When the King left Benares, he arranged at his own cost the daily playing of Shenai music at the Mandir of Lord Vishwanath at Kashi, and got built a Naobat-Khana in front of the holy shrine. It was Wajid Ali Shah's genius to invent a method of Muslim participation in the daily rituals of the holiest Hindu temple, without offending the principles of Islam. The idols were not garlanded, no Arti was performed, only Shenai from Noabat-Khan outside the Temple was played, whose Music went inside the Mandir.
From 200 years earlier, the Maharajas of Benares also used to keep Imam Husain's Tazia during the Ashra of Mohurrum in their Fort at Ramnagar, in the outskirts of Banares.
Such cordial display of Hindu Muslim brotherhood could not be tolerated by a wily alien regime, of a few thousand whites out to subjugate hundreds of millions of Indians. Thus the British rulers of India in their hay-day in pursuance of their notorious policy of "divide and rule", got both the practices, the Shehnai and Taziadari, discontinued and it remains so to this day.
The worthy great-grandson of H.H. Maharaja Ishwari Pershad Narain Singh namely the present Maharaja Vibhuti Narain Singh, and the humble great-grandson of H. M. Wajid Ali Shah namely the undersigned, have jointly decided to revive the traditional good practices started by our great forebears to renew the age old Hindu Muslim brotherhood in our great country.
Today, I get revived the daily playing of Shehnai at the Mandir of Lord Vishwanath at Kashi, the cost of which will be borne by me as the Chairman of His Majesty King Wajid Ali Shah's Trust and Mausoleum, Matiaburj, Calcutta. It will continue even after my death, for so long as the Trust of the King of Avadh continues.
Maharaja Dr. Vibhurti Narain Singh, Chancellor of Benares Hindu University, who wanted to simultaneously revive the Taziadari at Ramnagar Fort, has at my request postponed it to a near future date in order to do so in a separate grand ceremony at the Qula itself.
The Government of Inida and the State of uttar Pradesh are appreciating and patronizing our joint efforts to recreate the communal harmony and goodwill that existed here before the advent of the Feringhee to our peaceful land of milk and honey.
|King of Oudh's Mausoleum,
July 3, 1981
(Prince Anjum Quder)