SULTAN ABUL HASAN QUTB SHAH(MAY PEACE BE UPON HIM)
Sultan Abul Hasan Qutb Shah was the seventh and the last ruler of the Kingdom of Golconda(Deccan,Southern India) under the Qutb Shahi Dynasty. He ruled from 1672 A.D. to 1687 A.D. He is also known as Abul Hasan Tana Shah and more popularly, he is known as ” TANI SHAH ” meaning ” benevolent ruler “. He did not discriminate against those of other ethnicities or religions. He had hired Hindus as his ministers and generals. Madanna was his Chief Minister. Madanna had a nephew by name Kancharla Gopanna. He had appointed Gopanna as a “Tehsildar”( a revenue official) of Palvancha county. Gopanna had inadvertently used the public funds for construction of RAMA temple on the banks of River Godavari at a place known as Bhadrachalam. Sultan Tani Shah found Gopanna was guilty of the misuse of the funds and had him imprisoned at the Golconda Fort.
A LEGEND ABOUT DIVINE INTERVENTION :
Gopanna spent about 12 years in the prison. According to legend, God had intervened on behalf of Gopanna. Lord Rama in disguise had come before the King and returned the money owed by Gopanna and the debt was cleared with gold coins.God who had come to rescue Gopanna from the prison had met the Sultan but not the prisoner. Upon his release from the prison, Gopanna did express his sorrow for missing the opportunity to meet the Lord. Gopanna was released from the prison and he had successfully finished the construction of the Rama temple which stands even today. Sultan Tani Shah had publicly acknowledged that he had met ” ALLAH ” and had recognized the fact that Gopanna’s release from the prison was made possible by divine intervention. He made permanent arrangements for the upkeep of this temple. The funds that were collected as tax from Palvancha county were allocated to the temple and also he had established an annual tradition of sending pearls to shower the Deity during the annual temple festival. This tradition of offering pearls was continued by the rulers of the princely State of Hyderabad popularly known as the ‘Nizams of Hyderbad’, who had ruled the Telangana region continuously until India’s independence. The Hyderabad State became a part of the Indian Union and the State of Andhra Pradesh came into existence in 1956 and the Government of Andhra Pradesh followed the tradition established by Sultan Tani Shah in the 17th century and the tradition of offering pearls to Lord Rama still exists.
VERILY A BLESSED SOUL :
This benevolent ruler defended the Golconda Fort for eight months when the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb had attacked it in 1687 A.D. In October 1687, the Fort was captured by bribery and Sultan Tani Shah was taken as a prisoner and was imprisoned in Daulatabad Fort until his death.
I would call Sultan Tani Shah is a Blessed Soul for he had recognized God’s plan and purpose and had supported Gopanna to build the temple and had provided for the maintenance of the temple and gave us the opportunity to know about God’s Compassion, Grace, and Mercy. Secondly, Sultan Tani Shah had received the biggest gift that a man could ever seek. Man always cherishes the idea of meeting his Creator, the Father in Heaven, Allah, the Lord, RAMA the divine reincarnation of VISHNU and very few actually realise that dream. Gopanna was rescued but could not meet RAMA. Sultan Tani Shah did not pray or ask for this favor from God. He is a Blessed Soul because God had granted him that gift. He had received a sensory experience of that Reality called God and I fully trust this experience he had shared with others. Sultan Tani Shah’s actions substantiate his claim. Most importantly, he did not seek any personal reward or personal gain while he acted in obedience of a God he never actually believed and had never intended to worship in any manner. He had acted without seeking the fruits of his actions. I bless this Shia Ruler of Golconda and may Lord’s Peace be upon him for ever.
Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah, the fifth Sultan of the Qutb Shahi Dynasty of Golconda had described the then new city of Esfahan of Persia as ” unparalleled in the world and a replica of Heaven itself “. He ascended to the throne in 1580 at the age of 15 and ruled for thirty-one years. He founded the city of Hyderabad and this most well planned city was modeled on the city of Esfahan. Architects from Persia planned the lay out of Hyderabad city which was built on the southern bank of Musi River in 1591. Charminar(Four Towers) was built as the architectural centerpiece and it defines the center of the Hyderabad city. He had married a Telangana Telugu woman named Bhagmati and hence the city is known as ‘BHAGYA NAGAR’. He had given her the name Hyder Mahal and the city got its name from her new identity. He built JAMA MASJID in 1597.
Please view the related blog post titled ‘Shia Ruler of Golconda – Verily a Blessed Soul’.
