not accepted by famous scholars Dr. A. S. Altekar and Dr. R. Sharma Shastri who are of the observation that there were some types of republic in the Vedic Age. According to Dr. R. S. Sharma Vedic Gana was prevailing, Tribal republic and the Vedic Gana were self active armed organizations and were forerunners of the Ayudhyajivi Sangh of Panini and Vedic Gan was primarily in a tribal republic (state). The view of Shyam Shastri is that when the Aryans invaded India, they were separated in number of gana and Jans and during the Vedic and Brahaminic period a number of Jans passed into elective monarchy while a few retained their republic form as late as Buddhist time. There were individual republic and confederation of republics. Gana was the individual republics, and confederation of republics was sanghatangan. Lack of unity was there between individual republics, but not among the sanghthan republics. The republics of Yadav, Kukara, Bhoj, Andhakas and Vrishinis formed themselves into a sangh presided over by Lord Krishna. The village was the unit of administration. It was under a Gramani (Headman).

Republics during buddha period: The Buddhist literature, particularly the Anguttara Nikaya[20] lists the sixteen mahajanapadas given as Kashi, Kosala, Anga, Magadha, Vatsa, Avanti, Gandhara, Kamboja, Matsya, Kurus, Panchala, Surasena, Chedi, Vajjis, Mallas, and Assaka[21].

  1. Kashi: its capital was Banaras; among the sixteen states Kashi was at first the most powerful state and Kashi played a vital part in the subversion of the Videhan monarchy. Eventually it had to submit to the power of Kosala and later annexed to Magadh by Ajatasatru.[22]
  2. Kosala: It embraced the area occupied by eastern Uttar Pradesh and has its capital at Shravasti, which is identical with Sahet – Mahet in the borders of Gonda and Bahraich districts in Uttar Pradesh. Kosala was bounded on the west by the river Gomati, on the south by the Sarpika or Syandika (Sai), on the east by the Sadanira (Gandak) which separated it from Videha and on the north by the Nepal hills.
  3. Anga: Anga in the east of Magadha roughly corresponds to the modern districts of Monghyr and Bagalpur. Its capital Champa, situated on the bank of the river of the same name, was noted for its wealth and commerce. It was annexed to Magadha in the time of Bimbisara.
  4. Magadha: Between Anga and Vatsa there lay the kingdom of Magadha, corresponding to modern Patna and Gaya districts, bounded on the north and west by the rivers Ganga and Son, on the south by the Vindhya outcrop and on the east by the river Champa. Rajagriha or Girivraja, rendered impregnable by a perimeter of five hills, was the Magadhan capital. The earliest dynasty of Magadha was founded by Brihadratha. However, Magadha came into prominence under Bimbisasra and Ajatsatru.
  5. Vatsa: The Vatsa country had a monarchical form of government. Its capital was Kausambi (identified with the village of Kosam, 38 miles from Allahabad. Kausambi, a very prosperous city was the most important entre pot of goods and passengers from the south and the west. Udayana, the ruler of this country in the sixth century B.C. had to struggle against king Ajatasatru of Magadha and king Pradyota of Avanti.
  6. Avanti: The state of Avanti roughly corresponded to modern Malwa. The river Vetravati divided Avanti into north and south. Terrirorially, it was a big kingdom and its capital was Ujjayini or modern Ujjain. The ruler of Avanti in the time of Buddha was Chanda Pradyota. He was a contemporary of Udayana of Kausambi. Although he was given the nickname of Chanda on account of his ferocity, he became a convert to Buddhism. Avanti became a very important centre of Buddhism. The kingdom of Avanti was finally annexed to Magadhan Empire by Sishunaga.
  7. Gandhara: The state of Gandhara roughly corresponded to modern Kashmir and extended upto the Kabul valley. Its capital was Taxila which was a famous seat of learning where scholars came from all over the world. According to the Buddhist tradition, the Gandhara King Pukkusati exchanged gifts with Bimbisara in Magadha and went on foot to see the Buddha. Later it formed the twentieth province of the Achaemenid Empire (Persian) according to the Greek historian, Herodotus.
  8. Kamboja: It was the country adjoining Gandhara in the extreme North-West with Dwarka as its capital. A little before 530 B.C. Cyrus, the Achaemenid emperor of Persia, crossed the Hindukush and received tributes from the people of Kamboja, Gandhara and the trans-Indus area. During Kautilya’s time, Kamboja transformed from a monarchy to a republic.
  9. Matsya:The Matsyas were to the south of the Kurus and west of the Yamuna. The Matsya country corresponded roughly to the former state of Jaipur in Rajasthan.
  10. Kurus: The Kuru state approximately to the modern Delhi and the adjoining doab area. It was the very important kingdom of the later Vedic age but during the sixth century B.C. the Kurus did not occupy the same position. They set up their capital at Hastinapur located in the district of Merrut in Uttar Pradesh.
  11. Panchala: The Panchala Empire, which covered the modern districts of Bareilly, Badaun and Farukhabad of Uttar Pradesh state, lost its well-known position as in the Vedic period. The Panchala capital was at Kampilla, perhaps modern Kampil in Farrukhabad district in Uttar Pradesh.

12 Surasena: The Surasena was situated at the south east of Matsya state with capital at Mathura. The capital also knows at the time of Megasthenes as the centre of Krinshna worship. Later on the kingdom became an integral part of the Maghadh Empire.

13 Chedi: The .kingdom of the Chedis corresponded roughly to the eastern parts of Bundelkhand and adjoining areas, and their king lists occur in the Jatakas.

  1. Vajjis: The Vajji region lay north of the Ganga and expanded as far as the Nepal hills. Its western limit was the river Sadanira (Gandak), which separated it from the Malla and Kosalan cities. The Vajji state is said to have been a union of eight clans (atthakula), of whom the Videhans, the Lichchhavis, the Jnatrikas and the Vrijjis were the most essential place.
  2. Mallas: The region of the Mallas, a republican, was divided into two parts, both having its own capital. The two principal cities were Kushinara (known with Kasia in the Gorakhpur district), and Pava (present Padrauna). The importance of these two cities is very great in the history of Buddhism as Buddha took his last meals and was taken ill at Pava, and at Kusinara, he died.
  3. Assaka: The Empire of Assaka (Asmaka) was located nearthe river Godavari in the South, and it became commercially significant in course of time. Its capital was Patlia or Potna. All the 16 Mahajanapadas did not play the same role in contemporary politics, Kashi, which was most important at first, lost its situation to Kosla and Magadha. These two empires vied with each other for manage of the Ganga basin, which, owing to the riverine commercial traffic, had certain clear strategic and economic reward.

Conclusion – In short we can say the existence of the republic cannot be definitely proved during Rigvedic period: There is reference in Vedic literature which referred to democratic system of govt. The kings mentioned here are probably the heads of Kshatriya family assembling probably at the time of the coronation of the king. The sovereign powers thus did not belong to the masses but to the few leaders of the aristocratic classes. Public opinion had attained importance shown by the existence of sabha and samiti. Samiti some times elected their king also. The presence of the king in it was considered to be essential. From these examples we come to the conclusion that public opinion was sufficiently important.












Brief Introduction of Kautilya: Kautilya[23] is estimated to have lived from 350 – 283 B.C. He was an Indian political thinker in ancient India Chanakya is hyped as the economist of India”. Kautilya was the adviser and Prime Minister of Emperor Chandragupta. Kautilya was a professor at the University of Takshila (located in present time in Pakistan) and was an expert in commerce, warfare, economics, etc. His well-known works contain Chanakya Neeti, Arthashastra and Neetishastra.

At time of Kautilya birth he had a full set of teeth, which is a symbol that he would become a king or ruler. But since Chanakya was born in a Brahmin family, it was well thought-out improper. Consequently, his teeth were broken and it was forecasted that he would make another person an emperor and rule by him. During in child age, Chanakya had the qualities of a born leader. His level of awareness was beyond children of his time.

Chanakya was thrown out of the court of King Nanda who was Magdh emperor as he was a blunt man and spoke his mind clearly. Chanakya swore he would take revenge.  He comes across Chandragupta as a young child. Yet at that age, he was a born leader and showed the qualities of a talented ruler. He was the guiding force behind Chandragupta and the crucial person who made him a capable ruler.

Kautilya puts in poison in little amounts daily in Chandragupta’s food in order to make him immune to poisonous, lest some rival tries to toxic emperor Chandragupta’s. Though Chandragupta was unknown this fact and once gave a little parts of food to his wife after eaten that food she died she was in the ninth month of pregnancy also. After that Chanakya cut open her belly and took out the baby. This baby grew up to turn into capable emperor and famous named Bindusara.

In Bindusara emperor had a minister Subandhu who dislike Chanakya. He misguides Bindusara that Chanakya had killed his mother. Without evaluating real facts, Bindusara confronted Chanakya. After some time knowing the whole and real story, he felt embarrassed at his speedy actions and begged for forgiveness. He ordered Subandhu to go and apologize and make Chanakya come back. Subandhu was very cunning and on the pretext of going to apologize to Chanakya, he killed him. Theirefore ended the life of a great person like Chanakya just because of political jealousy.

 Kautilya’s Arthashtra, a book on statecraft was written tin the Maurya period in 4th century B.C. the text was divided into 15 chapters, 380 Shlokas and 4968 Sutras known as books. Different books deal with different subject matters concerning polity, economy and society, the king’s duties, the code of conduct of officers, agriculture and industry, the inter-state relations[24].

Kautilya was the chief advisor of the king Chandra gupta maurya, in his rule the biggest Hindu empire came into being. Kautilya’s wish was for his king to triumph over the world. In his book Chankaya focused on king diplomacy related to Peace, War, Neutrality, Marching, Alliance, Double Policy war, diplomacy and various parts of life. His book is still being analysed and discussed in the strategic society[25].


In book Arthashastra, Kautilya lists seven pillars for an organisation. “The king, the minister, the country, the fortified city, the treasury, the army and the ally are the constituent elements of the state” namely[26]:

  1. The King (The leader): All great organisations have great leaders. The leader is the visionary, the captain, the man who guides the organisation. In today’s corporate world we call him the Director, CEO, etc. Without him we will loose direction.
  2. The Minister (The manager): The manager is the person who runs the show – the second-in-command of an organization. He is also the person whom you can depend upon in the absence of the leader. He is the man who is always in action. An extra ordinary leader and an efficient manager together bring into existence a remarkable organization.
  3. The Country (Your Market): No business can exist without its market capitalization. It is the area of your operation. The place from where you get your revenue and cash flow. You basically dominate this territory and would like to keep your monopoly in this segment.
  4. The Fortifid City (Head Office): a place from where all planning and strategies are made. It’s from here that your central administrative work is done. It’s the nucleus and the center of any organization.
  5. The Treasury: Finance is an extremely important resource. It is the backbone of any business. A strong and well-managed treasury is the heart of any organization. Your treasury is also your financial hub.
  6. The Army (Your Team): When we go to war, we need a well-equipped and trained army. The army consists of your team members. Those who are ready to fight for the organization. The salesmen, the accountant, the driver, the peon – all of them add to your team.
  7. The Ally (Friend / Consultant): In life you should have a friend who is just like you. Being, in the same boat, he can identify with you and stay close. He is the one whom you can depend upon when problems arise. After all, a friend in need is a friend in deed.


 Chanakya in his book Arthashatras suggested idea of a country reaching the following levels of development in terms of ideologies and social and economic development[27]:

  • A self sufficient economy which is not dependent on foreign trade.
  • An egalitarian society where there are equal opportunities for all.
  • Establishment of new colonies for the augmentation of resources. He also advocated the development of the already annexed colonies. His imperialistic views can be interpreted as the development of natural and man made resources.
  • According to Chanakya, the efficient management of land is essential for the development of resources. It is essential that the state keeps an eye on the occupation of excess land by the landlords and unauthorized use of land. Ideally the state should monitor the most important and vital resource – Land.
  • The state should take care of agriculture at all times. Government machinery should be directed towards the implementation of projects aimed at supporting and nurturing the various process; beginning from sowing of seeds to harvest.
  • The nation should envisage constructing forts and cities. These complexes would protect the country from invasions and provide internal security. The cities would act as giant markets increasing the revenue of the state.
  • Internal trade was more important to Chanakya than external trade. At each point of the entry of goods, a minimal amount of tax should be collected. The state should collect taxes at a bare minimum level, so that there is no chance of tax evasion.
  • Laws of the state should be the same for all, irrespective of the person who is involved in the case. Destitute women should be protected by the society because they are the result of social exploitation and the uncouth behavior of men.
  • Security of the citizens at peace time is very important because state is the only savior of the men and women who get affected only because of the negligence of the state. Antisocial elements should be kept under check along with the spies who may enter the country at any time.
  • Chanakya envisioned a society where the people are not running behind material pleasures. Control over the sense organs is essential for success in any endeavor. Spiritual development is essential for the internal strength and character of the individual. Material pleasures and achievements are always secondary to the spiritual development of the society and country at large.

