History of The Hyderabad City

Hyderabad, the capital of the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh has a long history starting from the time of King Ashoka in third century B.C. After the decline of Mauryan Empire, Satavahanas came to power. They ruled the place for about 450 years and in 220 A.D., the power went into the hands of the Andhra Ishvaku dynasty. Buddhism spread in this area during this time. Chaukyas and Kakatiyas set up their kingdom around Warangal until finally the place went into the control of the Delhi Sultanate in 1321. There were frequent wars between Bahmani Sultanate and Vijayanagara Rayas for establishing control over the region.

The ancient name of Hyderabad was Golconda. There is an interesting and romantic story how the place got the name Hyderabad. During the rule of Qutb Shahi dynasty, the fifth king of the order, Muhammad Quli Qutb Shah founded the city in 1591. When he was fourteen years old, he was madly in love with the Hindu dancer Bhagmati. He often went to the village of Chichlam across River Musi to meet her. It is said that his father Sultan Ibrahim constructed the Purana Pul or the Old Bridge across the River Musi so that his son would be able to cross it without any problem.

Quli Qutb Shah named the city after his beloved wife as Bhagyanagar. Later Bhagmati converted to Islam and took the name Hyder Mahal. So the name of the city was also changed into Hyderabad. Qutb Shahi kings ruled over Hyderabad between 1518 and 1687. During this period many great buildings and structures were built including Charminar, the most popular edifice. There were totally eight Qutb Shahi rulers and during the reign of the last one, Abul Hasan Tana Shah, Mughal King Aurangazeb captured the place. On 22nd September 1687, Golconda became a part of the Mughal provinces. Aurangazeb built Mecca Masjid in 1693. After Aurangazeb shifted his capital from Hyderabad to Aurangabad, Hyderabad lost its importance.

In 1713, Qamaruddin was appointed as the Governor of Deccan region and in 1724, he declared himself as the Nizam-ul-Mulk. He was the founder of the Asaf Jahis dynasty. The Nizams shifted the capital back to Hyderabad and the place regained its lost glory. They ruled over the place from 1724 to 1948. Qamaruddin was called as Asaf Jah I. Seven generations of rulers of this dynasty ruled over Hyderabad, making it the largest Muslim state in India. The last Nizam was Mir Osman Ali Khan – Nizam VII.

When there was a declaration of Indian Independence given by the British governor, all the independent states were given option to join either India or Pakistan or to stay independent. All the states wanted to become a part of Indian Union except Hyderabad. Nizam of Hyderabad wanted to stay independent and he signed a standstill agreement. However, India insisted that Hyderabad should join Indian Union and to tighten the noose, it imposed an economic blockade in 1948. Finally Sardar Vallabhai Patel the then deputy Prime Minister of India had to take military action against the state and finally on 18th September 1948 Hyderabad surrendered.

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