The Secret History of Hyderabad State of the Nizam (South India; 1724 – 1948)
Last Updated on October 22, 2020 by Hamad Subani
Things go Awry for British Intelligence
As with best laid plans, things soon started going awry for conspirators. There were three people who can be credited for this. Maulana Azad for kick-starting the Quit India Movement ahead of its time, Mahatma Gandhi for leading it to unprecedented success, and Subhash Chandra Bose, for raising the specter of Japanese intervention. A combination of these factors resulted in the British granting “independence” immediately following the end of World War II. In reality, they intended to delay “independence” till at least a decade later. During that time, they could restructure British India for the upcoming conflict between India and Pakistan. And while most princely states were intended to be absorbed by India or Pakistan, the British had plans to grant perpetual sovereignty to some select princely states, Hyderabad State among them. As these were meant to be serve as havens for Western Intelligence Agencies. Secretly stationed in these princely states, Western Intelligence Agencies would create and direct all conflict the Subcontinent, for all time to come. For Hyderabad State, they intended to develop several air force bases, from where fleets of jet fighters would operate. But none of this came to fruition.
The Powers That Be were quick to realize that they had shot themselves in the foot by their earlier policy of landlocking Hyderabad State. Now deprived of a port, it was going to be exceedingly difficult to bring in foreign arms shipments as well as foreign troops. Had they had more time, they would return a portion of the Northern Circars back to the Nizam in exchange for his invaluable support during World War II. But now, Hyderabad State had to make use of the Portuguese port of Goa on the West Coast. This was also a Chitpavani stronghold, and they had some kind of historical relationship with the Portuguese. These people and the unsavory interests running Hyderabad State were a match made………not exactly in heaven. An airport was hurriedly set up in Hyderabad. And soon enough, the Nizam had his own fleet of planes, which were bypassing Indian territory to Pakistan.
Once British India was granted independence on 15th August 1947, it was planned that the Partition riots would devolve into an all out war between the two newly created countries. And this would give Western intelligence agencies some respite, as well as the opportunity to strengthen the princely states. The 30th January 1948 assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, who was the biggest obstacle to such a war, was meant to be followed by an overthrow of the Congress party by Hindu extremists. But they lost public support and this failed to happen. The Congress Party continued to stay in power. It is interesting to note that Hindu extremists (who were also compromised by British Intelligence) had an informal stand-down policy when it came to Hyderabad. For example, some of the Chitpavani interests involved in the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi were known to collect funds for the purpose of war against the Hyderabad State. But they would pocket the funds and stage token robberies of Hyderabadi travelers on the road to Bombay to justify the fundraising.
Then Jinnah died on 11th September 1948, and in these early years, Pakistan almost slipped out of the control of the Powers That Be. On the Indian side, the departure of Lord Mountbatten resulted in Nehru increasingly acting on his own initiative.
Osman Ali Khan falls out with British Intelligence
Osman Ali Khan was crowned in 1911. There are rumors that his mother came from a poor background, and therefore he exhibited several traits consistent with those of a commoner. This was a constant source of irritation and annoyance to his retinue. Yet, he was chosen because it was assumed that with his humble background, he would content himself with a luxurious and opulent lifestyle like Mahbub Ali Khan and let the Powers That Be run the show behind the scenes. And this was indeed true for his early years as the Nizam. The Powers That Be fully understood that the Nizam commanded a certain belovedness among his people, which could only be understood by the citizenry of Hyderabad State. And only he could best control their emotions. And as we shall see, tens of thousands of civilians laid down their lives believing that they were protecting him. This was without any formal call to jihad by the Nizam.
We may never know when he changed. We can only speculate why he changed. But at a time when everything was going according to the plans of the Powers That Be, he launched a counter-conspiracy against British Intelligence and the Shiite and crypto-Shiite cohorts who surrounded him. Two other officials also seem to have also been part of this counter-conspiracy, and may have influenced the Nizam’s decision in a big way. The first was Major-General Syed Ahmed El Edroos, the Chaush Commander of the State Army of Hyderabad. The second was Nawab Chhatari, who was the Prime Minister of the Nizam till 1st November 1947. Along with them, it appears that the family of Salar Jung I (in particular, Salar Jung III) also influenced his decision to oppose British Intelligence. According a popular urban legend in Hyderabad, the Nizam and Salar Jung III once separately placed orders for Rolls-Royce cars. The British, seeing this as an opportunity to sow dissension between the two, had Rolls-Royce approve the order of the polished and Western educated Salar Jung III, but refused to qualify the Nizam’s order, citing his lack of gentlemanly qualities. The Nizam quietly accepted. But he secretly contacted Salar Jung III to add some more cars to his order, on the Nizam’s behalf. When the cars arrived in Hyderabad, the Nizam had them assigned for sweeping the streets of Hyderabad, complete with brooms attached to their front bumpers. When Rolls Royce found out, they offered their profuse apologies to the Nizam, and immediately agreed to qualify his order, and not just that of Salar Jung III.