Quli Qutub Mulk, a Shia Muslim from Persia(present day Turkmenistan) with friends and a few relatives had migrated to Delhi in the beginning of 16th century A.D. He migrated south to Deccan and served Bahmani Sultan Mohammad Shah. He conquered Golconda and was appointed as the governor of the Telangana region(about the size of France) in 1512 A.D. After the disintegration of the Bahmani Kingdom into the five Deccan Sultanates, he had declared independence, assumed the title of ‘QUTUB SHAH’ and established the Qutb Shahi Dynasty of Golconda in 1518 A.D. Qutub Shahis were great builders and patrons of learning. They not only patronized the Persian culture but also the regional culture of the Deccan, symbolized by the Telugu language and the Deccani idiom of Urdu. The Golconda rulers learned Telugu.
Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham,
Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India.,
QUTUB SHAHI DYNASTY-HISTORICAL MONUMENTS OF HYDERABAD
The Qutub Shahis was the ruling family of the kingdom of Golconda, DECCAN, southern India. They were Shia Muslims and belonged to a Turkmen tribe from the Turkmenistan-Armenia region. The dynasty ruled Golconda for 171 years until the Mughal Emperor Aurangazeb’s armies conquered the Deccan in 1687. Amidst beautifully laid out gardens of Ibrahim Bagh there are seven tombs erected in the memory of the departed kings of Golconda and they are known as Qutub Shahi tombs. They are located one km away from Golconda Fort. The site is considered to be one of the world’s largest necropolis and nowhere in the world there are so many tombs in one place.
Each tomb stands on a raised platform. It is a domed structure built on a square base surrounded by pointed arches. The quadrangular terrace is approached on all sides by flights of steps. The galleries of the smaller tombs are single storied while the larger ones are two-storied. In the center of each tomb is a sarcophagus which overlies the actual burial vault in a crypt below. The material used was Grey granite embellished with stucco ornamentation. The domes were originally overlaid with blue and green tiles of which only a few pieces remain now. The tombs were once furnished with carpets, chandeliers and velvet canopies on silver poles. Qurans were kept on decorated supports.Golden spires were fitted over the tombs of the Sultans. The tombs were surrounded by rose gardens and fountains. The tomb of founder of Hyderabad City, Muhammad Quli Qutub Shah is the most impressive, rising to a height of 42.5 meters with a large dome and 28 open arches on each side. He had taken Iranian help in the planning of Hyderabad.
Iranian Government and the Iranian Consulate in Hyderabad have taken a great interest in the restoration work of these tombs. During August 2006, six Iranian experts had visited the site to draw up the plans for restoration which also includes the Prema mati Mosque, and the Badshahi Ashoor Khana where tears are shed over the martyrdom of the Prophet’s grandson Hussain. The underground drainage system, the fountains and the hamam(bath) that existed before would be restored. Gardens will be developed in and around the monuments. This project when completed will be like 20 Taj Mahals at one place.
Please view the related blog post titled ‘Shia Ruler of Golconda – Verily a Blessed Soul’.
The Imam Square in Isfahan houses two blue mosques which use lapis lazuli and gold and silver work with shades of turquoise and emerald, the entire structure gets a dazzling blue appearance. These pale blue tiles of Isfahan’s Islamic buildings is very unique and the historical Qutb Shahi monuments at Golconda, Hyderabad, Deccan, India would be restored on the same lines and would be preserved like the monuments in the city of Isfahan.
Isfahan is located at about 400 km (250 miles) south of Iranian capital city of Tehran. Isfahan is considered to be a charming and memorable place and if it is known as ” nesf-e-jahan meaning that Isfahan is half the world, I would name Hyderabad(DECCAN),India as the other half. Hyderabad is charming and its historical monuments are being restored and the city was originally modeled after Isfahan and very soon people would appreciate the connection between these two cities.
CHIEF OF ARMY STAFF, INDIAN ARMY February 1, 1985 to May 31, 1988.
GENERAL KRISHNASWAMY SUNDARRAJAN(SUNDARJI), PVSM.
We can not win peace if we are not ready for war. There will be no peace until we are willing to stand up to the challenge posed by the enemy. People who arrive at the battlefield fully prepared are more likely to display courage and the well-prepared are more likely to win.
IS WAR AN ART FORM ???
