Nawab Ibne Saeed Khan of Chattari : One of the Oldest Alumnus of AMU

Aligarh Muslim University’s Pro-Chancellor & President of All India Muslim Educational Conference Janab Nawab Ibne Saeed Khan of Chattari has passed away on 1st June 2021, 8:00 pm at his residence Rahat Manzil, Marris Road, Aligarh as informed by Janab Rahat Abrar. The Namaaz-e Janaza will be after Zohar on 2nd June at Chhatari Masjid, Marris Road, Aligarh and tadfeen at Chhatari. He also served as Hony Treasurer of the University. He was 98 and one of the oldest alumnus of Aligarh Muslim University. 

Syed Farooq Azam Rizvi, an Alig from Lucknow who is now based in Dubai shares that Nawab Sahab Chattari as he was popularly known was an example of the past, present and future times. He carried with him the values of the past, understanding of the present and vision for a future. This made him stand apart in the current times and allowed him to easily understand people from all generations and walk of life. He spent his glorious six years of life with him (1992-1998) during which he learned from him all aspects of life which perhaps no school or university can teach. His stay made him spent quality time with him and each day used to be a new chapter unfolding of Nawab Sahab’s life experiences and learnings from it. One of the lessons he puts forward in Nawab Sahab’s own words “Miya Ghussa Bahut Kharaab Cheez Hai…Ghusse Ko Lao Magar Aane Mat Dena…Kyu Ki Jab Ghussa Ata Hai To Aap Uske Qabze Mein Hote Hain Aur Jab Ghussa Laya Jata Hai To Woh Aap Ke Qabze Mein Hota Hai”. He recalls Nawab Sahab especially came down in cold winter to Lucknow to attend his marriage in Dec 2007 donning an Achkan which had Asharfis instead of usual buttons from erstwhile Hyderabad State. It became the biggest attraction for history lovers and the guests who knew the past in the marriage!

Nawab Ibne Saeed Khan of Chhatari was born in 1923. He transformed Rahat Manzil’s formal dining room into a museum dedicated to the life and career of his father, statesman Ahmed Said Khan. He recalled that one winter evening, after his father’s death in 1982, he saw that his servant was bringing bundles of old paper to feed the angeethi. He asked the servant where he was getting these papers and discovered stacks of old documents and photographs in the storage area. He rescued these and set to work, chronologically organising documents and photographs that captured the breadth of his father’s work. There are more than a hundred photographs and documents mounted in the main dining area.

Farrukh Said Khan recounts that his grandfather, Ahmed Said, was born in 1889. He was an orphan. His parents died in Saudi Arabia in the early 1890s. After the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857, Mahmud Ali was unwilling to stay under British rule. But when his son (Ahmed Said’s father) and daughter-in-law died, he had to return to take care of his grandson. Ahmed Said was eight years old when his grandfather passed away. He was sent to English House (AMU’s old guest house) by the British, who had taken control of Chhatari – Ahmed Said’s ancestral zamindari. When he turned 21, Ahmed Said was made the Nawab of Chhatari. He built Rahat Manzil in 1920 as a guesthouse to accommodate his family when they travelled to Aligarh from Chhatari. Non-related men would have entered through a zigzag corridor, preventing them from directly viewing the zenanah. He was the first Indian CM and Governor of United Provinces. Nawab of Chhatari was appointed President of the Executive Council of the Nizam of Hyderabad, 1941-1947. He received an honorary doctorate from AMU.

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