(B)  Manu

Manu is a term found with various meanings in different mythologies of Hinduism. In early texts[28], it refers to the representative man, or to the first man (progenitor of humanity). In later texts[29], Manu is the title or name of mystical sage-rulers of earth, or alternatively as the head of mythical dynasties that begin with each cyclic kalpa (aeon) when the universe is born anew. The title of the text Manusmriti uses this term as a prefix, but refers to the first Manu Svayambhuva, the spiritual son of Brahma. On the the other hand in some Puranic mythology, each kalpa consists of fourteen Manvantaras, and each Manvantara is headed by a different Manu. The current universe, in this mythology, is asserted to be ruled by the 7th Manu named Vaivasvata. In Vishnu Purana, Vaivasvata, also known as Sraddhadeva or Satyavrata, was the king of Dravida before the great flood. He was warned of the flood by the Matsya (fish) avatar of Vishnu, and built a boat that carried the Vedas, Manu’s family and the seven sages to safety, helped by Matsya. The myth is repeated with variations in other texts, including the Mahabharata and a few other Puranas. It is similar to other flood myths such as that of Gilgamesh and Noah[30].

Manusmriti, translated “Laws of Manu” or “Institutions of Manu,” is the most important and authoritative Hindu Law Book (Dharmashastra), which served as a foundational work on Hindu law and jurisprudence in the ancient Indian society. Until the modern times it was the standard reference for both the rulers who patronized Vedic faith and the people who practiced it[31].

According to Hindu tradition Manu is considered to be the first sons of Brahma’s and a progenitor of human race, so it is very difficult to decide the period of Manusmriti. It considered to that law of Manu might have been identified to the Vedic people for a long time before they were codified into their present form sometime during the post Vedic period. In ancient India the people believed in the order and regularity of the world as the manifestation of God’s will and intent, and the clear victory of the divine forces over the demonic. Therefore, the laws governing the perform of individuals and the order and regularity of Hindu society were prepared by many scholars and sages in ancient India since the primitive times.

Manusmriti schemes an ideal society and best human conduct as the basis to establish a systematically society and divine centered life. To support those principles and implement divine will, it offers numerous laws to minutely govern human life and conduct as applicable to each individual according to her or his society category, responsibilities and functions. Their object is to maintain control, provide a basis for the rulers to enforce lawful conduct, and ensure the orderly progression of the world through righteous conduct and observation of obligatory duties by individuals. The power to implement the laws is carefully circulated among the rulers and the guardians of society who support him in taken decision.

The laws that were proposed by Manu to govern human conduct and society reflect the conditions, needs and values of the times in which they were formulated. Most of them do not fit into the present day value system. They acknowledge prevailing social and gender inequalities as natural conditions of human existence, and propose laws to govern the behavior of individuals without providing scope for any changes that time may bring in the conditions of society or the lives of people. Hence, today you may find many laws of Manu archaic, outdated, and even primitive. The laws favor a paternalistic society and family system, vesting the authority to regulate them with men, and proposing rather a subordinate status and subservient role to women. They also betray a clear lack of trust in the integrity and sexual choices of women, thereby suggesting that they should always be guarded by men and should never be left alone in the presence of men outside their families. At the same time, they do not ignore or undermine the role of women in family and domestic matters, and urge men to treat them with honor and respect and not let them suffer[32].

Manusmriti recognize and validate the caste system as the foundation of order and regularity of society. It identifies four classes of people like Brahmanas, Kshatriyas, Vaisyas and Sudras, and their own roles in the protection of dharma. Brahmanas and Kshatriyas are given many civil liberties and superior leniency in matters of sentence for misbehavior, whereas Sudras are given the least number of civil liberties but the harshest of punishments even for minor misdemeanors. Thus, it is important to study Manusmriti with an open mind to understand its historical and religious importance in the development of Hinduism from its early days to its current shape.





India is a federal state with a parliamentary form of government. It is governed under the 1949 constitution (effective since Jan., 1950). The president of India, who is head of state, is elected for a five-year term by the elected members of the federal and state parliaments; there are no term limits. The kingdom of Magadha, ruled by Bimbisara, is the most powerful state in India. The Indian epic the Ramayana is composed by the sage Valmiki. The life of Siddhartha Gautama according to modern scholar consensus. Life of Indian Emperor Chandragupta, first ruler of the Mauryan Empire.

The three theories of origin of state in ancient India are as follows: 1. Social Contract Theory 2. Divine Origin Theory 3. Organic Theory. The core issues in the study of political science are the state and the government. The institution of state is studied in relation to its origin, nature, aims and functions of the state in ancient India. The dawn of civilization was stated to have marked the beginning of the origin of state. The state in ancient India was considered necessary, for it ensures peace, order and happiness. It was a social organization with political power. However, ancient scholars were not unanimous in their opinion with regard to the origin of the state. According to some, state was the outcome of a contract mainly political in nature between the rulers and the ruled. They opine that prior to the origin of state there was something called a golden age, wherein the people enjoyed a life of peace, order, self-discipline and happiness. Similarly, several theories like force theory, patriarchal theory, matriarchal theory, divine origin theory and finally the evolutionary theory advanced the origin of the state[33].

  1. Social Contract Theory: The social contract theory, one of the common theories of the origin of state, believes that state is a result of a contract between the king and his subjects or representatives. The king, thus appointed, was expected to save the state and the subjects from external aggression and establish order and security within the state. However, the earliest Vedic works never stated that state was the result of a contract. But, they clarified that king was elected to wage a successful war against the demons[34].
  2. Divine Theory: The Divine theory of origin of kingship as well as the state was not widely acclaimed in the ancient Indian polity. The emperor, according to this theory, was a subordinate to law, which was made by the community and not him. The society as a whole was given greater importance than the king. The king was not allowed to act indiscriminately and was expected to act as a father to his subjects, and treat them with affection and kind­ness[35].

The Divine theory holds the vision that state is like an organism and that each department has a specific function to perform. The theory believes that the healthy functioning of the whole organism depends upon the healthy conditions of each part of the body or organism and its efficient performance.

The seven parts of the body, that is, state are the king or the sovereign, the minister, the territory and population, the fortified city or the capital, the treasury, the army, the friends and the allies. Among all the seven elements or parts, it is the king who is most important.

It was also stated in Manusamhita that ‘when the world was not without a king and dispersed in fear in all directions, the lord created a king for the protection of all. And because, he’s formed of fragments of all those gods, the king surpasses all other beings in splendor’.

  1. Organic Theory: Organic theory deals the view that state is like an organism and that each department has a definite role to execute. The theory deals that the healthy functioning of the whole organism depends upon the healthy conditions of each part of the body or organism and its efficient functioning. The seven parts of the body, likes state are the king or the sovereign, the minister, the territory and population, the fortified city or the capital, the treasury, the army, the friends and the allies. Among all the seven elements or parts, it is the king who is most significant.



Administration of justice was not a part of the state’s duties in early times. We do not find references to any judicial organizations in Vedic literature. The aggrieved party in order to get its wrong redressed used to sit before the accused house and not allow him to move till his (aggrieved party) claims was satisfied or wrong righted. Later justice was administered by the tribe and clan assemblies and the judicial procedure was very simple. But with the extension of the functions of the state and the growth of the royal powers, the king came gradually to be regarded as the origin of justice and a more or less elaborate system of judicial administration came into existence. The Dharma Shastras, Niti Shastras and the Arthashastra provide us information about the well-developed judiciary. According to these literatures the king is the fountain head of all justice and he was required to spend every day about a couple of hours in adjudication. The paramount duty of the king is the protection of his subjects which involves the punishment of the wrongdoer. The law to be administered is the Dharma Shastras subject to local and other usages which are not inconsistent with the shastras[36].


According to Brihaspati[37] there are four types of courts likes

  1. Movable courts
  2. Stationary courts
  3. Courts deriving authority from the king and
  4. Courts presided by the king himself.

Brihaspati also mentioned three types of nomadic courts as following:

First: For the promote toforest dwellers.

Second: For the profit of caravan serai merchants.

Third: For the advantage of military men.

According to Bhrighu rishi[38]: There were some of the prominent courts for justice as follows:

  1. The Kings Court: At the head of the judicial system stood the kings court at the capital and presided by the king himself. But more often a learned Brahmana was appointed for the purpose and he was known as Adhyaksha or Sabhapathi. Earlier the Adhyaksha was selected for each particular occasion and in course of time became a permanent officer of state and held the position of the Chief Justice (Pradvivaka). Apart from the king, this court consisted of the Pradvivaka and three or four jurors.
  2. Court presided by the Chief Justice: The court presided by the chief justice appointed by the king called Pradvivaka was the second type of court.
  3. Principal Courts: Another court of importance were the principal courts in large town where royal officers assisted by learned person administered justice. They were presided by Adhyakshas appointed by the central government.
  4. Popular Courts: One special feature of ancient Indian judicial system is the existence of popular courts.

According to Yajnavalkya[39] for the first time refers to three types of popular courts.

  1. Kula: The Kula has been defined by the Mitakshara[40]as consisting of a group of relations, near or distant. The Kula or joint families were often very extensive in ancient India. If there was a quarrel between two members the elders used to attempt to settle it. The Kula court was this informal body of family elders.
  2. 2. Sreni: When the effort at family arbitration failed, the matter was taken to Sreni court. The term Sreni was used to denote the courts of guilds which became a prominent feature of the commercial life in ancient India from 500 B.C. Sreni had their own executive committees of four or five members and it is likely that they might have functioned as the Sreni court also for settling the disputes among their members. This was an assembly of persons following a particular profession like betel sellers, weavers, shoe makers and such like.
  3. 3. Puga: Puga was an association of persons drawn from various castes    and following different professions but staying in the same village or town. The Sabha or the village assembly of the Vedic period and Gramavriddha court of the Arthasastra were the forerunner of the Puga court.



Danda: The word Danda is derived from the words Dam and Dand, which refer to tame, subdue, to conquer or to restrain and the like. This term also means a stick. Danda, in fact, is one of the elements of a state. The main reason for institution of Danda is to bring about discipline in the lives of human beings who by nature are evil and corrupt. According to Manu, it is only the king who can protect the entire mankind and for this protection, the king uses Danda as a means or as an instrument. In the ancient Indian political system, it was the responsibility of the king to maintain Dharma by means of Danda. It was widely believed that it is only through fear of punish­ment that the mankind can be made more disciplined. It is this punishment that keeps a check on their actions consciously or subconsciously[41].

The Purposes of Punishment: Punishment has five recognized purposes as follows[42]:

  1. Deterrence: Deterrence prevents future crime by frightening the defendant or the public. The two types of deterrence are specific and general deterrence. Specific deterrence applies to an individual defendant. When the government punishes an individual defendant, he or she is theoretically less likely to commit another crime because of fear of another similar or worse punishment. General deterrence applies to the public at large. When the public learns of an individual defendant’s punishment, the public is theoretically less likely to commit a crime because of fear of the punishment the defendant experienced. When the public learns, for example, that an individual defendant was severely punished by a sentence of life in prison or the death penalty, this knowledge can inspire a deep fear of criminal prosecution.
  2. Incapacitation: Incapacitation prevents future crime by removing the defendant from society. Examples of incapacitation are incarceration, house arrest, or execution pursuant to the death penalty.
  3. Rehabilitation: Rehabilitation prevents future crime by altering a defendant’s behavior. Examples of rehabilitation include educational and vocational programs, treatment center placement, and counseling. The court can combine rehabilitation with incarceration or with probation or parole. In some states, for example, nonviolent drug offenders must participate in rehabilitation in combination with probation, rather than submitting to incarceration (Ariz. Rev. Stat., 2010). This lightens the load of jails and prisons while lowering recidivism, which means reoffending.
  4. Retribution: Retribution prevents future crime by removing the desire for personal avengement (in the form of assault, battery, and criminal homicide, for example) against the defendant. When victims or society discover that the defendant has been adequately punished for a crime, they achieve a certain satisfaction that our criminal procedure is working effectively, which enhances faith in law enforcement and our government.
  5. Restitution: Restitution prevents future crime by punishing the defendant financially. Restitution is when the court orders the criminal defendant to pay the victim for any harm and resembles a civil litigation damages award. Restitution can be for physical injuries, loss of property or money, and rarely, emotional distress. It can also be a fine that covers some of the costs of the criminal prosecution and punishment.




