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nizamate

Fazal Nawaz Jung

Fazal Nawaz Jung Bahadur (c. 1880-1964) was a noted Hyderabadi politician and financier during the period of the Nizamate.

Birth and family

He was born Syed Fazlullah in Hyderabad, India to a family of the ancient Arab nobility. His father's antecedents traced their lineage to the Prophet Mohammed, insuring their position in the upper classes of Hyderabadi society. The family were singular for their piety and devotion to the disadvantaged classes, though they were not known for their particular wealth. However, the successful political career of their most famous son would launch the family to a level of prominence in the Raj rivaling that of the Nizam himself.

Marriage

Fazal Nawaz Jung married the sahibzadi Habeeba Begum, a lady of an illustrious and prodigiously wealthy Delhi family. Habeeba's father descended in the male line from Mohammed Fakhruddin Faridi, Prime Minister to the Mughal Emperor. The alliance between the two families made Habeeba a noblewoman of Hyderabad, the most important of India's princely states at a time when the Mughal court was in decline. Fazal, on the other hand, received access to an immense fortune with which to further his political ambitions.

Political career

About 1910, Syed Fazlullah was appointed to the Hyderabadi Parliament by the Nizam Osman Ali Khan. Later, he was made a cabinet minister and granted the style of Prince Fazal Nawaz Jung Bahadur. First as Speaker of the House, then as Finance Minister, Fazal Nawaz Jung led Hyderabad through its own Gilded Age, a time when the princely state's Nizam was counted among the wealthiest men in the world.

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