ILTUTMISH – AD 1210–1236

Qutbuddin Aibak died in AD 1210.

After his death a few amirs raised his son Aram Shah to the throne in Lahore.

But Aram Shah was incapable ruler and the Turkish amirs opposed him.

The Turkish chiefs of Delhi invited the governor of Badayun (son-in-law of Qutbuddin Aibak) “Iltutmish” to come to Delhi.

Aram Shah proceeded against him at the head of the army from Lahore to Delhi but Iltutmish defeated him and became the Sultan with the name of Shamsuddin.

Other commanders of Muhammad Ghori like Yaldauz, Qubacha and Ali Mardan rose in defiance again.

The chief of Jalor and Ranthambore joined Gwalior and Kalinjar in declaring their independence.

Mongols under Chenghiz Khan threatened the North West Frontier of the Sultanate.

Iltutmish took up the task of consolidating his position.

He defeated Yaldauz in AD 1215 in the battle of Tarain.

In AD 1217 he drove away Qabacha from Punjab.

In AD 1220, when Chenghiz Khan destroyed the Khwarizm expire, Iltutmish realised the political necessity of avoiding a confrontation with the Mongols.


From AD 1225 onward, Iltutmish engaged his armies in suppressing the disturbances in the East.

In AD 1226–27 Iltutmish sent a large army under his son Nasiruddin Mahmud which defeated Iwaz Khan and brought Bengal and Bihar back into the Delhi Sultanate.

Ranthambore was captured in AD 1226 and by AD 1231 Iltutmish had established his authority over Mandor, Jalore, Bayana and Gwalior.


Iltutmish separated the Delhi Sultanate from Ghazni, Ghor and Central Asian politics.

Iltutmish also obtained a ‘Letter of Investiture’ in AD 1229 from the Abbasid Caliph of Baghdad to gain legitimacy.

Iltutmish made a significant contribution in giving shape to administrative institution such as iqtas, army and currency system.

He gave the Sultanate two of its basic coins– the silver Tanka’ and the copper Jittal.

To affect greater control over the conquered areas Iltutmish granted iqtas (land assignments in lieu of cash salaries) to his Turkish officers on a large scale.

The recipients of “iqtascalled the “iqtadars” collected the land revenue from the territories under them.