Change MAKER

Change MAKER

The proceeds of Shivnath Jha's new book will go towards the rehabilitation of Sultana Begum, the great-granddaughter of Bahadur Shah Zafar, says SHAILAJA TRIPATHI in The Hindus' Metro Plus on February 11, 2010

They are literally the words of change; “Prime Ministers of India: Bharat Bhagya Vidhata”, the 534-page coffee-table book compiled and edited by the husband-wife duo of Shivnath and Neena Jha, is meant to transform the life of Sultana Begum. The great-grand daughter-in-law of India's last emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar, Sultana Begum lives in a pitiable condition in Howrah, West Bengal. Covering Nandigram for a newspaper, Shivnath stopped over in Kolkata for a day to meet his friends and that's how he met Sultana, who lived selling tea on the streets of Kolkata. Adding to the Moghul heiress' stress was the impending marriage of her youngest daughter.

“There are thousands of publishers to print different kinds of books but I wanted to bring out one which could change somebody's life,” says Shivnath. The exhaustive compilation boasting contributors like Bipin Chandra, Inderjit Badhwar, Sunil Shastri and Salman Khurshid looks at the performance of the 14 Prime Ministers of the country — Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru to Dr. Manmohan Singh — who have held the prime position so far. The proceeds generated from the sales of the book will go towards helping Sultana Begum.

The trigger

It was the sad plight of the legendary Shehnai maestro Ustad Bismillah Khan which coaxed the pair to kick off the initiative “Andolan Ek Pustak Se: Bismillah The Beginning Foundation” in 2002. Under the aegis of the foundation, they envisaged a monograph on the virtuoso's life. The proceeds from its sale were used to fulfil his dream of educating his grandchildren and revamping his ancestral home in Bihar. “When I couldn't fulfil his last wish to perform at India Gate, I took a resolve to induce a change in the lives of the people who contributed to making India what it is today,” says Shivnath, who followed up it up with “Lalu Prasad: India's Miracle” with a view to help Vinayak Rao Tope, the third-generation descendant of Tantya Tope, a significant leader of the 1857 Uprising.

“Bahadur Shah Zafar was the Commander-in-Chief of 1857, when we fought the First War of Independence. A freedom fighter's daughter-in-law living in slums is a sad commentary on our society,” says Shivnath, explaining why Sultana Begum qualifies for help. “Anybody else who I thought deserved it would have also got the same treatment,” adds Shivnath, who now plans to take up the case of a sportsperson fallen on bad days.

The money generated from the sale of the book has ensured money for Sultana's daughter's marriage. Besides the amount of Rs.5 lakh to be deposited in her account, there are plans to get her a one-room flat in a decent colony in Kolkata and a job with a Government school, which will fetch her a monthly salary of Rs.6,000. “Young well-settled Indians from Kuwait, the U.S. and other places wrote to us offering to marry Sultana Begum's daughter without taking a single penny,” says Shivnath.


No-mad said…
Please Please,
This Lady is Impostor, Cheek this web site before you fall in the trap
* Amongst the many false claiments to Mughal descent is a woman named Sultana Begum of Calcutta. In her correspondence with Sonia Gandhi the lady asserts that her late husband, a supposed second son of Jamshid Bakht:"Bedar Bukht was the descendant of Bahadur Shah Zafar and Zeenat Mahal. When the emperor was exiled in Rangoon in 1857, he was kept in confinement along with Zeenat Mahal and only surviving son Jawan Bukht. After the death of the emperor, Jawan Bukht married while still under house arrest. A son, Jamshed Bukht, was born to him. He later married Nadir Jahan, daughter of Piare Mian, a small-time hardware merchant of Lucknow. Their son, born in 1920, is Sultana's husband Bedar Bukht." It is told that Piare Mian smuggled in Bedar Bukht into India. And, young Bedar grew up in Kolkata with his identity under wraps for fear of incurring the wrath of the British. It was only after Independence that Bedar revealed his identity”. While all that may neatly explain away the actual fact that are no records of this Bedar Bakht in the official papers of pre-independence India or Burma, it does not quite explain away the supposed need for secrecy in the first place. Prince Jamshed, Prince Sikandar and Princess Raunaq Begum were well known in Rangoon cicles. They were in receipt of British government pensions, managed the Mazar of Bahadur Shah Zafar, participated in legal actions in the Burmese courts and municipality and socialised with British officials. None of those who have taken up or given credence to her story seem to have stopped themselves to ask why the need for secrecy over this particular child or why would he have been in any greater danger than his supposed elder brother or other supposed near relatives.
No-mad said…
Please People do your real research before uploding

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