M S VATTS SUPERINTENDENT ARCHAEOLOGICAL SURVEY OF INDIA; DID DISCOVER GRAVE OF USTAD AHMAD LAHORI IN AURANGABAD.
Pandit Madho Sarup Vats was an archaeologist, who later became Director General of Archeological Survey of India. He was well familiar with Lahore, for he had done his studies at University of Punjab Lahore, in the Sanskrit language. He is famous for his work on Harappa civilization as well as Mohenjo-Daro. A totally unbiased scholar who did serve in many ways. In the course of his Superintendence, he came across the grave of Ustad Ahmad Lahori, outside Aurangabad city. Perhaps Khuld Abad. He wrote about it in his article on Repairs to the Taj Mahal in Ancient India. The unfortunate part was that it was the year 1946 and in 1947 Pakistan came into being. No longer the time to please the Muslims of the area.
In a foot note in the magazine “Ancient India”, he wrote that there is an epigraph on the tombstone of Ustad Ahmad Mimar written by his son Lutufullah Ahmad Muhandis. The epigraph talks of Ustad Ahmad as being the Architect of the Taj Mahal of Agra, Red Fort Delhi and the Jamia Masjid, Shahjahanabad. Such an important tombstone went unrecorded. M S Vats died on 7th December, 1955. Our dear Friend in Patiala R.P. Srivasthava was contacted by us to research on the papers of M.S. Vats and he contacted his wife, But no luck. Trace was not possible. It seems that the grave was kept as a secret by Indian authorities.
Eventually it will come out, but till then we have to revert to other sources. Like the Diwan of Lutufullah Muhandis, namely Diwan Muhandis for the same information. This is well known manuscript and clears follies of so many scholars on the same subject. Art and architecture are a pure source of things. One should keep bigotry away from it. It is worthy of being recorded, and perhaps with so many Indians making Vlogs on Youtube on architecture, someone may eventually find it. We in Pakistan have no capacity to explore its location. Thank you, M.S. Vats for your contribution!
THE PATHOS OF SHAH ALAM AND HIS TIMES A PUNJ SURA WRITTEN BY HIM BEFORE BLINDNESS SURROUNDED BY MIR JAFFERS AND MI6 007 SABOTEURS
If you read even a few pages of the history of Shah Alam, you shudder with the complexities and pathos of that time. The backbone of all nations are the Armies and the enemy knows that to gain inroads to the nation, the Army as to be dismantled. Warriors of the Timurids like Zaheer ud din Babar were not puppets under any hands. Each King in succession had the Army in control. Prince Dara Shikoh lost his battles for he was not battle hardened in any way and sought the recluse of so called Black Magic to try to end the war in Kandahar. Obviously it was lost. Emperor Aurangzeb rose to prominence for he was battle hardened till the very end. At the age of 92 years, he was ready for war with all enemies, When Kings were left to indulge in the charm of the palaces, relish the foods, wear the fancy dresses, entertained by ladies, or sexual gimmicks, the end result is always the same. The rise and fall of civilizations always take place.
Even a brief look at the times of Shah Alam is beyond comprehension. Lack of rain, lack of food, earthquakes, meteor rain, revolt of Army for pay and salaries. Connivance of various Ministers to get to being the Regent of affairs. The end result in 1784 is that Shah Alam is thrown on the floor and his eyeballs removed to be blinded forever. Even a Court painter was called to record the historical scene . And then came the scourge of the Syed brothers, the Ghulam Qadir tyrant of all times. Ghulam Qadir was so cruel, that not only he got Shah Alam blinded, he starved to death member of the Royalty, placed the ladies on walls of the Fort to be observed by all, and to have even Royal Princesses stripped naked and fondled by his soldiers. He asked his soldiers to make them beget illegitimate warriors instead of the wimps they were producing as Mughal Royalty.
When Shah Alam’s eyeball;s were throw out, he was asked what he could see. And he said between him and the asking Minister he could only see the Quran. Strange words for an Emperor, and yet four years before in 1194 AH 1780 AD, the Emperor had finished writing an illuminated Punj Sura (Five surats of the Quran). Shah Alam is no more and yet the Punj Sura is still there. The result of his last years, a treasure of the future.
Ghulam Qadir was to die his consequential end. An historian writes of it like this:
“So Sindia ordered that Ghulam and the former superintendent of the imperial harem were to be tortured to death. Ghulam ears were cut off and hung around his neck. With his face blackened, he was paraded round the city in a bullock-cart. Next day, his nose and lips were cut off and again he was shown to the city. The following day his eyeballs were torn out and yet again he was placed in a cart and trundled slowly though the streets. He eyes were followed b his hands, and then by his feet. Finally his head was cut off and the corpse was hung upside down from a tree.”
His reward for what he had done to Shah Alam and can be recorded too:
“Screams of the tortured filled the harem. Servants were held over fires to make them disclose the whereabouts of hidden jewels. Others had boiling oil poured into the palms of their hands.. Eunuchs were beaten to death. Shah Alam was himself brought out of his prison and subjected to less extreme torture. He was made to sit in the burning sun without food or drink. He was continually threatened, and Ghulam would — without warning— fling his arm round the ex emperors neck and blow a cloud of acrid smoke into his face. Finally the edge of madness when Shah Alam was thrown to the floor and his eyeballs taken out.”