A Brief survey of the Political History of Medieval India

Medieval period refer to the phase of Indian history that stretches from the fall of the Gupta Empire and advent of Islam into India in other words the beginning of the Sultanate period in the 13th century. Numeral Delhi Sultanates were in power from 1210 AD to 1526 AD. The Delhi Sultanate was established Muhammad Ghori by defeating Prithviraj Chuhan (Rajput king) in the battle of Tarain-II in 1192 AD. In 1206 death of Muhammad Ghori, Qutb ud-Din became himself sultan of Delhi and established the Slave dynasty; it came to an end in 1290 AD. The sultanate of Delhi was in regular change as five dynasties (families) as follows:

  1. Slave dynasty (1206 AD to 1290 AD)
  2. Khalji dynasty (1290 AD to 1320 AD)
  3. Tughluq dynasty (1320 AD to 1413 AD)
  4. Sayyid dynasty (1414 AD to 1451 AD)
  5. Lodi dynasty (1451 AD to 1526 AD).


Muhammad Ghur or Muhammad Gori left his Indian empire in the care Qutb-ud-din Aibak. Qutb-ud-din Aibak was his trusted former slave. On Muhammad’s death, Qutb-ud-din severed his ties with Ghazni. Muhammad Ghur dynasty referred to as the ‘mameluks’ or slave dynasty. The founders of these dynasties were Qutb-ud-din Aibak, Iltutmish and Balban who did not descend from a common ancestor. This dynasty ruled over Delhi during the period 1206 to 1290.

QUTB-UD-DIN AIBAK (1206-1210): after Muhammad Ghur, Qutb-ud-din Aibak received title of Sultan of Delhi from Ghiyas-ud-din Mahmud, nephew and successor of Muhammad of Ghur. He reinforced his position by political matrimonial coalitions. He was very religious Muslim, his devotion to Islam is known by the two mosques, Quwwat-ud-Islam built at Delhi and Arhai Din ka Jhonpara built at Ajmer. He also started the construction of Qutub Minar. He died in 1210, from the effects of a fall from his horse while playing polo. He was known as lakh bazirs or ‘giver of lakhs’[43].

ILTUTMISH (1210-1236): Qutb-ud-din Aibak son was Aram Shah but incompetent for post of sultan. Aram Shah challenged to Qutb-ud-din Aibak’s. After defeated Aram Shah in 1211 and Iltutmish made himself secure as the Sultan. His full name was Shams-ud-din Iltutmish. He was Aibak’s son-in-law also. On his accession to the throne he had to face many complexities. But I1tutmish proved himself equal to the every situation. After defeated all rivals, and was honoured with the patent of investiture from the Caliph of Baghdad in 1229. He was the first ruler to adopt a monetary standard the silver ‘tanka’, the ancestor of modern rupees. Iltutmush built other three more stories, and in 1368, Firoz Shah Tughlak constructed the fifth and the last storey[44].

RAZIYA SULTAN (1236-1240): Razia Sultan, a brave sultan belonged to slave dynasty and was the first mulim women to rule India and only women to occupy the throne of Delhi. She succeeded her father Shams-ud-din Iltutmish to the Sultanate of Delhi in 1236. She was talented, wise, brave, excellent administrator, and a great warrior that attracted her father which resulted that she became the next sultan of Slave dynasty. Though her reign was just for three years, her bravery, her struggle and her undaunted spirit has been preserved in the treasures of history. Razia Sultan’s Tomb in Delhi is one of those places, which relives the uncharted spirit of the brave woman who ruled Delhi once and for all[45].







The Tughlaq Dynasty (1320 AD to 1413 AD): Ghyasuddin Tughlaq, who was the Governor of Punjab during the reign of Ala-ud-din Khilji, ascended the throne in 1320 A.D. and founded the Tughlaq dynasty. He conquered Warrangal and put down a revolt in Bengal. Muhammad-Bin-Tughlaq succeeded his father and extended the kingdom beyond India, into Central Asia. Mongols invaded India during Tughlaq rule, and were defeated this time too[46].

Muhammad-Bin-Tughlaq: First shifted his capital from Delhi to Devagiri in Deccan. However, it had to be shifted back within two years. He inherited a massive empire but lost many of its provinces, more particularly Deccan and Bengal. He died in 1351 A.D. and his cousin, Feroz Tughlaq succeeded him[47].

Feroz Tughlaq: The invasion of Delhi by Timur in 1398 may be said to mark the end of the Tughlaq Empire. When ascended to the throne of Delhi, Firoz was a man of 45 years. His mother was a Hindu princess of Dipalpur, who gave herself to his father Razzab (the younger brother of Ghazi Malik) to save her people from the demands and oppressions of the half-breed Turks. Firoz was trained in the art of the administration under his late cousin, the “man of ideas” Muhammad bin Tughlaq. Muhammad kept him with himself like his son. Once becoming Sultan, he reversed every order of his predecessor. Firuzshah Kotla (in Delhi) is the city established by him. It was destroyed by the later rulers. The empire which was broken during his cousin Muhammad’s reign was to be recovered back. He campaigned against Bengal for two times, planned a new city Jaunpur in memory of Muhammad Bin Tughlaq. General administration Since he was half Muslim, got a religious temperament, probably to prove himself equal to the Pure Muslims. He started seeking advice of the Ulemas and ruled as per the Shariat. All the taxes which were unlawful as per Shariat were abandoned by him[48].



The Sayyid Dynasty (1414-1451)

It was the fourth dynasty of the Delhi Sultanate and ruled the Sultanate from 1414 AD to 1451 AD. Khizr Khan was the founder of Sayyid Dynasty. After Timur invasion in 1398 AD, the Tughlaq Dynasty became extremely weak. After the massacre, people lived a completely chaos life without a central powerful authority for more than one decade. In 1414 AD Khizr Khan acquired the Delhi Sultanate and founded the Sayyid Dynasty[49].

Khizr Khan (1414-1421): Timur’s nominee captured Delhi and was proclaimed the new Sultan and the first of the Sayyid Dynasty. They ruled over Delhi and surroundings districts.

Mubarak Shah (1421-1434): He succeeded Khizr Khan at the throne after his successful expeditions against Mewatis, Katehars and the Gangetic Doab area. He was killed by the nobles in his own court.

Muhammad Shah (1434-1443): The nobles put Muhammad Shah on the throne, but could not survive the in-fighting among the nobles in the court. He was authorized to rule a meagre area of around 30 miles and rest of the Sultnate was ruled by the nobles.

Alam Shah (1443-1451): The last Sayyid king descended in favour of Bahlol Lodhi and himself retired. Thus began the Lodhi dynasty, which confined to Delhi and a few surrounding areas.

Lodi Dynasty was the last dynasty of Delhi Sultanate and ruled from 1451 AD to 1526 AD. The Lodi Dynasty was of Afghan origin and Bahlul Lodi was the founder of Lodi Dynasty. In 1451 AD, Alam Shah, the last ruler of Sayyid Dynasty voluntarily abandoned the throne of Delhi Sultanate in favour of Bahlul Lodi. In 1526 AD, the Lodi Dynasty came to end after the first Battle of Panipat and marked the beginning of Mughal Empire.




The Lodhi Dynasty (1451-1526 AD)

Bahlol Lodhi (1451-88 AD): Bahlul Lodi was the first ruler of the Lodi Dynasty. He ruled the Delhi Sultanate from 1451 AD to 1489 AD. He was first Afghan dynasty of India. He also knew as Pathans sultans. Sikandar Lodi established himself in Punjab after invasion of Timur founded of Lodhi dynasty. He tried to restore the glory of Delhi by conquering territories around Delhi. Extending his authority over Jaunpur, Rewail, Itawah, Mewar, Sambhal, Gwalior etc. Though he was himself illiterate, he extended his patronage to art and learning[50].

Sikandar Lodhi (1489-1517 AD): His real name was Nizam Khan. After the death of Bahlul Lodi, his son Sikandar Lodi succeeded him and ascended the throne of Delhi Sultanate in 1489 AD. He ruled the Delhi Sultanate from 1489 AD to 1517 AD. Sikandar Lodi was a good and caring ruler for his Muslim subjects but he was extremely strict and harsh for Hindus. He founded Agra in 1504 AD as his second capital after Delhi. In 1504, he founded the city of Agra and made it his capital.  Set up an efficient spying system and introduced the system of auditing of accounts. He was a poet himself and wrote verses in Persian under the pen-name of Gulrukhi. He also repaired Qutab Minar. He was a fanatical Muslim and he broke the sacred images of the Jwalamukhi Temple at Naga Kot and ordered the temples of Mathura to be destroyed.

Ibrahim Lodhi (1517-26 AD): Ibrahim Lodi, the youngest son of Sikandar Lodi succeeded his father in 1517 AD and ruled the Delhi Sultanate till 1526 AD. He was the last Sultan of Lodi Dynasty as well as the Delhi Sultanate. At last Daulat Kan Lodhi, the governor of Punab invited Babur to overthrow Ibrahim Lodhi. Babur accepted the offer and inflicated a crushing defeat on Ibrahim Lodi. Defeated & killed by Babur in the first battle of Panipat in 1526.  In 1526 AD, the Mughal Emperor Babur defeated him in the first Battle of Panipat and established the Mughal Empire. Ibrahim Lodi died in the battle. He was the only Sultan who had killed in battle. This battle is considered as ending of Lodi Dynasty and beginning Mughal Empire in India[51].



KHILJI DYNASTY (1290-1320)

After the decline of the Slave reign, the Sultanate became even more fragile and instable due to the numerous revolts and internal aggression. The Khilji dynasty started with the crowning of Jalaluddin Khilji by the nobles. This was around the year 1290 A.D. But within a few years, he was killed by his nephew Alauddin Khilji under a conspiracy hatched by the latter. The Khilji dynasty is also known by the name of Khalji dynasty. The history of Khilji dynasty is marked by brutal wars and internal conflicts among the rulers. Read on about the history of the Khalji dynasty. The next territory that Alauddin Khilji conquered was that of Gujarat. Around 1301 A.D, he captured Ranthambhor and murdered the Rajput Hamir Deva. Then, he killed Rana Rattan Singh and captured Chittor. By 1305, he had captured territories like Malwa, Ujjain, Mandu, Dhar and Chanderi but couldn’t capture Bengal. He had conquered almost entire north India by the year 1311 A.D. and established his kingdom successfully. Read about the main Khilji dynasty rulers of India[52].

JALAL UD-DIN FIRUZ KHILJI: The founder of the Khilji dynasty was Jalal-ud-din Firuz Khilji, who ruled from 1290 – 1294. He attacked India and built his empire which was capital in Delhi, however he never really ruled from Delhi. He builds another capital at Kilokhri, and reigned from there for around 6 years. At the time Mongols attacked the on country, Jalal-ud-din Khilji confront very bravely due to his daring Mongols depart. They came back after, five years later and attack once again when his nephew ascended on the throne. Jalal-ud-din Khilji was murdered by his own nephew which known as Ala-ud-din Khilji, when he was going to visit in Kara.

ALA-UD-DIN KHILJI: After Jalal-ud-din Khilji throne ascended by the second ruler Ala-ud-din Khilji, whose real name was Juna Khan. He reigned in India from 1296-1316. He was the nephew and son-in-law of the first Khilji ruler. Jalal-ud-din Khilji killed the first Khilji ruler (or his father-in-law) and proclaimed himself as the ruler of Delhi. Ala-ud-din extended his territory into the peninsular India very rapidly. Due to an acute health condition Jalal-ud-din Khilji died on January 1316 A.D.

QUTB-UD-DIN MUBARAK SHAH: The last and third ruler of the Khilji dynasty in India was Qutb-ud-Din Mubarak Shah.  The third ruler of the Khilji dynasty was the weakest ruler, during his reign, all taxes and penalties were eradicated. He released all prisoners of war. Qutb-ud-Din Mubarak Shah killed by Khusru Khan, hence ended the Khilji dynasty in India.



