Caliphate was a religious and political institution which played an important role in Islamic history. During the Abbasid Caliphate, the Muslim civilisation reached its height. However, as there is always a rise and a fall of an empire, the same was the case of the Abbasid Caliphate - it also declined in the 9th century CE.
Taking advantage of its weakness, provincial governors became independent and adopted the title of 'Sultan'. As a result of it, there emerged in the eastern part of the Caliphate, which was Central Asia, a political institution known as 'Sultanate'. These two institutions divided the Muslim world in different political units.
However, their independent rulers recognised the Caliph as their spiritual and political sovereign. To show their allegiance to him, his name was recited in the khutbah and his name was also inscribed on coins. It was a tradition for every Sultan, after his accession to the throne, to get a certificate of recognition from the Caliph.
When Muhammad Bin Tughlaq faced rebellions against him from all sides, he requested the Caliph to issue him the certificate of recognition to possibly stabilise his position in the eyes of his Muslim subjects.
There are various coins minted in the reign of Muhammad Bin Tughlaq, on five of these coins name of Sultan is not mentioned and is replaced by the name of the ‘Abbasid Caliph Al-Mustakfi Billah Abu al-Raba Sulayman’, while the other three have the name of Caliph ‘Al-Hakim be Ammr Allah Abu al-Abbas Ahmed II’.
These coins are made of copper or billon except two golden dinars, one of them on behalf of Caliph Al-Mustakfi, and the other on behalf of his son Al-Hakim II.
Above shown silver Tanka of Muhammad Bin Tughlaq was stuck in the name of ‘Abbasid Caliph al-Mustakfi’. This coin weighs around 11.22g and is minted at Dehli in 741/742 AH. The obverse of the coin is inscribed with Persian legend ‘Fi Zaman al-Imam al-Mustakfi Billah Amir al-Mumineen Abu Rabi Sulayman Khallada Allah Khilafatahu’ and reverse is read as ‘Zarb Haza al-Dinar al-Khilafati fi al-Dehli’ and date in words (wahid/ithnan wa arba'in wa sab'amayah).
Image Courtesy: Mintage World