Ever since India had become independent, the Nizam had officially opened a dialogue with it’s leaders. But unknown to history, parallel secret negotiations on the future of Hyderabad State were also taking place between the Nizam, his trusted aides such as General Edroos, Nawab Chhatari and Sardar Patel. On the other hand, Jinnah had also visited Hyderabad State several times before. There was a proposal for a Muslim League backed “Osmanistan,” as Hyderabad State was referred to by an early proponent of Partition Choudhry Rahmat Ali. But the Nizam seemed to detest Jinnah. Various stories have been made to explain his dislike for Jinnah. But the reality is that the Nizam detested British Intelligence. And he was privy to fact that the Muslim League had been severely compromised by British Intelligence. And any association with the Muslim League would further ensnare Hyderabad State into the trappings of British Intelligence.
This later became evident after Pakistan was created. The ISI was formed by a British-Australian Major General Sir Walter Joseph Cawthorn, who continued to supervise its operations even after the British left. He would return to Pakistan in 1954 as Australia’s High Commissioner to Pakistan, but it was more likely he had returned to supervise his creation. He later became the head of Australian Secret Intelligence Service. On the other hand, Congress dominated India had been designated to the Soviet Union. And therefore British Intelligence had actually minimized its footprint to make room for the future domination of the KGB. Many patriotic people associated with the Congress party took advantage of this power vacuum supplanted their own influence within Congress dominated India. The result was that the influence of British Intelligence had been significantly whittled down, compared to the Muslim-League dominated Pakistan.
It is unclear when British Intelligence figured out what the Nizam was up to. They were quick to respond to the Nizam’s overtures to Sardar Patel. After all, the Indian Army and Indian Intelligence (the IB) still had British staff, and the British were always in the loop about what was happening on the Indian side. Illuminati operatives within the ranks of the Congress Party deliberately made the possibility of peaceful union with India unpalatable to the Nizam by demanding that they would only accept the complete surrender of him and Hyderabad State to them, although some sort of compromise would have been more reasonable. In Hyderabad, the home of Prime Minister Nawab Chhatari was immediately surrounded by Razakars. They forced the Nizam to make Mir Laik Ali the new Prime Minister on 1st November 1947.
British Intelligence tries to Assassinate Osman Ali Khan
On 4th December 1947, A Maratha youth by the name of Narayan Rao Pawar tried to assassinate the Nizam by hurling a bomb at him. It is likely he had inside help. He was a member of of the Arya Samaj and had links to the Communist Party of India, both of which were connected to British Intelligence. Contrary to the claims of establishment historians, the annexation of Hyderabad by India was not inevitable. Some kind of solution could have been worked out. And this is exactly what the British were clamoring for. India was a newly formed nation, nervously monitoring the border with Pakistan and China. It had far more important and pressing concerns. But the Nizam realized that for more than a century, British Intelligence and their supporters had firmly entrenched themselves in Hyderabad State. They could only be evicted if Hyderabad State came under the control of the Congress Party. The alternative, Hyderabad State on its own, or Hyderabad State under the Muslim League, would only further embroil it in the activities of British Intelligence. And he sought to accomplish this before he would be killed in another assassination attempt, and replaced with a puppet more amenable to British Intelligence. History had given him a very narrow window of opportunity. He was old, frail, and likely to be assassinated or poisoned. At the same time, the British were conceding the rest of the Indian Subcontinent to a new power, the Congress Party. For the first time in more than a century, they were “retreating.” But this was a strategic retreat. They were also laying the groundwork for the newly created nations of India and Pakistan to go to war. And once these wars started, the KGB and the Soviet Army would actively intervene in India, while all parts of “Pakistan” (including Hyderabad State) would automatically succumb to the successors of British Intelligence (the CIA and NATO), and maybe even the American Army. Once the armed intervention of Western Powers took place, there would be no looking back. And all of the Subcontinent, including Hyderabad State would succumb to the Illuminati.
