Battles of Tarain

Battles of Tarain – मुहम्मद घोरी vs पृथ्वीराज चौहान – Know who won in 1191 & 1192?

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The Battles of Tarain, also known as the Battles of Taraori, were fought in 1191 and 1192 near the town of Tarain (Taraori), near Thanesar in present-day Haryana, approximately 150 kilometres north of Delhi, India, between a Ghurid force led by Mu’izz al-Din and a Chauhan Rajput army led by Prithviraj Chauhan.

 

The First Battle

In 1191, Mu’izz al-Din captured the fortress of Bhatinda in East Punjab, which was on the frontier of Prithviraj Chauhan’s domains.

Prithviraj marched on to Bhatinda and met his enemy at a place called Tarain (also called Taraori) near the ancient town of Thanesar.

The Ghurid army initiates battle by attacking with cavalry who launch arrows at the Rajput centre. The forces of Prithviraj counter-attack from three sides and dominate the battle, pressuring the Ghurid army into withdrawal.

Meanwhile, Mu’izz al-Din is wounded in personal combat with Prithviraj’s brother, Govind Tai.

The victory of Prithviraj was decisive, he inflicted the crushing defeat on Mu’izz ad-Din by completely routing his forces and succeeded in stopping the Ghurid advance towards Hindustan in the first battle of Tarain.

He did not pursue Ghori’s army either not wanting to invade the hostile territory or misjudging Ghori’s ambition, instead electing to retake the fortress of Bhatinda.

The Second Battle

On his return to Ghazni, Mu’izz al-Din made preparations to avenge his defeat. When he reached Lahore, he sent his envoy to Prithviraj to demand his submission, but the Chauhan ruler refused to comply.

Prithviraj saw through Mu’izz al-Din’s stratagem and issued a fervent appeal to his fellow Rajput chiefs to come to his aid against the Muslim invader.

Battle

The battle occurred in the same field as the first one. Knowing the Rajputs were well-disciplined, the Ghurids did not want to engage in melee combat with them.

Instead, the Ghurids army was formed into five units, and four units were sent to attack the Rajput flanks and rear. The flanking attacks failed and the fighting continued.

In hopes of causing a break in the Rajput lines, Mu’izz al-Din ordered his fifth unit to feign retreat. The Rajput’s charged the fleeing Ghurid unit, as the Ghurids expected.

The Ghurids then sent a fresh cavalry unit of 12,000 and they managed to throw back the Rajput advance.

The remaining Ghurid forces then attack and the Rajputs flee in panic. Prithviraj Chauhan abandons his elephant for a horse and tries to escape.

But he is caught a few miles from the battlefield and promptly executed.

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