Mughal Emperor Akbar

2209 Words Aug 17th, 2005 9 Pages
What were the contribution of the Mughal emperor Akbar to the creation of an Indian national Identity? What were the greatest obstacles to his achievement in this?

The greatest of the Mughal's emperors, Akbar, attempted the creation of a

national identity for India by his numerous reforms, literal and cultural

development, and policies of integration and organization. His reforms

included a liberal policy toward the non-Muslims, religious innovations, the

land revenue system and the famous Mansabdari system. His policy of

religious toleration became the most significant aspect during his reign.

Akbar established a new religion, the Din-i-Ilahi. But Akbar's attempt to

create a national identity and a social
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Todar Mal with the assistance of

Muzaffar Khan Turbati implemented the policies of

(1) the introduction of the branding regulation, (2) the abolition of the feudal system by resuming fiefs, placing them under the administration of crown officials, and paying both officers and men from the treasury, and (3) the preparation of the graded list of officials classed as amirs and mansabdars, all, whether civil or military, holding military rank.

Keeping in mind that Akbar had abolished not only the poll tax and

pilgrims' tax, but also over fifty minor duties, his purpose was to levy a

fair rent on the land, which would support the administration without

unduly burdening the cultivators. Akbar allowed no oppression and many

campaigns were undertaken mainly for the purpose of punishing

governors who had been guilty of self-seeking and corruption. Akbar's

innovation was that the tax be assessed equally on every member of the

empire. Considering that every other state in the sixteen century rarely

taxed the nobility, this innovation was indeed a radical one.

Akbar's fame rests on his many attempts to blend and unite Muslim and

Hindu civilizations. He dreamed of a "new united civilization that would

be neither Islamic nor Hindu but Neo-Indian." He began to look into his

own faith and to "observe the external forms of Muslim Orthodoxy." He


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