The End of Hyderabad State
The Nizam continued the secret negotiations with India (while keeping Laik Ali in the dark). It was only when Indian troops began pouring in that Laik Ali figured out he had been circumvented. This is mentioned in Laik Ali’s book, Tragedy of Hyderabad (Strangely, this book is banned in India). It seems that Sardar Patel also managed to keep things secret on the Indian side, and British Intelligence had been surprised. The Commander of Indian Armed Forces was still a British man (General Roy Bucher) and he openly opposed the idea of invading Hyderabad. But once he resigned, the path was clear.
It took some time for British Intelligence to figure out. They initially assumed that the Indian government had acted on its own initiative. And so, they prepared to prevent the Nizam from falling into the hands of Indian forces. Having the Nizam leave Hyderabad State would also result in a complete Razakar takeover of the State Machinery (which is probably what they really sought). The Nizam was instructed to immediately proceed to Begumpet (Hyderabad’s Airport), where a long range Bomber was waiting for him. It was piloted by Sidney Cotton, one of the best pilots MI-6 had to offer. He was running daily missions from Hyderabad State to Pakistan, supplying the landlocked State with much needed arms and ammunition. Even Laik Ali travelled with him for meetings in Pakistan. He had developed quite a reputation for his taunting of the Indian Air Force over radio….”Mr Nehru, where are your Tempests?” On board the plane were boxes with 100 million pounds in banknotes,John Zubrzycki, The Last Nizam (Sydney: Picador, 2007) 197. enough for the Nizam to start a new life in a European resort city on the Mediterranean coast. But no Nizam had ever fled Hyderabad, and neither would Osman Ali Khan. He pretended to leave for Begumpet, deliberately delaying until Indian forces had surrounded the airport. He used this as an excuse to not board the plane. It took off without him (but with the cash, which was never recovered).
The Indian strike force which entered Hyderabad State on 13 September 1948 was surprisingly small. This was because it never a proper strike force. It was tasked with capturing operatives of British Intelligence, who probably numbered a few thousands. Once British Intelligence was evicted, the Razakars would collapse. General Edroos had already agreed to peacefully surrender the Hyderabad Army. Thus the strike force would only engage with the poorly armed Razakars and scattered opposition. Part of the strike force was smuggled in by General Edroos on Hyderabad’s trains, flying the Hyderabad flag as they moved in. British Intelligence had planned to blow up the bridges if such trains ever arrived. But General Edroos made sure the bridges were secured before moving in the trains. The whole operation lasted just 4 days. The Indian government was so confident about the success of the operation that they codenamed it Operation Polo.
On board the plane were boxes with 100 million pounds in banknotes, enough for the Nizam to start a new life in a European resort city on the Mediterranean coast. But no Nizam had ever fled Hyderabad, and neither would Osman Ali Khan.
On 23rd September 1948, the Nizam took to the radio and said:
In November last year , a small group which had organized a quasi-military organization surrounded the homes of my Prime Minister, the Nawab of Chhatari, in whose wisdom I had complete confidence, and of Sir Walter Monkton, my constitutional Adviser, by duress compelled the Nawab and other trusted ministers to resign and forced the Laik Ali Ministry on me. This group headed by Kasim Razvi had no stake in the country or any record of service behind it. By methods reminiscent of Hitlerite Germany it took possession of the State, spread terror … and rendered me completely helpless.Lucien D Benichou, Autocracy to Integration (New Delhi: Orient Longman, 2000) 237.
Pay careful attention to the wording of the sentence “This group headed by Kasim Razvi had no stake in the country or any record of service behind it. By methods reminiscent of Hitlerite Germany it took possession of the State, spread terror……” The Nizam is clearly referring to a hostile takeover of his state by a foreign organization, a takeover which began in 1883 and was finally being consolidated under Prime Minister Laik Ali. Only British Intelligence would have this ability. Can the ragtag Razakars really be compared with efficient European organizations like those of Hitlerite Germany? Or was this a European organization at work, like British Intelligence? This can be the only rational explanation as to why the Nizam chose to embrace the uncertainty of a union with India. He was being ousted from his position as a sovereign head of state by the British Intelligence. He was losing power either way. But he chose the way which he perceived was in the best interests of his subjects.
