Organization of Trade & Commerce

  • The Mughals paid attention to roads and sarais, which made communication easier. A uniform tax was levied on goods at the point of their entry into the empire. Rahdari (a transit duty, a toll) or Road ceases was declared illegal, though it continued to be collected by some of the local rajas (kings).

  • The Mughals introduced silver rupees of high purity, which became a standard coin in India and abroad and that helped in the growth of India's trade as well.

  • Mughals also made the policies that helped the commercialization of the economy and the growth of a money economy.

  • During the Mughals period, salaries of the standing army as well as many of the administrative personnel (excluding the nobles) were paid in cash. Besides, under the zabti system, the land revenue was assessed and required to be paid in cash.

  • The growth of the rural grain markets led to the rise of small townships (or qasbas). The demand for all types of luxury goods by the nobles led to the expansion of handicraft production as well as the growth of towns.

  • Ralph Fitch, who came India during the Akbar's reign said that Agra and Fatehpur Sikri were each larger than London.

  • Monserrate said that Lahore was second to none of the cities in Europe or Asia. Bernier says that Delhi was not much less than Paris and that Agra was larger than Delhi.

  • Ahmadabad was also a large town, being as large as London and its suburbs. Dacca, Rajmahal, Multan, and Burhanpur were large towns, while Patna in Bihar had a population of 2 lakhs.