Paigah is a family in the senior Hyderabad State aristocracy. Under the British Raj they tended to be richer than the average Indian Maharajah, and each maintained his own court, his own extraordinary palaces, and his own three or four thousand-strong private army.
List of Paigahs of Hyderabad
Paigah or the Shums ul Umra family was the Premier nobility of the Hyderabad State. They were richer and had larger estates than the average Indian Maharajah, they maintained their own court, their own extraordinary palaces, and their own twelve-thousand-strong private army. Paigah was often referred to as a State within a State comprising 23 taluks, and 1,273 villages and covering an area of 4,134 square miles with a population of 774,411 (per 1901 census).
The Paigah nobles claim their descent through Baba Fariduddin Ganjshakar, one of the greatest Islamic Sufi Saints in India, whose shrine is in present day Pakpatan in Punjab. Some writers traced the descent of Baba Farid back to the second Caliph, Umar ibn al-Khattab through his son 'Abdullah. However, amongst family members, there is a difference of opinion regarding the identity of "Abdullah", the second name which appears in the genalogy of the Paigah's who according to some historians is written as "Abdullah ibn Umar ibn al-Khattab", while other family trees list him as "Abdullah Daqdaq", the son of Imam Muhammad al Baqir, the son of Imam 'Ali Zayn al-Abidin, the son of Imam Husayn ibn Ali ibn Abi Talib. Abdullah Daqdaq lived during the end era of the Ummayyad Caliphate, during which descendents of 'Ali ibn Abi Talib were considered heretics and rebels. Both Imam Muhammad al Baqir the father of Abdullah Daqdaq, and Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq, the brother of Abdullah Daqdaq were murdered by poison. As such, in order to protect themselves, the descendents of 'Ali ibn Abi Talib were forced to conceal their lineage in a form of Taqiyya. The descendents of 'Ali ibn Abi Talib were constantly seen as a direct threat to the seat of the Ummayyad and later Abbasid Caliphate due to their lineage tracing back to the Prophet Muhammad himself, through his daughter Fatimah Zahra and as such were persecuted, and murdered under the Ummayyad and Abbasid eras.
Shaik Baha Uddin Khan, Governor of Shikohabad under Emperor Aurangzeb was also appointed to an Imperial mensab of 2,000 zat, was twelfth in direct descent from Shaikh Fariduddin (Rahmat ULLAH Aliah). To Shaikh Bahauddin was born a son, Abul Khair Khan. Under the tutelage of his father, Abul Khair Khan learned the arts of peace and war and grew up to be an accomplished young man. The Emperor Muhammad Shah bestowed upon him the title of "Khan Bahadur" and appointed him to the leadership of 200 cavalry and 500 foot. Abul Khair Khan's emergence as statesman was noticed by Emperor Muhammad Shah's senior minister, Mir Qamaruddin Khan, Nizam-ul-Mulk - the future Asaf Jah I.
ABUL KHAIR KHAN (SAMSHER JUNG) served as Deputy Governor of Malwa and Khandesh and attached his career to that of Nizam-ul-Mulk on his way to the Deccan. Renowned for being frank and outspoken in advice, he served Asaf Jah I well in this capacity in crucial battles like Shekar Khara, then quelling the rebellion of Nizam-ul-Mulk's son Nasir Jung, and also for defeating Bapuji Naik (a senior minister and General of Shahuji- the Maratha ruler) in 1745. Abul Khair Khan died in 1752 and was buried in Burhanpur. His titles at the time of death were Abul Khair Khan, Imam Jung I, Shamsheer Bahadur.Granted the hereditary title of Khan and rose to the command of an Imperial mansab of 2,500 zat under Emperor Aurangzeb, prom. to 4,000 zat and 2,000 sowar by Asaf Jah I, and 5,000 zat and 4,000 sowar by Salabat Jang. Qiladar of Dhar 1724, Faujdar of Nabinagar, Mandu 1724, Gulshanabad, and Baglana, Naib Subadar of Khandesh and Aurangabad. Raised to the titles of Khan Bahadur, Shamsher Bahadur, and Imam Jang. He died at Hyderabad, before 8 November 1752
Abul Khair Khan had two sons: (1) Abul Barakat Khan, Imam Jung II who was shot during his father's lifetime(according to family lore) while the Nizam was inspecting a fort near Poona captured from the Marathas he was also buried in Burhanpur. There is a family tree which traces back to Abul Khair Khan through him. However, this branch of the family claims no connection or title to the ensuing conferred Amir i-Paigah family royalty and title. This line, which does not claim royalty, traces its descent through Shaikh Muhammad Baha ud-din back to Imam Zayn al-Abidin and his son Imam Muhammad al-Baqir (2) Abul Fateh Khan, Abul Khair Khan II, Tegh Jung Bahadur, Shums-ud-Dowlah, Shums-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Umara I, Amir e Paigah I.