In the ensuing conflict, anywhere between 40,000 to 200,000 civilians were killed. It is still unclear how this happened. One theory is that Hindu extremist groups, which had links to British Intelligence, went on the offensive. Despite the fact that up to this point, they had an unofficial “stand down” policy with regards to Hyderabad State. The idea was to give the misleading impression that they were working in concert with Indian troops, and they would thus force the mainly pacifist Muslim population of Hyderabad State to side with Razakars. Apparently, this was a last ditch attempt of British Intelligence to save Hyderabad State. Hindu extremists would later claim that this unnecessary bloodbath was their contribution to the “liberation” of Hyderabad State. It is also possible that British Intelligence sought to salvage Hyderabad State by involving the International Community (UN Intervention) by deliberately organizing a bloodbath. There is also a theory that these killings were the work of another force, and took place some days after Operation Polo concluded.
It is true that many civilians, unaware of the reality of the situation, volunteered to fight for their beloved Nizam. And many North Indian soldiers, also ignorant of the reality of the situation, styled themselves as conquerors and engaged in violence (On the other hand, a Keralite Company took the town of Nizamabad, and not a single shot was fired). And then there was also violence in areas where communal tensions had already been simmering. But the communal violence which killed so many civilians was far too voluminous and organised to be considered as a random and sporadic eruption. And the Indian strike force did not have the numbers to perpetuate it on solely on their own. Further research is required to ascertain what happened. Most tales of violence that I grew up hearing took place in Marathi speaking areas, where Hindu extremist organizations had a historical foothold. According to one narrative, members of these organizations began approaching the Indian strike force with exagerrated and fearsome reports of armed Muslim fighters. In one case, a land-owning Muslim family in the town of Kandahar (present day Maharashtra) was reported to the Indian Army as being Razakars. Wary of being drawn into the violence, they volunteered to surrender their arms to the Indian Army. The Indian Army officer, taking advantage of their naivete, requested them to pose for a photo with their arms when they arrived. They were then wiped out as “Razakars.” One of their youngest children fled and jumped on a moving train, ending up in Hyderabad to tell the grisly tale.
The question remains, why did the Nizam not publicly out British Intelligence now that he had nothing to lose, especially during the radio broadcast of 23rd September 1948? The answer is that this radio broadcast was closely supervised by the new Indian Government of Hyderabad. Given their precarious relationship with the British, they would never allow the Nizam to publicly damage Indo-British relations.
Evidence that large numbers of British Intelligence operatives had been captured was quickly scrubbed. Britain still held too many of India’s cards in its grimey old hands. And the Illuminati still had a presence in Congress Party operatives. It was much easier to draw attention towards the excesses of the Razakars rather than parade the captured British Intelligence operatives in the streets of Delhi. Nevertheless, indications of the capture of British Intelligence operatives still trickled out. You will spot them only if you look too closely and if you can read between the lines. Consider this statement.
On September 10, 1948 Nehru issued an ultimatum, “With great regret we intend to occupy Secunderabad.” The same day England evacuated British subjects from Hyderabad to return and ordered all British officers to resign from the Hyderabad Army, so that they will not be forced to fight against an erstwhile British dominion (India). Ian Austin, City of Legends (New Delhi: Viking, 1992) 188.
This of course refers to British army officers, who numbered in the thousands. But what about Intelligence operatives? We can assume the British Government authorized them to stay behind and organize a last ditch resistance for the Razakars. We can assume there were plenty of them, maybe thousands.
Laik Ali was put under house arrest, but managed to escape to Pakistan, presumably with the assistance of the IB. He would later resurface as some kind of mysterious emissary of the United States to Pakistan. He died in New York. Qasim Rizvi was also arrested but managed to escape to Pakistan. Since the Indian government now had evidence against the Shiite and crypto-Shiite ruling elite aligned with British Intelligence, many of them fearfully left the country, abandoning their palatial estates. Prior to the property boom of the 90s, such abandoned estates were a common sight in Hyderabad. Many ended up in Canada and Australia, where their drinking habits gave a bad name to Hyderabadi Muslims. But most of them migrated to Pakistan, where they would once again resurface in the intrigues that Americanized and destroyed that country. This also holds true for some of the shadowy figures connected to the Hyderabad State after the death of Salar Jung I. For example, Malik Ghulam Muhammad, who once served the Nizam as a Finance Minister (and who arranged the infusion of 200 million Rupees from the Treasury of Hyderabad into the Treasury of newly created Pakistan), later emerged as the first Governor General of Pakistan.
