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Finally Dara Shukoh the forgotten Prince honoured!

Dara-Shikoh

There are number of confusions arising post changing of road name to Dara Shukoh Road as last year Aurangzeb Road name was changed to APJ Abul Kalam Road. Lesser know who was Dara Shukoh apart from only being a Mughal Prince.

NDMC has renamed the Lutyen’s Delhi road from Dalhousie Road to Dara Shukoh Road.

Going by the old adage ‘It is better to be late than never!’ NDMC has re-named the road in the heart of the historic capital of India, Lutyen’s Delhi from Dalhousie Road to Dara Shukoh Road. The honour to Prince Dara Shukoh came in the 402nd year of his birth.

There are number of confusions arising post changing of road name to Dara Shukoh Road as last year Aurangzeb Road name was changed to APJ Abul Kalam Road. Lesser know who was Dara Shukoh apart from only being a Mughal Prince.

Prince Dara Shukoh was born on 20 March 1615 at Akbar Fort–presently known as The Magazine after British changed the name–Ajmer. He was the eldest son of Mughal Emperor Shahjahan, who later became the most liked Prince of the Mughals among the masses.

Prince Dara Shukoh was born with mystical abilities, having not much attraction toward the luxuries of Mughal Empire. He would love to read and enjoy the company of spiritual people which led him to be the disciple of Mulla Abdul Latif Saharanpuri, Mian Mir, Baba Lal, Sarmud Baba, etc. It was the understanding about abilities of Dara Shukoh that Mian Mir took him along to Amritsar at the time when he laid the foundation stone of Golden Temple. Dara Shukoh was a combination of the qualities of his two ancestors Humayun and Akbar. From the first he gathered the habit of reading and learning and from the latter belief in oneness of the Almighty.

Dara Shukoh was a person having amalgamation of many instincts; he was an author, a poet and a painter. Iksir-ul-Azam happens to be his diwan consisting of his ghazal, rubaiats, on Sufism and Qadirism—doctrines of mysticism. His paintings are considered to be important in Indo-Persian Art style of painting.

Dara Shukoh to quench his thirst for truth travelled far and wide. It is believed that he travelled more than 14,000 kms in his life span of 44 years—which are still less if the childhood years are subtracted from his life. He travelled from Ajmer to Delhi, to Agra, Allahabad, Varanasi, Kashmir, Gujarat, etc, and many more places. He compiled his travelogue in form of books which reflect some part of his towering personality. His learning from the Sufi saints were compiled for the future generation by him in a book Safinat-ul-Auliya (1640 AD), Sakinat-ul-Auliya (1643 AD), Risala-e-Haq Numa (1647 AD) and Tariqat-ul-Haqiqat and Hasanat-ul-Arifeen (1653 AD).

Dara Shukoh can also be termed as seeker! He travelled to Varanasi to understand Hinduism and there he met Baba Lal a mystic soul of that time. His book Mukalama Baba Lal wa Dara Shukoh is a compilation of the dialogue between him and Baba Lal regarding the queries of the author about Kashi, question on the Hindu mythology, about Ram, Sita, Krishan, etc. About the truth of Brajdham, exact recitation of syllable Om, Panchabhuta about the human soul and the Divine Soul (Param Aatma). He also understood jyotish and is said to have written a book on this topic in Sanskrit. Risala-e-Haq Numa is an asceticism revelation about ‘Yoga’ system. Majma-ul-Bahrain was the book which was the result of nine years of research and study regarding the two doctrines Brahmavidya and Quran. Majma-ul-Bahrain–the mingling of the two oceans–by Prince Dara Shukoh is a testimony about the similarities in Sufism and Hinduism. Dara Shukoh learned Sanskrit and studied the Upanishads. Being inspired by the hidden treasures in the Upanishads; made him to translate the same into Persian in form of Sirri-i-Akbar. This book happens to be a remarkable parallel about the tauhid or unity of God which is present in Quran and Upanishads alike.

Prince Dara Shukoh always advocated similarities among religions of this world, and propagated the same. His ideology was similar to the one of Kabir and Emperor Akbar from the 15th and 16th century. He vindicated about secularism, oneness of all the human being, which was the reason to his killing. It was not the desire of Dara Shukoh to be the king of Mughal Empire, but the bigot Aurangzeb was worried and in jealousy eliminated his elder brother. Why Prince Dara Shukoh could not attain fame and glory can be reasoned out as done by Shri Gopal Gandhi explaining beautifully that ‘Shikoh’ in Persian means ‘terror’ while ‘Shukoh’ stands for ‘glory’.

It was on 20th March 2015 Fraternity to Inculcate Vedic Erudition & Senses (FIVES) an NGO organized a talk on the topic: If Dara Shukoh was the King! celebrating the 400th birthday of the Prince, which was learning for many. It was also communicated by the General Secretary of FIVES that they had sent letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in March 2016 proposing release of postage stamp on the 401st birthday of Prince Dara Shukoh. FIVES got portraye of Dara Shukoh remade which was procured from Bangalore Achieves of Museum of History. The original artwork was created by Hunhar in 1650 and FIVES got it recreated in colour version for their event (same is on wikipedia page of Dara Shukoh). History has hidden treasure about Prince Dara Shukoh who was liberal, secular, knowledge loving, etc. with most of the positive attributes, still to be delivered unto the people.

Many are false propagating why a road in the name of Mughal Prince is being done, without understanding anything about Prince Dara Shukoh, or it is another election gimmick to woo Muslims or a salutation to secular bent of Dara Shukoh! It could have been done on his 400th birthday on 20th March 2015 but it is right as per saying, ‘It is better to be late than never!’

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