Muhammad Tughlaq's Conquest of Kampili

The kingdom of Kampili, which is now present-day Bellary, Raichur, and Dharwar districts in the Indian state of Karnataka, has a rich history that dates back to the 1300s. It was founded by Mummadi Singeya Nayaka, a skilled general who served under Raja Ramadeva Yadava of Devagiri. The kingdom's capitals were located at Kummata and Hosadurga (Anegundi).

Shortly after the capture of Ramadeva and the annexation of Devagiri by Ala-ud-din Khilji, Singeya Nayaka declared his independence. He was succeeded by his son, Kampiladeva, who took the throne around AD 1313. Under Kampila's rule, the kingdom of Kampili flourished, and he controlled the entire Doab between the Krishna and Tungabhadra rivers. 

Vira Kampiladeva Nayaka

Muhammad Bin Tughlaq and Kampiladeva:

During the reign of Muhammad Bin Tughlaq (r: 1325-1350), one of the earliest events was the rebellion of his cousin, Baha-ud-din Garshasp, the governor of Sagar in the Deccan, in 1327. According to Ferishta, Baha-ud-din had his sights set on the throne and had won over many nobles in the Deccan to his cause. Ibn Battuta states that Baha-ud-din refused to swear allegiance to his cousin Muhammad after Sultan Tughlaq's death. Isami added that Baha-ud-din rebelled when he realized that Muhammad's character and temperament had changed.

Upon hearing of Baha-ud-din's revolt, Muhammad dispatched an army under Khwaja Jahan Ahmad Ayaz against him. A fierce battle ensued near Devagiri, which ended in Baha-ud-din's defeat. Baha-ud-din fled with his family and sought refuge with Kampila, with whom he had maintained friendly relations.

Muhammad arrived at Devagiri and sent Khwaja Jahan against Kummata. Despite initial victories by Kampila and Baha-ud-din, Khwaja Jahan emerged victorious in the third battle after receiving reinforcements from Devagiri. The defeated forces retreated to the fortress of Anegundi, where they were soon besieged by the Delhi army. 

As the situation grew dire, the Rai told Baha-ud-din, "Matters have reached the pass which you see, and I am determined to destroy myself and my family and all those who follow me." The Rai then advised Baha-ud-din to seek protection from the neighbouring king, Ballala, and sent him with an escort to his court. Tragically, Kampila died in battle, and the women in his family committed jauhar, a ritual of self-immolation. 

Following the fall of Kampila, his kingdom was annexed to the Delhi Sultanate, and his eleven sons were taken as prisoners. According to Battuta, all of them embraced Islam, and Muhammad made them amirs, recognizing their noble lineage and their fathers' deeds. Battuta claims to have met three of these brothers, including Abu Muslim, in Muhammad's court, and he became companions with Ibn Battuta.

Temples on the Hemakuta Hill at Hampi built by Kampiladeva

Meanwhile, Baha-ud-din sought refuge with Ballala III in Dwarasamudra, but the Sultan's troops swiftly arrived and laid siege to the city. Ballala captured Baha-ud-din and surrendered him to Khwaja Jahan, acknowledging Muhammad's authority. Muhammad ordered Baha-ud-din to be taken to the female quarters, where he was subjected to verbal abuse and even spat upon. 

Ibn Battuta states that Muhammad ordered Baha-ud-din to be flayed alive and his flesh was cooked with rice and sent to his family. The remains of his body were given to an elephant, who did not consume it. His skin was stuffed with straw and displayed throughout the kingdom as a cautionary tale for all to see. Battuta adds that when the stuffed skin reached Sind, its Governor Bahram Abiya Kishlu Khan arranged for its burial, which angered the Sultan greatly. 

Kampili was eventually lost to Muhammad with the emergence of the Vijayanagara empire.