War Between: Hindu Guhila Empire Vs Muslim Delhi Sultanate
Battle Leaders: Ratnasimha (Guhila's) Vs Alauddin Khalji (Delhi sultanate)
Battlefield: Chittorgarh Fort, Bharatpur District, Rajasthan, Bharat (India)
Weapons Used: Swords, Armour, Siege Engines (Rock Catapults)
Once Impenetrable Fortress
The fortress of Chittorgarh, was once considered Impenetrable, given it's thick wars, solid defences and position elevated on top of a 180 foot hill. It's still one of the largest forts in India and is part of a Unesco World Heritage site. It's supposedly built by Chitrangada Maurya, ruler of the Maurya clan. It was designed to be able to contain an army during a siege, it's planners having built in 84 water sources, 22 of which remain today. This water could meet the needs of an army of 50,000 for as much as 5 years with a system of wells, step wells and ponds. But once artillery weapons started to make their way into India, traditional fort structures were no longer able to provide the safety they once could. The Fort was sacked for the first time in 1303, but then would be sacked again in 1535 and 1567.
The Muslim Ravan
According to the 'Padmavat' which has descriptions of the battle, Alauddin Khalji of the Delhi sultanate had heard of the beauty of the wife of the Guhila empire's King Ratnasimha wife, Padmavati. He couldn't contain his lust for another mans wife and had to take her for himself and add to his collection of kidnaped trophies. So on the 28th of January, 1303 he began his siege with a large army in tow. He surrounded the fort from all sides and took elevated position on a hill to the North of the fort. The siege apparently lasted for 8 months, with two full frontal attacks thwarted by the brave Hindu defenders.
Khalji then ordered his siege engines to start pelting boulders at the fort walls, while his armoured soldiers attacked from all sides. Some accounts say there was a famine or disease breakout and their defences weakened. Khalji finally entered the fort on the 26th of August 1303. After his victory in true peaceful muslim style, Khalji ordered the immediate execution of 30,000 Hindus. No doubt in the fashion of earlier muslim invaders, they raped Hindu women and took them with younger children as slaves.
Padmavati had apparently committed Jahaur (the act of self immolation) when Hindu women would burn themselves, rather than dishonour themselves and fall into the hands of muslim forces. Who would often rape, enslave and convert Hindu women once they had slaughtered all the men.
Hand Prints of the Women that committed 'Jauhar' and burnt themselves rather than be raped