Before Alauddin's reforms, the Delhi Sultanate did not collect the land revenues directly from the peasants. The peasants surrendered the land revenues to intermediary chiefs, known as khuts, muqaddams, and chaudharis, who represented villages or groups of villages.
These chiefs surrendered a fixed part of the revenue to the Sultanate's Ministry of Revenue, irrespective of how much revenue they extracted from the peasants.
Apparently, the Sultanate's government did not have adequate staff in the rural areas, and as long as the intermediary chiefs paid their pre-determined share of revenue, the government did not bother about how they treated the peasants.
Alauddin noticed that the intermediary chiefs fought against each other, flaunted their lavish lifestyle, and some of them did not remit revenues to the crown. He sought advice from Qazi Mughisuddin of Bayana on how to suppress these chiefs. Subsequently, his administration decided to collect the revenues directly from the cultivators.
All cultivators, from the village chiefs to the peasants, had to remit half of their revenues to the crown. The village chiefs lost all their privileges. Alauddin's government accepted the revenue in both cash and kind. In the fertile regions near Delhi, the government preferred taking revenue in kind: the grain collected as a result was taken to the state granaries.
The peasants were not allowed to take the surplus grain to their homes, and were compelled to sell it in the market or to the transporters at a low price
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