|Raja Todar Mal|
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- Activated Effect: Gain 1 Envoy and your Trade Routes to your own cities gain +0.5 Gold for each specialty district at the destination.
Civilopedia Historical Context
Born in Uttar Pradesh to a Hindu family ... that's about all that is known of the young Todar Mal; even his date of birth has been lost to time. He began his bureaucratic career as a scribe in the court of Sher Shah Suri, who ruled northern India from his capital in Delhi. An able administrator, Todar helped Sher Shah establish a postal system in his holdings (Bengal and Bihar), create a standard coinage (the rupiya, or rupee), and extend the Grand Trunk Road from Chittagong to Kabul. The shah also put Todar Mal in charge of building a new fortress at Rohtas in the Punjab to limit Ghakkar raids and serve as a barrier to the Mughals to the northwest. It didn't work.
After the fall of the Sur dynasty, Todar Mal would serve the new Mughal emperor Akbar just as faithfully and ably, pragmatically transferring his loyalty without hesitation. Rising through the ranks, he was made a Wazir and finance minister to Akbar. In that role, Todar transformed the rather lax tax structure (the dahshala) based on a ten-year survey. In 1582 AD the emperor bestowed the title Diwan of the newly conquered province of Gujarat on Todar, making him a Navratna of the royal court.
Now a raja, Todar continued his reforms in the Mughal Empire. He introduced a system of standard weights and measures for trade, established revenue districts and appointed officers to these, and created a settlement system for newly-acquired territories. All of this based on a data collection scheme he devised, one that would be used for centuries across the subcontinent. And he foresaw the significance of having a common tongue for efficient administration of the empire and so promoted Persian as the official language. Todar Mal, having left his imprint on India, died in November 1589 in Lahore.