1. Imam Baqir
4. Tahir Jabir.
6. Adham,Ruler of Balkh and Bukhara.
7. Ibrahim Bin Adham aka Abou Ben Adham.
8. 'Abdul Fatah Ishaq.
9. 'Ali, Wa'iz al-Akbar.
10. Muhammad, Wa'iz al-Asghar.
12. Masud Sama'an.
13. Mahmud Sama'an.
14. Shihab ud-din Ahmad Farrukh Shah Kabuli, Ruler of Afghanistan.
16. Ahmad died fighting Hulagu Khan.
18. Sulaiman Kiuliwal.
19. Hadrat Baba Fariduddin Ganjshakar (died 668 AH).
20. Badr ud-din Sulaiman.
21. Majd ud-din Maudad.
22. Zain ud-din Musa.
23. Mu'in ud-din Ma'araf.
24. Karim ud-din Mutawakil.
25. Jalal ud-din 'Abdu'l-Haq.
26. Hisam ud-din Mahmud Danishmand.
27. Kamal ud-din Daud.
28. Malik ul-Ulama, Jalal ud-din Bhalul.
29. Muhammad Firuz.
30. Shaikh Muhammad Baha ud-din (general for Aurangzeb) and after this point his son Abul Khair Khan attached his career to that of Nizam-ul-Mulk, Nizam Asaf Jah I on his way to the Deccan..
31. Abul Khair Khan, Imam Jung I, Shamsheer Bahadur.
32. Abul Fateh Khan, Abul Khair Khan II, Tegh Jung Bahadur, Shums-ud-Dowlah, Shums-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Umara I.Founded the Paigah nobility.
33. Nawab Abul Fakhr Fakhruddin Khan Bahadur,Imam jung II Shams-ud-Dowla, Shams-ul-Mulk,Shams-ul-Umra II,Amir e Kabir I
Relationship with the Nizams
The bond between the Nizams and the Paigah nobility strengthened with the marriage of Abul Fatah Khan’s son Fakhruddin Khan with the daughter of Mir Nizam Ali Khan, Asaf Jah II, Sahebzadi Bashirunissa Begum in 1797. Henceforth, Fakhruddin Khan’s descendants married daughters of other Nizams and consequently, in protocol, the Paigahs were considered next only to the Nizams. The Paigah jaagir was the largest in the state, second only to the Nizam. It was in fact "a state within a state" with its own postage,police,courts and standing army.
The Paigah nobility being sons-in-law and brothers-in-law to the Nizams, were to a certain extent above the law. The local police and courts did not have personal or in rem jurisdiction over their persons or property. They were subject only to the jurisdiction of the Nizam. (With such power and prestige there were times when individual noblemen didn’t foster an entirely cordial relationship with the Nizam.)
