Chand Bibi (1550–1599 CE), was an Indian Muslim regent and warrior. She acted as the Regent of Bijapur (1580–90) and Regent of Ahmednagar (in current day Maharashtra) (1596–99).[unreliable source?] Chand Bibi is best known for defending Ahmednagar against the Mughal forces of Emperor Akbar in 1595.
Chand Bibi was the daughter of Hussain Nizam Shah I of Ahmednagar,[unreliable source?] and the sister of Burhan-ul-Mulk, the Sultan of Ahmednagar. She knew many languages, including Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Marathi and Kannada. She played sitar, and painting flowers was her hobby.
Chand Bibi was married to Ali Adil Shah I of the Bijapur Sultanate. A stepwell (bawdi) constructed near the eastern boundary of Bijapur by her husband was named Chand Bawdi after her.[unreliable source?]
Ali Adil Shah's father, Ibrahim Adil Shah I, had divided power between the Sunni nobles, the Habshis and the Deccanis. However, Ali Adil Shah favored Shi'as. After his death in 1580, the Shi'a nobles proclaimed his nine-year-old nephew Ibrahim Adil Shah II as the ruler. A Deccani general called Kamal Khan seized power and became the regent. Kamal Khan showed disrespect to Chand Bibi, who felt that he had ambitions to usurp the throne. Chand Bibi plotted an attack against Kamal Khan with help from another general, Haji Kishvar Khan. Kamal Khan was captured while fleeing and was beheaded in the fort.
Kishvar Khan became the second regent of Ibrahim. In a battle against the Ahmednagar Sultanate at Dharaseo, the Bijapur army led by him captured all the artillery and elephants of the enemy army. After the victory, Kishvar Khan ordered other Bijapuri generals to surrender all the captured elephants to him. The elephants were highly valued, and the other generals took great offense. Along with Chand Bibi, they hatched a plan to eliminate Kishvar Khan with help from General Mustafa Khan of Bankapur. Kishvar Khan's spies informed him of the conspiracy, so he sent troops against Mustafa Khan, who was captured and killed in the battle. Chand Bibi challenged Kishvar Khan, but he got her imprisoned at the Satara fort and tried to declare himself the king. However, Kishvar Khan had become very unpopular among the rest of the generals. He was forced to flee when a joint army led by a Habshi general called Ikhlas Khan marched to Bijapur. The army consisted of the forces of three Habshi nobles: Ikhlas Khan, Hamid Khan and Dilavar Khan. Kishvar Khan tried his luck at Ahmednagar unsuccessfully, and then fled to Golconda. He was killed in exile by a relative of Mustafa Khan. Following this, Chand Bibi acted as the regent for a short time.
Ikhlas Khan then became the regent, but he was dismissed by Chand Bibi shortly afterwards. Later, he resumed his dictatorship, which was soon challenged by the other Habshi generals. Taking advantage of the situation in Bijapur, Ahmednagar's Nizam Shahi sultan allied with the Qutb Shahi of Golconda to attack Bijapur. The troops available at Bijapur were not sufficient to repulse the joint attack. The Habshi generals realized that they could not defend the city alone, and tended their resignation to Chand Bibi. Abu-ul-Hassan, a Shi'a general appointed by Chand Bibi, called for the Maratha forces in Carnatic. The Marathas attacked the invaders' supply lines, forcing the Ahmednagar-Golconda allied army to retreat.
Ikhlas Khan then attacked Dilavar Khan to seize the control of Bijapur. However, he was defeated, and Dilavar Khan became the regent from 1582 to 1591. When order was restored in Bijapur kingdom, Chand Bibi returned to Ahmednagar.
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|Address||Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, Ahmednagar, Maharashtra 414001, India|