General Sundarji served as the General Officer Commanding, First Armoured Division of Indian Army during 1976 to 1978 and I had served in 55 Medical Battalion of First Armoured Division during that time. He would not let us give an excuse for not being prepared for the combat operations. He would stand next to me to check the expiration dates of the life saving medicines we bring to the battle and very often count the numbers to make sure that we carry enough quantity of each item that is included in our operational plans. Without preparation, no plan could be executed to accomplish its goal. While serving under his Command, I learned the importance of preparing for war. Shortcomings and deficiencies should not be ignored and should never be concealed. Being fully prepared boosts up the level of confidence and keeps up the fighting morale of men. I was fortunate to learn from his experience and his insistence and expectation that people under his command should excel in the art of preparing for war. He was an exceptionally good task master and would not permit any second guessing when he inspected Units to evaluate their battle preparedness. He paid scrupulous attention to every detail and no aspect of preparedness was considered trivial and no shortcoming would escape his attention. Under the leadership and stewardship of General Sundarji( whom I consider as my ‘Guru’) I learned the basic method of preparing for battle. He is described as the scholar General, military genius of India and is well-respected for his professional acumen and candor. He was the first and the only Infantry Officer in the Indian Army till date to command an Armoured Division. My learning experience started upon my posting to the First Armoured Division in 1976 while General Sundarji served as its Commander. In India, the classical literature had always described the use of weapons as an art which like all other branches of learning requires a ” GURU “(Teacher) and the act of preparing for war needs a proper attitude, discipline and application. Modern Warfare is like a Symphony Orchestra where different players come together, work in harmony to provide an alluring musical experience. The actual warfare may provide images of violence but the preparation for war is more of an art form. Just like the practice for a great musical performance, each player should learn the notes, tune the instrument to play the correct notes and synchronize their moves with the rest of the team. My service in the Indian Army had given me the opportunity to master this art of preparing for war and I would consider General Sundarji as a great Master of this Art.
YOU WIN PEACE WHEN YOU ARE READY FOR WAR :
In early 1979, as tensions between India and Pakistan had increased and in response to Pakistan’s military build up and aggressive postures, India had demonstrated its willingness to accept the challenge by moving its fighting forces and conducted a massive operation near the Indo-Pak border in the Thar Desert of the State of Rajasthan. I was deputed to witness this military exercise as an umpire and was asked to report upon the performance of a Medical Battalion. The Battalion was commanded by a Lieutenant Colonel and was supervised by an Additional Director of Medical Services, a Colonel. From my experience at the First Armoured Division and the mentor ship of General Sundarji, I had acquired a sharp eye and a passion for details. During the course of the exercise, I had submitted several reports to the Deputy Director of Medical Services at the Head Quarters of the Southern Army Command. I had frank and open discussions with the Officers and the men of the Medical Battalion about aspects of their training and preparedness. I had accurately pointed out their shortcomings in training and their deficiencies in stores and equipment. I was pleased to hear from all of them that they would not mind any hardship or inconvenience and that they would prefer to retrain and improve their battle preparedness. My reports had helped the Unit to identify the areas of weakness and later the Medical Battalion was provided with the necessary retraining.
The robust military response from India at that time in 1979 had forced Pakistan into a retreat and eased tensions between the two countries and averted the possibility of a war. From this experience, I learned that we can win peace when we are prepared for war.
Please also read the blog post titled ‘Blessings for Peace’.
MY CONNECTION WITH THE ‘ PARSI ‘ COMMUNITY OF INDIA :
Parsis are the followers in India of the Iranian Prophet Zoroaster. The name means ” Persians “. According to tradition, the Parsis had initially settled at HORMUZ on the Persian Gulf and they sailed to India in the 8 th century. They form a well-defined community and they have retained almost unchanged the beliefs and customs of their ancestors. Just like other Indians, the Parsis consider the elements of Fire, Water and Earth as sacred. I would like to speak about two members of this community with whom I am connected with love and a great admiration.
1.Field Marshal Sam Hormusji Framji Jamshedji Manekshaw :
In the year 1969, while I was a student at Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, I was granted Short Service Commission and was selected to join the Indian Army Medical Corps in the rank of Second Lieutenant. I had joined the Army Medical Corps on 26 July, 1970 in the rank of Lieutenant. On completion of my training, I was promoted to the rank of Captain on 26 July, 1971. My first task was getting ready for the crisis that India was facing on account of the influx of the Bangla refugees. General Manekshaw was born in Amritsar, Punjab to Parsi parents. He became the 8th Chief of Staff of the Indian Army in 1969 and his distinguished military career has spanned four decades and through five wars, including World War II. He has the rare distinction of being honoured for his bravery on the battle front itself. He was awarded Military Cross for display of his valour in face of stiff resistance from the Japanese while he was leading a counter-offensive against the invading Japanese Army in Burma. He is the architect of India’s heroic victory in the 1971 INDO-PAK WAR. He had shown uncommon ability to motivate the troops and coupled it with a mature war strategy. He had masterminded the rout of the Pakistan Army in one of the quickest victories in recent military history. I take pride in my military service and my connection to ” SAM BAHADUR “. This military experience has helped me while I had participated in Military Security and Intelligence Operations at Strait of Hormuz, Persian Gulf during 1984 to 1986 while I had served in the Land Forces of Sultanate of Oman. I began my military service under the leadership of a member of the Parsi Community which had arrived in India from Hormuz area of Persian Gulf (IRAN) and my military career has fatefully ended at Headquarters Peninsular Security Force, KHASAB, on the shores of Persian Gulf at Strait of Hormuz while I was very actively involved in arresting the growth of Iranian influence in that area.
