Among all the noble families of Hyderabad, the Paigah family came right after the ruling family – the Nizams. Holding prominent positions under the Nizami rule; including holding the position of the chief of Nizam’s Armed forces in addition to serving as Governors of various regions. On World Heritage Day, South Report takes a look at some interesting facts about the Paigahs.
1. The First Paigah:
Abul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung Bahadur of Paigah family migrated to Hyderabad in the late 1740’s. He is said to be a descendent of the second Caliph of Islam and was appointed to protect Nizam Ali Khan, the second Asaf Jahi ruler or Nizam of Hyderabad .
2. The Paigah Palaces:
The Paigahs were also the foremost palace builders of Hyderabd. the Falaknuma Palace was built by Nawab Vikarul – Umra, Iqbaluddoula. This was later gifted to Nizam VI. Vikarul Umra also built the Paigah Palace in Begumpet, presently the office of US Consulate.
3. Their Military Prowess:
He commanded an army called the ‘Paigah’ for the purpose, they were fiercely loyal to the Nizams and were responsible for the defense of the state.
4. The Right-Hand of the Nizam:
Paigah also means ‘Highest among Nobles’, which they certainly were to the Nizam.
5. The Nizami Sons-in-Law:
The tradition of marrying nizam’s daughter started from Fakhruddin Khan, which gave them the next position after the Nizams. This tradition continued till the end of the Nizami rule.
6. The Most Luxurious Hotel in Hyderabad:
The Falaknuma Palace was built by the Paigahs and is the most luxurious hotel in Hyderabad. The word ‘Falaknuma’ means ‘mirror of the sky’.
7. The Paigah Status:
Apart from being the most powerful family after the ruling family, the Paigahs were practically like a state within the Nizam’s kingdom; owing to the sheer size of their Jagirs, wealth and annual income.
8. The Airport Connection:
Hyderabad airport is located in Shamshabad, the village that was named after Shams-ul-umra, the title confirmed by the nizams on paigah nobles. in arabic shams mean sun and the title denoted the importance of that the Nizams gave to the Paigahs.
9. The Railway Connection:
Begumpet was the land received in dowry when the daughter of the sixth Nizam was married to a Paigah noble and it is said that the Paigahs ensured the construction of the Begumpet railway station as the track was passing through their land.
10. The Paigah Tombs:
The Paigah Tombs are a mixture of mughal and moorish style of architectures. These tombs are magnificent structures, decorated in stucco work, and represent the Moghal, Greek, Persian, Asaf Jahi, Rajasthani and Deccani style of architecture. Every member of the Paigah family has been buried there.