Malik Ghulam Muhammad is credited with a constitutional coup that brought the early death of democracy in Pakistan. Feigning Illness, Malik Ghulam Muhammad left for Britain, vacating the post of Governor General to Iskandar Mirza on 7th August 1955. On 7th October 1958, Iskandar Mirza, now the first President of Pakistan, abrogated the 1956 Constitution, dissolved parliament, abolished the Office of the Prime Minister and imposed martial law, which would continue till 1971. Iskander Mirza was a descendant of Mir Jafar, a noted Shiite traitor who helped the British establish a foothold in Mughal Bengal. His mother belonged to the Ismaili Tyabji clan of Bombay. Back then, the people of Pakistan still maintained some degree of self respect, and at least did not allow him to be buried in Pakistan.
While Osman Ali Khan was king no more, he continued to live in Hyderabad with respect and splendor. He was officially recognised as Raj Pramukh. But since he was no longer a sovereign ruler, traffic would no longer be halted to make way for his Rolls Royce motorcade. The Indian government was fairly generous to him (compared to the rulers of other princely states). He freely corresponded with Indian political leaders whenever he desired. Rumour has it that he even advised Indian National Leaders on strategic issues. He never left Hyderabad. He died in 1967, one year after Indira Gandhi (Congress) became the Prime Minister of India. At his death bed, he specifically requested that he be buried as a Sunni Muslim, and not as a Shiite, indicating that his once pro-Shiite pronouncements were merely attempts at placating British Intelligence. Indira Gandhi personally attended his funeral. There are even wilder rumors, suggesting that after the death of Nehru, Osman Ali Khan became a secret mentor of Indira Gandhi, advising her all along her rise to power. This would seem logical, as Osman Ali Khan rightly feared that the foreign interests who once ruled India prior to 1948, would attempt a comeback if the Congress Party weakened. There are also rumours of secret meetings that took place between Osman Ali Khan and Indira Gandhi, in specially constructed guest houses. These guest houses were built in extremely remote but picturesque parts of Telangana by the then Government of India. There is also a rumour of a marriage proposal for Indira Gandhi, from a prince of the Nizam’s household.
While Osman Ali Khan was king no more, he continued to live in Hyderabad with respect and splendour. He never left Hyderabad.
Maybe the newly formed Congress Party was too weak to openly confront the British government, I believe things would have been different had Gandhi been alive. With the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, the Congress Party lost direction. The angst of the Quit India Movement was replaced by meekness and accommodation, not just towards the the departing British but also towards the newly encroaching Soviet Union. There had always been Illuminati operatives within the newly created Indian Government. And the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi had them crawling out of the woodwork. Forty years later, a British-born British Intelligence operative Omar Saeed Shaikh was captured in Indian Kashmir. The Indian Government strangely displayed the same meekness towards Britain and covered up the event, just as if it were 1948.
The disinformation and cover-up regarding the events of 1948 can best be summarized by a single photograph, which was mass reproduced in books and newspapers because it helped reinforce some common myths, and it served to distract from British Intelligence.On the 50th anniversary of Hyderabad State’s union with India, a larger than life representation of this picture was put up in the city by the BJP, to hurt the feelings of Muslims. Here’s what’s wrong with it.
- The towering and muscular Sardar Patel appears menacing and bully-like. While it is true that Sardar Patel was part of the Lal-Bal-Pal trio who pushed for Partition on the Indian side, the horrors of the Partition seems to have mellowed Sardar Patel. The Sardar Patel who negotiated the union of Hyderabad State was a different man, and his accomplishment was a feat of diplomacy, not pushiness or hardlining.
- The India that the Nizam sought union with was not the “Modi-fied” India of today but the India of Mahatma Gandhi, who had been assassinated just 7 months prior to the union. The optimism of the success of Gandhi’s movement was still in the air. The Nizam still trusted his Congress Party to carry out the task of uprooting British Intelligence from the Deccan,only because this party had stood up to the British in the past. It is unlikely that present day national leaders of India, who ever so eager to attend the durbar of Lord Amrika and other Western countries, would be willing to be involved in such a confrontation with a Western power.
