to recover his power from his base in the sultanate of Bengal till his death.
Simhadeva founded a new Hindu dynasty in Kashmir in 1286 by
overthrowing the last ruler of an old Hindu dynasty. Suhadeva, the successor
of Simhadeva, faced an invasion of his kingdom (1320) by the Mongols
under the leadership of Dalucha, and fled from capital, Indrakot. Rinchan, the
son of a Ladakh chief, seized the throne at that time, taking advantage of the
widespread dislocation caused by the Mongol invasion. Udayanadeva, a
cousin of Suhadeva, soon succeeded in overthrowing Rinchan in 1323 and
ruled Kashmir till 1339.
Shah Mir Dynasty
Shah Mir, a Muslim adventurer who had acquired considerable political
influence during the reign of Udayanadeva, seized the throne in 1339. This
marked the beginning of Muslim rule in Kashmir. He assumed the title of
Sultan Shams-ud-din (1339–42) and his dynasty, known as the Shah Mir
dynasty, ruled Kashmir for more than two centuries (1339–1561). The Shah
Mir Sultans never acknowledged the suzerainty of Delhi, nor did any Sultan
of Delhi make any attempt to subjugate Kashmir.
Of the sixteen more members of this dynasty, two deserve special
mention. They are Sikandar and Zainul Abidin. Sikandar (1389–1413),
known as the Aurangzeb of Kashmir, brought about the religious and social
transformation of Kashmir through his ruthless persecution of the Hindus. A
large number of Muslim immigrants came to Kashmir from Central Asia and
Persia as a result of Timur’s devastating campaigns. They were liberally
patronised by Sikandar. Supported by the Sultan, they introduced a new and
powerful element in to the population of Kashmir and provided for Islam a
cultural and educational basis in the valley.
The Chaks seized power in 1540 itself, but they ruled as wazirs with Shah
Mirs acting as mere puppets on the throne. The pretence was given up in
1561 when the Chak wazir assumed the title of Nasir-ud-din Muhammad