Bahadur Shah I ruled for few years. He tried to win over the’Rajputs by recognising Ajit Singh as the ruler of Jodhpur. He also’tried to appease the Marathas by releasing Shahu, the grandson’of Shivaji, and offering him a high administrative post. He also’sought the friendship of the Sikhs.
Jahandar Shah (1712-1713)’After the death of Bahadur Shah I, a war of succession broke’out. Jahandar Shah emerged victorious and ruled for a few’months. He was a puppet in the hands of Zulfiqar Khan, the’most powerful noble of the time. Jahandar Shah was overthrown’by his nephew, Farrukhsiyar.
Farrukhsiyar was a ruler only in name. The empire was’controlled by the Sayyid brothers – Abdullah Khan Baraha and’Hussain Ali Khan Baraha. They were known as the ‘kingmakers’.’In 1719, they removed Farrukhsiyar from the throne. Within a’gap of a few months, they placed and removed two more rulers.’Finally, they declared Muhammad Shah as the emperor.
Soon after coming to power, Muhammad Shah stripped the’Sayyid brothers of their power and authority. He ruled for’a long period and could have revived the empire. However,’he did not even attempt to consolidate the empire. Powerful’governors established independent kingdoms in different parts’of the country. The Sikhs, Marathas, Jats and Rajputs revolted’against the Mughals.
During this period, the empire also faced two invasions. In’the year 1739, Nadir Shah, the ruler of Iran, invaded India.’He defeated the Mughals and carried away a large amount of’treasure, including the Kohinoor diamond and peacock throne’of Shah Jahan. His invasion was followed by that of Ahmad’Shah Abdali in 1761. The Mughals could never recover from’the affect-effects of these two invasions.
After Muhammad Shah, the Mughal empire existed only in’name. The regional kingdoms became very powerful during this’period. The British had also started annexing Indian territories.’In less than a century, they became the real masters of India.
The last Mughal emperor was Bahadur Shah Zafar. In the’year 1858, the British removed him from the throne and brought’an end to the Mughal Empire.