Alauddin Khilji was a stern despot and exercise complete authority over his vast empire. Alauddin combined efficiency with sternness. He suppressed rebellions with a strong hand. To prevent future troubles he enacted various laws by which he put a ban on the consumption of wine, prohibited social meetings among the nobility, and even forbade inter-marriage among them without his special permission. He employed many spies who kept him informed of the doings of his subjects. He burdened his subjects with heavy taxes. Naturally, the wealthier classes were subjected to more taxes. Sultan Alauddin Khilji realized the need of keeping an efficient army. This could only be done at heavy expenses. To reduce heavy military expenditure the Sultan fixed a price of every article and attempted to make goods available in cheap rates[53].

  1. Fountain head of administrative system:The Sultan was the fountain head of the administrative system. The earlier Muslim rulers carried on their administration by the Koranic principles and the Ulemas or Muslim divines had a large say in the formulation of policies. However, Alauddin Khilji differed from that of his predecessors in this respect. He did not allow the Ulemas to lay down the principles of administration. As he used to say, “I do not know what is lawful and what is unlawful; whatever I consider to be for the good of my kingdom I do.” These words sum up his attitude towards government and its objects[54].

Ibn Batuta describes Alauddin Khalji as one of the best Sultans. This observation, however, is not justified either by the manner in which he came to power or by the way he carried on the government. However, when the vastness of his conquests is taken into consideration, then only perhaps the remark that he was a great Sultan can be justified.

Sir Wolseley Haig has remarked, “With the reign of Alauddin begins what may be called the imperial period of Sultanate which lasted about half a century.”

  1. Central Administration: Sultan Alauddin Khalji established a strong central government during his reign in which the Sultan was the head of the administra­tion. AH executive”, legislative and judicial powers were centred in the hands of the “Suttan and he had the supreme power in all the three departments. K. M. Ashraf remarks, “The Sultan of Delhi was in theory an unlimited despot bound by no law, subject to no material check and guided by no law or will except his own.”

There were two powerful classes—nobility and ulema in the Sultanate throughout the 13th century. Alauddin snatched all the powers from the nobility and deduced them to the position of mere servants. He also minimized the powers of Ulema in the affairs of State and religion.

Dr. Ishwari Prasad writes, “Alauddin was opposed to the interference of the Ulema in matters of State and in this respect, he departed from the tradition of the previous Sultans of Delhi. The law was to depend upon the will of the monarch and had nothing to do with the laws of the prophet. This was the guiding maxim of the new monarch.”

  1. Ministers: A powerful ministry was organized by the Sultan for the smooth running of administration. Each minister was attached to one Particular department. Their duties were to tender advice to the Sultan but there was not bound to act according to their counsel. The post of minister was not reserved for any class. It was the privi­lege of the Sultan to appoint or suspend a minister. The ministers had to work in their respective departments according to the will of the Sultan. The following were the notable ministers during the reign of Aluddin Khalji.
  2. Wazir: Wazir was the most powerful minister of the Sultan. His position was next to the Sultan in the Sultanate. He was both a civil and military officer. He was in charge of revenue department and he had a right to inspect the departments of other ministers.

Various appointments were made by the Sultan in consultation with the Wazir. He used to command the royal forces at the time of war.

  1. Diwan-i-Ariz – This was a department pertaining to the army and war and the incharge of this department was named Ariz-i- Mamalik. He assisted the Sultan in recruitment of soldiers, organi­zation of the army and expeditions.
  2. Qazi-ul-Quzat – He was incharge of judicial department. He was expected to administer justice according To Islamic law.
  3. Mir Arigf – He was the lord of petitions. People could not approach the Sultan directly. They could only send their petitions to the Sultan through the Mir Ariz.
  4. Diwan-i-Ashraf – He was the accountant general. He used to maintain the accounts of the Sultanate.
  5. Mustaafi -The auditor general was known as Mustaufi. He audited the accounts of the Sultanate.

G. Bakshi-i-Fauj -He was the pay master of the royal army.

I. Amir-i-Kohi -He was in charge of the agriculture department.

J. Diwan-i-Riyasat and Shahana-l-Mandi – They looked after the affairs of the market. They used to keep close watch on the prices.

K. Kotwal – During pre-Mughal period the post of Kotwal was very significant. The person who worked on it had to maintain law and order in the city. He was also expected to check thefts and robberies. To provide peaceful life to the citizens was the first and foremost duty of the Kotwal.

Besides the above referred officials, there were several other officers who looked after the affairs of administration, out of which the following were significant: a. Vakil-l-Dar (Incharge of the keys of the gates of palace. b. Amir-i-Hajib (Incharge of festivals). c. Amir-i-Akhur (In charge of royal stables). d. Amir-i-Shikar (Lord of the Hunts). e. Sar-i-Jandar (Head of the bodyguards).

  1. Provincial Administration – The empire of Alauddin was divided into several provinces due to its large extent. The incharge of each province was known as governor. They were almost kings in miniature but they had to obey the orders of the Sultan. They had all executive, legislative and judicial powers. People could prefer appeal against their decisions to the Sultan or to Qazj-ul-Quzat. They had independent army and ‘hey made use of it in realizing revenue. At the time of war, they sent their army for assistance of the royal army.

The vast empire of Alauddin Khalji was divided into eleven Provinces: I. Gujarat, II . Mlultan and Sehwan, III.Dipalpur, IV. Samana and Sunam, V. Dhar and Ujjain, VI. Jhain, VII. Chittor, VIII. Chanderi, IX. Badaun, X. Avadh, XI. Kara.

Besides these provinces there were some States which accepted supremacy of the Sultan. The rulers of these States were more in­dependent than the Governors. Owing to strong monarchy of Alau­ddin veteran governors like Ghazi Malik, Malik Kafur and others dared not disobey the commands of the Sultan.

Towns were the lower units. The administration of the towns was in the hands of separate officers. Villages were the smallest units of administration. Alauddin used to keep a close watch over local and village administration.

5. Judicial System – Alauddin Khalji was a lover .of justice. Dr. K. S. Lai has remarked, “The Sultan was as relentless and unflinching in adminis­tering justice as Balban.” He was the fountainhead of justice. He listened to the appeals and gave his judgements.

Qazi-ul-Quzat was next to him. Justice was administered by Qazis (junior officers) in the provinces. Panches and Panchayats used to settle the disputes in the villages. Alauddin was in favour of awarding impartial and immediate justice’.

Severe punjshmeala were in vogue during the reign of Alauddin. Mutilation of limbs was very common. Nobody could escape justice on the basis of his piety or wealth. The criminals were tortured to accept their crimes. Contemporary historian, Barani has written that owing to cruelty of Alauddin and his barbarous justice thefts and dacoities were not heard of in his reign.

6. Police and Intelligence System – Alauddin established a strong and effective police and intelli­gence system in his territories. The Kotwal was the chief police officer and it was his first and foremost duty to establish law and order in the Sultanate. Alauddin is also known for establishing a strong spy system in the country. Intelligence department was the base of his strong autocratic rule.

Without an effective espionage system, he might not have achieved success in establishing control over the Amirs and nobles. Barani has also written, “No one could stir with­out his (Alauddin’s) knowledge and whatever happened in the houses of Maliks and Amirs, officers and great men, was communicated to the Sultan. The fear of spies led barons to cease speaking anything aloud in the Hazur Sultan and if they had to say anything they said through gestures. Day and night did they tremble in their own houses on account of the activity of the patrol? Neither did they do anything nor did they utter a single word which could subject them to reproof or punishment.”

MARKET REFORMS OF ALAUDDIN KHALJI[55]:  The market reforms of Alauddin Khalji were oriented towards administrative and military necessities. Medieval rulers believed that necessities of life, especially food grains, should be available to the city folk at reasonable prices. But few rulers had been able to control the prices for any length of time. Alauddin Khalji was more or less the first ruler who looked at the problem of price control, in a systematic manner and was able to maintain stable prices for a considerable period. It has been pointed out that Alauddin Khalji instituted the market control because after the mongol seige of Delhi, he wanted to recruit a large army. All his treasures would have soon exhausted if he was to spend huge resources on army. With low prices the sultan could recruit a large army with low expenses. Whatever may be the reason for the market reforms, elaborate administrative arrangements were made to ensure that the market control was followed strictly.

Alauddin fixed the prices of all commodities from grain to cloth, slaves, cattles etc. He also set up three markets at Delhi, the first for food grains, the second for cloth of all kinds and for expensive items such as sugar, ghee, oil, dry fruits etc. and the third for the horses, slaves and cattle. For controlling the food prices, Alauddin tried to control not only the supply of food grains from the villages, and its transportation to the city by the grain merchants, but also its proper distribution to the citizens. A number of measures were taken to see that prices laid down by the Sultan were strictly observed.

Market for cloth, dry fruits, ghee etc. was called Sarai-i-adl. All the clothes brought from different parts of the country and also from outside were to be stored and sold only in this market at government rates. To ensure an adequate supply of all the commodities, all the merchants were registered and a deed taken from them that they would bring the specified quantities of commodities to the Sarai-i-adl every year. The Merchants who, brought commodities from long distances including foreign countries were given advance money on the condition that they would not sell to any intermediaries. In cases of costly commodities an officer was to issue permits to amirs, maliks etc. for the purchase of these expensive commodities in accordance with their income. This was done to prevent any black marketing of these expensive products. The third market dealt with horses, cattle and slaves. The supply of horses of good quality at fair prices was important for the army.




Farid Khan to Sher Khan: On the death of Ibrahim Lodi, Bahar Khan had proclaimed himself as the Sultan of Bihar, assuming the title of Muhammad Shah Nuhani. Farid joined the service of Sultan Muhammad Shah, who rewarded him the title of Sher Khan, for killing a tiger with his bare hands during a hunting expedition. Impressed by his service, Muhammad Shah made him the deputy to his minor son, Jalal Khan. After some time, Sher Khan took leave to visit his Jagirs. During his absence, Muhammad Sur poisoned the Sultan’s ears that Sher Khan was planning to join Mahmud Lodi, a brother of the late Sultan Ibrahim Lodi, and requested him to confer his Jagirs on Suleiman. Muhammad Sur sent a force to occupy the Jagirs and defeated Sher Khan’s army. Thus Sher Khan was once again deprived of his paternal Jagir[56].

During the Service of Babur, with the intention of recapturing his Jagirs, he joined the services of Junaid Birlas, the Mughal governor of Jaunpur. Junaid was much pleased with Sher Khan and gave him troops to recover his parganas. Unable to resist, Muhammad Sur and Sulaiman fled; Sher Khan got possession of his own parganas as well as Muhammad Sur’s. He then befriended Muhammad Sur and returned him the possession of Chaundh. After leaving Nizam (his own brother) in charge of the Jagirs, he went to Junaid Birlas and was presented to Emperor Babur at Agra in 1527. He accompanied Babur in the siege of Chanderi. He remained for some time among the Mughals, where he had the opportunity to observe their military arrangements and the character of their nobles. Once he said to his Afghan fellows, “if luck and fortune favour me, I will very shortly expel the Mughals from Hind, for the Mughals are not superior to the Afghans in battle or single combat; but the Afghans have let the empire of Hind slip from their hands, on account of their internal dissensions. Since I have been amongst the Mughals, and know their conduct in action, I see that they have no order or discipline, and that their kings, from pride of birth and station, do not personally superintend the government, but leave all the affairs and business of the State to their nobles and ministers, in whose sayings and doings they put perfect confidence. If fortune extends a hand to me, the Shaikh shall soon see and hear how I will bring the Afghans under my control, and never permit them again to become divided”[57].


Sher Shah Suri, also known as Sher Khan or the Lion King, was one of the greatest administrators of medieval Indian. The Sher Shah Suri administration was based on the old institutions in a new spirit, and in this task attained to much success that he almost transformed the medieval Indian administration and made it serve the interest of the people. He created no new ministry and his administrative divisions and sub-divisions were borrowed from the past, and so also the titles of his officer[58].

The Central administration: Like all rulers of the Sultanate of Delhi, Sultan Sher Shah was a despot and was at the top of the Central administration. But unlike his predecessors, he was a benevolent despot, exercising power for the benefit of the people. Still, all the strings of policy and civil and military powers were concentrated in his hands. His ministers were in charge of the daily routine work of administration and had no authority to initiate policy or to propose radical changes in the mode of transacting business or in the administrative setup[59].

