Answer :

Mughal rulers efficiently assimilated heterogeneous populace within an imperial edifice. He welcomed all religions and established an environment of religious tolerance.

• Akbar himself invited Jesuit priests. The first Jesuit mission reached the Mughal court at Fatehpur Sikri in 1580. He showed immense interest in Christianity and debated its virtues with the ulama.

• Akbar was greatly influenced by Jesuits. He took them on his campaigns, tutored his children, and were often companions of his leisure hours.

• Akbar had high respect and regard for all the religions. His quest for religious knowledge led to interfaith debates in the ibadat khana at Fatehpur Sikri between learned Muslims, Hindus, Jainas, Parsis, and Christians.

• As a result, he began to move away from the orthodox Islamic ways of understanding religions towards a self-conceived eclectic form of divine worship focused on light and the sun.

• All this broadened his horizon on religious education.

• Akbar successfully accommodated religious communities. He abolished the pilgrimage tax in 1563 and jizya in 1564.

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