“Study of history sends ambition high, draws towards virtues and keeps away from vices.” (The History of Islam) This is an excerpt from the book Muslims In India by Abul Hassan Ali Nadwi talking about the personality Tipu Sultan.
Muslims have played a very significant role in the national struggle for freedom against British in India. They have been in the forefront of it. It was after all, from Muslim hands that the British had taken India. When British Imperialism was spreading over the country and devouring one province after the other, the first man to realize the gravity of the danger was the lion hearted Tipu Sultan, King of Mysore. He saw clearly that unless determined efforts were made in time, the whole of India would ultimately be swallowed up by the British. With this resolve, he unsheathed his sword and jumped into a fierce, life and death struggle against the British.
Tipu Sultan made a valiant bid to unite the Indian princes against British. He even wrote to Sultan Salim III of Turkey to join hands with him for the expulsion of British. His whole life was spent in the struggle. He came on the verge of success, the English were about to be swept out of the land, but they managed to achieve through diplomacy what they could not gain by arms. They cleverly obtained the support of some rulers of the South and by the use of other methods of treachery and deceit defeated the gallant son of Mysore. Tipu Sultan was finally killed in the thick battle on May 4, 1799. He preferred death to a life of servitude under the British. His famous, historic, words spoken a little before he met his death were: “To live for a day like a tiger is far more precious than to live for a hundred years like a jackal.”