What had been done to the Mughal ladies had never been done before. Many were starved to death in the eyesight of the people on the Fort walls. Also stripped naked and fondled by common soldiers in front of all. Humiliations were complete and Ghulam Qadir paid the price.
Who gained? First the French General De Boigne and then the British visitor Thomas Twining. Then Lord Wellesley stepped in for the advantages. General Perron took control of northern India. With a pension Shah Alam could stay in the palace, the rest was for the British alone. In fact substantial treasure fell into the hands of the French mercenary Lestenean, who left for British territory and later for Europe with his windfall. DIVIDE AND RULE AND 007 ASSASSINS all were there in full force. It was the Mughal Army which was fist brought down with discord. The House of Timur had finally fallen and Hindustan was left bare for centuries to come.
Did we learn any lessons! Today the situation is still the same. Foreign lobbies are working to throw our army in disarray and take our assets. Hatred destroys people. There is every reason to believe that there is unnatural hatred for Muslims primarily Pakistanis for our CODE OF LIFE. Anarchy is being generated for us but by the Grace of Allah, we will come out of this malaise and be Pakistan again. So be it!
THE MEMOIRS OF ABDUR RAHEEM KHAN KHANAN MAASER I RAHEEMI; MULLA WAISHI YAZDI TALKS OF USTAD HERAWI AS ARCHITECT OF KHAN: MORE SPECIFICALLY MULLA ABDUL BAQI NAHAVANDI REVEALS NAME, OF MUHAMMED ALI MIMAR GARAG, HAMMAMI AS ARCHITECT WORKS.
Islamic civilization talked of cleanliness as being half of faith itself. That is why they spread the concept all over the world. Europe was without soap for a thousand years. In fact, bathing was considered injurious to health. The cleaning practice in Hindustan was much to the desired, and it is legendary that the “Gudawi” that is a small vessel; provided all the water for morning cleanliness here. The arrival of the Muslims brought in different standards of cleanliness, and one finds the introduction of Public and Shahi hammams all over Indian region.
If we study the early hammams it is based on the concept of flowing water, rather than stagnated water. A look at the intricate hammam of Jaunpur Sultans tells us everything. Ventilation, hot and cold water, place for massage, bathing tubs and pools, toilet recluse, literally all the things that modern bath rooms are made off. All this in a separate enclosure for men and women, and interspersed with beautiful naqashi designs on the walls.
Abdur Raheem Khan Khanan was brilliant with all things which make a scholar, or a man of wisdom. He was Governor of Burhanpur and made lot of facilities for the city. One such facility was an intricate water system for the city. It was eighty feet deep and there were 111 kundis (narrow wells) all over the city. The flow was masterminded by the slope of water through gravity, and the air from towers built for the purpose. By use of special stones and filter elements, the water was more pure than mineral water. And the interesting part is that even today it is a working system and people come from all over the world come to go down in small lift to see the flow of water. A miracle of that age. Impossible for claustrophobic to go down but imagine the people who worked eighty feet deep all over the city and made it possible by joining 111 holes. And on top of line is the Janta Hammam for the public, and on the other Shahi Hammam for Shah Jahan and Mumtaz Mahal. A feat unparalleled in Hindustan. It is called KUNDI BHANDARAN, a derivative from Khooni Bhandaran, when initially the water flowing was of red colour.
Researchers could only come up with the name of USTAD HERAWI as the architect of Abdur Raheem Khan Khanan. What was missing was the actual name mentioned in the Memoirs of Abdur Raheem Khan Khanan. His name was Muhammed Ali, and his famous name was GARAG (that is Wolf), and he was famous as HAMMAMI, that a reflection of his proficiency in same. We translate the actual paragraph about him from the memoirs. An engineering feat of exceptional work. Happy reading!
In praise of hammamBecause in Hindustan initially there was governance of Kafirs and Hindus that was the reason that in their cities there were no hammams and the Muslim umma were deprivated from this blessing and the Muslims here due to lack of Hammams were in great difficulty. That is why when construction went into the hands of Iranian people then the Governor gave the order for construction of a public hammam in an open ground and in short time the architects of the government concentrated and that is why Mohammed Ali who was famous as Garag (wolf ) and who came from Khurasan (being Herat), he built a very clean and scruplous hammam and the residents and travelers took advantage of it and prayed for the government. The fair thing to say is that Hammam was comparable to heavenly. This design was very much an innovation of his own mind and he dedicated it as charity making it a waqf and was completed in date by the fifteenth and today the whole city’s needs are being fulfilled by it.
It can be presumed that Ustad Muhmmed Ali was responsible for the Janta Hammam, Shahi Hammam and for the construction of Kundi Bhandaran too. For all three are interlinked with each other.
An addition to our knowledge is the name of a geologist by the name of Tabkutul Arz (also referred as Arkbul Arzin, who guided Abdur Raheem Khan Khanan on the feasibility of this project in 1615 AD. We know that Arzin is a small village in Iran, in Taragavar, West Azerbaijan, and it seems to be proficient in Turkish knowledge of geology. Naturally a full team of architects were responsible for putting this project into motion, and Ustad Muhammed Ali must have supervised it all.