| This A Different History page is a Proposal.
The Mughal Empire , also known as India, is the only state in the Indian subcontinent. The Emperor (or Padishah) of the nation currently is Akbar Shah Zafar II and its capital is Lahore, and its official language is Urdu, however, several others are known to be spoken as well. It borders Assam to the east, Persia to the west and the Central Asian States to the north. The Mughal Empire is the biggest economy in Asia, and the second biggest in the world and is the fastest growing economy. It is a nuclear power, and one of the founding members of the United Nations.
In 1526, Babur captured Delhi in the First Battle of Panipat, and formed the Mughal Empire. The empire was only a regional power then, and his son, Humayun, lost the empire for a full 25 year period before regaining it. The Empire truly became one, when Jalal-ud-din Mohammad came to the throne in occupied territory. He was the first Emperor born in India itself. He annexed Rajputana, and the east, and brought the border of the Empire to the Vindyas. Akbar the Great, as he would soon be known, made many reforms, and removed the jizya tax, making Hindus pay for simply not being Muslim, and increased the treasury to such a point, that his son, Jahangir, did not have to worry about the costs of any military campaign.
During Akbar's reign, several dignitaries from foreign nations visited his imperial court in Agra, and Fatehpur Sikri, including English, Portuguese, and French envoys, looking for trade. Akbar was known to be generous, and he allowed the Europeans to stay. During this time, India bloomed, with taxes coming in from the European outposts, and although they were considered barbaric, the traders were allowed to visit inland, and conduct trade operations in the heart of India, itself.
Conquest of the Deccan
Jahangir started his conquest of the Deccan immediately after his father's death, in the year 1605, looking to capitalize on having an almost unlimited stockpile of money. Jahangir started by invading the Golconda Sultanate, and expanded the Empire to the tip of India. The only state left, Travancore, offered its own vassalization, allowing them to stay nominally independent until the death of the Maharaja. Jahangir died before he was able to take the Portuguese ports of Goa and Bom Baia, and his son Shah Jahan did that for him. Upon Shah Jahan's insistence, the Portuguese left, and the British and French were the only European powers left in India. Eventually, they were both dealt with, and the only country on the Indian subcontinent was the Mughal Empire
Reconquest of Samarkand
Upon Dara Shiko's ascendance to the throne, the Mughals looked north to the city of Samarkand, capital of the Timurid Empire, and the birthright of the Emperor of India. He quickly mobilized his armies towards the north, capturing the city, and more, eventually reaching the Kazakh Khanate, avenging the defeat dealt by the Shaybanids to the Timurids. Dara quickly set up Khanates to the north, and the Empire reigned supreme. Eventually, future emperors captured more territories.
The Khanate of Bukhara
In the year 1789, the Indian territories of Kazakhstan, Bukhara, Khiva, Ferghana, and Turkmenistan experienced turmoil and lusted for independence. Mughal forces were sent to contain it, but within the year, the Khanate of Bukhara was formed, but in time, it became a Mughal protectorate. Under the rule of Emperor Akbar Shah, the Empire was still able to use its resources to push itself as a major power in the world.
Central Asian Revolution
The year 1856 was a year of political change in Asia. After almost 70 years as a protectorate, the Khanate of Bukhara fragmented into the states of the Kazakh Khanate, Kokand, Khiva, Bukhara and Turkmenistan, which was eventually annexed by India. Central Asia became a hotbed of frenzy and influence, as various powers tried to capitalize on the chaos, but the situation calmed down after 10 years, and in 1866, the borders were settled, and friendly relations emerged. India, however, was always wary of the north, and it remained a political issue, until the independences of Assam and Turkmenistan after World War II
Following the loss of Bukhara, India completed railways that interconnected the Empire. The first line, from Kanyakumari to Delhi, was inaugurated on the 17th of June, 1857, with the second, connecting Lahore and Kholkatha was completed a few years later. The industrial age created more jobs in India, and also made the nation more interested in industry as a whole.
Age of Reforms
The early 20th century brought more freedom to the populace of India, as several political reforms were enacted, including a freer election process and worker rights. At this time India joined the Central Alliance, allying with several European leaders and the United States of America, in a move that would bring the country to the forefront of global politics, and to ensure that Chittagong would once again become Indian.
India declared war on Arakan on the 15th October 1912. The war was a result of Arakan attacking the Majapahit Empire, an ally of India's. The Majapahits quickly asked the Emperor for assistance, and the War began. The war resulted in a victory, resulting in India annexing Chittagong from the Arakanese Union, and set them up for a humiliating disarmament. They had to pay for the full funding of the war, and had to sign a treaty to ensure that Arakanese expansion was to be forbidden.
In the early 20th century, the Province of Panjab and its Nawab, Zhulfikar Muhammad, were having problems. The western half, was largely Muslim, but the eastern half was mainly Hindu and Sikh. The population was getting restless, as they felt misrepresented in the ballots and requested the formation of a new province, East Punjab. After the Chandigarh Riots of 1901, the Indian Government created the Territory of East Panjab, administered directly from Delhi, before attaining provincehood in 1925. The split caused industry to halt, and caused mass migration to and fro the provinces, leading to violent altercations, culminating in the Lahore Massacre of 1932, in the height of the Depression, leading to the Panjab Wall, controlling migration between the two provinces. The Wall was a hot-button issue in Indian politics, up until the mid 1980s, when it was torn down, reuniting the two provinces, and uniting Panjab as one, single entity, once again.