The Empire assisted by ministers. Thus, Sher Shah had four ministers after the model of the Sultanate period. They were as such:

  1. Diwan-i-Wazarat,
  2. Diwan-i-Ariz,
  3. Diwan-i-Risalat, and
  4. Diwan-i-Insha.

Thus, there were minor officers, two of whom (the chief qazi and the head of the news department) enjoyed quite high rank and are placed by some writers in the group of minister. Hence it may be said that the machinery of the central government under Sher Shah Suri was just the equal as under earlier Slave dynasty.

Ariz-i-Mamalik (Army Ministry): after central administration second category ministry was Ariz-i-Mamalik.  Who was the army minister. He was not the commander-in-chief of the army. He was in charge recruitment cell and maintains discipline. He had to make planning for payment of salaries of the army and their officers and to look after the disposition of army on the field of battle. However, in the military department Sher Shah was personally interest, he generally interfered with the work of Diwan-i-Ariz. Sher Shah fixed the salary of individual soldiers and looked their welfare also.

Foreign minister: The third category ministry was the Diwan-i-Risalat or Diwan-i-Muhtasib (Foreign minister). He was in charge of not only diplomatic correspondence, but also the charity and endowment department. His work was related to ambassadors and representatives.

Diwan-i-Insha: The fourth types of ministry were known as Diwan-i-Insha. The heads of Diwan-i-Insha had to draft imperial announcement and dispatches. His responsibility was also to communicate with governors and other local executive officers. He maintained Government record also.

Diwan-i-Qaza and Diwan-i-Barid: The other departments which were sometimes reckoned as ministers were Diwan-i-Qaza and Diwan-i-Barid. The chief qazi was the head of the first. He had to supervise the administration of justice besides deciding cases, whether in the first instance or appeals from the courts of provincial qazis[60].

The Barid-i-Mamalik: was the head of the Intelligence department, and it was his duty to report every important incident to the king. He had a host of news writers and spies who were posted in towns, markets and in every important locality. He also made arrangements for the posting of new-carriers at various placed to carry the royal dak[61].

There seems to have been a high official in charge of the royal household and the various workshops attached to it. His duty was to administer the king’s household department and to keep watch over crowds of servants attached to it. He was very near the royal person and therefore, enjoyed a high prestige.

Provincial administration of Sher Shah[62]: Dr. Saran maintains that Sher Shah did have large military governorship. Throughout the Sultanate period, including the reign of Sher Shah and his son Islam Shah, there were administrative divisions corresponding to provinces, but they were not uniform in size or income. They were not called subas or provinces, but were known as iqtas which were assigned to important chiefs. Besides these, there were numerous of vassalage under the sultans of Delhi. Such states and the iqtas did not enjoy a uniform political status and were not governed by the same system of administration. But while during the reign of earlier sultans of Delhi the control of the central government over them was nominal, under Sher Shah it was substantial and strict. It will, thus, be seen that there were military governorships in the time of Sher Shah, such as those of Lahore, the Punjab, Malwa and Ajmer. The officials in charge of these provinces were commanders of large armies. Sher Shah established a new type of provincial administration in Bengal, which he divided into a number of sarkars, placing each in charge of an Afghan officer. At the head of the entire province he placed a civilian with a small army under his command. His principal duty was to supervise the work of the officers of the sarkars and to settle their disputes. This was done to guard against rebellions.

All other provinces had governors and a few other officers who seem to have enjoyed the same designation in various provinces, barring which there was no uniformity in their administrative machinery or method. In fact, we have not means of ascertain the names and number of officers appointed to various provinces; nor do we know whether the governor was authorized to appoint his colleagues or they were appointed by Sher Shah himself. In short, the provincial administration under Sher Shah was not so much organized as that under Akbar. But it was definitely a good step forward.

Land Revenue System of Sher Shah[63]: Before Sher Shah, the land rent was realized from the peasants on the basis of estimated produce from the land but this system did not seem to be faultless as the produce was not constantly the same. It increased or decreased year after year. Sher Shah introduced a number of reforms in the fields of revenue. These are as follows.

  1. Sher Shah was the first Muslim ruler who got the whole of the land measured and fixed the land-tax on it on just and fair principles.
  2. The land of each peasant was measured first in “bighas” and then half of it was fixed as the land tax. According to More land in certain portions of the empire such as Multan the land tax was however one-fourth of the total produce.
  3. The settlement made between the Govt. and the peasant in respect of the land revenue was always put in black and white. Every peasant was given as written document in which the share of the Govt. was clearly mentioned so that no unscrupulous officer might cheat the innocent peasant. This is known as ‘Patta’.
  4. Each and every peasant was given the option to pay the land-tax either in cash of in kind. The subjects of Sher Shah used to Kabul (Promise) that they should pay taxes in lieu of Patta.
  5. The peasants were required to credit the land-tax direct into the Govt. treasury, to be on the safe side, so that the collecting officers might not charge them any extra money.
  6. Strict orders had been issued to the revenue authorities that leniency might be shown while fixing the land tax, but strictness in the collection thereof should be the inevitable rule.
  7. But suitable subsidy was granted to the farmers in the time of drought, famine or floods from the royal treasury.
  8. Special orders were issued to soldiers that they should not damage the standing crops in any way. According to Abbas Khan, the cars of those soldiers, who disregarded these orders, were cut off. Even when Sher Shah led an expedition to the territory of his enemy, he was very particular about it that no harm shall come to the farmers in any way from the excesses of his soldiers.
  9. In case of damages compensation was granted to the former by the Govt. This arrangement of Sher Shah was as reasonable as was adopted not by Akbar only but was followed by the British Govt. also. The well-known ‘Ryatwari System’ which has been in vague till now, was not founded by Akbar but by Sher Shah.





Babur (reign – 1526 to1530 AD) The founder of the Mughal Empire in India,was the descendant of as Changez Khan. Ousted by his cousins, he came to India and defeated Ibrahim, the last Lodi Sultan in 1526 at the First Battle of Panipat. There was a brief interruption to Mughal rule when Babur’s son Humayun (reign – 1530 to1540 AD) was ousted from Delhi, by Sher Shah, an Afghan chieftain. It was Babur’s grandson Akbar (reign – 1556 to1605), who consolidated political power and extended his empire over practically the whole of north India and parts of the south. Jahangir (reign- 1605 to 1627 AD) who succeeded Akbar was a pleasure loving man of refined taste. Shah Jahan (reign 1628 to 1658 AD) his son, ascended the throne next. Shah Jahan’s fame rests on the majestic buildings he has left behind – the Taj Mahal, the Red Fort and the Jama Masjid. Aurangzeb (reign – 1658 to 1707 AD) was the last Great Mughal ruler.


The administrative machinery of the Mughuls, which functioned during the Mughul’s rule, was launched by Akbar. ‘Mughul Administration means Akbar’s Administration. Akbar was not only a brave warrior, a successful leader and a great religious reformer but also a great administrator. He initiated various reforms in every parts of the administration.

Central Administration: Akbar was the overall in-charge of the central government. All the executive, judicial and legislative powers of the state were combined in him. There were no limitations on his despotism and his word was law. But Akbar had always the welfare of his people in his mind and so his was a benevolent despotism. He himself supervised all the branches of his administration and worked hard to discharge his manifold duties. He would hold an open court, listen to the complaints of his subjects and try to pacify them[64].

Akbar administration was assisted by a numerous ministers. The most important ministers were Vakil, Diwan, Mir Bakshi, Sadar-i-Sadur, Khan-i-Saman, Muhtasib Daroga-i-Dak ,Chowki. There works were as follows:

  1. The Vakil – He maintained a general control over all the central departments and acted as the chief adviser of the King, who was in-charge of finance and revenue also.
  2. Mir Bakshi – He maintained the records of all the Mansabdars and distributed pay among the high officials.
  3. Sadar-i-Sadur – He acted as a religious adviser to the king, disbursed royal charity and discharged the function of the Chief Justice of the empire.
  4. Khan-i-Saman – Beside these ministers, there were other ministers of lower rank- Khan-i-Saman, who was in-charge of the royal household; Muhtasib, who saw that the people (Muslims) led a highly moral life according to the Muslim law.
  5. Daroga-i-Dak Chowki – Daroga-i-Dak Chowki an officer who was in-charge of the postal and intelligence department.

Provincial Administration: Akbar divided his vast empire into fifteen Subas or provinces. In each suba or province there was a Subedar, a Diwan, a Bakshi, a Sadar, a Qazi, a Kotwal, a Mir Bahr and Waqa-i-Nawis.

  1. The Subedaror Governor – He was the head of the provincial administration. He enjoyed vast powers and was in-charge of the provincial military, police, judiciary and the executive.
  2. The Diwan- was in-charge of the provincial finance and all bills of payments were signed by him.
  3. The Bakshi – He looked after the management of the provincial army. The Sadarwas in-charge of the judicial charity department.
  4. The Qazi – He was in-charge of the judicial department of his province. He supervised the work of Qazisin the districts and towns.
  5. The Kotwal– Was the supreme administrator of all the ‘thanas of the province and was responsible for the maintenance of law and order in all the cities. The Mir Bahr was in-charge of customs and taxation department.
  6. The Waqa-i-Nawis – Was in-charge of the secret service of the province.

The provinces were further divided into Sarkars and Sarkars into Parganas. The head of the Sarkar was Faujdar who kept his own small force and maintained law and order in his area. He was assisted by a number of other officials who collected the revenue, maintained the accounts and deposited the money into the state treasury. The head of the Parganas was called Shikdar whose functions were the same as those of the Faujdar in a Sarkar. Each Pargana comprised several villages. Each village was under the charge of a Muqaddam, a Patwari and a Chowkidar who carried on the work of administration with the help of the village panchayat.

Military Administration: Akbar paid much attention towards the organization, equipment and discipline of the army. For efficient military administration he introduced a new system known as the Mansabdari System. The Mansabdars had to maintain soldiers according to his grade or rank. There were thirty three grades of these Mansabdars who maintained soldiers ranging from 10 to 10,000. They were paid salaries in cash and the system of assignments of lands was discouraged. They were directly under the charge of the emperor and were promoted, degrade or dismissed at his will. He also revived the practice of taking the descriptive rolls of the soldiers and branding the horses. A large number of troops were, no doubt, supplied by these Mansabdars but Akbar had maintained a standing army of his own. The Mughul army consisted of infantry, cavalry, artillery, elephants, and navy. The cavalry was the most important wing of the army and special attention was paid towards its organization and equipment[65].

Land Revenue Administration: Land Revenue was the chief sources of income of the Government. So, Akbar paid special attention towards the organization of the land revenue administration. With the help of his Diwan (Revenue Minister), Raja Todar Mal, Akbar introduced many reforms in his revenue department. First of all, the land was measured into ‘bighas’, secondly, all the cultivated land was classified into four divisions – PolajParauti,Chachar and Banjar. The Polaj land was always cultivated and was never allowed to fallow; the Parauti land was allowed to fallow for a year or two to recover its strength; the Chachar land had to be left uncultivated for three or four years and Banjar land had to be left fallow for five years or more. Thirdly, the total produce of each land was determined separately. Fourthly, the share of the state was fixed at one-third of the total produce. Land revenue was paid in cash or in kind, but cash payment was preferred. Loans with small interest were advanced to the cultivators. In case of famine, drought or another unexpected calamity, remission was granted and even loans were advanced for purchase of seeds and animals. The revenue collectors were asked to be friendly towards the cultivators and not to oppress them on every account. As a result of these measures the revenue of the state greatly increased, the cultivators became better off and the country became prosperous. The abundance of food also made the life of the common man better and happier than before[66].

Judicial Administration (Judicial Reforms): Akbar set up various reforms in the administration of justice. Previously to Akbar almost all the cases were decided according to the Islamic law. For the first time, Hindu law was administered in deciding the cases where the parties Hindus, but Islamic law continued to function where the parties involved were Muslims. The emperor was the highest court of appeal. Capital punishment was given only in severe cases[67].

Social Reforms: Despite his multifarious activities Akbar found time to undertake several social reform measures for wedding out the evils of both the Muslim and non-Muslim societies. His principle of religious toleration did not, however, make him blind to certain evils in the Hindu society. In 1563, the Pilgrim Tax, which was a great burden on the Hindus, was abolished. In 1564, Jaziya, a tax which was imposed on non-Muslims, was also abolished. Akbar tried to stop the practice of Sati. Child marriage was discouraged and female-infanticide was forbidden. Widow-marriage was encouraged. in 1582, an order was passed appointing a number of officers to regulate the transactions of sale and purchase of a certain number listed articles. In the same year (1582) a very important proclamation was made liberating all the slaves in the empire[68].

