What's there today 14th August, from the past !!!!
The 127th Anniversary of a Family Tragedy ! :,(
The King who came to Dinner - the Host survived.
Venue : Ata bagh, Matiaburj Year : 1893
On the death of His Majesty Wajid Ali Shah on 21st Sept 1887, there were three contenders to succeed him. The first was his chief consort Nawab Khas Mahal Saheba, the second was his nephew Prince Jehan Kudr whom the king looked upon and brought up as his own son (because his father General Sahib had gone to England in 1856 on a royal deputation for return of the kingdom of Oudh). The third was the then eldest son Prince Kamar Kadar. None of the three was given the charge of organizing the king's burial lest a claim came forward for recognition to succeed. The British government at that time wanted to put an end to this generation after generation system to succeed by a head of the house so that a new order is established void of any head of the family. Whatever it may be, there were none courageous enough to put forward a claim to step into His Majesty 's shoes. The estate was taken over and auctioned and the family came under a pension system. That one large family survived on british pension was under british thumb and none of the princes raised their head out of fear or were in the good books of their masters. This was 1887-89 and life continued thereafter, as the family comfortably settled in Matiaburj. The family affairs had come under the eye and control of the british District Collector who could be considered as the Head of the family because he had the final say in family matters.
The exact entry and a snapshot of the burial register is reproduced Click here !
As per the account given by both Prince Anjum Quder and Dr. Kaukab Quder, six people lost their lives in that ghastly dinner. Nothing is known as to what happened to three of his bodyguards. Below is the assassinated group photo.
Unnatural Death !
The British Administration was silent !
Not a protest. Not a whisper.
Not a word. Not a sound.
Not a report. Not an inquest.
Not an inquiry on the death of six lives within a span of 3 to 4 days.
An evasive silence in the family.
A tacit extermination.
The motive : ENVY - JEALOUSY - MALICE - GREED - HATRED or Accident.
It will remain a mystery.
Birjis Qadr's wife, the grand daughter of Bahadur Shah Zafar - Emperor of India, Nawab Mahtab Ara Begum, had not gone for that fatal dinner due to her being pregnant. Her young daughter Princess Husn Ara Begum, aged around 9 years was with the mother and had not accompanied the father. The story goes that as soon as Nawab Mahtab Ara Begum, heard of her husband's and children's death she fled from the house where she was staying in Matiaburj for the safety of the child that she was carrying and her daughter. A woman losing her husband and two of her young children within two / three days would have been a life shattering blow to any normal person. However, she still maintained her sanity and brought up Prince Meher Qadr (born 24th Dec, 1893) and his sister Princess Husn Ara Begum with dignity which speaks remarkably of her courage and grit.
The family lost everything and was on the verge of annihilation, thanks to some well wishers and good samaritans amongst the family members (probably Prince Buland Jah Mirza Muhammad Askari), who helped the family survive. Finally, by the then prevailing british law, Nawab Mahtab Ara Begum, Prince Husn Ara Begum and Prince Meher Qadr were granted pension by the British.
Birjis Qadr's grandson Dr. Kaukab who had made rounds of the Alipore Collectry in the 1950's stated that one clerk in charge of distribution of political pensions in the Superintendant of Political Pensions Office at Alipore Collectorate was kind enough to show the cover of a file containing the petition of Birjis Qadr's memorandum of 1893 and the same was marked "Secret and Confidential" and was not accessible to anyone without the governments special permission even though India had achieved freedom. No, Right to Information Act was unheard of in those times. This disclosure was made by Dr. Kaukab in the 1980's when he went to collect his pension and found that the record from the old historical pension office (since the time of His Majesty Wajid Ali Shah) ground floor building was shifted to a new building 4th Floor called the Treasury building at Alipore. He was of the opinion that by then, whatever remained of the pension office record (correspondence record of family affairs etc) barring the Oudh Family Pension Register would have been terminated by termites or lost in transit by careless clerks and employees or would be lying in some corner of a government building, untraceable.
The three great grandsons of the last king hold that the attempt to obliterate the family of Birjis Qadr was political in nature and a nexus between the british administration and some family members.
(1)Lucknow: The Last Phase of an Oriental Culture - Abdul Halim Sharar. Translation - 1994
(2)The REGISTER of BURIALS in Oudh Family Burial Ground, Garden Reach - 1893
(3)Oudh Pension Papers
(4)Birjis Qadr 150th Birth Anniversary - Souvenir 1995
(5)Direct conversation with the grandson of Birjis Qadr - Prince Anjum Quder,
Dr. Meerza Kaukab, Prince Nayyer Quder.
Translated from an Urdu article written by
|Today, that year in the history of Oudh -||6th Aug 1857|
What's there today 06th August, from the past !!!!|
A second booming of 21 guns marked the regal recognition from
Emperor of India, Bahadur Shah Zafar.
The second coronation of Birjis Qadr, by the supreme religious head of Oudh,
SEALED whatever doubt remained of the legitimacy of his rule.
