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Emperor Akbar

Introduction
Mughal Emperor Akbar Akbar was famous Mughal emperor who ruled successfully till death and enhanced the boundaries of Mughal dynasty. He was the third Mughal emperor in dynasty. His actual name was Abu'l-Fath Jalal-ud-din Muhammad, popularly known as Akbar. He was born in 15/Oct/1542 in Umerkoat (in Pakistan) and died in 27/Oct/1605. After death of Mughal Emperor Humayun, Akbar was declared Mughal Emperor in 1556, when he was just 13 years of age. Since then he ruled till his death in Fatehpur Sikri. He was buried at Sikandara in Agra. The place where he was buried, tomb was constructed which is now a popular tourist attraction. It is included in Agra city tour. Soon after Humayun's death in 1556, he ascended the Mughal throne and became the 'Shahanshah' (King of Kings) at the age of 13, in Kalanaur, Punjab. At this teenage he was required assistance & guidelines from senior Mughal generals to successfully convey his duties and control the areas under Mughal kingdom. Thus Bairam Khan was made his regent and childhood guardian who was loyalist to Mughal family and a competent military general. He successfully took all important decisions on behalf of Akbar and managed the kingdom. In later phase, when Akbar took over the control of kingdom, he was proved very competent ruler, who just tripled the Mughal dynasty in terms of area and wealth. He was diplomatic person and managed to extended the boundaries of kingdom by military actions, treaties, marriages etc. For other religions, he was tolerant and liberal thus received support from all sections of Indian society. It is skillful ruling that resulted into political stabilization in India and unite the India as he had control over almost all south Asia.

Humayun to Akbar
Akbar was son of Mughal emperor Humayun and born in year 1542. When he was born, Hymayun was passing through his struggle period when he has lost almost all his territories to Sher Shah Suri and his competent brothers also didn't supported him in this low period of his life. The place Umerkot was under control of Hindu Ruler Rana Prasad, who was loyalist to Mughals. It was the time when Humayun was in process to collect more men and make alliances to gather a large competent army, in order to gain his lost territories. Akbar was born in that generation of Mughals in which brother are tolerant to each other. Dying Babur, urged is sons, not to go against each other and be tolerant to each other even then one is wrong. It was his message that all four brothers, may be not really helping to Humayun but still not revolting to each other. In later generation of Mughal dynasty, a trend was setup in which one brother kills all the remaining brothers to claim over throne. Thus Akbar was lucky in born in that period when Mughal brothers are tolerant to each other. Humayun made new alliance and proceed to northern India region to reclaim his lost territories and Akbar was left behind at Umerkot, safe for him. Luck favored to Mughals and Sher Shah Suri died in a accident while siege of Kalinjar fort in Central India. His son Islam Shah was also died in year 1554, leaving best scope to regain Agra and Delhi. Humayun make large army and marched towards Delhi to restore Mughal rule over India and get success. In year 1555, Humayun took control over Agra and Delhi. Soon after this, Humayun died (in 1556) in an accident and buried in Delhi. Once again situation changed. Hemu with his army, attacked on Delhi and Mughal army was to leave Delhi with body of Humayun. They sworn Akbar as new Mughal ruler at Kalanaur, located in Gurdaspur district of Punjab, India. At the young age of 13, Abkar became Mughal Shah-en-shah (King).

Akbar Ruling Period
On untimely death of father & emperor Hymayun, circumstances compelled Akbar to took over charge. Suddenly heavy responsibilities came over Akbar as Mughal rule in India was in vulnerable state. Adil Shah Suri was keeping eye on Delhi and had sent his extremely successful military general Hemu to march towards Delhi, to take advantage of situation. Mughal army, under Akbar rule, in leadership of Bairam Khan, was camped in Jalandhar when Hemu forces took control over Agra and Delhi. Hemu didn't face any challenge in Agra but had to fight at Tuglakabad (now in Delhi). After knowing about Tuglakabad defeat, Akbar with Bairam Khan, marched towards Delhi to restore their rule and both forces met in Second battle of Panipat. In this war, Mughal forces win and Hemu was killed. This was the first and last battle-loss for Hemu. With this, dreams of Adil Shah Suri shattered. Lost of Hemu was irrevocable and Sur rule subsequently collapsed. From here success journey of Akbar begins, touching many milestones in his life. Right from the age of 13 when he took over the reins of the Mughal Empire, he got control and overcome territories and states in the northern, western and eastern regions, especially Punjab, Delhi, Agra, Rajputana, Gujarat, Bengal, Kabul, Kandahar and Baluchistan, to bring most of India under his control. Despite being illiterate, he possessed exceptional knowledge in almost all subjects. He earned high respect from his non-Muslim subjects, mainly due to his adoption of policies that created a peaceful atmosphere in his diverse empire. He also re-organized taxation systems, divided his army following the mansabdari system, and established foreign relations with the West. Being a contributor of art and culture, he got a number of literature books written in various languages and constructed numerous architectural masterpieces during his reign, such as Agra Fort, Buland Darwaza, Fatehpur Sikri, Humayun Tomb, Allahabad Fort, Lahore Fort, and his own mausoleum at Sikandra. He started a new sect 'Din-i-Ilahi' by deriving elements from various religions . Many of his courtiers followed Din – i-Illahi as their religion, as well, as many believed that Akbar was a prophet. One famous courtier who follows this blended religion was Birbal. Akbar decreed that Hindus who had been forced to convert to Islam could reconvert to Hinduism without facing the death penalty. Akbar practiced several Hindu customs. He celebrated Diwali. He allowed Brahman priests to tie jewelled strings round his wrists by way of blessing and, following his lead, many of the nobles took to wearing rakhi.

