1. Strengthening the position of the Sultan:

Balban took the following steps in this regard:

(i) He glorified the position of the Sultan. He declared that it was the duty of all to submit to him.

(ii) He enforced strict discipline in the court; No one was allowed to indulge in humour or loose talk.


(iii) He himself set ideal examples. He gave up drinking. He never came to the court without proper dress.

List of Muslim military leaders - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

image source: upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e3/Saladin_and_Guy.jpg

(iv) He prescribed several practices for the nobles of his court. Court dress was fixed.

(v) He appointed fearsome and tall guards who were to stand round king’s person with naked swords.


All the above mentioned measures created an environment of terror and fear.

2. Efficient spy system:

Balban kept a close watch on the activities of the governors, nobles, military and civil officers and even on his own sons. Every spy had direct access to the Sultan. The spy system proved very helpful in checking conspiracies.

3. Liquidation of the Corps of Forty:


Balban very skilfully and sternly eliminated the group of forty slaves. They were humiliated publicly and punished severely. A cup of poison and the dagger of an assassin were equally good for him.

4. Strengthening administrative structure:

The administration of Balban was partly military and partly civil. All his officers were required to perform both types of duties. He himself kept control over the entire administration. He abolished the post of the ‘Naib’ (Prime Minister) or Deputy to the Sultan. Balban himself supervised the appointments of .all officers. Only people of noble birth were appointed to higher posts.

5. Providing justice:

Balban succeeded in providing justice to his subjects. Prof. Habibullah has highly praised the sense of justice of Balban. He has quoted instances of punishment of highly placed noble as examples of upholding justice by Balban.

6. Confiscation of ‘fiefs’ (Jagirs):

Balban ordered an enquiry regarding the status of the ‘Jagirdars’. It was revealed that most of the occupants of Jagirs were not the real owners. So he confiscated such jagirs. This had a salutary effect on feudal lords and they exhibited their loyalty to the Sultan.

7. Liquidation of thieves and robbers:

Balban very ruthlessly uprooted the menace of thieves and robbers by clearing out their hide outs in the forests.

8. Massacre of the Mewati Rajput’s:

The Mewati Rajput’s had become a terror for the people of Delhi. They used to loot, kill and abduct women. Balban crushed the Mewatis with an iron hand. Their hide-outs were besieged and every Mewati caught was immediately killed.

9. Strengthening army:

Balban realized that to make his despotism effective, to safeguard the empire from the invasion of the Mongols and to suppress rebellion He needed a strong army. He therefore increased the number of officers and soldiers of his army, paid them good salaries and took personal interest in their training. He personally planned every military campaign and kept it secret till the operation day.

10. Suppression of revolts:

Balban suppressed rebellions in the Doab, crushed the revolts of the Hindus of Rohelkhand and mercilessly quelled the revolt of Tughril Khan of Bengal. Baiban’s reign of terror is described by Barani in these words “On either side of the principal bazar, in a street more than two miles in length, a row of stakes was set up and the followers of Tughril were impaled (put to death) upon them. None of the beholders (eye-witnesses) had ever a spectacle so terrible, and many swooned with terror and disgust.”

11. Providing effective defence against Mongol invasions:

The Sultans of Delhi had to face the Mongol invasions from the north west. Balban too was not free.

He accordingly prepared an effective defence policy which included the following steps:

(i) He constructed strong forts in the frontier.

(ii) He repaired the old forts.

(iii) He kept well-equipped forces therein.

(iv) He divided the North-West Frontier into two parts for the purpose of defence.

(v) Provinces of Multan, Sindh and Lahore were placed under the charge of prince Mohammad Khan.

The Mongols made their biggest invasion in 1285 in which Balban’s son was killed but in the end, the Mongols lost and had to retreat.