2.FEROZE GANDHI( “FEROZE GANDHY” ) :
Feroze Gandhi was born into a Parsi family. He was a member of India’s first Parliament. He won his election in 1952 and in 1957 from Rai Bareilly constituency in Uttar Pradesh. His wife was his election manager. He was the husband of India’s first woman Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi and the father of the former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. His grandson is a Member of Indian Parliament. Feroze died in 1960 but his name connects me to our beloved Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. I was a student in Kurnool Medical College in 1966 when Mrs. Gandhi was first appointed as the Prime Minister. I wrote her a personal letter to congratulate her and she had graciously responded to that letter. In 1967, I was in New Delhi to participate in a National Student Seminar for National Integration . Myself and other student delegates had a opportunity to meet Mrs. Gandhi at her residence and exchanged our views and expressed our concerns on several issues. After joining Indian Army, in 1971, I was deputed to the Office of the Directorate General of Security which functions under the supervision of the Prime Minister’s Cabinet Secretariat. It gave me an opportunity to understand the great leadership role played by Mrs.Gandhi and it provided me an insight into her foreign policy initiatives. Mrs. Gandhi’s decisive leadership had helped India to successfully test our first nuclear weapon.
SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – OPERATION EAGLE – INDIRA GANDHI’S MILITARY ACTION IN CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS – LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH 1971:
Among several people who had participated in Operation Eagle 1971, I may mention the name of Flight Lieutenant PARVEZ JAMASJI of Indian Air Force, the Parsi helicopter pilot who had helped me with my battle casualty evacuation from Chittagong Hill Tracts to our Field Hospital at Lungleh, Mizoram.
Iran is an ancient land. We had trade and Cultural relations with Iran( PERSIA – THE LAND OF ARYANS ) for several centuries. People of Persian origin have immensely contributed to India in a variety of fields such as business, arts, architecture and public service. The Parsi community of India represents my connection to Iran.
Dr. R. R. Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S.,
Ex Number – MS-8466 CAPTAIN AMC/SSC, MR-03277K MAJOR AMC/DPC, XSCO-324 NAQEEB/CAPTAIN FMS HQ SOLF Sultanate of Oman
Medical Officer South Column Operation Eagle 1971
Headquarters Establishment No. 22 C/O 56 APO
Related Blog Posts :
1. A Sermon in Kaptai, Bangladesh – September 22, 2007
2. About Guns, Victory, and Gallantry Awards – Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971 – October 23, 2007
3. Liberation War of Bangladesh – Fallen Heroes on Both Sides – October 28, 2007
4. Sangram Medal 1971 – A Story that I shared with the Director General of Armed Forces Medical Services – November 22, 2007
5. The Spirit of a Jew – Revisiting the Birth of Bangladesh – February 10, 2009
6. The Phantoms of Chittagong – A Story from Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 17, 2009
7. The Fifth Army – The Untold Story from Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 18, 2009
8. The Medical Plan for Fifth Army in Bangladesh – The experience of Madhurya in Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 18, 2009
9. Award of Gallantry Awards – Indo-Pak War of 1971 – August 25, 2009
10. The Art of Battlefield Medicine – September 01, 2009
My Father, Shri. R. Suryanarayana Murthy, Principal(Retd) rejoicing during the Golden Jubilee Celebrations at Giriraj Government Arts College, Nizamabad.
INDIA’S RIGHT TO TEST NUCLEAR WEAPONS :
In the year 1961, my Father was transferred from Government Arts College, Rajahmundry to Nizamabad upon his selection as the Principal of Giriraj Government Arts College. At age 13, I had joined Giriraj as a student of the Pre-University Course. In 1962, at age 14, I had joined the Bachelor of Science, 3 year degree course. I had started understanding the security threats that were faced by India after the brutal Chinese aggression across our Himalayan frontier. I had also started to lose my faith in the United Nations as India was not able to defend its vital national interests in the Security Council and India had mostly survived on account of the help extended by the Soviet Union. At Giriraj, when we celebrated the ‘ U.N.O. DAY ‘, I had an opportunity to speak and publicly express my opinion about India’s relationship with the United Nations. As my Father, the Principal of Giriraj, was listening to me, I told the Faculty Staff Members and the assembled student community that India should exercise its rights to develop and test the nuclear weapons. India had actually carried out its first nuclear test at POKHRAN on May 18, 1974.
I WAS SMILING LIKE ” THE SMILING BUDDHA ” :
I love Giriraj, which had given me this courage to speak my mind without any inhibition or fear. Later in my life, in the year 1979, while I was a Major in the Indian Army, I had visited POKHRAN, the nuclear test site in the State of Rajasthan and I was smiling like ” THE SMILING BUDDHA “.