His Exalted Highness Nizam of Hyderabad’s 54th death anniversary observed

* Historian Dr Safiullah demands memorial, lessons in curriculum

* Having ascended the throne in 1911, HEH the Nizam VII was an absolute monarch who called Hindus and Muslims as his two eyes

* He put Hyderabad on the world map with his visionary development and policies

By Dr Ahmed Mohiuddin Siddiqui

The 54th death anniversary of His Exalted Highness (HEH) Nawab Sir Mir Osman Ali Siddiqui Khan Bahadur – the Nizam VII of the erstwhile Asaf Jahi Kingdom of Hyderabad was observed with floral tributes and prayers at Masjid -e- Judi in Hyderabad on Wednesday.

Prayers for the departed soul of HEH Nizam VII

Prince Najaf Ali Khan, grandson of the Nizam, eminent historian Dr. Mohammed Safiullah, senior journalist Inamur Rahman Ghayur, Dr Haseeb Jafferri and others were present.

The Deccan Heritage Trust and the Heritage Buffs of Hyderabad are at the forefront in preserving the glorious heritage of Hyderabad. They take the initiative to observe the great ruler’s birth and death anniversaries too.

Having ascended the throne in 1911, HEH the Nizam VII was an absolute monarch who called Hindus and Muslims as his two eyes.


He is well-known as the richest man in the world. The Times Magazine carried a cover story on him and put his picture on the magazine cover in 1937.

The modern builder of Hyderabad put Hyderabad on the world map with his visionary development and policies. HEH the Nizam VII built the world-acclaimed Osmania University with Urdu as the medium of instruction.

He built the Osmania General Hospital, the Nizam Institute of Medical Sciences, the Nizamia General Unani and Maternity Hospital, the Nizam Sugar Factory, Paper Mills, Nizam’s Railway, water resorviors — Osman Sagar and Himayat Sagar, which still provide drinking water to Hyderabad.

HEH the Nizam’s kingdom was absorbed into the Indian Union in 1948. He was appointed as the Raj Pramukh (Governor) by the Government of India. One of the greatest patriots of India, the generous Nizam donated 2-tonnes of gold from his personal wealth to the Government of India after an appeal by the then Indian Prime Minister.

Prince Najaf Ali Khan paying floral tributes to

This helped to ease the financial situation and take care of the needs of the brave Indian army during the Indo-China war. No wonder, Hyderabad saw one of the largest funeral processions in the history of India, when HEH the Nizam left the mortal world for his heavenly abode.

More than a million people lined up the streets of Hyderabad to bid adieu to Hyderabad’s most brilliant son ever in 1967.

The Nizam era buildings — colleges, palaces, hotels have fallen on bad days for want of preservation from the Government of India and the Government of Telangana due to utter neglect.

The heritage warriors and conservationists like Anuradha Reddy, herself a princess of a feudatory under HEH the Nizam, are moving heaven and earth to restore and preserve the glorious heritage of Hyderabad.

Sea of humanity turned up for funeral of HEH
Nizam VII in 1967

The Indian National Trust for Arts and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) under the able stewardship of Anuradha Reddy has inspected critical heritage structures like the Arts College building in Osmania University, Hotel Ritz at Naubat Pahad and other places.

The INTACH has drawn up extensive reports, which are highly valued. Recently, the Government of Telangana has allocated Rs. 3 Crores (One US dollar equals 72 Indian rupees) which is about US$414,150.

Anuradha Reddy has suggested to the government the use of the original traditional raw materials to repair and restore the heritage structures. Telangana Chief Minister KCR and his able son K. Tarak Rama Rao (KCR), Minister for Municipal Administration and IT were educated in Osmania University. Hence, both are proud Osmanians.

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They should allot more funds for the Arts College and Osmania University to bring back the glory of the national institutions par excellence. Save the heritage structures by repairing and restoring them. They should make Osmania University free from encroachments of land grabbers.

The Government of Telangana need to undo the wrongs of the Andhra chief ministers, who damaged the heritage and also snatched away prime lands of the Nizam’s family.

It may be recalled that the founder Chief Minister of Telangana K. Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR) had promised to re-name the K. Brahmananda Reddy Park (KBR) as the Asaf Jahi Park.

Should KCR be reminded that KBR was responsible for scuttling the Telangana agitation earlier and was responsible for the deaths of scores of Telangana youth in police firing.

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Why should the park retain the name of the oppressor of Telangana? KCR should re-name the park as Asaf Jahi Park or HEH Nizam VII Park as promised.

Eminent historian and heritage enthusiast Mohammed Safiullah has demanded the government to build a suitable memorial for HEH the Nizam VII for his unprecedented vision in the development of Hyderabad.

He wanted lessons to be included in the school and college curriculum to acquaint the future generations about the phenomenal role played by HEH the Nizam in building a prosperous and self-reliant Hyderabad.

Dr Mohammed Akhter is a rare geographer who delves deep into history.

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He pointed out that Masjid -e- Judi was built by HEH the Nizam in memory of Prince Jawad Jah, who passed away at an early age. HEH the Nizam Nawab Sir Mir Osman Ali Siddiqui Khan Bahadur wanted to be buried near his mother Zehra Begum. Hence, he willed that he should be buried at Masjid -e- Judi.

Perhaps, William Shakespeare had in his mind the coming of the great monarch in the future like His Exalted Highness the Nizam VII of Hyderabad, when he said:

He gave his honours to the world again,
His blessed part to heaven, and slept in peace.

Henry VIII (c. 1613), Act IV, scene 2, line 29