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Hyderabad History

400 Years Rich History of Hyderabad

Hyderabad History is very rich and interesting, so don't worry,

you will not get bored reading it.
History of Hyderabad is inextricably linked with the rise and
fall of various kingdoms, Qutb Shahi to Asaf Jahi (Nizams),
which flourished in the Deccan region during the medieval and
modern times.
It was the famous Qutb Shahi's rule that opened a glorious
chapter in the chronicles of Hyderabad.

Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, Founder of Hyderabad

Fifth ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty
(Accession 1580 - Death 1612)

The birth of a city

Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, a ruler of the Qutb Shahi dynasty,
was the founder of Hyderabad City. In the year 1591, when the
Moon was in the constellation of Leo, Jupiter in its own abode
and all celestial planets favourably placed, he laid the
foundation of a new city which he called Bhagyanagar after his
beloved queen 'Bhagmati'. Bhagmati embraced Islam and took
the name Hyder Mahal and consequently Bhagynagar was
renamed Hyderabad after her.

City of Love
The fourteen year old crown Sultan of Golconda, Muhammad
Quli Qutb Shah was madly in love with beautiful Hindu
courtesan 'Bhagmati', a local dancer. Every evening, the Prince
of Golconda would ride to the village of Chichlam across Musi
river, to meet his beloved, for he couldn't live without watching
her dance, and listening to her soulful voice.
Legend has it that once heavy rains and thunderstorm lashed
Golconda and the city was devastated. Flood water of the Musi
river destroyed many homes and lives.
Young Sultan of Golconda, Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah was
worried for Bhagmati, so he decided to cross the flooded river
to meet her. His Royal guards tried to stop him as it was very
dangerous for the young sultan, but in vain. Prince rode to the
shore of the Musi river. He coerced his horse to step into the
river and as soon as it did, a furious current nearly swept it
away. It was a miracle that both survived and reached the
other end.
View of Musi River from Puranapul (Old Bridge)
After crossing the Musi river, Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah
rode towards the Chichlam village; he found many homes and
lives were destroyed, he was searching for Bhagmati all the
way and was praying for her safety.
Prince of Golconda found Bhagmati alive and felt happy after
meeting her. After storm subsided, Muhammad Quli Qutub
Shah and Bhagmati left for Golconda.
When Sultan Ibrahim, the father of the young Sultan heard this
tale of dangerous passion, he was alarmed and forbade
Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah from meeting Bhagmati. Young
Sultan was miserable without her. Beautiful women from
Armenia, Persia, Arab and different parts of India were brought
to entertain the prince, but none could attract his attention
away from his beloved 'Bhagmati'.
Sultan Ibrahim found that his son loved only Bhagmati and no
one else, no matter how beautiful she was. After seeing so
much love for Bhagmati, Sultan Ibrahim constructed the Purana
Pul (Old Bridge) – a massive stone bridge across the Musi
River, to make it easy for the young Sultan to reach Chichlam
to meet his beloved.
The romance of the crown Prince with a dancer evoked great
curiosity and controversy in Golconda. The fact that the
Bhagmati was a Hindu courtesan and much older than the
prince, created quite a uproar in the court. The orthodox
society was not ready to accept her as queen of Golconda.
After ascending the throne, Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah
defied all traditions, married Bhagmati, and made her his
queen. He re-christened her Hyder Mahal, and named the city
Hyderabad in honour of her.

Hyderabad History during Qutb Shahi rule

Qutb Shahi Kings - Rulers of the

1518 - 1687
The Qutb Shahi Kings were rulers between 1518 and 1687. As
the monuments of their time reveal, they were great builders,
lovers of architecture and patrons of learning. The greatest
and the most popular edifice of the time is the Charminar.
Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah, fifth ruler of the Qutb Shahi
dynasty, inherited a rich legacy – a prosperous and large
kingdom with the densely populated capital of Golconda.

