Telangana: State making efforts to acquire Nizam’s Jewelry

Hyderabad: Telangana CM KCR while speaking at the Legislative Assembly on Thursday promised to make efforts to bring back Nizam’s jewelry to the state but stated it may not be easy since the Centre in 1995 has already paid around Rs 218 crores to acquire jewelry from HEH Nizam’s jewelry Trust.

Historian Dr Muhammad Safiullah says that the Centre’s acquired 173 item collection is worth about $10 million dollars as of now.

The first Nizam has acquired the collection in the 1720s from the Mughals in Vijayanagar, Bidar and Golconda.

Dr Safiullah said, “The Nizams also bought pieces from the (Russian) Czars’ collection.”
He said the last Nizam Mir Osman Ali Khan wrote to the Centre on 4 June 1949 that “Almost all the articles have descended to successive rulers from the founder of the dynasty and his son and successor, and have constituted the secret personal property of my predecessors.”

The Nizam Trust’s beneficiaries tried selling the jewelry after the death of Prince Azam Jah in the 1970s but Centre stating it as National treasure stopped the beneficiaries from selling the jewels. The acquired Jewels have been kept in RBI vault since then. The jewels were displayed in 2001 and 2006.

The then CM of united AP made efforts to bring in the jewels but was not successful. Though the Telangana government in 2015 had announced to bring back the jewelry but could not succeed.

Lawyer Khaja Aijazuddin under Right to Information sought information about the jewelry.

The Union Ministry of Culture replying to it answered that “the jewelry belongs to the Centre. The authority to hand it over to the state government or display it at any exhibition rests with the Centre.”