The Nawab of Arcot ????? or is he …

26 03 2008
Petition protesting Vandalisation of the Chennai Exhibition FACTAura/petition.html

Please sign the petition for protection of Right to Equality… FACT/petition.html

Please sign the petition for protection of Right to Equality…

The “Prince of Arcot” is “a bogus nawab” (Kanchan Gupta in The Pioneer, Mar 9). The Arcot lineage, for all its claimed link to the Caliphate, owes to Aurangzeb’s “munificence” its elevation to nawabhood in recognition of an ancestor’s defeat of the Marathas.

The direct line died out in 1855, and in 1867 the British elevated the collateral Azim Jah branch with the title of Prince and a large pension – in perpetuity. At least one of the Azim Jahs died without a son, and the title passed to the son-in-law. Arcot was annexed by the British in 1825 and the state extinguished in 1855 (!

Nevertheless, independent India continues the title, and it is the Indian taxpayer who pays for the so-called Prince’s many official perquisites and a tax-free pension amply sufficient for him to live in regal splendour ( ).

In return, the Prince’s website lists his “donations to non-Muslims”. These are three – all by the direct line, and the last of which was in the 18th century (! None by the Azim Jahs, and certainly none at all post-1947 and by the present Prince.

A government gazette of April 1871 records the fealty “at all times” of the Azim Jahs to the British Crown ( So, in effect, the Indian taxpayer continues to generously reward the Azim Jah family for its loyalty to the British, and will do so forever.

He pretends an interest in the welfare of his extended family ( but obviously can spare no money for them (see the letter to the editor at

The websites are silent on the amount of his pension (eg, ) but clearly it is munificent enough for him to live like a prince!

This family has lived off the fat of our land long enough, and the money spent on it should be diverted to poor farmers and fishermen of Tamil Nadu. Rulers of real significance gave up their kingdoms and lost their privy purses. The petty Prince of Arcot is a parasitic anachronism in our democracy and there is no reason at all why the Indian public exchequer should support him. His pension and perquisites should be abolished in free India – or let the British still support him if they want.



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