Source: This post is based on the article “Dara Shikoh never became emperor” published in “Indian Express” on 31st August,2021.
What is the News?
At a time when incidents of intolerance in the name of faith are being reported from Afghanistan, Dara Shikoh, one of India’s most enlightened thinkers, needs to be remembered.
About Dara Shikoh:
- Dara Shikoh (1615-59) was the eldest son and a chosen successor of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan.
- He was designated with the title Padshahzada-i-Buzurg Martaba (Prince of High Rank).
- However, he was killed after losing the war of succession against his brother Aurangzeb.
Dara Shikoh as Liberal Muslim:
- Dara Shikoh was a champion of interfaith understanding, philosopher, artist, architect, translator, poet and administrator.
- He is described as a “liberal Muslim” who tried to find commonalities between Hindu and Islamic traditions. He translated the Bhagavad Gita as well as 52 Upanishads into Persian.
- Moreover, his most important works, Majma-ul-Bahrain (Mingling of Two Oceans) and Sirr-i-Akbar (Great Mystery) are devoted to the cause of establishing connections between Hinduism and Islam
The architecture of Dara Shikoh: Dara Shikoh is credited with the commissioning examples of Mughal architecture such as:
- The tomb of his wife Nadira Begum and Shrine of Mian Mir in Lahore.
- Dara Shikoh Library in Delhi.
- Akhun Mullah Shah Mosque and the Pari Mahal garden palace in Srinagar, Kashmir.