Monday, November 17, 2014

Sikandar Shah Suri

Ahmad Khan, nephew of the late Sher Shah, whose sister was married to Mahmud Adil Shah having procured the aid of Haibat Khan and other chiefs, who had been created nobles by the late Salim Shah, assumed the title of Sikandar Shah, and marching with 10 or 12 thousand horse towards Agra, encamped at Kurra, within twenty miles of that city. Ibrahim Khan opposed him with 70,000 horse, but nevertheless was defeated. He then, abandoning his capital, retreated to Sambhal, while Sikandar Khan took possession both of Delhi and Agra.

A last flicker of hope had been roused among the Afghans, when Sikandar, having ascended the throne at Agra, held a magnificent festival, and calling together all his chiefs,
spoke to this effect :

" I esteem myself as one of you : having thus far acted for the commonweal, I claim no superiority. Bahlol raised the tribe of Lodi to glory and reputation ; Sher Shah rendered the tribe of Sur illustrious ; and now Humayun the Mughal, heir to his father's conquests, is watching an opportunity to destroy us all, and re-establish his government.
If, therefore, you are sincere, and will set aside private iaction and animosities, we may still retain our kingdom ; but if you think me incapable of rule, let an abler head and a stonger arm be elected from among you, that I also may swear allegiance to him : I promise most faithfully to support him, and will endeavour to maintain the kingdom in the hands of the Afgans, who have retained it by their valour for so many years." The Afghan chiefs, after this appeal, answered with one accord : " We unanimously acknowledge you, the nephew of our Emperor Sher Shah, our lawful sovereign. 1 ' Calling then for the Koran, all swore both to observe allegiance to Sikandar, and to maintain unanimity among themselves.'

But, in a few days, Ferishta tells us, 'the chiefs began to dispute about governments, honours, and places, and the flames of discord were rekindled, and blazed fiercer than
ever, so that every one reproached his neighbour with the perfidy of which each was equally guilty