Eight Qutb Shahi Rulers

I. Sultan Quli Qutbul Mulk
1518 - 1543
Founder and first ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

II. Jamsheed Quli Qutb Shah

1543 - 1550
Second ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

III. Subhan Quli Qutb Shah

Third king of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

IV. Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah

1550 - 1580
Fourth ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

V. Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah

1580 - 1612
Fifth ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty & Founder of Hyderabad City

VI. Muhammad Qutb Shah

1612 - 1626
Sixth ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

VII. Abdullah Qutb Shahi

1626 - 1672
Seventh ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

VIII. Abul Hasan Tana Shah

1672 - 1687
Eighth & last ruler of Qutb Shahi Dynasty

Hyderabad History during Mughal Attack

Mughal Attack
Fall of Qutub Shahi and the rise of Asaf Jahis
Abul Hasan Tana Shah was the last king of Golconda. It was
during his reign that the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb after a
siege of 8 months was able to storm into the fortress when the
gates were opened by a traitor in 1687. Abul Hasan was taken
prisoner first to Bidar and then to Daulatabad (Aurangabad)
where he died in prison after 12 years of captivity.
On September 22, 1687, Golconda was conquered by
Aurangzeb and became a part of the six Mughal provinces in
the Deccan. Mahabat Khan who was initially the Commander of
the Golconda army, switched sides and joined the Mughal
camp. He was appointed the Governor of Golconda-Hyderabad
state, by Aurangzeb.

Golconda Fort, Hyderabad

Though Aurangzeb tried to consolidate his authority over
Hyderabad, the city began to lose its importance. The final nail
was struck when the capital of the new province was shifted
from Hyderabad to Aurangabad, which became the new
headquarters of the Mughals in the Deccan.
In 1713, the Mughal Emperor, Farruksiyar, appointed a twenty
six year old warrior Qamaruddin as the new Governor of
Deccan. Qamruddin was the grandson of Chin Qilij Khan,
Aurangzeb's brave commander who lost his life during the
siege of Golconda. The young Governor proved to be an able
administrator and earned the title of Nizam-ul-Mulk or the
Governor of the Kingdom.
In October 1724, Nizam-ul-Mulk declared himself Subedar or
Governor of the six Deccan provinces - Aurangabad, Bidar,
Bijapur, Berar, Adilabad and Hyderabad.
Between the fall of the Qutub Shahi dynasty and the rise of the
Asaf Jahis dynasty, the city of Hyderabad steadily deteriorated.
Aurangzeb's only contribution to the city was the completion
of the Mecca Masjid in 1693. In 1763, after a gap of nearly
seventy six years Hyderabad regained its lost glory when
Nizam Ali Khan, the second Asaf Jahi ruler moved the capital
back from Aurangabad to Hyderabad.
Hyderabad History during Asaf Jahi rule

Asaf Jahi Dynasty - Nizams
1724 - 1948

The family of the Asaf Jah (Nizams) of Hyderabad is one of the
most illustrious that ever came to India.
The Asaf Jahi dynasty, familiar to all the by title of its
representative-the-Nizam-owes its origin to Mir Qamaruddin
Chin Qilij Khan, better known as Asaf Jah I.
Asafia Flag
Asaf Jahi dynasty ruled the state of Hyderabad for seven
generations (A.D. 1724 - 1948) establishing it as the largest
and foremost Muslim princely state in India. Hyderabad's
existence and development was intrinsically linked to the rule
of the Asaf Jahi dynasty and their contributions were
foundational to not only the States but the Deccan's social,
economic and cultural milieu.

Nizam's crest

Seven Asaf Jah Rulers - Seven Nizams

I. Mir Qamaruddin Chin Qilij Khan - Nizam I

1724 - 1748
Founder and first ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...
II. Nizam Ali Khan - Nizam II
1762 - 1803
Second ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...
III. Mir Akbar Ali Khan Sikander Jah - Nizam III
1803 - 1829
Third ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...
IV. Mir Farkhunda Ali Khan Nasir-ud-Daula - Nizam IV
1829 - 1857
Fourth ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...
V. Mir Tahniat Ali Khan Afzal-ud-Daula - Nizam V
1857 - 1869
Fifth ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...
VI. Mir Mahboob Ali Khan - Nizam VI
1869 - 1911
Sixth ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...
VII. Mir Osman Ali Khan - Nizam VII
1911 - 1948
Seventh and last ruler of Asaf Jahi Dynasty
Read More ...

