A man of great aesthetic sense

Nobleman Nawab Fakhr-ul-Mulk Bahadur was a man of discerning taste and was known for his attention to detail

By Author  |  Published: 10th Dec 2017  12:05 amUpdated: 9th Dec 2017  2:53 pm
file picture of the old building, Iram Manzil, which used to be the Chief Engineer’s office previously.

NawabFakhr-ul-MulkBahadur, the nobleman who constructed AsadBagh (Nizam College), IramManzil (Chief Engineer’s office, Punjagutta) and Iramnuma (T.B. hospital, Erragadda) was a great disciplinarian and a man of very fine taste. His parties especially to his English friends used to be the talk of the town.

His daily routine was fixed, after a nap in the afternoon; he used to be ready for tea at 4pm. One day at 3:30pm, milk for tea got spilled much to the dismay of the chief steward and cook, Mahankali. But he managed to procure the milk from Khairtabad, a short distance away from IramManzil palace. He entrusted a horse rider with the job. So tea was prepared and served to the NawabSaheb on time. The Nawab sipped the tea and observed a different taste. He summoned Mahankali and asked him whether the tea was prepared with the usual milk. Mahankali replied in affirmative. But Nawab was not satisfied. He said, “Mahankali, the tea has the smell of the sweat of horse.”His observation was correct as the milk was brought by a horse rider. That showed the delicate nature of NawabFakhr-ul-MulkBahadur.

Fakhr-ul-mulk’s clever cook

The new building which has come up in its place.

Nawab Fakhr-ul-mulk used to host regular parties for his English friends and officers of the Residency. The dinner used to be lavish and multi-course.

One night the English guests arrived an hour before the dinner party was to start. Suddenly there was a loud sound of utensils. Nawab got curious and asked about it. The chief cook, Mahankali came and with an apology informed him that the preparations for the dinner fell down accidentally. Nawab got worried and so did his English guests as there was no food left over.

Mahankali very respectfully told his master that he need not worry and would get every dish ready on time. The shaken Nawab asked his guests to stay back and accept his hospitality.
The party went on and Mahankali informed his worried master that the supper was ready at the fixed time. The surprised guests ate the lavish supper left with puzzled thoughts.

Later, the Nawab summoned Mahankali and asked him how he managed to prepare the fixed menu in such a short time. Mahankali sought the Nawab’s apologies and respectfully said, “NawabSaheb, I am sorry for the mess. Actually, I dropped empty vessels and informed you that the preparations were spoiled. I wanted to show those Englishmen that we could prepare the substitute in no time and were experts in cooking. We can maintain the schedule, come what may.”