§ 2. Aurangzib's early jealousy of Dara.

A mansion had been [newly] built at Agra for Dara Shukoh. He invited to it Shah Jahan and his three other sons. As it was the summer season, an underground room had been constructed close to the river, and mirrors from Aleppo, longer than the human stature, had been hung on the side towards the river. Dara conducted Shah Jahan and his brothers to see how the room looked. Muhammad Aurangzib sat down close to the door leading in and out of the room. Dara seeing it winked at the Emperor, as if to say ‘See where he is sitting.’ His Majesty said, “My child, though I know you to be learned and hermit-like, yet it is also needful to maintain one's rank. [There is a popular saying],—‘If you do not maintain your rank, you are an atheist.’ What necessity is there for you to sit down in the path by which people pass, and in a position below your younger brother?” Aurangzib replied, “I shall afterwards tell you the reason of my sitting down here.” After a short time he rose on the plea of performing his midday prayer (zuhar) in congre­gation, and went back from the place to his own house without taking the Emperor's permission. When the Emperor heard of it he forbade him the Court, so that the prince was debarred from the audience for seven months. After the seven months, the Emperor told the Begam Sahib [Jahanara, the Crown Princess], “Go to his house and learn for me the reason of his coming back on that day without my leave and of his sitting down on a low level.” When the Begam Sahib went and asked him, he replied, “On the day when Dara Shukoh had invited us, if that brother intentionally so acted that, after making his father and three brothers sit down in that underground room with one door, he repeatedly came in and went out for the necessary supervision of the entertainment, [I feared that] he might shut the door, and then all would be over [with us]. If he acted thus through carelessness, it repeatedly struck me that I should do the work (of guarding the door) while he was inside the room. But His Majesty out of a sense of dignity forbade my action. So I came out after begging God's pardon.” Immediately on hearing this the Emperor summoned the prince and conferred favours on him. The prince told Sadullah Khan [the prime-minister], “Send me away from the Court by any means that you can, as I have lost my sleep and peace of mind.” So His Majesty sent him from Lahor to act as governor of the Deccan.

Text.—Ir. MS. 15b—16a; MS. N. 24a—25b.

Notes.—Lahor in the last sentence must be a mistake for Multan. Aurangzib was never subahdar of Lahor (the Panjab), but on 14th July, 1652 he was appointed subahdar of the Deccan on transfer from Multan.

On 1st December, 1645 Dara was given two lakhs of Rupees for his new house on the Jamuna at Delhi (Abdul Hamid's Padishahnamah, ii. 474). This house was visited by Shah Jahan on 14th March, 1643 (Ibid. 333). Dara's house on the bank of the Jamuna at Agra was inhabited by the Emperor from 20th July to 8th August, 1644 (Ibid. 380, 386). Aurangzib was in disgrace at Agra from 28 May to 25th November, 1644 (Ibid. 376, 398) and was afterwards (16th February, 1645) sent as subahdar to Gujrat (411). The Emperor again visited Dara's house at Agra on 2nd January, 1645 (403).