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Even in the pre-Islamic era, Arab traders used to visit the Konkan-Gujarat coast and Malabar region, which linked them with the ports of Southeast Asia.
Newly Islamised Arabs were Islam's first contact with India. Rawlinson in his book Ancient and Medieval History of India It was with the advent of Islam that the Arabs became a prominent cultural force in the world.
In the first half of the 10th century, Mahmud of Ghazni added the Punjab to the Ghaznavid Empire and conducted 17 raids on modern-day India.
Intensive missionary activities were carried out along the coast and many other natives embraced Islam.
In the 8th century, the province of Sindh (in present-day Pakistan) was conquered by an Arab army led by Muhammad bin Qasim.
Sindh became the easternmost province of the Umayyad Caliphate.
Mohammed Bin Qasim (672 CE) at the age of 17 was the first Muslim invader and he managed to reach Sindh.
Centuries later Mahmud of Ghazni (971 - 1030 CE) was the second, much more ferocious invader, who swept up into Northern India as far as Gujarat.