Battle of Bayana, c. September-November 1526

The battle of Bayana (1526) was a rare setback for Babur in the aftermath of his victory at Panipat on 21 April 1526. Although this victory gave Babur control of Delhi and Agra, many other fortified places refused to acknowledge his authority. Amongst them was Bayana, fifty miles to the west of Agra. Nizam Khan, who had held the place under Ibrahim Lodi, trusted in the strength of his fortifications to protect him against Babur, and made unacceptable demands of Babur's representatives. Babur began to prepare for a siege.

While these preparations were under way Babur dispatched a raiding force under Tardi Beg towards Bayana, with orders to try and win the garrison over, and if this failed to plunder the area. This expedition was dispatched soon after Babur's heir Humayun set off on his own expedition against Afghan rebels to the east of Agra on 21 August. 

Although Nizam Khan had decided to hold out against Babur, the same was not true for his elder brother 'Alam Khan (not the same man as Ibrahim Lodi's uncle of the same name). Alam Khan offered to capture Bayana if Babur would provide him with some troops. Babur responded by ordering Tardi Beg to co-operate with Alam Khan. According to Babur their combined army contained 250-300 Turks and 2,000 Hindustanis.

The combined army was still badly outnumbered by Nizam Khan, who according to Babur commanded 4,000 cavalry and 10,000 infantry.

Despite being outnumbered Alam Khan led the combined force up to Bayana. Nizam Khan realised that he had a big numerical advantage, and sallied out of Bayana at the head of his cavalry. This charge swept away the attacking force, and Alam Khan and five or six others were taken prisoner.

Nizam Khan's success was short-lived. At about the same time as this battle Rana Sangha of Mewar captured Khandhar, and advanced towards Bayana. Nizam Khan surrendered the fort to Babur's men, and was given territory in the Doab in compensation. Bayana was given first to Dost, Lord of the Gate, and then a few days later to Madhi Khwaja. Babur's men arrived just in time to be besieged by the Rajputs

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (19 May 2010), Battle of Bayana, c. September-November 1526 ,

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