Avadh at last was free, and NOW had an independant and a recognised ruler who was not at the mercy and protection of the British or bound by any of their Treaty.
British presence disappeared from the face of the earth in Oudh except the residency. The treaty of 1801 between the ancestors of Wajid Ali Shah and the british was rendered redundant by the annexation of Oudh; The annexation for the time being was hanging in thin air and the new government proclaimed under the banner of Birjis Qadr and Begum Hazrat Mahal was in charge of administration and state affairs. Lucknow and Oudh slipped out of british control. Freedom at last from the
The abdication by Wajid Ali Shah and the annexation of the kingdom of Oudh was not the political end for Avadh, the polity continued till its circumstantial end. The recognition of kingship from Delhi was enough for jubiliation and further boosted the morale of the
revolutionaries nee Sepoys and
the subjects comprising of Taluqudars, nobility and the commoners alike.
Upon receiving the information of Birjis Qadr's coronation on 5th July, the Emperor of India, Bahadur Shah Zafar, sent back the Ambassador from Oudh, Abbas Mirza with the seal and a reply to Birjis Qadr. This seal sent from the Mughal Emperor, along with a seal of Begum Hazrat Mahal adorns the masthead of this website from today. The original seal is with his descendants in Kolkata.
The Last King|
Birjis Qudr - An Appraisal
The OP-ED Page - PASTMASTERS
|Today, that year in the history of Oudh -||30th July 1822|
What's New today 30th July, from the past !!!!
The 198th birth anniversary of His Majesty Wajid Ali Shah, VIth King of Avadh
What do we have here. !!!
When the legendary director Satyajit Ray was making a film on Wajid Ali Shah, in Calcutta in 1970's, he turned to the scions of the Avadh family, the three great grandsons of Wajid Ali Shah from his wife Begum Hazrat Mahal.
Wajid Ali Shah
Vintage ;-) Scanned photos of the souvenir on a bengali drama 'Wazid Ali Shah' by CHORUS - a Calcutta based drama troupe in 1986. The city based drama talent of those days. ;-) Click here !!!
Wajid Ali Shah
An Urdu poet Josh Malihabadi's salute to another legendary poet the King. It was a part of the below excerpt collection of Prince Anjum Quder but it was so emotionally moving that it has been given on a separate link. Translation. Click here !!!
Wajid Ali Shah
Prince Anjum Quder's collection of excerpts on the wrong done to Wajid Ali Shah. Removing the blemish through excerpts. No Time for love - very brief excerpts from the king's reply to two love letters from his wife, Ghizala Begum. Click here !!!
What's New today 23rd July, from the past !!!!
In memory of Late Prince Anjum Quder, whose 23rd death anniversary is today 23/07/1997.
What do we have here. !!!
"The Prince's credential" which was just a single line label in the webpage on late Prince Anjum Quder, has been partly updated after 20 years !!, showing his social status. There are still at least 1200 photographs to be posted, 90% of which are in B & W, segregated in 80 albums of all the programmes, functions, symposium and seminars which he attended in a span of his public life starting from 1975 till his death in 1997. In that period, he toured the length and breadth of Avadh, the then Uttar Pradesh.> ;-)
To the people of Avadh it appeared that their king had come back.
The common man (aam aadmi) ;-) , be him a hindu or a muslim met him as if they were meeting their king. He rubbed shoulders both with the elite and the common man with remarkable equanimity, be it a banquet in the Governor house at Lucknow or the inauguration of an Eid-gah in a remote town in U.P. This showed the difference between a real prince and an imposter of 1947.
This website is an inhouse work, those 80 photo albums (most of them have already been scanned) will take at least 80 pages to showcase.
We have also run out of free webspace on http://oudh.tripod.com. No more free trips for a website on a royal family. We now have to buy a ticket.
We start with two very interesting links which have been added, one of them being a royal noble mission aborted in 1981.
Please visit and glance the full page dedicated to
Late Prince Anjum Quder
What's New !!!
From today 23/07/2020 being the 23rd death anniversary of Late Prince Anjum Quder the below link is added. This link will show important dates concerning the family
List of Important Dates in the House of Birjis Qadr.
|Today, that year in the history of Oudh -||7th July 1837|
Two days forward to the day of the coronation of Birjis Qadr and twenty years back to it, on that fateful Diwali night, coronation of another king took place in the history of Oudh. It will be unjust, if that coronation goes 'unannounced' in this website
WE SALUTE BADSHAH BEGUM, THE DETERMINED, SPIRITED AND HIGHLY AMBITIOUS QUEEN OF OUDH, WHO TOOK A DEFIANT STAND AGAINST THE BRITISH, WAY BACK IN 1837
The date above is a new link starting from today the 7th of July, 2020. The link will highlight the important dates and the same appended as a link in another page titled
List of Important Dates in the History of Oudh.
This website is updated with the above question link from today, the 5th of July, 2020 in the 163rd Anniversary of Birjis Qadr's Coronation as King of Oudh on 5th July, 1857 by the freedom fighters of Oudh, amidst 21 gun salute or as they say in urdu "ikkees topon ki salaami".