Akbar Navratna
For successful ruling of any kingdom, presence of good administration and management team is required. In order to do good administration & management, presence of good ministers and officers is must. Thus, rulers often remain in search of genius personalities belonging to varying fields of management and administration. Presence of such personalities is a matter of proud for every ruler and similarly working in a great kingdom for great ruler is equally matter for pride for such great personalities. Both sides are like ornament for each other which enhances their name, fame and beauty. Emperor Akbar was admirer of art, music and learning. He always prefers to have a team of talented personalities who talents are unmatched as they will proved to be asset for kingdom. When he was in Fatehpur Sikri his court was full of many proven scholars and talented personalities. The Nine most learned & talented man in his court were known as NAVRATANA. Here "Nav" means Nine and "Ratna" means Ornaments. Lets check about them: These nine great personalities are ornaments for Akbar's court. Their names as Abul Fazal, Faizi Miyan, Tansen, Raja Birbal, Raja Todar Mal, Raja Man Singh, Abdul Rahim Khan-I-Khana, Fakir Aziao-Din Mirza, Aziz Koka All these personalities are masters in their field. Their laid system was adopted and followed even after end of Mughal dynasty. Their land and revenue system is still prevalent in India. If you want to know more about them, please go by their details, easily available in internet. Their presence in Akbar's court, contributed in his success and getting title of "Akbar The Great".
EMPEROR AKBAR's NAVRATNA
S.No. Name Work-field
1. Tansen Cultureal Minister & Singer of Akbar
2. Birbal Foreign Minister of Akbar
3. Todar Mal Finance & Commerce Minister of Akbar
4. Abdul Rahim Khan-I-Khana Defence Minister of Akbar
5. Mullah Do Piyaza Home Minister of Akbar
6. Abul Fazi Iban Mubarak Prime Minister & Grand Vizer of Akbar
7. Faizi Education Minister of Akbar
8. Fakir Aziao Din Religious Minister of Akbar
9. Raja Man Singh-I Chief of Staff of Akbar's Mughal Army

Religious Policy
Akbar was liberal and tolerant towards other religions thus we have observed better communal harmony during his reign. He realized the fact that in order to get support of all sections of society, he is required to be more liberal and this policy will be helpful in better ruling. Akbar and his family members are believed to be Sunni Hanif muslims. He was born at Rajput Fortress in Umerkot (at Sindh in Pakistan), held by Rana Prasad which was Hindu. His parents has taken refuge at this fortress. He spend his early days in this place and this might have some impact in his religious thinking. At the age of 13, he took charge of Mughal empire and his guardian was Bairam Khan who was hardcore Muslim. During this time, his court was full of other hardcore Muslim clerics, due to which decisions made at court reflects policy of intolerance towards other religions like taxation on holy journeys etc. With the passage of time, when Akbar gained maturity and started taking his own decisions, Bairam Khan was relieved from guardianship, policy shift was noticed. Akbar found many policies as injustice with other citizens and thus revised them with liberal mindset. This has generated better acceptance of Akbar in his citizens and also changed mindset of other rulers. Through his experience, he realized that it is the religious leaders, preachers who are more intolerant than common people thus thought of new religion came up in his mind which would be more tolerant, no discrimination on the basis of religions, universal peace etc. From here religious movement "Din-i-illahi" was introduced by him, based on sufi values. In this religion, it was said that soul can be purified by yearning of god, animal sacrificing was opposed, celibacy was respected, chastity was enforced, tolerance towards other religions, no sacred scriptures etc. This was offered as a platform where different noble views from different religions, noble personalities were collected and introduced. All this shows that Emperor Akbar was more tolerant towards all religions and tried for better coordination between people, despite of belonging to different religions. His views, thinking and policies also portrays him as a great social reformer.

Personality
We can learn many aspects of Akbar's life and reign in a book called "Akbarnama", written by Abul-fazal. He was historian in Akbar's court. Through this, we will find that he was of medium height person, broad shoulders, black eye-brows, fair complexion with good physique. He was brave and did many act of courage like one in which, at the age of 19, he was on the way from Malwa to Agra and met Tigress on his way. She charged on him and he repulsed the attack with single blow of his sword. Animal was killed in his blow. Many time, he was seen jumped into flooded river of monsoon season, with his horse and crossed it successfully. He like to give animal training, by his own. He is having many Cheetahs (now extinct in India) which were trained by him. He is the person who likes to take his own decision rather than influenced by others. This was reflected in his ruling, after gaining maturity. His religious policy was clear, tolerant towards other religions. During his reign, he visited Vrindavan and allowed permission for construction of 4 new temples. His diet was also were disciplined and planned. He drinks on Ganges water, which he called "the water of immortality". It is noticeable fact that, clinical tests have proved that Ganges water is having capability to kill all bacteria. Akbar was fond of fruits and dislikes meat.

Death
Akbar died on 25/Oct/1605. He was suffering from dysentery. His body was buried in a mausoleum, located in Sikandra region of Agra. Now a days, it is a popular tourist attraction for Agra sightseeing.

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