From the above account it is quite clear that Akbar was a great administrator and the administrative machinery that he set up continued to function throughout the Mughul period.



Introduction of Shivaji: Shivaji was born in 1627. He was the son of Shahji Bhonsle and Jija Bai. Shahji Bhonsle acted as the king maker in Ahammednagar. After its extinction, transferred his service to Bijapur. Shivaji spent his childhood under the protection of a Brahmin official called Dadaji Kondadev. While Jija bai built up the character of Shivaji, Kond Dev trained him in the art of fighting and administration. Shivaji aimed to create an independent kingdom of his own right from the beginning of his career. His primary aim was to carve out an independent kingdom for himself in Maharashtra. At the age of 20 years he started his adventures on a wider scale. Many courageous Maratha leader gathered round him. In 1643 Shivaji captured the fort of the singhgarh from Bijapur and then gradually the forts of Chaken, Purandar, Varanati, Torna, Supa, Tikona, Lohgarch, Rairi were taken over. Shivaji had won over many of his officers of Bijapur to his side by bringing them. The conquest of Javli made him in disputed master. Shivaji came into conflict with the Mughals first in 1657. Aurangazeb had attacked Bijapur, which sought his help Shivaji could realize that it was in his interest also to check the power of the Mughals from penetrating in the Deccan. Therefore he helped Bijapur and attacked south west territory of the Mughals. He looted Junar and troubled the Mughals at several places. But when Bijapur made peace with the Mughals, he also stopped raids on Mughals territory. With Aurangazeb away in the north, Shivaji resumed his career of conquest at the expense of Bijapur. He captured Konkan. Bijapur now decided to take stern action Afzalkhan who was a reputed commander of Bijapur was deputed for his task in 1659. With a large army, He tried to terrify Shivaji by wholesale destruction of temples, agriculture and populace with in his territories Afzalkhan assured Shivaji that if he would come to meet him in person and agreed to accept the suzerainty of Bijapur he would so given the a additional territory as Jagir. Shivaji got scant of Afzalkhan and decided the pay him in the some coins. He agreed to meet Afzalkhan after a solemn promise of his personal safety. Shivaji went prepared and murdered khan in cunning but daring manner, Shivaji put his leaderless army to rout captured all goods and equipment including his artillery. Flushed with victory, the Maratha troops overran the powerful fort of Panhala and poured in to south Konkan and Kolhapur districts making extensive conquest. Shivaji’s exploits made him a legendary figure. His name passed from house to house and was credited with magical powers. People flocked to him from the Maratha areas to join his army. Meanwhile, Aurangazeb was anxiously watching the rise of a Maratha power so near the Mughal frontier. Aurangazeb instructed the new Mughal governor of Deccan, Shiasta Khan to invade Shivaji dominion. At first the war went bodly for Shivaji Shaista Khan occupied Poona and made it his headquarter. He sent army to capture Konkan from Shivaji. Mughal secured their contest on north Konkan. Driven into a corner Shivaji made bold stroke.He infiltrated in to the camp of Shaista Khan at Poona and at night attacked Khan, killing his son, and one of his captains and wounding khan. This daring attack put the Khan in to disgrace.In anger Aurangazeb transferred Shaista Khan to Bengal. Meanwhile Shivaji made another bold move. He attacked Surat and looted it in to his hearts content, returning home laden with Treasure. After the failure of Shaista Khan Aurangazeb deputed Raja Jai Singh of Amber to deal with Shivaji[69].

In 1670 AD Shivaji again started fighting against the Mughals and succeeded in capturing many farts from among those which he had surrounded to by the treaty of Purandar. He conquered forts like singhgarh, Purandar, Kalyan Mahuli etc. and successfully raided to the territories of the Mughals in Deccan. He also plundered Surat in 1670 for the second time. Thus within a few years; Shivaji captured many farts and territories from the Mughals and Bijapur. In 1674 Shivaji held his coronation, assumed the title Chatrapathi and made Raigarh his capital.In 1677-78 AD Shivaji attacked east Karnatak on the pretext of getting share of his fathers jagir from his brother. He then conquered the forts of Jinji and vollore and the territory between rivers Thungabhadra and Kaveri in Karnataka. The Karnatak expedition was the last major expedition of Shivaji. Shivaji died in 1680 shortly after his return the Karnatak expedition[70].

Shivaji Administration System

Shivaji had laid the foundation of a sound system of administration. His administrative system was largely borrowed from the administrative practices of the Deccan state.Like all other medieval rulers, Shivaji was a despot with all powers concentrated in his hands.He possessed all executive and legislative power. ‘Shivaji’ was a great organizer and constructive civilian administrator. The one of the novelty of Shivajis administration was the introduction of Maratha language as the state language.

(i) Central Administration: The administration was divided into eight departments headed by ministers who are sometimes called Ashta pradhan. The eight ministers were (1) Peshwa who looked after the finances and general administration. (2) Sari-Naubat who was the Senapati. (3) Majumdar looked after the accounts. (4) Waqai navis looked after the intelligence, post and household affairs (5) Surnavis or Chitnis looked after official correspondence (6) Dabir looked after foreign affairs (7) Nyayadhish looked after justice and (8) Pandit Rao looked after ecclesiastical affairs. The ashtapradhan was not a creation of Shivaji. Many of these officers like Peshwa, Majumdar, Waqai navis, Dabir and Surnavis had existed under the Deccani rulers also. All the members of the astha pradhan except Pandit Rao and Nyaydhish were asked to lead military campaigns. Under Shivaji these offices were neither hereditary nor permanent. They held the office at the pleasure of the king. They were also frequently transferred. Each of the ashta pradhan was assisted by eight assistants’ diwan, Majumdar, Fadnis, Sabnis; Karkhanis, Chitnis, Jamadar and Potnis.Chitnis dealt with all diplomatic correspondences and wrote all royal letters. The Fadnis used to respond to the letters of commanders of the forts. The potnis looked after the income and expenditure of the royal treasury[71].

(ii) Provincial and Local Administration: The provincial administration was also organized on the Deccani and Mughal system.All the provincial units already existed under the Deccani rulers. Shivaji reorganized and in certain cases renamed them. The provinces were known as Prants. The Prants were under the charge of subedar. Over a number of Subedar there were Sarsubedar to control and supervise the work of subedar. Smaller than prant were Tarfs which were headed by a havaldar.Then there were Mauzas or villages which were the lowest unit of administration. At the level of village, Kulkarni used to keep accounts and maintained records while Patil had legal and policing power. At the level of Pargana, Deshpande used to keep account and maintain records while Deshmukh had legal and policing powers. The Police officer in rural area was called Faujdar and in urban area was called Kotwal. The Maratha polity did not have unified civilian-cummilitary rank. Under the Marathas performance based Brahmin elites manned the central bureaucracy and the local administration. In this capacity they were called Kamvishdar who enjoyed wide powers of tax assessment and collection. They adjudicated cases, provided information about local conditions and kept records. Later on, the British District collector was modelled on this Maratha officer only[72].

III. Army: Cavalry and infantry constituted the primary part of the army of Shivaji. The paga cavalrymen were called the bargirs. They were provided horses by the state while the silahdars purchased their armies and horses themselves. The paga cavalry was well organized. Twenty five horsemen formed a unit which was placed under a havildar. Shivaji preferred to give cash salaries to the regular soldiers, though some time the chief received revenue grants strict disciplines was maintained in the army. The plunder taken by each soldiers during compaign was strictly accounted for, farts and security occupied an important place in the army organization of Shivaji. Shivaji maintained a navy as well. Shivaji had 400 ships of different kind. The navy was divided in to two parts and each part was commanded by darive Nayak and mai Nayak respectively.

  1. Finance and Revenue: The revenue system seems to have been patterned on the system of Malik Ambar land revenue; Trade Tax etc. were the primary source of the fixed income of Shivaji. But income from these sources was not sufficient to meet the expenditure of the state. Therefore Shivaji collected the chauth and Sardeshmukhi from the territory which was either under his enemies or under his own influence. The chauth was 1/4 part of the income of the particular territory while the Sardeshmukhi was 1/10. Shivaji collected these taxes simply by force of his army. These taxes constituted primary source of the income of Shivaji and after wards helped in the extension of the power and territory of the Marathas. The revenue system of Shivaji was Rytowari in which the state kept direct contact with peasants. Shivaji mostly avoided the system of assigning Jagir to his officers and whenever he assigned Jagir to them, the right of collecting the revenue was kept with state officials.






Medieval India was not women’s age it is supposed to be the ‘dark age’ for them. Medieval India saw many foreign conquests, which resulted in the decline in women’s status. When foreign conquerors like Muslims invaded India they brought with them their own culture. For them women was the sole property of her father, brother or husband and she does not have any will of her own. This type of thinking also crept into the minds of Indian people and they also began to treat their own women like this. One more reason for the decline in women’s status and freedom was that original Indians wanted to shield their women folk from the barbarous Muslim invaders. As polygamy was a norm for these invaders they picked up any women they wanted and kept her in their “harems”. In order to protect them Indian women started using ‘Purdah’, (a veil), which covers body. They were not allowed to move freely and this lead to the further deterioration of their status. These problems related with women resulted in changed mindset of people. Now they began to consider a girl as misery and a burden, which has to be shielded from the eyes of intruders and needs extra care. Whereas a boy child will not need such extra care and instead will be helpful as an earning hand. Thus a vicious circle started in which women was at the receiving end. All this gave rise to some new evils such as Child Marriage, Sati, Jauhar and restriction on girl education[73].

Sati: The ritual of dying at the funeral pyre of the husband is known as “Sati” or “Sahagaman”. According to some of the Hindu scriptures women dying at the funeral pyre of her husband go straight to heaven so it’s good to practice this ritual. Initially it was not obligatory for the women but if she practiced such a custom she was highly respected by the society. Sati was considered to be the better option then living as a widow as the plight of widows in Hindu society was even worse. Some of the scriptures like ‘Medhatiti’ had different views it say that Sati is like committing suicide so one should avoid this.

Jauhar: It is also more or less similar to Sati but it is a mass suicide. Jauhar was prevalent in the Rajput societies. In this custom wives immolated themselves while their husband were still alive. When people of Rajput clan became sure that they were going to die at the hands of their enemy then all the women arrange a large pyre and set themselves afire, while their husband used to fight the last decisive battle known as “Shaka”, with the enemy. Thus protecting the sanctity of the women and the whole clan[74].

Child Marriage: It was a norm in medieval India. Girls were married off at theage of 8-10. They were not allowed access to education and were treated as the material being. The plight of women can be imagined by one of the shloka of Tulsidas where he writes [r1] “Dhol, gawar, shudra, pashu, nari, ye sab tadan ke adhikari”. Meaning that animals, illiterates, lower castes and women should be subjected to beating. Thus women were compared with animals and were married off at an early age. The child marriage along with it brought some more problems such as increased birth rate, poor health of women due to repeated child bearing and high mortality rate of women and children.

Restriction on Widow Remarriage: The condition of widows in medieval India was very bad. They were not treated as human beings and were subjected to a lot of restrictions. They were supposed to live pious life after their husband died and were not allowed entry in any celebration. Their presence in any good work was considered to be a bad omen. Sometimes heads of widows were also shaved down. They were not allowed to remarry. Any woman remarrying was looked down by the society. This cruelty on widows was one of the main reasons for the large number of women committing Sati. In medieval India living as a Hindu widow was a sort of a curse.

Pardah System: The veil or the ‘Pardah’ system was widely prevalent in medieval Indian society. It was used to protect the women folk from the eyes of foreign rulers who invaded India in medieval period. But this system curtailed the freedom of women.

