Tuesday, 16 December 2014

English surgeon and Mogul Emperor's daughter

The Princess Jahanara (April 02,1614 to September 16,1681) was the eldest daughter of 5th Mogul Emperor ShahJahan, the builder of the world famous Taj Mahal, Agra and Empress Mumtaz Mahal. She was the older sister of Aurangazeb (6th Mogul Emperor). After the death of her mother Mumtaz Mahal, she took care of the Royal house with care and dedication. As Shahjahan was very much shattered after the death of Mumtaz, Jahanara paid special attention to him to help him recover from grief and pangs of pain. 
Jahanara Begum,daughter of Shahjahan, India indianetzone.com
Shahjahan, very much impressed as he was, allowed Jahanara to live in her own palace outside the confines of Agra fort, a special privilege other princesses were not given.
Shahjahan, 5th Mogul Emperor,India.madhukidiary.com,
Just after her 30th birthday, when applying fragrant perfume oil on her garment, unexpectedly her dress caught fire which had caused serious burn injuries to her.. The Emperor was quite miserable that she would remain disfigured for life.
Then he heard that at the English factory in Surat, there was a very clever British doctor who could give his daughter right medicine and treatmentand he sent word to him to come to his Court at once Dr. Gabriel Boughton obeyed, and succeeded in curing the Princess, and nursing her back to lead a normal life as other people.
The Emperor was delighted, and told him to name his own reward; would he have gold or jewels? would he have lands,or a place at Court?
As the British India company was struggling to settle down to Business in Bengal the shrewd and intelligent doctor, taking advantage of the pleasant situation, requested the Emperor to allow the company to carry on ''duty free'' mercantile trade. The Emperor obliged and the East India company got the best trade concession which helped them a lot in the future operations. ''Dame Luck''smiled on the British traders. The smart doctor went away having done so much for his country and nothing for himself, unlike many other Englishmen (who were  prone to lay their hands on the treasures of Indian Maharajas and Nawobs).
Some historians say that it was not the Princess Jahanara whom Dr. Boughton cured, but some other lady in the palace. When the Company wanted lands to build a factory in Bengal, and they chose a place on the banks of the river Hughli. That time Mogul Emperor Farrukh-siyar, became weak and was taken ill and was unfit to rule.  Because, none of his own doctors could cure him, he asked William Hamilton of East India co, to get a surgeon. When the Emperor asked about his fees surgeon Gabriel Boughton requested for a grant of lands for the Company. The Emperor obliged,