Contrary to popular belief, the Hindus and Buddhists under the control of Muhammad bin Qasim were not forced into converting rather they were promised security and religious freedom. This freedom continued with successive waves of Muslim armies moving forward into India and leaders such as Mahmud of Ghazni and Muhammad Tughluq expanded the Muslims hold without actually changing the religious or social fabric of the society.
However, not everyone was happy with this intrusion of the Muslim armies. The Raja of Sindh, Dahir, marched his armies out against Muhammad bin Qasim and in the year 712 AD the two armies met in the battle field with a resounding victory to the Muslims. With this victory, all of Sindh came under the control of the Muslims.
“Allafi Brothers”- the enemies of the Umayyad Dynasty, who had fled to the land of the Sindh, collected a band of supporters and got the protection of Raja Dahir-, Hajjaj would have left the issue of the Sindh un-attended. He sent Saeed bin Aslam Al-kilabi to fight them, but they got him killed and started growing stronger and stronger, and, by the year 80 AH, occupied the whole Province of Makran.
But, the great warrior Muhammad bin Qasim and his regiment were not the first to tread on the land of Sindh and to make it their dwelling place, because the trade relations, by sea and land simultaneously, have been established between Arabia and India long ago. It is said that the Prophet Solomon (AS) used to get gold, silver, ivory and peacocks imported from “Sindh and Hind” (India).
Hajjaj deputed Majaah bin Misar to teach them the lesson. No sooner had he reached Makran than the enemies fled away and took refuge in the court of Raja Dahir.
After the death of Raja Dahir, all other citadels of the Sindhhies, like Alwar, Brahmanabad, Harawar, Basmand and swandhri, were no more than a wall of sand. They all were occupied one by one in 94 AH.
Muhammad bin Qasim landed on Makran in 92 AH and started occupying the cities situated on the western bank of the Indus. The first major victory achieved was in 93 AH when the city of Debul was occupied after a protracted fighting and all the Arab prisoners including women were released. Next came the turn of the city of today’s Hyderabad which was captured without any resistance. The Arab army then advanced to the city of Sahvan Sharif which was subjugated after a complete siege of seven days. Before crossing the River, the Arab Conquerors also took the cities of Boodhia and Bhakkar.
The crossing of the Indus by the Arab army proved to be decisive step in the ensuing war between the Arab Muslims and the Hindus. Had Raja Dahir stopped the Arabs at the bank of the River, the situation would have been quite different. He let the Arab army cross the river easily which proved fatal not only for him but also for his kingdom. The Arabs made him the first victim of their onslaught. They besieged his city of Rawar for days and a bloody war continued between the armies till he was killed in the holy month of Ramazan, 93 A.H.
The consecutive defeat of the Arab army at the hands of the Hindus shook the policy-making circles in the Umayyad administration. Hajjaj sent to the Caliph a detailed report of the events demanding permission for a full-fledged military operation to conquer the Sindh. Caliph Waleed bin Abdulmalik, after showing reluctance initially, approved the plan. So a huge army, with 6000 Syrian horse, 6000 men, a camel corps of 3000 and a baggage train of 1500 camel, was sent, under the command of Muhammad bin Qasim, a cousin and son-in-law of Hajjaj
Hajjaj was not ready to digest the defeat so easily. Next year he sent another well-supported army under the command of Budail bin Tahfah Al-bajli, but, too, was severely punished by the son of Raja Dahir. The commander of the Arab army was mercilessly killed.
3. The king of Sindh, Raja Dahir, was unpopular and was considered to be a usurper’s son because after the death of the last Shudra King, Sahasi, his throne was seized by Chach, the father of Dahir.
“The Imam the Muhadith, the Thiqah, Abu al-Hassan Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Ahmad bin Mansor al-Baghdady al-Atiqi”
Siar alam alnubala, Volume 17 page 602
It is believed that the Arab conquerors stepped in the land of present-day Pakistan through the province of Sindh in 92 AH, and established their first-ever state, under the marvellous leadership of Muhammad bin Qasim.