Bengal Sultans

The Bengal Sultanate was an independent medieval Islamic state in the Indian subcontinent established on the coast of Bay of Bengal in 1342. Its dominion and influence extended across modern-day Bangladesh, East India and West Burma. The sultanate was dominated by numerous dynasties of Turkic, Arab, and Persian, Bengali and Abyssinian origin. It disintegrated at the end of the 16th-century and was absorbed into the pan-South Asian Mughal Empire and the Arakanese Kingdom of Mrauk U.

The important kingdoms that ruled Bengal Sultanate were:

Illyas Shahi Dynasty: Bakhtiyar Khilji annexed the Bengal region as a province of the Delhi Sultanate, but in mid 14th century the governors of Bengal announced their independence. The Bengal Sultanate was then formed in 1352 by Shamsuddin Ilyas Shah when he conquered Lakhnauti, Sonargaon and Satgaon. The dynasty’s rule was interrupted by an uprising by the Hindus under Raja Ganesha. However the Ilyas Shahi dynasty was restored by Nasiruddin Mahmud Shah.

Ganesh Dynasty: The Ganesha dynasty began with Raja Ganesha in 1414. After Raja Ganesha seized control over Bengal he faced an imminent threat of invasion. With the help of Qutb al Alam, the threat was seized but the Muslim influence continued. Raja Ganesha’s son converted to Islam who was known as Jalaluddin Muhammad Shah. Jalaluddin's son, Shamsuddin Ahmad Shah ruled for only 3 years due to chaos and anarchy. The dynasty is known for their liberal policy as well as justice and charity.

Hussain Shahi Dynasty: This dynasty ruled from 1494-1538. Alauddin Hussain Shah was considered as the greatest of all Sultans of Bengal. He extended the Sultanate’s territory and trade links. In the later period, the Afghans sacked the kingdom’s capital Gaur and remained for several decades until the arrival of Mughals.

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