Although the exact answer is up for debate, there are compelling reasons to believe that India may just be the most invaded country of all time. Foreigners have invaded the state over 200 times. The first person to successfully invade India was Alexander the Great in the year 321 BCE while the last people were the British who finally give way for an independent India.
Alexander the Great
Alexander the Great was the first person to invade India when he successfully captured the Paurava Kingdom in the Western Punjab province. He declared himself the king and lowered the status of the then king to the governor of Punjab. Alexander considered attacking the Nanda Empire but withdrew after learning that the empire had a large army.
Between 1221 and 1327, the Mongol Empire made several incursions into India. The Mongols first appeared in the Indus River in 1221 when Genghis Khan pursued Sultan Jalal ad-Din Mingburnu to Ghazni. He joined forces with the local armies and successfully managed to keep the Mongolians from gaining more land in India. However, Genghis Khan regrouped his forces and defeated the sultan before invading several empires in the subcontinent. In 1235, the Mongols captured Kashmir and stationed an administrative governor in the city. Shortly after, the Mongols captured Peshawar and Lahore.
Emperor Nader Shah of Persia
Emperor Nader Shah of Persia invaded the Mughal Empire and captured the capital of Delhi in 1739. The fall of the Mughal Empire meant that Nader had a clear campaign against the Ottoman Empire and other territories in Central Asia and the North Caucasus. The occupation of Delhi destabilized the economy of the city, and the prices of goods rose significantly. The Persians tried to revive the economy by coercing the local traders to drop the prices of commodities, but the merchants refused to do so but instead opted for violence. The traders killed 3,000 Persian soldiers. The emperor responded by ordering the infamous “qatl-e-aam” massacre.
The Romans were the first Europeans to reach India, but the collapse of the Empire led to the rise of other empires in the Indian subcontinent. In 1498, the Ottoman Empire closed the route to the Far East forcing the Portuguese to seek an alternative way. The Portuguese sailed around Africa and landed in present-day Kerala. They established a trade route across India until the Dutch arrived and established the Dutch East India Company. The French and the British subsequently developed trading bases in the continent. In 1858, the British formally declared India its colony by establishing the British Raj. The Raj was a response by the British after the Indian Rebellion of 1857. The British colonized India until 1947 when they partitioned the colony into the present-day states of India and Pakistan.
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