Saturday, March 5, 2011

Cover Page of the Book

A short account of

Chakladar of Zila Purwa (Subah Awadh) under Wajid Ali Shah-i-Awadh
Taluqdar of Miyanganj,
(Shares in Asiwan, Rasoolabad, Safipur,Fatehpur Chaurasi & Unnao Parganas)

Researched & Compiled by



Listen to me - Preface of the book

Listen to me ……..

While studying the of history of Oudh (Awadh), I came across the name of Maulvi Shaikh Habib-ur-Rahman ,a Chakladar of the Nawabi and a Taluqdar of British period who was highly appreciated by a British Official for his steadfastness and influence especially in the backdrop of the Uprising of 1857. Again I happened to read a few lines about him in the gazetteer of Oudh by Charles W.Bennet published in 1878 at Page 74, Vol 1 as follows:-

Habib-ur-Rahman was a chakladar under the Oudh king, and holds a large estate under the English. Another native, Ghulam Ali Khan, constructed a mosque and sarai.

As inquisitive I am, I tried to know more about him but alas nothing was readily available! We do keep records of film industry but forget to save the records of our own forefathers. Nothing concrete was available in any Urdu/Persian book. Then I looked some old British papers in the libraries of Delhi and Allahabad and as always it was the British who preserved our history and names of our ancestors.

After getting clues about him in the Gazetteer of Unnao , I tried to learn more about his estate and his successors but nobody could tell me where his family was and what happened to his vast land holdings that he maintained from 1855 to 1875.

As the luck would have it, during one of my trips to Kanpur, I discussed his name with some of my friends who ,in turn, discussed this with their friends of Unnao ( Formerly Unao , Asiwan is now a part of this district to which the Maulvi belonged to). As a result of this verbal communication, I was taken to see a gentleman named Akhlaq-ur-Rahman Siddiqui who is rarely known by his real name for he is widely known as Elvi in Unnao & Kanpur both. To my pleasant surprise , this gentleman turned out to be a great-grand son of Maulvi Shaikh Habib ur Rahman of Asiwan. He himself was looking for some more information about his distinguished forefather. He told me some of the facts which was little known by the people and goaded me for further research. Then I started on a journey of re-searching and discovering the facts about Maulvi Habib ur Rahman. Here is what I have collected and I would call it sufficient until someone comes up with more substantial facts and figures.

I look forward to your comments & suggestions.

22 Dec 2010
New Delhi

Map of Unnao - An overview

Asiwan & Unnao - Page 5

Asiwan ( Unnao )

Before we go ahead, let’s have a look Asiwan and the district of Unnao at present.
Asiwan lies to the north east of city Unnao. It is a picturesque spot with a high sandy land with Sai river to the north of the town. It is situated 16 miles north west of Mohan and 20 miles north of Unnao. Safipur, another famous town, lies 8 miles to the south west.The Imperial Gazetteer of India Vol VI gives the following account about Asiwan:-

Asiwan. — Town in the Mohan tahsil of Unao District, United
Provinces, situated in 26 48' N. and 8o° 28' E., on the bank of a fine
lake 20 miles north of Unao town. Population (1901), 6,153. It is
said to have been founded in the eleventh century by a dhobi or washer-
man, named Asun, but has no history. Asiwan contains a number of
mosques and temples, and a fine masonry sarai built early in the
nineteenth century. There is a small manufacture of coarse cotton
cloth, and a market is held twice a week. A school has about 98 pupils.

As on today (in 2010) Unnao District has been divided into 5 Tehsils Unnao, Hasanganj, Safipur, Purwa & Bighapur and 16 development Blocks namely - Ganj Moradabad, Bangarmau, Fatehpur Chaurasi, Safipur, Miyanganj, Auras, Hasanganj, Nawabganj, Purwa, Asoha, Hilauli, Bighapur, Sumerpur,Bichia, Sikandarpur Sirausi, Sikandarpur Karan.

In the days of Akbar, the area covered by the district was included in sirkar Lucknow of the Suba (province) of Avadh, During the days of nawabs of Avadh, the eastern portion of the district formed the chakla of Purwa. The portion of the district lying to the north of this chakla was included in the chaklas of Rasulabad and Safipur which also included the mahal of Mohan.

After the annexation of Awadh by the British in February 1856, the district, then called district Purwa came into existence and the head-quarter was shifted from Purwa to Unnao. The district then contained 13 parganas namely Bangarmau, Fatehpur Chaurasi, Safipur, Pariar, Sikandarpur, Unnao, Harha, Asiwan-Rasulabad, Jhalotar-Ajgain,Gorinda Parsandan, Purwa, Asoha and Mauranwan.