Hyderabad History during India Independence

End of Asaf Jahi Dynasty

On the 10th of July 1947, the 'Declaration of the Indian
Independence' bill was introduced by Harold Macmillan. To the
Nizam's dismay, no mention or decision was taken regarding
the state of Hyderabad.
All princely states were given the option to either join India,
Pakistan or remain independent. All states that would join the
Indian Union would have to surrender their sovereignty and
their right to collect taxes. All princely states large and small
agreed to join the Union of India, except Hyderabad. In June
1947, the Nizam issued a Firman or a proclamation declaring
independence from the Indian Union.

Gold-plated chair of Nizam VII at Purani Haveli, Hyderabad

On the 15th of August 1947, India attained independence
from the British, but Hyderabad stood defiant as an
independent state. On 29th November 1947, the Nizam signed
a 'standstill agreement' with the Indian Union for a period of
one year.
In the months following the signing of the Standstill
Agreement, suspicion and misgivings between the Nizam and
the Indian government grew. Relations between the two were
far from amicable.
The Razakar Movement, supported by the Majlis Ittehad-ul-
Musalmeen, supporting Islamic supremacy in southern India
gained ground in Hyderabad. Led by the zealous Kasim Razvi,
the Razakars compelled the Nizam to maintain his
independence and not relent to pressure from the Indian
government. Claiming his right to remain independent in
accordance with the Indian Independence Act, the Nizam
declared Hyderabad a free, self-governing independent state
but the Government of India refused to accept his point of

H.E.H Mir-Osman Ali Khan Nizam VII with his court nobles - 1936
Sardar Vallabhai Patel, the deputy Prime Minister of India
insisted that the state had to merge with the Indian union and
to further tighten the noose, an economic blockade was
imposed on Hyderabad. On the 10th of September 1948, the
Nizam sent Nawab Moin Nawaz Jung to the Security Council to
represent Hyderabad's case before the United Nations. This
was the last straw. All channels of communication were
severed and the Government of India contemplated military
action against the defiant state.
On the 13th of September 1948, the Indian Army initiated its
Police Action Against Hyderabad. The exercise was termed
Operation Polo and for five days the Razakars and the
Hyderabad army made a half hearted attempt to resist the
Indian army. But their antiquated ammunition and ill equipped
soldiers were no match to an entire armoured division of the
mighty Indian army. A number of Razakars lost their lives in
the battle and their feeble resistance was soon overcome.
Staircase of Falaknuma Palace, Hyderabad
Five days later, on the 18th of September, 1948, the Indian
army entered Secunderabad Cantonment. Military rule was
A reluctant Hyderabad finally merged with the Union of India.
For a smooth transition and to placate the sentiments of the
hurt Hyderabadis, the Government of India considered it
prudent to appoint Osman Ali Khan as the Rajpramukh of
Hyderabad state, a position that he held from 26th January
1950 to 31st October 1956.
Democracy had the whole world in its grip and how long could
Hyderabad stay unaffected? The boundary of this region in the
Deccan was redrawn on linguistic considerations. The Marathi
speaking areas merged with Maharashtra, the Kannada
speaking region with Karnataka and on 1st November 1956,
the Telugu speaking areas along the region formerly known as
Andhra formed the new state of Andhra Pradesh with
Hyderabad as its capital.

Takht-e-Nishan (Royal Seat) in Durbar Hall of Chowmahalla Palace, Hyderabad

Mir Osman Ali Khan withdrew completely from public life and
choose to lead a quiet, secluded life with his family. He had
wisely formed a number of trusts that took care of his family's
need and funded his various charitable institutions.
In 1967 Osman Ali Khan passed away and his eldest grandson,
Mukarram Jah, became the new Nizam - a designation that
had no meaning, no duties and no responsibilities any more.
In 1972, the Indian Prime Minister, Ms Indira Gahndhi
abolished the 'privy purse' and monarchs and royal families
lost all their privileges at one go. Prince Mukarram Jah
migrated to Australia and while most of his estate is being
managed by the trusts formed by his grandfather, some of it
has been acquired by the government.
Thus an era became history and a Asaf Jahi dynasty spanning
seven generations faded into the twilight leaving behind an
indelible print on the sand of time.

Source: Hyderabad Portrait of a City

NOTE: Hyderabad History is very rich and unique. If you find
any old picture collections of Hyderabad please contact me, I
will add on this page of Hyderabad

Hyderabad History
Filed under Basics

Among the cities of India, Hyderabad, the capital of the new state of
Telangana, has one of the richest and most colourful histories, accentuated
by magnificent architecture and a rich culture. Several influences for the past
400 years has molded it into the A-1 status city it is today.

Ancient History
Before the city’s actual historical rise, the area where Hyderabad would
ultimately be established was under the rule of several kingdoms, including
those of Buddhist and Hindu royalty. It came under rule by the kings of the
Chalukya kingdom, whose feudal chieftains, the Kakatiyas, splintered off to
create their new kingdom and established it around Warangal. In 1321 AD,
the Sultanate of Delhi under the command of Muhammad bin Tughluq brought
Warangal to its knees, resulting in anarchy in the whole region. The next few
decades saw the battles for supremacy for the region among the Bahmani
Sultanate, the Masunuri Nayakas, and the Vijayanagara Rayas, which finally
ended with the Bahmani Sultanate exerting control by the middle of the 15th

Modern History
The Qutub Shahi Dynasty
The history of Hyderabad as a city began in 1518 when Sultan Quli Qut-ul-
Mulk declared independence from the Bahmani Sultanate and established the
fortress city of Golconda, calling himself the Sultan Quli Qutub Shah. Decades
before, Sultan Mohammed Shah Bahmani instructed Quli Qut-ul-Mulk to quell
insurgents and disturbance in the region, a job which the future ruler carried
only too well. By the time he established the Golconda Sultanate under the
title of Sultan Quli Qutub Shah and began the Qutub Shahi Dynasty, the
Bahmani Sultanate had completely disintegrated, splintering into five different
In 1589, the city of Hyderabad was finally built on the Musi River by the fifth
sultan of the dynasty, a mere five miles east of Golconda. Muhammed Quli
Qutub Shah dedicated it to his wife, Bhagyamathi, and also ordered the
construction of the monument of the city, which eventually became its icon,
the Charminar on 1591, reportedly as a way to thank the almighty for quelling
a plague before it destroyed his newly-built city. During this time and well into
the 17th century, Hyderabad’s power and fame rose as it became the center
of a highly successful diamond trade. All the Qutub sultans, great thinkers and
builders as they were, contributed hugely to the richness of Hyderabad’s
culture and affluence, attracting countless visitors from other countries who
compared it to Iran’s beautiful city, Isfahan.

The Mughal Empire

Hyderabad’s fame finally caught the attention of the Mughal prince
Aurangzeb, who laid siege on Golconda in 1686. Aurangzeb had been
spending most of his time in the Deccan establishing and enforcing the
Mughal superiority and sovereignity. When Shah Jahan finally died in 1666,
Aurangzeb consolidated his power as Emperor and he spent most of it trying
to expand his empire beyond that of his predecessor, Akbar the Great. His
target was Hyderabad, at that time one of the richest cities in the area, and
was reportedly impregnable because of the protection of Golconda Fort.
Aurangzeb’s initial sieges were failures and he had to leave in frustration.
However, he came back and it wasn’t until a nine-month long intensive siege
in 1687 when Golconda finally fell. Legend has it that the fortress would’ve
held on if it wasn’t for a saboteur who was bribed by Aurangzeb to open the
gates at night. Sultan Abul Hassan Tana Shah, the seventh and last king of
the Qutub Shahi dynasty, was imprisoned soon after Golconda fell.
Hyderabad’s importance declined, its flourishing diamond trade was
destroyed, and the city fell into ruins. Aurangzeb’s attention, itself, was
focused on the other parts of the Deccan shortly after, especially with the
Marathas steadily gaining ground, albeit slowly, against the reigning Mughals.

Rise of the Nizams

In 1724, Mir Qamar-ud-Din Siddiqi, was granted the title of Nizam-ul-Muk
(meaning Administrator of the Realm) by the Mughal emperor as viceroy
tasked to oversee parts of the Mughal empire in behalf of the emperor. He
intermittently ruled under the title of Asaf Jah and defeated a rival official in
order to establish control over Hyderabad. During this time, viceroys and
governors of Hyderabad have gained a considerable autonomy from the seat
of power at Delhi and, when the Mughal empire finally crumbled down in the
mid 18th century, the young Asaf Jah declared himself independent and the
dynasty of the Nizams was established.
It would not take long before the Nizams quickly surpassed the Mughals in the
domination of the southern parts of India, with their dominion hitting as high as
125 million acres (roughly 510,000 square kilometers). In the two centuries
that the Nizams ruled over Hyderabad, there were a total of seven Nizams,
excluding the 13 years where the three sons of Asaf Jah 1 ruled after him; the
three sons were not officially recognized as rulers (and thus, did not get the
title of Nizam). During these two centuries, Hyderabad saw immense growth
again, both culturally and economically. It finally became the capital with the
old one, Golconda, becoming all but abandoned. Hyderabad’s cultural glory
was again established, especially since the Nizams themselves were great
patrons of literature, art, architecture, and food. The Nizams themselves were
counted as among the wealthiest people in the world; in fact, the last Nizam is
ranked as the fifth wealthiest people in the history of the world today, with his
fortune at its highest pinned at US$225 billion, adjusted to today’s value.

Integration into the Nation

When the British and French took hold over most of India, the Nizams played
a delicate game of balance and subterfuge. They allied themselves with each
side at different times, playing an important role in the wars involving Tipu
Sultant, the French, and the British. The Nizams eventually won the friendship
of the Western invaders without giving up their powers. As a result,
Hyderabad was still ruled by a Nizam, and it became the largest princely state
of India. As a princely state, Hyderabad had its own currency, railways, mint,
and postal system. The citizens enjoyed no income tax.
When India finally gained its independence in 1947, the Nizam at that time
made known his intention to become independent, either by gaining dominion
status by the British Empire or as a sovereign ruler. The Nizam signed a
Standstill Agreement with the Indian Union which, by this time, had
surrounded him on all sides. Breakdown in law and order soon followed, with
fights between the supporters of the Nizam and the supporters of Congress.
As the violence spiraled out of control, the newly established Indian
government initiated a police action called Operation Polo. On September 16,
1948, the Indian army moved in to the state of Hyderabad in five fronts. Five
days later, the Nizam’s army surrendered, and the Nizam signed the
Instrument of Accession, integrating Hyderabad into the Indian Union as a
Development of Education
System in India during British
On March 19, 2014 By Deepak Chaturvedi
Category: Modern History of India
Education policy of the British: In pre-British days Hindus
and Muslims were educated through Pathsala and
Madrassa respectively. Britishers showed no interest in
advancement of learning in the first stage of their rule in
India. Some of the Britishers in personal endeavor and for
political gain showed some interest in spreading
education. Warren Hastings, Governor-General of Bengal
showed keen interest in spreading oriental education in
which effort Jonathan Duncan, Nathani Halhead, Sir
William Jones, joined hands. Sir William Jones, the
Justice Calcutta High Court, established Asiatic Society at
Calcutta (1784 A.D.). Here they started research on
oriental education and culture. At the time of Lord
Wellesley Fort William College was established (1800
A.D.). Here the British Civilians were taught Indian
languages, laws, customs, religion, geography etc. By
endeavor of Wilkins Jones, Colebrook, William Carey this
oriental education got a foothold.

Stop seeing this

Endeavour of the Christian Missionaries: British colonial
ruler did not show any interest in education. The Christian
Missionaries were the first to come forward. The Baptist
Missionary William Carey came to India in the year 1793
A.D. He along with his friends established Baptist Mission
in Serampore (1800 A.D.). By their enthusiasm many
primary schools came up in nearly places.
They es-tablished a printing press and stilled printing
booklets in Bengali. Carry translated the Ramayana in
English (1800 A.D.) By his inspiration the Bible was
translated in differ­ent Indian languages and Halhead’s
Bengali Grammar’s new edition was published. By their
zeal an English school was established in Serampore in
1818 A.D. That is now known as Serampore College.
Personal Endeavour: At that time by the attempt of few
liberal Indians and foreigners non-government schools
were founded to spread English education. Out of them
most memorable were Raja Rammohan Roy, Raja
Radhakanta Deb, Tejchandra Rai Bahadur of Burdwan,
David Hare, the watchmaker of Scotland. Raja
Rammohan Roy was the father of modern India. By his
own endeavor he established Anglo Hindu School in 1815
A.D. By personal endeavor two English schools were
founded in Chinsurah (1800 A.D.) and Bhawanipur (1848
A.D). Few energetic Indians and high-minded English
civilians came forward to establish Hindu College in
Calcutta in the year 1817 A.D. This is now the famous
Presidency College.
Endeavour of the government: In the Charter Act of 1813,
Rupees one lakhs per year was sanctioned for
advancement of education in India. Now there was a
debate about the line of expenditure of this
amount. Some said that it should go for oriental
education; the others said that the sum was to be spent
for English education. Raja Rammohan Roy was in favour
of spending the money in western education. But that was
not done. The General Committee of Public Instruction
(1823 A.D.) decided to spend the money on oriental
studies. In 1823 A.D. the decision was taken to establish a
Sanskrit College at Calcutta. Rammohan opposed this
During the rule of Lord William Bentinck (1828-1835 A.D.)
there was change in government’s education policy. He
appointed Thomas Babington Macaulay, a renowned
educationist, the chairman of the Committee of Public
Instruction. At that time the committee was divided in the
issue of Oriental or European education. Princep,
Colebrook, Wilson were the supporters of Oriental
education. They were known as Orientalist. But people
like T.B. Macaulay were the supporters of European
education. He had with him Alexander Duff, Sanders,
Colvin etc. at his side. They became known as Anglicists.
Macaulay presented a proposal of advancement of
English education in 1835 A.D. This was known as
Macaulay minutes.
1 He expressed his strong opinion in favour of English
education, as he thought that oriental culture was
defective, unholy and corrupted.
2 He thought that it would be better to give proper teaching
to a small number of upper and middle-class
students as a law of infiltration it would reach to more
number of people. This law was known as infiltration
3 He opined that a shelf of Europeans library was equal to
the whole literature of India and Arab. Practically, this
opinion was the result of his complete ignorance and
blind nationalism.
4 He wanted to create a good number of black Europeans
who would support the British government. The
government approved the Macaulay proposal and
after that by the government the education English
language and science started spreading very quickly.
It was in the same year (1835 A.D.) Calcutta Medical
College and Elphinstone College at Bombay were
established. During the time of Lord Auckland (1836-
1842 A.D.) government sanctioned more money for
propagating Anglicized education.
In 1842, the Public Instruction Committee was rejected
and Council of Education was formed. Few Indian
members were taken in this Council. Charles Wood’s
recommendation in the question of spreading of higher
education was very important. He was the Chairman of
the Board of Control. His proposal about education was
known as Wood’s despatch. He gave in­struction to
regularize the education system from primary stage to
University level. He also instructed to educate pupils in
both English and Vernacular. By his recommendation
Education Department was established. In 1857 A.D.
Calcutta, Bombay and Madras Universities were