Sher Shah Suri (AD 1540-1545)
- He founded the second Afghan dynasty (first Lodi dynasty).
- Sher Shah Suri original name was Farid. In AD 1522, Farid took service under Babur Khan Lohani (Governer of Bihar), the ruler in Bihar.
- Shah was an Afghan who ruled Agra and Delhi.
- Sher Shah was particularly perturbed by the activities of Raja Maldev of Marwar. Sher Shah got better of him in the Battle of Samuel in 1544.
- Shah died in AD 1545 in an explosion during his conquest of Kalinjar fort.
In the field of central administration, Sher Shah followed the Sultanate pattern. There were four main central departments which were as follows.
- Diwan-i-Wijarat This department was related with financial matters.
- Diwan-i-Ariz Headed by Ariz-i-mumalik. It was a military department.
- Diwan-i-Insha Working as a secretariat.
- Diwan-i-Rasalat Headed by a Sardar. This department dealt with foreign affairs matter. Diwan-i-Kaza headed by a Qazi. The Qazi looked after the judicial administration.
There was two important officials at the Sarkar level.
a. Shiqdari-i-Shiqadaran to maintain law and order.
b. Munshif-i-Munshifan to supervise the revenue collections.
- Sher Shah is known for the creation of the Grand Trunk Road, that stretched from the river Indus in the west to Sonargaon in Bengal (from Calcutta to Peshawar).
- He also improved the communications within his empire.
- Sarais (rest house) were built on roads. Markets were developed around these and some of them were even used for new services as Dak-Chowki.
- Introduced coins of unalloyed gold, silver and copper of fixed standards. The silver ‘Rupaya‘ and the copper ‘Dam‘ were also available.
- Trade and commerce flourished –His currency reforms and land revenue system are also noteworthy. He fixed standard of weights and measures.
- He built a tomb at Sasaram (Bihar) for himself which is a masterpiece of architecture.
- Shah built a new city on the bank of the Yamuna river (present day Purana Qila).
- Malik Muhammad Jaisi composed the Padmavat in Hindi during his reign.
- Abbas Khan Sarwani was the Historian in the court of Sher Shah (wrote the Tarikh-i-Sher Shahi).
SHER SHAH SURI