Traitor's Gate - Namak Haram Deorhi, Murshdabad, British India

Nawob of Bengal Siraj.
 Unlike whistle-blowers or squealers, traitors have no place in our society. They are a class of most dangerous people, ready to do anything for their selfish-gain.  Betraying  ones' mother land to enemies for some personal gain  is the most disgusting job  one can ever think of  and such people should be sent to the gallows. A traitor's act is akin to stabbing a close friend on his back when he is in a tight corner or facing a bad situation. All through history we run into people who are much worse than the Shakespearean character 'Brutus or Iago of Othello. In the history of British India, one man's foolish act of betrayal and backstabbing turned the course of events in the Indian subcontinent, ultimately we became slaves to the British, who, in the turn of subsequent events,  became the Masters of the world. Unlike the other European powers, who in their pursuit of conquering the third world, fell off in the middle,the British succeeded in becoming a big Empire because, all along they exploited as much as they could the traitors,whistle blowers and black sheep in the society. Unfortunately in India there were many to do this nauseating job for the sake of pelf and power. This human frailty was well exploited by the British schemers during their rule under British East India company  as well as  under the direct rule by the British Crown.      

 Namak Haram Deorhi (Namak Haram is a Hindi phrase meaning "one who is treacherous" or "one who cannot be trusted" while Deorhi is a word in Hindi which means "gate") was the palace of Mir Jafer before he became the Musnad of Bengal or when he was the Commander-in-Chief of the subha; also referred to as the 'Traitor's Gate Jafarganj Palace` or `Jafarganj Deorhi. The main gate of the palace, as well as the residence of Mir Jafer, is termed as the Namak  Haram Deorhi.

Historical evidences bear testimony to the fact that a secret conference was held in Namak Haram Deorhi prior to the Battle of Plassey - 1757.

 Jafer and Miran,relatives of the Nawob of

Mir Jafer, William Watts (on orders from Robert Clive) and Mir Miran, a dissident Amir, were present in the conference. William Watts was the chief officer of Historical records; Mir Jafer used to dwell in this very building. The conspiracy was to go down in the history of the British India and world history that changed the course of events that had gone in their favour and ultimately led to the foundation of the British Empire – beginning of the saga of colonialism, oppression and exploitation in the Indian subcontinent and later it had spread to SE Asia and subsequently to the North American continent. Rich, productive and self-sufficient  Bengal became a prized possession of the British, who landed in India in early 1600s for establishing trading posts. Possession of Bengal changed the prosperity of England. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, a great freedom fighter and first Prime Minister of India  in his famous book 'Discovery of India' aptly described Clive as having
Namak Haram Deorhi - traitor palace credit.
won the battle ''by promoting treason and forgery,'' thus marking a sordid start to British rule in India.

In the same building -Namak Haram Deorhi, Watts forced Mir Jafer to swear in the name of God - Allah by placing his hand on the head of Mir Miran, a Muslim and another enemy Nawob of Bengal who switched over his allegiance and loyalty to the British - a day before the battle of Plassey.
Watts made it sure that Mir Jaffer won't go back on his promise by forcing him to take the oath in the name of Allah. Unfortunately in the same building Siraj-ud Daualh, the Nawob of Bengal, who was in retreat after the battle to save his life, was assassinated without compunction by his men on July 02, 1757.

After this treacherous murder, Nawob Siraj ud-Daulah's mangled body was taken over the river and kept at Jafarganj for the night. The following morning, his body was placed on an elephant and paraded through the streets of Murshidabad and before Siraj ud-Daulah's mother, Amina Begum's house. He was then taken across the river to Khushbagh. The Nawob's family went through untold sufferings and pain. The British were responsible for the family's misery and every drop of tear. In fact the Nawob was a just ruler, his only crime was he rebelled against the dishonest and untrustworthy British officials.

However, at present this historical  palace is in a state of complete ruins, except the gate of the Deorhi. The state government should come forward and allot funds to preserve such historical places that bear testimony to our past history. In fact many historical places in several parts of India, particularly in the south are very poorly being maintained and in some cases, they are in a state of negligence. The onus is on the government to restore and preserve such historical places for the progeny. Respective state governments should take the initiative in this regard.


                                  (Modified: June 13, 2015)