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The loyal elephant of the last Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zaffar

Ubqari Magazine - October 2018

It is an old and a true story that took place in the Mughal era. The last Mughal Emperor Bahadur Shah Zaffar had an elephant. Its name was Maula Bakhsh and it was greatly loyal to its master. Though the elephant was very old but it was very healthy. Before Bahadur Shah Zaffar, it had served many other emperors for royal ride. It was a naughty and playful elephant. It was always in its full swing and didn’t let anyone come close to it except its trainer.

This elephant was fond of playing. Children gathered around it near the fort and Maula Bakhsh used to play with them. First the children used to ask it to get its leg up, and it did the same. The children asked it not to put its leg before for one minute and the elephant used to stay in the same posture. Maula Bakhsh put its leg down when the children said that one minute was over. Then it used to make a particular sound which meant that now it was children’s turn. The children pulled their legs up and if any child would put his leg down before a minute, Maula Bakhsh used to move its neck strongly, signaling that one minute was not yet over!  It enjoyed a lot with the children. It used to pull sugar canes with its trunk and gave them to the children. If some day, children couldn’t come to play, the elephant used to make so much noise that its trainer had to call the children to play with it. Though Maula Bakhsh was very playful but at the time of royal ride, it behaved very respectfully and sensibly. It never got up until the emperor would have settled properly on it. Maula Bakahsh was extremely disheartened when in 1857, the Britishers captured the fort and Bahdur Shah Zaffar took shelter in Humayun’s tomb. It was so much grieved upon being departed from the emperor that it stopped eating. When the new fort incharge Sandrus came to know this, he ordered baskets full of sweets and Kachoris and put in front of Maula Bakhsh. The elephant threw everything on the ground with its trunk. Sandrus became furious to see that even an elephant was so rebellious against them. He ordered to auction the elephant. Maula Bakhsh was standing in the market but no one was bidding its auction. Finally a druggist opened the bid with only 250 rupees. And it was decided to sell the elephant to him. Seeing this, Maula Bakhsh’s trainer said, “Maula Bakhsh! So long we had been serving the emperor but now you have to serve ride to a turmeric seller.” Upon hearing this, the elephant fell off and died. It is a unique account of an elephant’s loyalty. Maula Bakhsh didn’t like living with anyone else except its master and lost its life due to this grief.

Do Good and have Good!

Once upon a time a duck lived on the river bank. Her male had died and the poor duck was always sick. One day her condition got worsened and she went to the doctor. The doctor told her that she will die soon due to her disease. She was shocked to know this because she had an egg. She was scared that if she died, what will happen to the egg. The egg was about to be hatched and a duckling was expected to be born. Who will look after the baby after her death? So she went to her friends who lived in the jungle. She told the whole story to them but they refused to help her. The duck requested them to take care of her baby after her death for Allah’s sake but no one agreed. The poor duck was helpless. She thought that she should go to her brother chicken and he would surely help her. So she went to him and told the whole story. “Brother Chicken! You are just like my baby’s uncle, please look after my baby”. The chicken said, “I could keep your baby but my wife will not agree upon it. I’m sorry to say that I cannot do this for you, please forgive me”. Disappointedly she went back to her home and started thinking what to do.  Suddenly an idea came to her mind and she accomplished her task as soon as she found an opportunity. After this, she sat under a tree where her condition turned so severe that she died. When the baby chickens came out of the eggs, one of them was duckling. The father chicken realized that how it happened but he thought it was better not to tell anything to his wife. Mama chicken made a lot of noise saying a duckling would not live with her children. He tried to make her understand but she didn’t agree. She told her babies that they should not talk to the duckling. All her babies did what she said accept two of them. They shared everything they ate with the duckling. Mama chicken hated the duckling so much that she didn’t even want to see him. One day she thought that all of them would go to the river bank for outing and leave the duckling over there. This is how she would get rid of him. As soon as they reached there, a baby chicken fell in the water and was about to be drowned. Seeing this, mama chicken started crying loudly. The duckling could swim so he jumped in the river and took out the baby chicken. Upon seeing this, mama chicken felt sorry for her bad behavior, she said sorry to the duckling and accepted him as her son. This is how they lived happily together. So kids! You can see how the duckling saved the baby chicken and what reward he got in return. This is why it is said, “Do Good and have good”. (Selection: Sanwal Chughtai, Ranjhu Chughtai, Amman Zaebu Chughtai, Bhooral Chughtai, Ahmed Pur Sharqiyah) 

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