Girl Education: The girls of medieval India and especially Hindu society were not given formal education. They were given education related to household chores. But a famous Indian philosopher ‘Vatsyayana’ wrote that women were supposed to be perfect in sixty four arts which included cooking, spinning, grinding, knowledge of medicine, recitation and many more. Though these evils were present in medieval Indian society but they were mainly confined to Hindu society. As compared to Hindu society other societies such as Buddhism, Jainism and Christians were a bit lenient. Women in those societies enjoyed far more freedom. They had easy access to education and were more liberal in their approach. According to these religions gender was not the issue in attaining salvation. Any person whether a man or a woman is entitled to get the grace of god. During the time of king Ashoka women took part in religious preaching. According to Hiuen Tsang, the famous traveler of that time, Rajyashri, the sister of Harshavardhana was a distinguished scholar of her time. Another such example is the daughter of king Ashoka, Sanghmitra. She along with her brother Mahendra went to Sri Lanka to preach Buddhism.The status of women in Southern India was better than the North India. While in Northern India there were not many women administrators, in Southern India we can find some names that made women of that time proud. Priyaketaladevi, queen of Chalukya Vikramaditya ruled three villages. Another women named Jakkiabbe used to rule seventy villages. In South India women had representation in each and every field. Domingo Paes, famous Portuguese traveler testifies to it. He has written in his account that in Vijaynagar kingdom women were present in eachand every field. He says that women could wrestle, blow trumpet and handle sword with equal perfection. Nuniz, another famous traveler to the South also agrees to it and says that women were employed in writing accounts of expenses, recording the affairs of kingdom, which shows that they were educated. There is no evidence of any public school in northern India but according to famous historian Ibn Batuta there were 13 schools for girls and 24 for boys in Honavar[75].

Devadasis: ‘Devadasis’ means servant of God. In Southern India Devadasis custom was prevalent. In Devadasis system girls were dedicated to temples in the name of gods and goddesses. These Devadasis were supposed to live the life of celibacy. All the necessities of Devadasis were fulfilled by the grants given to the temples. Devadasis used to spend their full life in worship of god and by singing and dancing for the God.  After some times Devadasis converted to Rajadasis (palace dancers) prevalent in some tribes of South India, for example Yellamma cult.





Sati literally means ‘a pure and virtuous (worthy) woman’. Sati Pratha or tradition of widow burning at the funeral pyre of her husband has been a shameful social evil and an age old practice in Indian society. A widow was burned either with her tacit consent (implied) or most of the times forcefully by her in-laws after the death of her husband. This practice shows a dark and evil side of Hindu society, especially of ancient and medieval India.

The practice of Sati or self-immolation by the widow was associated with a kind of virtue. The ‘virtue’ of this practice was defined by a religious logic that it was inauspicious for widow to live after the death of her husband. A widow who agreed to self-immolate herself at the funeral pyre of her husband was considered to be very virtuous and attained to the status of Sati Mata or Sati Goddess. We can still find Temples of Sati Mata in some States of India such as in Rajasthan and M P[76].


The root of this inhuman practice lies in the patriarchal traditions of Hindu society where women are always considered as subservient and inferior to men.  Origin of sati pratha as follows[77]:

  1. Mythological Story: about the origin of Sati Pratha says that Sati was the wife of Shiva and she self-immolated herself in protest against her father who had disrespected Shiva. Though in this story, Sati immolated herself while her husband, Shiva was still alive.
  2. Historical Reality: the practice took a different form and women were being forced to die by sitting on their husband’s funeral pyre. How this transformation took place is not clear from historical sources but one thing is clear that the evil practice somehow became part of Hindu society. The earliest literature of Hindus such as Vedas does not mention the practice of Sati.
  3. According to Hindu Texts: It is only in the later Hindu texts such as Puranas, one finds the mention of Sati. Furthermore, the practice was mainly associated with the so-called high castes (Brahmin and Kshatriya) in the early history.
  4. During the Muslim Period: According to one version it became fairly wide spread during the muslim period when invasions and conquests played its role and it was considered necessary to preserve the honor of Hindu women. However, there are evidences to show that the practice of Sati was also there in western and southern India even before the advent of Muslims.
  5. Customs and Rituals: Gradually, the practice was adopted by the so-called Lower Castes in their quest to aspire for higher ranking in social order by emulating the customs and rituals of higher castes. The practice of Sati was not, therefore, peculiar to one caste or one region of the country and we find evidences across the spectrum of the contemporary Hindu society.


Attempted In Muslims Period – As far as stopping or banning this evil practice is concerned, it was tough a task as it had been given a religious sanction by the conservative religious pundits of the time. But some enlightened Indian rulers had taken steps to curb the cruel practice; for instance, Akbar attempted to restrict it, the Marathas had forbidden it in their dominions. However, the East India Company, early in their rule over India, stays to its policy of non-interference into socio-religious customs of the people of India.

British India: But in the early Nineteenth-century-British India, the English view about India’s socio-religious aspects began to change. This change of view was mainly for two reasons. Firstly, there was a genuine concern among some good-hearted English officials that the social conditions especially of women were in urgent need of reforms; and secondly, the English rulers wanted to get a moral sanction of their illegal and unethical exploitation of the native people by maintaining that it was a moral duty and ‘Whiteman’s burden’ to civilize the uncivilized people of the country. Therefore, the British began to depart from their earlier stand of non-interference. Some serious efforts were made in 1813 when a Circular was issued which prohibited the burning of women in all cases where the widows was below 16 years of age or pregnant or intoxicated or in any other way coerced. But these measures proved inadequate and unsuccessful.

Raja Ram Mohan Roy – The real change occurred during the time of Governor-General Lord William Bentinck when he took charge in 1828. He tried to tackle several social problems facing the society such as abolition of Sati and suppression of infanticide and crushing the gangs of Thugs. Several sane and educated Indians also began to question this inhuman practice of Sati despite the opposition and pressure from the religious leaders. Prominent among them was Raja Ram Mohan Roy. Roy is rightly considered to be the first leader of the Indian social enlightenment in the early Nineteenth century. It was Raja Rammohan Roy who urged and pressed Bentinck to take necessary steps and declare the practice of Sati illegal. Due to his great efforts and work through publication of pamphlets and newspaper reports etc, he was able to awaken the conscience of the masses. In December 1829, Regulation No- XVII was issued by the Governor-General declaring the practice of Sati or burning or burying alive of widows illegal and punishable by the criminal courts as culpable homicide. The Regulation of 1829 was initially applicable to Bengal Presidency alone but in 1830 it was extended in different forms to Madras and Bombay Presidencies also[78].

Thus, after the Regulation of 1829, the inhuman practice of Sati was more or less abolished from the customary practices of Hindu society; though opposition was made from some quarters of orthodox Brahmins but overall the abolition proved successful.

In recent past one notable incidence came into light when in September 1987, in Rajasthan village of Deorala, 17-year-old Roop Kanwar, a bride of eight months immolated herself on her husband’s funeral pyre. Thousands were present at the venue. This shocking incident once again brought into light the fact that still in the sub-conscious memory of traditional Hindu society people consider the practice of Sati as some kind of virtuous act.

But apart from this infamous exception no other such event came into light anywhere in the country. Therefore, it can be said that the inhuman practice now has no place in the modern outlook of Twenty-first-century society of India.



Untouchability is major problem of India. It is basically a rural problem. Its seeds are only found in rural soils. Untouchability is an ancient concept traditionally. Indian society was broadly divided into four groups such as Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya and Sudra. In the caste hierarchy the lowest place was given to the Sudras and they were regarded as untouchables by the rest members of Hindu Caste. Since untouchability is a very old concept, therefore, the untouchables were identified by the different names in different periods[79].

In Vedic period – they were known as ‘Chandala’.

In Medieval age – they were addressed as ‘Achhuta’.

In the British period– they were known as ‘Exterior Caste’.

In the present time – they were generally known as the ‘Scheduled Caste’ by the Indian Constitution.

Though the untouchables are theoretically considered as a part of Varna organisation, they are closely linked with the Hindu Social Life. The presence of untouchables is very indispensable for the smooth functioning of Hindu Society because they perform certain polluting occupations like scavenging, removal of the dead cattle and so on.


It is extremely difficult to define untouchability. Therefore, it is usually defined in terms of disabilities suffered by define untouchability those who are considered to be the untouchables. Thus it may be said that suffering from all kinds of disabilities is the sign of untouchability. Vradharita Smiriti says that persons belonging to different Non-Vedic religions or semi-religions sects are to be treated as untouchables[80].

According to Manu Smritis: The people who follow the lowest kind of occupations include scavenging, leather work, removal of the carrion etc, are to be regarded as untouchables.

According to Mahatma Gandhi: the father of nation says “Untouchability is the hate fullest expression of Caste System and it is a crime against God and man”. Further he lovingly called the untouchables as Harijan means the people of God.

According to G. S. Ghurye: Defines Untouchability as “ideas of purity whether occupational of ceremonial or ceremonial, which are found to have been a practice of untouchability.

According to Dr. D. N. Majumdar: “Untouchables castes are those who suffer from various social and political disabilities many of which are traditionally prescribed and socially enforced by higher castes.”

According to K. M. Pannikar:  The system of communal slave-holding contrasted with individual owning slaves. No social or personal consideration was there to relax the rigors of the evil system. The untouchables lived within their own system. Thus they formed a parallel society to Hindu social system. They had the lowest ritual position in the society. They also had the lowest socio-economic position in society. These exterior castes were a depressed community who were subjected to all kinds of social and civic discriminations.

Thus, untouchables are those castes which are subject to all kinds of disabilities in every walk of life such as social, economic, religious and political in other words, the persons who have no right to enjoy any privilege, who do not touch the shadow of higher caste, who follow the lowest kind of occupations, who have occupied the lowest place in the caste hierarchy and deprived from all sorts of things are called to be the untouchables.


1) Social untouchables: From the social point of view, the untouchables suffered following disabilities[81].

  1. i) Lower Social Status: Since social status was fixed for different castes, therefore, the untouchability was placed at the lowest place in the caste hierarchy and enjoys lowest status in the society. Their social status was just like a golden zero. Moreover, they were considered as the symbol of pollution by the higher caste people. Consequently, the untouchables are deprived of all kind of commercial contacts.
  2. ii) Educational untouchables: Traditionally, the untouchables were forbidden from receiving any education. They were not entitled to acquire the knowledge of Vedas. Even if they were not permitted to touch the religious books. The untouchables were not allowed to get education from the public institution. Only recently they have given educational facilities.

iii) Disabilities relating to Social habits: Till recently, the untouchables are faced many problems in various social habits like food, drink and social intercourse. They are not permitted to take food or drink from the house of high caste people. They are eating only ‘Kachha’ foods which are prepared by the ordinary things. In the social intercourse, they are also faced the same problem.

  1. iv) Prohibition in the use of public places: In fact, the untouchables were not allowed to use village wells, ponds, public hospitals, roads and so on. They were not permitted to live in those places where the higher caste people reside. The untouchables were forced to live in the worst type of village slums. Moreover, they were leading a life just like the domestic animals.

2) Economic untouchables:  Economically, to the position of untouchable’s castes was very pitiable. They were deprived from all kinds of economic privileges in the society following are the main economic disabilities of untouchables.

  1. i) No right to property: Traditionally, the untouchables were not allowed to have any land or property of their own. They were prevented from entering in various types of enterprises. They were not permitted to acquire wealth or to buy land in village. Even if, the untouchables have no right to sell their landed property to any one. Moreover, they were deprived from all sorts of right to property.
  2. ii) No right to choose occupation: In the past, the untouchables were not allowed to engage themselves in occupations which were reserved fro the members of higher castes. They were compelled to struck to their traditional occupations. They were largely engaged in agricultural and other associated works as wage-earners. The untouchables were traditionally associated with such lower occupations like scavenging, leather works, basket making and so on.

iii) Landless labourer: The untouchables were traditionally known as landless laborers because they have no land in the village. They were leading a landless laborer life. Before the abolition of zamidari system, their primary duty was to work for a landlord without any remuneration. Thus their position was just like a slave and in certain circumstances worst than a slave. In this context, Gandhiji has said that, “the untouchables performed the most essential service of society yet at the same time they were the lowest paid ones. Only such amount of wages is given to them that are necessary to unite, their cursed soul and their physical frames.

3) Religious untouchables: Though, the untouchables are known as the Hindus by religion, yet they were not permitted to enter into the Hindu temple and pilgrimages nor were they allowed to use public bathing Ghats. The untouchables were not allowed to study religious books. They were also deprived from the Jajman of Brahmin priests. For example, a Brahmin never accepts to perform the religious ceremony of an untouchable. Only recently, efforts have been made by the Government for removing these religious disabilities by legislators.

4) Political untouchables: In the past, the untouchables were also deprived from all kinds of political privileges. They were not allowed to participate in political administration and general election of the traditional India. They were also not permitted to hold any public post. Only during the British rule, they for the first time got the right to vote[82].

But, now-a-days, they have enjoy maximum political rights on the ground that some seats in Parliament and State Assemblies are reserved constitutionally for them, but it is doubtful, weather they can properly utilise this political rights without their economic development. It means without their economic improvement, they cannot utilise the political rights which they have got.