Nawab Fakhruddin Khan died in 1862 at the age of 85. His titles at the time of death were: Abul Khair Khan III, Imam Jung III, Tegh Jung II, Khurshid-ul-Doula, Shams-ud-Doula, Khurshid-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Umra II, Amir-e-Kabir I. Fakhruddin Khan had three sons by the Princess Bashirunissa Begum(daughter of H.H Nizam Ali Khan, Asaf Jah II): (1) Fariduddin Khan (1802–1816) (no issue), (2) Rafiuddin Khan (1805–1877) (no issue, but later adopted Sultanuddin Khan’s sons), and (3) Sultanuddin Khan (1814–1845) Sultanuddin Khan had one son by an African wife - Sabaqat Jung and one son by his wife Sahebzadi Sultanunissa Begum (daughter of Asaf Jah III) - Sir Asman Jah. Fakhruddin Khan also had one son by his wife Dilawarunissa Begum - Badruddin Khan (1805–1853) (no issue) and one son by his wife Sahebzadi Latifunissa Begum - Rashiduddin Khan (1815–1881) [Rashiduddin Khan had two sons by his wife Sahebzadi Hashmatunissa Begum (daughter of H.H Sikander Jah Bahadur, Nizam Ul Mulk, Asaf Jah III) - Sir Khurshid Jah and Sir Viqar-ul-Umara II].
At the death of Fakhruddin Khan, the Paigah estate was divided between his two sons that had surviving issue: Rafiuddin Khan and Rashiduddin Khan. Rafiuddin Khan's titles at the time of death were: Abul Khair Khan IV, Namwar Jung, Umdat-ud-Doula, Shums-ud-Doula, Umdat-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Umara III, Amir-e-Kabir II. Rashiduddin Khan's titles at the time of his death were: Abul Khair Khan V, Bahadur Jung, Iqtidar-ud-Doula, Shums-ud-Doula, Iqtidar-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Mulk, Shums-ul-Umara IV, Viqar-ul-Umara I, Amir-e-Kabir III.
When Rafiuddin Khan died in 1877, his Paigah estate was inherited by his two adopted sons Sabaqat Jung (1839–1880) and Sir Asman Jah (1840–1898). However, when Sabaqat Jung died in 1880 without issue, his portion of the Paigah estate was divided into three parts and allocated between his brother Sir Asman Jah and his cousins Sir Khurshid Jah and Sir Viqar-ul-Umra. When Rashiduddin Khan died in 1881, his share of the Paigah estate was divided between his two sons Sir Khurshid Jah Bahadur (1841–1902) and Sir Viqar-ul-Umara Bahadur II (1856–1902). It was decided during this period that there would be no further divisions of the three estates. The Paigah estates were henceforth known as the Asman Jahi Paigah, Khursheed Jahi Paigah, and Viqar-ul-Umarahi Paigah.
Each of the three branches has its own Amir, appointed by the Nizam entirely upon his own discretion. Preference was given to those individuals whose mothers were daughters of the Nizam, provided that they were fit for the post, regardless of other seniority factors such as age, etc. The newly appointed Amir would inherit the entire jaagir of the previous Amir and would be the ceremonial head of that branch of the Paigah family. The Nizam also had the authority to appoint one Amir from among the three Paigah Amirs to hold the honorary morchal (standard) behind the Nizam during Durbar.
According to the census of 1901, the three Paigah Estates in the Hyderabad State comprised 23 taluks dispersed over the Districts of Bidar, Nander, Osmanabad, Gulbarga, Medak, Atraf-i-Balda, and Nizamabad, and a few scattered villages in Aurangabad, Warangal, Mahbubnagar, and Nalgonda, encompassing 1,273 villages, covering 4,134 square miles, over a population of 774,411 (The Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 1, 1909).
Sir Vicar-ul-Umra, the Paigah Amir(noble)and the then prime minister of Hyderabad state 1894–1901 (also officiated as prime minister in 1893) presented Falaknuma palace in 1897, easily one of the most opulent palaces in the country to the sixth Nizam, Mir Mahbub Ali Khan.
Other important Paigah Palaces were.
2.Deodi Khurshid Jahi(Khurshidjah Baradari).
3.Deodi Asman jahi.
4.Deodi Iqbal ud dowla Vicar Ul Umra Shahgunj palace.
6.Aiwan E Begumpet.
7.Paigah Palace Begumpet.
8.Razak Gadh Vicar Manzil Begumpet.
9.Saroor Nagar Palace.
16.Paigah Sir Vicar house Bombay.
17.Paigah House Hyderabad.
18.Phisalbanda palace of Nawab Zafar Jung Bahadur.