The Muslim conquest in the Indian subcontinent brought changes to Indian society. The position of Indian women in society deteriorated during this period.[6][10][better source needed] The purdah system and Jauhar are attributable to the Muslim rules that existed from 10th century awards.

The Rajputs of Rajasthan, started the practice of Jauhar after a century of Islamic invasions in the 10th century. The early Islamic invasions in Sindh did not result in Jauhar, as is evident from the history of Raja Dahir or Sindh. After the attack by Mohammed-Bin-Qasim in 10th century, and the killing of Raja Dahir, his wife and daughters were sent off as sex slaves to Damascus. This type of slavery prevalent in 10th century may have resulted in the evolution of Jauhar in Western India, which were the first parts of India exposed to invasions from the Persian and Turkish empires.

Polygamy was practised among Hindu Kshatriya rulers.[19] However, this practice may not be considered a uniform social behavior, as at the same time, there were kingdoms which practised polyandry also. Nair warrior communities in Kerala practiced polyandry for centuries, during the medieval period up to the British 18th century.

The status of women of Islamic faith followed Islamic precepts, and rules of Sharia. Women were restricted to Zenana areas of the house,[citation needed] had to wear the Burqa or niqab, and were not allowed to venture outside alone without a male guardian. Their rights were dictated by the Sharia law, which prevented women from getting a share of the inherited wealth.

Apastamba sutra (c. 4th century BCE)[20][non-primary source needed] captures some prevalent ideas of the role of women during the post Vedic ages. The Apastamba Sutra shows the elevated position of women that existed during the 4th century B.C.: