Wednesday, February 09, 2005

The Last Mughal Emperor - The Memorable Poet

Lagtaa nahii.n hai jii meraa uja.De dayaar me.n
kis kii banii hai aalam-e-naa_paayedaar me.n

Kah do in hasarato.n se kahii.n aur jaa base.n
itnii jagah kahaa.N hai dil-e-daaG_daar me.n

Umr-e-daraaz maa.Ng kar laaye the chaar din
do arazuu me.n kat gaye do intazaar me.n

Kitnaa hai bad_nasiib "Zafar" dafn ke liye
do gaz zamiin bhii na milii kuu-e-yaar me.n

Bahadur Shah "Zafar" - the last mughal emperor, wrote this ghazal after he was deported to Rangoon (Burma) after the revolt of 1857. He knew he would never be able to go back to his Homeland. He was buried in Rangoon itself after his death. His tomb still stands in Rangoon.

This ghazal tells a lot about his love for his kingdom, birthplace and motherland. It clearly speaks about his helplessness, wish to get back what he lost, longing and hope for independence.

Lastly, he expresses his misfortune that he couldn't get the honour to be buried in his own country. Such was the love of India for a descendant of "Babur".


Manzoor Khan said...

Very touching lines, indeed. Incidently, I came across this small piece about the Emperor's grave, in the Outlook Magazine:


Barely half a kilometre from Shwedagon is buried the last emperor of India—the last Mughal, Abu Zafar Sirajuddin Bahadur Shah Ghazi (1836 to 1857)—who was exiled to Rangoon by the British in 1862 for treason and rebellion. Next to him is Zeenat Mahal, his queen who died in 1886. This chunk of India interred in Rangoon was restored as a mausoleum only in 1991 by the Indian embassy. This was also the beginning of constructive engagement and India reversing its policy of isolating Burma. According to G.D. Khosla’s The Last Mughal, officer-in-charge prisons, Capt David, recorded about the burial site: "No vestige will remain to distinguish where the last of the great Mughals rests."
By - Ashok K. Mehta

Unknown said...

Um....the last person to hold the title Emperor of India was George VI and his "reign" ended in 1948 (made retroactive to August 15, 1947). (Interestingly, the last "Empress of India", "the Queen Mother", died in 2002.)

Of course, Bahadur Shah was the last native emperor and his importance is not any less because of this. I wish someone would post a picture of the mausoleum. Someone has posted what is apparently a very, very rare picture of Bahadur Shah at:

Take a look!

Unknown said...

PS: Also, the term "Great Mughal" is usually reserved for the first Six: Babur, Humayun, Akbar, Jahangir, Shah Jahan, and Aurangzeb.

Let's at least keep our own history straight.

Hari said...

excellent blog my dear,
I have always loved urdu poetryand this one is another classic

Hari said...

I very much appreciate your blog !

if you don't mind I would be adding a link to yours in all my blogs ,