Prelims 304

Which of the following can be said to be the major reasons behind the decline of the Vijaynagara Empire?
1. Strain in the imperial structure following the death of Krishnadeva Raya.
2. The Battle of Talikota.
3. Invasion by the Mughals.
Select the correct answer using the code given below:
1 and 2 only
2 and 3 only
1 and 3 only
1, 2 and 3
Explanation :
Statement 3 is incorrect because till that date Mughal had not expanded their Empire in the South.
The Vijayanagara kingdom was founded by Harihara and Bukka of the Sangama dynasty in 1336. Krishna Deva Raya (1509-30 A.D.) who was the greatest ruler of the Vijayanagar Empire. Under him, Vijayanagara emerged as the strongest military power in the south. Strain began to show within the imperial structure following Krishnadeva Raya’s death in 1529. His successors were troubled by rebellious nayakas or military chiefs. By 1542, control at the centre had shifted to another ruling lineage, that of the Aravidu, which remained in power till the end of the seventeenth century. During this period, as indeed earlier, the military ambitions of the rulers of Vijayanagara as well as those of the Deccan Sultanates resulted in shifting alignments. Eventually this led to an alliance of the Sultanates against Vijayanagara. In 1565 Rama Raya the chief minister of Vijayanagara, led the army into battle at Rakshasi Tangadi (also known as Talikota), where his forces were defeated by the combined armies of Bijapur, Ahmadnagar and Golconda. The victorious armies sacked the city of Vijayanagara. The city was totally abandoned within a few years. Now the focus of the empire shifted to the east where the Aravidu dynasty ruled from Penukonda and later from Chandragiri (near Tirupati).
The Battle of Talikota (1565) was a watershed battle fought between the Vijayanagara Empire and the Deccan sultanates. The battle took place at Talikota, today a town in northern Karnataka to the southeast from the city of Bijapur. The battle of Talikota ended the prominence of Viajaynagar kingdom in South Indian politics. The Kingdom of Mysore, Nayakas of Vellore, Nayakas of Keladi in Shimoga declared their independence from Vijayanagar.
Hence, statements 1 and 2 are correct.