History is a story of deeds and achievements but its characters are real human beings experiencing the same pangs of life which an ordinary person undergoes. It is by one way or another manifested through the brawl on the film “Padmavati”. Why do royals die an isolated death? Was it destined to be so?
What we go through in the news-item with the heading, ‘A lonely death for the last prince of Oudh’, police finds the body near palace’ dated November 7, 17 is painfully awful. Prince Riaz Oudh died the way he lived – alone and forgotten. He appeared to have passed an abandoned pitiful life after his sister’s death in the broken Malcha Mahal – which was constructed by Feroz Shah Tughlaq in the jungles of Delhi. What had been constructed for gratifying one’s hunting habit ended up being a dwelling place for a penniless prince. He came to this stone structure in 1985 along with his mother and sister Sakina. His mother had died in 1993 after consuming poison. His sister apparently died a few months before his death in September. The prince was a descendant of Awadh Nawab Wajid Ali Shah whose razzle-dazzle can never be overlooked.
It was quite strange that a progeny of that opulent Nawab was living in a pitiable condition. He used to ask people for food and one person in the locality would apparently feed him. He would wander near the forests in Chanakyapuri. A distant relative from Aligarh would apparently visit him every few years. Some descendants of the Nawab were said to have been living in Metiabruz of Kolkata but their relationship with the prince did not seem to stand. Nawab did find mention more often but his progenies are forgotten in the wilderness.
Likewise, we hear of the descendants of Tipu Sultan living in penury while the king is much in the news these days. Similar stories were heard about the Mughal descendants whose ancestors lived royal lives. The regal families’ fall is so scary as to compel them to such an extent. Were their privy purses not been stopped, they would have lived a normal life.