The Untold Story of the Nautch Girls

I have always been curious about the ruined structure standing in the graveyard situated in Dargah complex of Shahvilyat. Whenever I have visited that place from my early childhood till the time, I always used to ask my father or other elders with whom I used to be with about that structure. The answer was always so absurd that it could not satisfy my curiosity. The answer used to be, “ Log kahte hain yahan Tawayfon ki qabrein hain ( Some people say that there used to be the graves of the nautch girls). Another reason for their absurd answering was that in their culture it was considered  inappropriate to discus about the nautch girls before the kids of my age. I was a kid indeed, a kid with so many questions about such places. It was obvious to have that intensive curiosity about such things and all my questions were yet to be answered.
During a certain span of time, I paid no such attention to that place. It is now when I have started working on this blog (Exploring Amroha) I thought of reopening that Pandora box, by doing this,  I may get answers of my questions that are still unanswered. Today, when I visit this place with my point and shoot camera, I found nothing but few clues indicating the existence of a walled structure and a small dome lying 4-5 yards away from the place. Though there remained only a wall of that building, but I still have a clear impression of that Tomb in my mind, Tomb of the Nautch Girls.
To satisfy my curiosity, I went through some books written on the history of Amroha (Tareekh e Asghari by Syed Asgher Hussain and Tareekh e Amroha by Mahmood Ahmad Abbasi) and enquired some elderly persons but absurdity was still maintained about the place.
If you can recall the frames from Kamal Amrohvi’s Pakeezah, you can see that he beautifully picturised that scene of the burial of “Nargis” in that graveyard. That graveyard was a replica of Dargah of Shahvilyat. 
I am not sure if Kamal Amrohvi had this story in his mind while writing that scene, but somehow it leaves some clues that he may have that narration of that nautch girls of Amroha buried in the graveyard.
Amroha has always been in royal influence during the reign of the Mughals and in the rule of Company Bahadur. There lived a majority of landlords and persons of greater influence powered by the wealth and land they owned. Nautch girls have been a major part of that culture. Dance was one of the major sources of entertainment at that time. It is possible that these nautch girls have inhibited the city during those days.
Though I  found no historical evidences supporting that story, but it may be the case that the story has been concealed intentionally,  to counter the dignity of that culture that gave no place to such things. In concluding phrases I can say that the place is enough itself narrating the untold story of the nautch girls.

2 comments:

  1. Accha likhne page Ho...by that I mean the selection of simple n suitable words to be understood by mass n the pattern u do with expressing the whole taking people back to ur childhood days.....these all things r good....keep it up....

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