[1] The Vedic period (or Vedic age) (c. 1500 – c. 500 BCE) was the period in Indian history during which the Vedas, the oldest scriptures of Hinduism, were composed. During the early part of the Vedic period, the Indo-Aryans settled into northern India, bringing with them their specific religious traditions.

[2]Available at https://www.classle.net/#!/classle/content-page/ancient-indian-political-system-pdf/ visited on 05.12.2016.

[3] For more detail see, Social life of Aryans during Vedic period. Available at http://www.edgearticles.com/681/

history/social-life-of-aryans/ visited on 08.10.2016.

[4] For more detail see, early Vedic age: origin, social life, economic life, culture and religion. Available at http://www.historydiscussion.net/vedic-age/early-vedic-age-origin-social-life-economic-life-culture-and-religion/ 3013, visited on 09.10.2016.

[5] Dharma is the path of righteousness and living one’s life according to the codes of conduct as described by the Hindu scriptures.

[6] Available at https://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/essays/dharma-hinduism, visited on 09.11.2016.

[7] For more detail see, http://www.indianetzone.com/57/revenue_system_ancient_india.htm, visited on 098.10.2016.

[8] For more detail see the legal system in ancient India Available at http://www.legalservicesindia.com/ article/article/the-legal-system-in-ancient-india-1391-1.html.

[9] For more detail see Vedic period, available at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vedic_period, visited on 21.12.2016.

[10] The Ashvamedha is a horse sacrifice ritual followed by the Śrauta tradition of Vedic religion. It was used by ancient Indian kings to prove their imperial sovereignty: a horse accompanied by the king’s warriors would be released to wander for a period of one year.

[11] Rajasuya Imperial Sacrifice or the king’s inauguration sacrifice, is a Śrauta ritual of the Vedic religion. It is a consecration of a king. It is described in the Taittiriya corpus, including Apastamba Srauta Sutra 18.8–25.22.

[12] Vajapeya is a soma yajna basically (though certainly involves minor animal sacrifice too) done by Brahmins, Kshatriyas, and one of the greatest Soma yajnas of its kind. The surname of some Brahmins “Bajpai” or “Vajpayee” derives from this yajna.

[13] Seven parts of the state is king, amatya, janpad, treasury, fort, punishment and friends.

[14] Valmiki is revered as the first poet or Adi Kavi and Ramayana, the first kavya (poem). His first disciples to whom he taught the Ramayana were Kusha and Lava, the sons of Rama.

[15] Available on, http://www.srilanka.travel/ravana, visited by 11.10.2016.

[16] Literally “Compiler is a central and revered figure in most Hindu traditions. He is also sometimes called Veda Vyāsa or Krishna Dvaipāyana (referring to his complexion and birthplace). He is generally considered the author of the Mahabharata, as well as a character in it.

[17] Yuga in Hinduism is an epoch or era within a four age cycle. A complete Yuga starts with the Satya Yuga, via Treta Yuga and Dvapara Yuga into a Kali Yuga. Our present time is a Kali Yuga, which started at 3102 BCE with the end of the Mahabharata war.

[18] Myneni S.R. “Indian History for Pre-Law First Year”, Allahabad Law Agency, Faridabad, second edition 2006, at p.61.

[19] Available at, http://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/satyam-bruyat/republics-in-ancient-india/,visited on, 13.10.2016

[20] The Anguttara Nikaya, the fourth division of the Sutta Pitaka, consists of several thousand suttas arranged in eleven books (nipatas) according to numerical content. For example, the first nipata the Book of the Ones  contains suttas concerning a single topic; the second nipata the Book of the Twos contains suttas concerning pairs of things (e.g., a sutta about tranquillity and insight; another about the two people one can never adequately repay (one’s parents); another about two kinds of happiness; etc.); the third nipata contains suttas concerning three things (e.g., a sutta on the three kinds of praiseworthy acts; another about three kinds of offense), and so on. For more detail see, http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/.

[21]Available at http://www.historydiscussion.net/history-of-india/mahajanapadas-by-buddhist-angauttara-nikaya-16-names/5706, visited on 09.11.2016.

[22]Available at http://www.historydiscussion.net/society/mahajanapadas-monarchies-and-republics-during-the-post-vedic-period/569, visited on 09.11.2016.

[23] Chanakya is also known by the name of Kautilya and Vishnugupta. Rishi Canak named his son as “Chanakya”. He was an Indian teacher, philosopher, economist, jurist and royal advisor. He assisted the first Mauryan emperor Chandragupta in his rise to power. He is widely credited for having played an important role in the establishment of the Maurya Empire. Chanakya served as the chief advisor to both Emperors Chandragupta and his son Bindusara.

[24] For more detail see at, Myneni S. R. “Indian History for pre law first year” Allahabad Law Agency, Faridabad (Haryana) 2006, p.93.

[25]For more detail see at, http://www.eurasiareview.com/29032011-indian-strategic-thinking-a-reflection-of-kautilyas-six-fold-policy-analysis/ visited on 29.12. 2016.

[26] Available at, http://hinduism.about.com/od/scripturesepics/a/businesspillars.htm, visited on 12.01.2017.

[27] For more detail see at, http://hinduhistory-arya.blogspot.in/2011/06/father-of-politics-and-economics.html, visited on 11.01.2017.


[28] Rigveda, 1500 – 1100 BCE, Samaveda, 1500 – 500 BCE, Yajurveda, 1500 – 500 BCE, Atharvaveda 1500 – 500 BCEUpanishads, 1200 – 500 BCE,Mahabharata, 400 BCE – 400 CE, Bhagavad Gita, 400 BCE – 300 CE, Ramayana, 400 BCE – 400 CE, Samkhya Sutra, Mimamsa Sutra, 300-200 BCE.

[29] Nyaya Sutra, 2nd century BCE, Vaiseshika Sutra, 2nd century BCE, Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, 100 BCE – 500 CE, Brahma Sutra, Puranas, 3rd – 16th century CE, Shiva Sutras, 8th century CE, Abhinavabharati, 950 – 1020 CEYoga Vasistha, 10th – 14th century CE

[30] Available at https://findwords.info/term/manu, visited on 11.01.2017.

[31]Manusmriti the Laws of Manu, Available at http://www.hinduwebsite.com/sacredscripts/hinduism/dharma/Manu smriti.asp, visited on 15.01.2017.

[32] Ibid

[33]For more detail see, http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/political-science/3-theories-of-origin-of-state-in-ancient-india/40149/ visited on 12.02.2017.

[34] For more detail see, http://www.iep.utm.edu/soc-cont/ visited on 13.02.2017.

[35] For more detail see, http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/31776/7/07_chapter%201.pdf visited on 10.02.2017

[36]Available at https://ithihas.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/judicial-administration-in-ancient-india/ visited on 10.02.2017

[37] In the Vedic literature and other ancient texts, sage Brihaspati is also called by other names such as Brahmanaspati, Purohita, Angirasa (son of Angiras) and Vyasa; he is sometimes identified with god Agni (fire). His wife is Tara (or goddess who personifies the stars in the sky).

[38] Bhrigu. Maharishi Bhrigu was one of the seven great sages, the Saptarshis, one of the many Prajapatis, created by Brahma, the first compiler of predictive astrology, and also the author of Bhrigu Samhita, the astrological (Jyotish) classic.

[39] Yajnavalkya is a revered Vedic sage of Hinduism. He is mentioned in the oldest Upanishadic scriptures, and likely lived in Videha kingdom of northern Bihar around the 8th century BCE, or 7th century.

[40] The Mitākṣarā is a vivṛti (legal commentary) on the Yajnavalkya Smriti best known for its theory of “inheritance by birth.” It was written by Vijñāneśvara, a scholar in the Western Chalukya court in the late eleventh and early twelfth century.

[41] Available at http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/political-science/concepts-of-danda-dandaneethi-dharma-and-raja-dharma/40148/ , visited on 12.02.2017.

[42] https://open.lib.umn.edu/criminallaw/chapter/1-5-the-purposes-of-punishment/

[43] For more detail see at, https://www.ibiblio.org/britishraj/Jackson3/chapter04.html, visited on 16.02.2017.

[44] For more detail see at, http://sultanatofdelhi.blogspot.in/2009/11/slave-dynasty-1206-1290.html, visited on 16.02.2017.

[45]For more detail see at, http://theindianhistoryblog.blogspot.in/2013/05/sultanrazia.html, visited on 17.02.2017.

[46] Available at http://knowindia.gov.in/knowindia/culture_heritage.php?id=13, visited on 13.022017.

[47] Available at http://viajesindiatours.com/history-of-india/ visited on 13.022017.

[48] For more detail see at http://www.gktoday.in/firoz-shah-tughlaq/ visited on 13.022017.

[49]Available at, http://myupscprelims.blogspot.com/2016/06/sayyid-dynasty-1414-1451.html, visited on 20.02.2017

[50]For detail see on, http://iascat.in/lodi-dynasty-1451-founder-bahulal/, visited on 20.02.2017.

[51] For detail see on, http://www.indianmirror.com/dynasty/lodhidynasty.html, visited on 20.02.2017.

[52] For more detail see on, http://www.iloveindia.com/history/medieval-india/delhi-sultunate/khilji-dynasty.html, visited on 11.02.2017.


[53] http://www.importantindia.com/2970/administrative-policies-of-alauddin-khilji/

[54] http://pune.gen.in/india/administrative-policies-alauddin-khilji/886/

[55]For more detail see on http://www.govtstudy.com/2016/08/07/market-reforms-of-alauddin-khalji/ visited on 13.02.2017.

[56] Available at, http://anjanadesigns.blogspot.com/2014/07/sher-shah-suri-lion-king-of-india.html, visited on 22.02.2017

[57] Ibid

[58]Available at http://www.importantindia.com/4562/administration-of-sher-shah-suri-2/, visited on 13.02.2017.

[59] Available at http://www.academia.edu/26352837/Administration_of_Sher_Shah_Suri visited on 13.02.2017.

[60] Available at http://pune.gen.in/india/administration-sher-shah-suri-2/1129/visited on 14.02.2017.

[61] Ibid.

[62] For detail at http://www.historydiscussion.net/history-of-india/function-of-the-central-government-during-the-delhi-sultanate-period/3050visited on 14.02.2017.

[63]Available at, http://www.importantindia.com/2989/land-revenue-system-of-sher-shah-suri/visited on 13.02.2017.

[64] For detail see http://www.trcollege.net/study-material/26-history/51-administration-of-akbar, visited on 14.02.2017.

[65] For more detail see at https://www.scribd.com/doc/91924157/Administration-of-Akbar, visited 14.02.2017.

[66]For more detail see at http://www.historydiscussion.net/history-of-india/administration-system-in-the-different-periods-of-indian-history/678, visited on 14.02/2017

[67] For more detail see at http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00islamlinks/ikram/part2_16.html visited on 01.02/2017

[68] For more detail see at http://www.importantindia.com/12878/social-reforms-of-akbar/ visited on 02.02/2017


[69]For more details see at, http://www.universityofcalicut.info/SDE/BA_his_medieval_india_society.pdf, visited on 10.02.2017


[71] For more detail see at http://archive.mu.ac.in/myweb_test/TYBA%20study%20material/T.Y.B.A.%20History%20

Paper%20-%20IV%20-%20Medival%20India%20(1000%20-%201707%20A.D.)%20(Eng).pdf visited on 02.02.2017

[72] Ibid

[73]For more detail see at http://www.mapsofindia.com/culture/indian-women.html, visited on 13.02.2017.

[74] For more detail see at http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/37022/9/09_chapter%202.pdf, visited 15.02.2017

[75] Ibid.

[76] For details see at, https://truthabouthinduism.wordpress.com/2014/10/01/sati-pratha-the-burning-of-widows/,visited on 17.02.2017.

[77] For details see at, http://www.wikiwand.com/en/Sati_(practice),visited on 17.02.2017.

[78] For more details see at, http://www.womenplanet.in/society/sati-pratha, visited on 17.02.2017.

[79] For more detail see at, http://www.preservearticles.com/201105096379/essay-on-the-problems-of-untouchability-in-india.html, visited on 17.02.2017.

[80] For more detail see at, http://www.shortparagraph.com/society/short-paragraph-on-untouchability-in-india/250, visited on 17.02.2017.

[81] For more details see on, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Untouchability, visited 17.02.2017.

[82] For more see at, http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/social-problems/disabilities-of-untouchables-religious-social-economic-and-political-disabilities/47438/, visited on 17.02.2017.


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