The Tughlaq dynasty, also known as the Tughluq or Tughluk dynasty, was a Turkic Muslim dynasty that ruled over the Delhi sultanate in medieval India. The reign of the Tughlaq dynasty began in 1320 in Delhi with Ghazi Malik ascending the throne under the name Ghiyath al-Din Tughluq. The Tughlaq dynasty formally came to an end in 1413.
Before 1320, the Khalji dynasty ruled the Delhi Sultanate. The last ruler of the Khalji dynasty, Khusro Khan, was a slave who had been forcefully converted to Islam and served the Delhi Sultanate as a general of its army. He, along with Malik Kafur, led several military campaigns on behalf of Alauddin Khalji for the expansion of the Sultanate and plundering non-Muslim kingdoms in India.
After Alauddin Khalji succumbed to an illness in 1316, assassinations followed with Khusro Khan coming to power in 1320, after killing Mubarak Khalji, one of Alauddin Khilji’s sons, setting off a massacre of all the members of the Khalji family. However, he did not have the support of the aristocrats and Muslim nobles of the Sultanate. Ghazi Malik, the then governor in Punjab under the Khaljis, was hence invited by the Delhi Sultanate to lead a coup in Delhi and assassinate Khusro Khan and take over as ruler, which he eventually did in 1320. Ghazi Malik, after gaining power, renamed himself Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq, hence starting the Tughlaq dynasty. He is also referred to in scholarly works as Tughlak Shah. He was of Turko-Indian origins – his mother was a Jatt noble and his father is believed to have been a descendant of some Indian Turkic slave.
However, the Tughlaq dynasty experienced several revolts from within the Muslim nobility itself, especially during the reign of Muhammad bin Tughlaq but also during other rulers like Firoz Shah Tughlaq. Subsequent weak rulers led to the eventual downfall of the Tughlaq dynasty in 1413.
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