- The Nizam is portrayed as weak, frail and folding his hands up in submission. In reality, he had the might of the Illuminati, the most powerful force in Western Civilization behind him. The British Empire and British Intelligence (soon to be succeeded by NATO and the CIA) were all for the perpetuation of Hyderabad State, and they had devoted a century of effort and intrigue to the same. By defying and abandoning them, the Osman Ali Khan demonstrated he was just as extraordinary a man as Asif Jah I.
The Motives of Osman Ali Khan
While the motives of Osman Ali Khan may always be subject to speculation, It is important to consider that long before the Congress Party was created, the Nizams were already locked in a passive struggle against the British for centuries. While it is true that they succumbed in end, they still possessed the most astute insights on how to best oppose the British.
And they also hated the British. It was the British who destroyed their parent civilization, the Mughals, whom Asif Jah I upheld and protected as if it were the mission of his life. Given the continued influence of the family of Salar Jung I in the innermost circles of Osman Ali Khan, it is clear that they had never forgave the British for his assassination, and for the subsequent takeover of Hyderabad State by British Intelligence. The fact that Salar Jung I was assassinated by the British seems to have become common knowledge in the aftermath of his death. At his funeral, such large and unprecedented numbers of Hyderabadis showed up that there was no such outpouring of support in the entire history of Hyderabad State. In other words, what transpired at a lakeside picnic on the outskirts of Hyderabad in 1883 still resonated strongly in the innermost circles of the Nizams. And what better way to seek revenge than to disrupt the carefully laid plans of the British for post-independence India?
There is also a theory that on the deathbed of Salar Jung I, the then Nizam Mahbub Ali Khan and notable members of the Paigah pledged with Salar Jung I to begin making secret preparations for the permanent eviction of the British from the Deccan. Since it was not possible to do so openly given the might of the British Empire in India, this pledge was to be honored in secret, and would be passed down to successive Nizams, until the day came when Hyderabad State was strong enough to take on the British Empire in India. It was also then decided that the Salar Jung family was to be entrusted with dealing with the British and countering their machinations and conspiracies at an official level. This arrangement seems to have lasted till 1915, after which the Powers That Be forced Salar Jung III to resign as the Prime Minister of Hyderabad State. It seems the Salar Jung family still maintained its influence unofficially thereafter. What is most interesting is the approach adopted by the Salar Jung family in combating the British. Rather than become reactionaries, they took numerous trips to Europe and immersed themselves in understanding Western culture and technology. What better way to understand to understand the motives and activities of the Illuminati?
Osman Ali Khan also understood that he had already been reduced to a titular king, and that the belovedness with which his subjects held him was going to be used by British Intelligence in the most darkest ways. Of course, he was never an Indian nationalist, but in his heart, he certainly did admire the success of the Quit India Movement led by Gandhi. This is evident from the translation of a poem that he wrote in Persian when India became a Republic in 1950, waiving its status as a British dominion.
What splendour for our eyes – suspicious, fair!
What fragrance wafted on the morning air!
The tidings that from Delhi’s walls rang wide
Brought solace to all hearts, and joy and pride
To hearts released from bonds of caste and race –
Yea, hearts that only bend before God’s Grace.
How wondrous is the bond of Love! No heart
Disowns the spell it works by mystic art.
“Karbalas’ martyrdom” – love’s glorious meed –
proclaims what blessings crown the pure heart’s creed
‘Tis not the throned seat, the waving plume;
The heart’s the throne that golden deeds illume.
The feast’s prepared, the sparkling bowl overflows!
What joyous strains towards thee the Zephyr blows!
The new Dawn’s greetings, “OSMAN”, rich and strange,
And the four quarters hail the promised change!
And it seems that the leadership of the Congress had won his admiration. In 1938, a branch of the Congress Party established itself in Hyderabad State. The same year, P. M. Bapat, a hardlining member of the Congress Party in Pune who had earlier been associated with Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, threatened to launch a satyagrah (civil disobedience) in Hyderabad. It was launched on 24th October 1938. The Hindu-sectarian Arya Samaj and the Hindu Mahasabha also launched their agitation on the same day. Snubbed by Hindus from Hyderabad State, they mobilised 80% of their cadres from outside Hyderabad State. Ironically, the surrounding areas where these cadres came from were not under their influence either. It was the Congress which dominated these areas. On the other hand, Congress high command sought a firmer collaboration between Hindus and Muslims against the British. Padmaja Naidu (the daughter of Sarojini Naidu) wrote a lengthy report to Gandhi where she castigated the Hyderabad State Congress for lacking unity and cohesion and for being communal. Following reprimands from the Congress High Command, the Hyderabad State Congress suspended the agitation on 24 December 1938. Gandhi had been skeptical of involvement in the princely states from the very beginning, concerned that such agitations would degenerate into violence. On the other hand, the Arya Samaj/Hindu Mahasabha combine and the Communists were unapologetic. The former stirring violence against Muslims and the latter calling for the decimation of landowners. Only the Congress was genuinely focused on opposing to British rule.
