Aurangzeb’s Tomb – Khuldabad, Maharashtra
Wending our way through the narrow roads of Khuldabad we reached the next destination Tomb of Emperor Aurangzeb. There in the serene atmosphere of the court yard of Alamgir Dargah lie the remains of the man who once ruled India sitting on jewel encrusted thrones.
Aurangzeb’s Tomb at Khuldabad
We stood there in silence, stunned at the simplicity of the tomb: the tomb of The Great Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. This man who was endowed with all riches of his ancestors wrote in his will, “No marble sheets should shield me from the sky as I lie there one with the earth.” And just as he desired only the portion where he lay is not covered with marble. The sides covered with plain white sheets. It is left open to sky, with few tulsi plants growing over it. I remembered reading of his atrocities on Hindu population of India. Probably people change as their end draws near, how else does one explain the humility in those words!
Aurangzeb’s tomb is just a small space covered with white cloth nothing like the tomb; Taj of Deccan, built by his son for his mother!
Earlier Aurangzeb’s tomb was just a plain mound of earth we were told. In 1911, Lord Curzon the then viceroy of India ordered a marble enclosure for the grave. The grave is thus enclosed in a delicately carved, lattice-work grill made of marble.
Aurangzeb didn’t want the expenses for his mausoleum to be taken from state treasury, instead he earned it all by stitching caps, copying verses from Quran and selling them. He was forever committed to simple living. He died in Ahmednagar but was buried in Khuldabad in the Dargah of his Guru, saint Sayyid Zain-ud-Din who died in 1370, as per his wish.
Other Sights at Alamgir Dargah
The tombs of Azam Shah (Aurangzeb’s second son), his wife’s and their daughter’s tomb were in another enclosure.
A walk along the Dargah’s premises will take you to the various rooms, dormitories, open water tanks and tombs of other historical figures. We sensed a profound mood in the interiors which was so silent in spite of the human traffic there.
He died in March 1707, and we were there at the quiet sepulcher three centuries later, Dec 2007!