Friday, November 20, 2009

Musabagh the last bastion of 'mutiny' of 1857

You can read a lot about Musabagh on the internet but what you will be able to read the real fact about Musabagh only on my blog. I am surprised that so many able historians never reached this conclusion. I am beginning to doubt whether they even visited the site at all. In short Musabagh was laid as a garden by Nawab Asafuddaulla somewhere around 1780's . Later Nawab Saadat Ali Khan built a house near it , but in all probability the structure that you see in the picture was designed by General Claude Martin. According to Sydney Hay the 7th Oudh irregular cavalry was stationed here and it first rose up in 'revolt' when asked to bite the greased cartridge. The final decisive battle for control on Lucknow was fought here. Well that was all historical data which you will easily find on the internet. What I am going to tell you now is what will disturb you most - this beautiful building ( as you can see in the black and white photograph) was destroyed in cold blood by the British army as probably they did not want a fortified building of this size in the vicinity of Lucknow. I say cold blood because you have to go to Musa Bagh to belive it but it is not half as lovely now as it was when I was first there I think nearly twenty years back. At that time there was only a very rocky kind of road and we had to stop the car much before Musa Bagh and walk upto the place. It is the loveliest location in Lucknow and must have been even more lovely about a century and a half back when the Gomti used to flow beside it. But the British army just destroyed this building and Kothi Dilkusha in cold blood. Please do not for a moment believe that they decayed and fell off due to age or disuse or whatever no they were destroyed deliberately perhaps with gunpowder, one historian says dynamite was used, a renowned historian but ha ha dynamite was invented only in 1863. The black and white photo is by Felice Beato a Venetian who was one of the first commercial photographers in the west. That photo was taken in 1858 after everything had pretty much settled down! So well you are intelligent people think for yourself!
Anyway now Musa Bagh is awaiting speedy destruction not gradual destruction mind you but speedy destruction, it may go off the map altogether like Polehampton bungalow , so if you have a plan to visit it , do it now! Tommorrow may be too late!

By the way if ever it does go don't worry you can see its photograph no infact the cover of my novel 'Recalcitrance' is Musabagh - my last ditch effort to save Musabagh for posterity.


  1. hello sir i m heartly felt by each of your word you used for dis so called "national monument"
    and just like u i also want to at least save it for its existence...i want ur kind help sir..please give me your contact no.

  2. how can i reach musa bagh.. i've been there before but that was a school trip and i was kid that time. now im a photographer and i want to go there again. but i dont know the route can you help me by telling the exact location and route?

  3. Dear Mr. Vijendra Singh all you have to do is go to Hardoi Road and ask people for directions there. Hardoi road is one that starts at Koneshwar Chowk and goes west. In our times there was no road but now a very good road just passes by Musabagh. thanks for your interest

  4. thank you sir.. :)
    i was bit confused because when i try to find this place on maps it shows a forest and over the top its written musabagh... thanks for your help now its confirmed to me it there somewhere.. :) thankyou sir ! ^_^

  5. There are many historic places to visit in Lucknow.
    Thanks for sharing the useful information :)