The governing system of India, consists of the Emperor on top, followed by his Grand Vizier. Followed by his court ministers, including his Navaratna, a system adopted from his ancestor, Akbar the Great.
The Mughal Empire has hundreds of provinces who are governed by Nawabs, in predominantly Muslim provinces, Maharajas in the Hindu provinces and Khans in the Turkic provinces of the North. Rajas are the governors of territories, which are under federal power.
The Empire is divided into different "zones": areas in which provinces fall in, who each report to the Federal Government. The reason for having zones, is because the Empire has a Hindu majority, but the rest of its peoples also need to be heard, so each zone fulfills that result. Each zone is governed by one of the Navaratnas.
The 9 Zones are:
- Dravid Nadu
The capital of Delhi is located in the National Capital Territory, autonomous from any zones or provinces.
There are several popular political parties in India, however three stand out the most: the Democratic Party, the Socialist Party, the Conservative Party, and the Imperial Party.
- The Democratic Party was formed in 1896, and its core principles are akin to OTL US Democratic Party
- The Socialist Party was formed in 1917, and its core principles are akin to OTL UK Labour Party
- The Conservative Party was formed in 1864, and its core principles are akin to OTL Republican Party
- The Imperial Party was formed in 1864, and it is a reactionary party.
Padishah Akbar Shah Zafar II
His Imperial Majesty, Padishah Akbar Shah Zafar II, Agent of Allah, Son of Timur, Emperor of India, King of Delhi, Khan of All Turks, Khagan of All Mongols, Maharaja of Varanasi, Protector of Mecca, King of Bumbai, Chief of the Afghans, Ruler of Jerusalem, Ruler of the World, Defender of all Faiths(b.1940) is of the House of Timur, and the 23rd Mughal Emperor. Born in the Winter Palace in Travancore to Padishah Akbar Shah Zafar I and Begum Zeenat Mahal, he would develop a soft spot for it, throughout his reign. He engineered many reforms in transport, and oversaw several architectural wonders, including the tallest building in the world, the Zafar Tower, completed in the year 2011. He was married to his wife the Rajput Princess Chandresh Kumari, who became Roshanara Begum in the year 1969, and their first child, Prince Salman, was born the following year. Zafar ascended to the throne on August 16th, 1972, after his father died of old age, and at first he was unwilling to take on the burden of being Emperor, but relented. As he was the third child, he dueled his two brothers for the right to rule. The duel was non-lethal, of course, simply a tradition from older times, without the savageness. After he won, he immediately set up a road system to be the envy of the world, on top of buying shares in one of the world's most successful car companies, Maaruti Automotive. In the year 1981, his wife gave birth to their second son, Prince Jawan.
The Government has a stake in a lot of companies in India, as the economy is partially regulated. Several companies are highly successful, and have gained a name outside of India:
- Tata Enterprises
- Maaruti Automotive
- National Bank of India
- Greenlight Filmstudios
- Kohinoor Comics (this company bought DC Comics in the 90s and Marvel in the 2000s.)
- The Royale ( a hotel chain)
- KwikKhanna ((fast food) Indian fast food company, (chicken burgers, fries, samosas, chaat etc.))
Tourism in India has been increasing since the early 20th century. Catering to many people, Bumbai was the economic powerhouse of India, and is the home of Bollywood. It has many attractions, including the Zafar Towers, and contains a significant expatriate community. It has the Imperial Museum of Natural History, and the Imperial Gardens. Another city is Delhi, the capital of the Empire. Home of the Museum of History and the Museum of World Culture, it is a pinnacle of manmade cities. The Tomb of Bahadur Shah I ( Dara Shiko), lies here. With its intristic craftmanship, and architecture, it has replaced the Twin Tajs as one of the Indian Wonders of the World. Delhi also offers authentic Mughal cuisine, and there are a number of places to shop. Over all this, the Red Fort looms. Kholkatha is home to the Music Hall, a place where many a singer and performer have performed, and is home to the Royal Library, the biggest in all India. Containing old works of literature, and poems ranging from centuries ago, it is a museum unto itself. To top it all off, Kholkatha also has the largest Eid and Diwali celebrations as well, ranging from fireworks, to music, and even the appearance of the Emperor.
Protectorates and Colonies
The Mughal Empire had a few protectorates, and tried to implement a colonial policy in the late 19th century, but it turned into a disaster, costing India all of their African lands and any outposts in Singapore and Malacca. They did have a few protectorates, however, including Nepal, Assam, Ceylon and Haka, but in the end, they too, earned independence, and cost the Mughali people to lose faith in the policy, which was quickly overturned by that Emperor's heir. The 19th century caused the loss of the Central Asian Vassals, including Khiva, Bukhara and Ferghona, who each felt better suited as independent nations, with self-government. The last state to declare independence from the Mughals, was the Turkmen Emirate, when a cousin of the Emperor stirred up problems in a bid to gain power, but he failed to be recognized as a valid country until the 70s. The loss of Turkmenistan, however, caused the Mughals to lose a strategic port in the Caspian Sea, and now naval trade is conducted solely through the oceans.