Malika-I-Jahan – Chief Consort of Alahuddin Khilji

Meherunissa Malika-I-Jahan was first wife of Alahuddin Khilji and daughter of Khilji empire founder Jalaluddin Khilji. Meherunissa was the first cousin of Alahuddin Khilji and was married to him at a young age before Jalaluddin Khilji founded the Khilji empire in 1290. Once Alahuddin Khilji became an Sultan of Delhi in 1296 he made Meherunissa his chief consort and gave her title of Malika-I-Jahan. Though their relationship was not great yet till Alahuddin’s death she remained his chief consort.

Malika-I-Jahan had hot temper and would try to dominate and command over Alahuddin Khilji himself. She also had pride that she was Jalaluddin Khilji’s daughter and wanted her husband to listen to her whims and fancy. That led to lots of issues between the couple. Malika-I-Jahan was highly jealous of Alahuddin’s second wife Alp Khan’s sister Maharu. Once she attacked Maharu in the Mherauli garden, Delhi when Alahuddin Khilji and Maharu were sitting alone and Alahuddin had to threaten her with his sword looking at Maharu’s plight.

Meherunissa’s mother openly sided with her daughter and would humiliate Alahuddin Khilji. Meherunissa’s mother would poison Jalaluddin Khilji’s mind against Alahuddin saying he was trying to upsure his throne etc. That brought a strain between Jalaluddin and Alahuddin’s relationship. Alahuddin kept quiet through all these issues only because may be he had no options, he and his siblings were orphaned at a young age and Jalaluddin Khilji had sheltered them.

After Jallauddin’s murder if Alahuddin assumed his wife was going to give him some respite, nothing of that happened and Meherunissa continued her haughty ways and never forgave him for killer her father. Yet Alahuddin maintained her position as Chief Queen. Her power was so complete that Malik kafur after killing Alahuddin Khilji imprisoned her and took away all her property.

Alahuddin may be a great conqueror and cruel emperor but in house he was a much troubled man at hands of his mother in law and wives like Meherunissa and Maharu. Historical writer Bharani states that Alahuddin Khilji started losing his health and mind in last few years of his life. He died young at age 50 years. His health detoriating was not only due to slow poison fed by Malik Kafur but also due to family strifes that never left him in peace.

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