Was the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, just seven months prior to the end of Hyderabad State, somehow connected to the end of Hyderabad State?
It is unclear if the Nizam maintained a correspondence with Gandhi. If he did (which is very likely), it would be secret, and through intermediaries such as Hyderabad’s very own Sarojini Naidu. It is also plausible that Sardar Patel originally began his secret dialogue with the Nizam on behalf of Mahatma Gandhi. Lending credence to this theory is the fact that the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi was also used to put an end to the political career of Sardar Patel, indicating that both were the targets of The Powers That Be, maybe because of their involvement with Hyderabad State. Patel had a bad habit of entertaining Hindu extremists at his residence. Prior to the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, the assassin showed up at the residence of Sardar Patel and had a brief conversation with him. This would have been overlooked were it not for the fact that Patel as Home Minister, was also responsible for the security of Gandhi. And so, British Intelligence avenged Patel’s intervention in the future of Hyderabad State. This begs the question, was the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, just seven months prior to the end of Hyderabad State, somehow connected to the end of Hyderabad State? While no attempt to answer this question will be made here, it will suffice to suggest how the end of Hyderabad State would have unfolded had Mahatma Gandhi been alive.
- The idea of joining India would be made more palatable to the Nizam. He would probably be allowed to retain figurative rule, and his subjects would probably be given certain inalienable rights and guarantees. And maybe the city of Hyderabad would be under his jurisdiction.
- There would be no communal riots, because Mahatma Gandhi would personally intervene in such scenarios.
- Neither would there be any opportunity for Communists to benefit from the confusion, because Mahatma Gandhi would maintain focus on the struggle against the British, rather than letting the struggle turn into a Hindu vs. Muslim one, or a Peasant vs. Landlord one.
- There would be no attempts to cover up the presence of British Intelligence in Hyderabad State, or to hide their links to the Razakars. Captured British Intelligence operatives would be shown to the whole world, because Mahatma Gandhi never feared the British.
None of this was palatable to the Powers That Be. Since Hyderabad State joining Congress dominated india was never their priority, they used elements within the Congress (after the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi) to make the idea of a union with India the equivalent of political suicide for the Nizam. But even this did not stop the Nizam from discontinuing the course he had taken. The communal riots were probably neccessary as a last ditch attempt to make all Muslims rally to the Razakars, and to allow for international intervention of the UN. Neither was Gandhi to be allowed to steal the thunder of the Communists, who had been designated as the ultimate deliverance of of Hyderabad State. Further, the spectre of Gandhi holding hands with the Nizam, and anouncing to the world the misdeeds of British Intelligence would galvanize support for the Congress, considerably weakening the appeal of both Hindu extremists and the Muslim League.
With Gandhi being killed, the Congress was rudderless, and the India of 1948 became a very uncertain entity. Yet the Nizam persisted on the course he had taken. Maybe the only thing the Nizam could be certain about the India of 1948 was that it still clung to the legacy of Mahatma Gandhi, and was thus still the only viable opposition to British Intelligence.
The Nizam had to choose between continuing as a fake titular head of a kingdom hijacked by British Intelligence. Or he could permanently evict the British from Hyderabad State while giving up all pretensions of power. He chose the latter. Acceding with India was not as simple as it sounded. Unlike other princely states who simply had to sign a document called the Instrument of Accession, Osman Ali Khan had to risk his life in a secret counterconspiracy against British Intelligence, a major Western power that historically dominated the region.
In other words, Osman Ali Khan was a secret freedom fighter, of a stature comparable to that of Subhash Chandra Bose. And this is the only reason why the political leaders of India later respected him the way they did. While many people of the Subcontinent made sacrifices to put an end to the British rule, only Osman Ali Khan gets credit for having sacrificed a generational kingdom for this cause. Asif Jah I would be proud.