In 1869, parganas Panhan Patan, Bihar, Bhagwantnagar, Magaryar, Ghatampur and Daundia khera were transferred from district Rae Bareli to tehsil Purwa of this district, and pargana Auras-Mohan was transferred from district Lucknow to the old tehsil Nawabganj of this district. When the tehsil headquarters were removed first to Mohan and, again in 1891, to Hasanganj.

Maulvi Habib-ur-Rahman was the chakladar of the above mentioned Zila Purwa (Dist Purwa) that covered the purwa, safipur, Mohan, Rasulabad,Fatehpur Chaurasi and Asiwan parganas etc.

Page 6 - Maulvi Habib ur Rahman

Maulvi Shaikh Habib-ur Rahman

Chakladar of Zila Purwa Subah Awadh (1853-1856-57)
Taluqdar of Mianganj                             (1857/60-1875)
Died                                                        (27th Sep 1875)
(Shares in Asiwan, Rasoolabad, Fatehpur Chaurasi, Safipur, Unnao Parganas )

Birth, Family & Education:

Maulvi Habib ur Rahman was a resident of Asiwan, Unnao. His father Shaikh Ahmad Zaman was a well-to-do Landlord of the area and was held in high esteem for his piety and helpful attitude. Maulvi Habib ur Rahman was born in Asiwan around 1805. As per the custom of that era he studied firstly at home and then at Asiwan and Safipur with several teachers there till he completed his education and became a qualified Aalim.He was a sharp, intelligent and courageous person.

As per the book " Ain ul Wilayat" written by Mushi Wilayat Ali Khan of Safipur with the biographies of the saints of Safipur, it appears clearly that the family of Maulvi Habib ur Rahman was originally from Safipur and he was closely connected with the family of Makhdoom Shah Safi ( Rahmatullahi Aliahi). The excerpt is given below
an caption from Ain ul Wilayat

 Ain ul Wilayat showing the genealogy of Maulvi Abdul Rahman

The Shajra-i-Nasab of Shaikh Habeeb ur Rahman 

Bandagi Shaikh Mubarak s/o Shaikh Abdul Malik s/o Shaikh Muhammad ladan s/o shaikh muhammad gadan s/o shaikh Muhamad Jafar s/o Shaikh Manjhley s/o Shaikh Muhammad Ghaus s/o Shaikh Muhammad Haq go Malik Yar Parran s/o Makhdoom shah Ala Jajmavi s/o Qazi sirajuddin  s/o Shaikh Abul Fath s/o shaikh Muhammad s/o shaikh abu Bakr s/o abdul Qadir s/o Hasan zanjani s/o abdul Majeed s/o Abdul kareem s/o Abdul Jaleel s/o shaikh Abdullah bin Ameer ul Momineen Umar Farooq Razi Allahu Anhu

He took service in the accounts & revenue department of the King of Awadh in 1821 and worked honestly and tirelessly in maintaining the true picture of collections of revenues and personal accounts of the Shah as well. His hard work paid him a lot and he was promoted constantly and was trusted for greater responsibilities. His greatest fortune came when he was appointed a Chakladar. For your information, for land revenue purposes, the kingdom of awadh was divided into Chaklas which numbered twelve. In theory each chakla was to be under a Chakladar but in 1838 only six chakladars was appointed for the whole of Kingdom, holding six or seven chaklas and were virtually the supreme authority in Awadh.  The Chakladar represented the state in the countryside and collected direct from the landowners and local magnates at the same time.
Badrinath was the Chakladar of Asiwan & Mohan etc since 1253-54 fasli but he oppressed the rayyat (Ryot) so much that they complained & refused to cooperate with him and after a span of five years Badrinath surrendered the Ijara to Shah Wajid Ali.  He was widely disliked and hated for his ways of extraction.
Keeping in view the long faithful services and also the influence of the family ,In 1853-54, Wajid Ali Shah, the King of Oudh (Awadh) appointed Maulvi Habib ur Rahman the Chakladar of Zila Purwa ( then spelt as Zillah Poorwah) that comprised of Asiwan, Rasoolabad, Fatehpur Chaurasi ,Safipur and Mohan pargana/tehsils etc.

As mentioned earlier Chakladar was an important officer that worked sometimes under or as Nazim and dispersed ready justice as well. They usually resided in their forts, kept a posse of soldiers and enjoyed great power & status. There were several Qanungos and Patwaris under a