Shatranj Ke Khilari {HD} Satyajit Ray – Sanjeev Kumar – Shabana Azmi Hindi Film (With Eng Subtitles)

Just look at the hands
of these generals. They might never have actually
lifted any real arms themselves… …but in what
a grand manner they move… …forward their troops
in this square battlefield. But even the battle is not real. Here, neither will
there flow rivers of blood… …nor will there be the
staking of heads or of land… …nor will any
regime be overturned. Mirza Sajjad Ali and Mir
Roshan Ali are not fighting… …they are playing. They prefer to ride, not real,
but horses of the minds. That is why they have made
the old and excellent game… …of chess, their playground. Check! Mirza Sajjad Ali is giving check. This is the king of the white
army and the black queen is… …about to launch
an attack on him. Mir Sahib, save your king. If the king is
lost the game is over. Maqbool Mian. Poor Maqbool, who knows
how many more pipes will… …have to be filled today Because today, there will be
a lot many more battles fought… …in this battlefield. This issue of battles is
continuing from the day when… …these two friends
were taken with this game. And maybe, you might ask… ‘Brother, don’t they
have any other work?’ No, sir. Do fiefs
ever have any work to do? By the grace of god, they are
the rich for the past several… …generations and
that too, from Lucknow. Since the time the Mughal
Sultanate in Delhi became… …defunct, Lucknow became
the emerald of etiquette. The fun-loving gentry
of Lucknow, believe that… …throwing money about, is work. There was another
aspect to this culture… The king of this
fun-loving kingdom is… …Nawab Wajid Ali Shah who
has a liking for everything… …except running his kingdom. Your highness, congratulations. Your highness, congratulations. May you live a long life. May you live a long life. I am fortunate to have your glimpse. Your highness, congratulations. Your highness, congratulations. Your highness.. Your highness.. Every once in a while Wajid
Ali Shah would also hold court. He might not love to rule
his kingdom but he loved… …his crown very much. It was five years ago,
that he had sent this crown… …with great aplomb to
an exhibition in London. And do you know
what an Englishman said… …on the subject of this crown? The wretch at Lucknow
who sent his crown to the… …exhibition would have
done his people and us a great… …service if he had sent
head in it and he never… …would have missed it. That is the cherry that
would drop into our mouth one day. The head of the king of Avadh,
and swallowed like a cherry? These are the words of
India’s Governor-General… …Lord Dalhousie. Maybe the cherry is the
favorite fruit of Lord Dalhousie. How many cherries
has he swallowed up… …in the last ten years? Punjab, Burma,
Nagpur, Satara, Jhansi. And now, only one
cherry remains, Avadh. Whose friendship with
the English goes back… …a hundred years to the
time of Nawab Shujauddaulah. And it was Nawab
Shujauddaulah’s foolishness… …that he challenged
the strength of the English. The result was that he had
to suffer a terrible defeat. But look at the generosity
of the English government! They did not take over the
kingdom but got him to sign a… …friendship treaty
and fixed a small sum of… …5 million rupees as penalty. From that day till today,
the Nawabs of Avadh have… …maintained their
friendship with the English and… …whenever the English
need money for any war… …the treasure
houses of Avadh are opened. This is how the debt of
friendship is paid off. In any case, if the
English government had… …any complaints
against a Nawab, then… The English were so
pleased with the generosity of… …Nawab Gazziuddin Hyder,
that they honored him with… …the title of king. And this is the very crown
that Wajid Ali Shah had sent… …for the exhibition. Nawab Wajid Ali Shah,
wish you knew what plots… …the English Resident,
General Outram… …was hatching for you. Come in. From Cawnpore, sir.
General Wheeler. – Yes. Weston
– Sir. Have you ever seen a
pigeon that has one black and… …one white wing? No, sir. So now, Jalman Khan, the
keeper of the royal pigeons… …received a Kila, reward,
that’s what, eh? – Yes, sir. Of two thousand rupees,
for producing a pigeon with one… …black wig and one white wing. I find this a very
revealing document, Winston. It is an hour-by-hour account
of the king’s activities… …dated the 24th of January…
that’s yesterday. Do you know the king
prays five times a day. Five is the number
prescribed by the Koran, sir. Surely, all Muslims
don’t pray five times a day. Well, not all, sir but some do. The king being one of them. The king is known to be
a very devout man, sir. I see. The king listened to a
new singer, Mustali Bai… …and afterwards he
amused himself by… …flying kites on the palace roof. That’s at 4 pm, when the
king goes to sleep for an hour… …but he is up in time
for the third prayer at 5 pm… …and then, in the evening…
where is it… here it is… …the king recited a new
poem on the loves of the Bulbul? A bird, sir.
The pheasant nightingale. …after the mushaira.
What’s mushaira? A mushaira is a gathering of poets.
They recite the new poems. I see. Weston,
you know the language. You know the people here.
what kind of poet is the king? Is he any good or is it simply
that because he is the king… …that they say he’s good. I think he’s rather good, sir. Do you, eh?
– Yes, sir. Do you know any of his stuff?
– I know some, sir. Well, can you recite it,
if you know any by heart? Recite it, sir? Yes. I’m not a poetry man.
I know many soldiers are but… …I’m curious to
know how it sounds. I like the sound of Hindustani. Are they long, these poems?
– Not the ones I know, sir. Go on, man. Out with it.
– Sir. ‘Wound not my bleeding body
throw flowers gently on my grave. ‘ ‘… though mingled with the
earth I rose up to the skies. ‘ ‘… people mistook my
rising dust for the heavens’ Is that all?
– That’s all, sir. Well, it certainly
has the virtue of brevity. What the hell does
it mean, if anything? He’s speaking about himself, sir. What’s he saying?
There’s nothing obscene, I hope. No, sir.
– Well, what’s he saying? ‘Wound not my bleeding body
throw flowers gently on my grave. ‘ ‘… though mingled with the
earth I rose up to the skies. ‘ ‘… people mistook my
rising dust for the heavens’ That’s all, sir. Doesn’t strike me as a great
writer of poetry, I’m afraid. Doesn’t translate very well, sir. But what about his songs? He’s
something of a composer, I understand. Are they any good, these songs?
– They keep running you ahead, sir. I find them quite attractive,
some of them. I see. He’s really quite gifted, sir. He’s also fond of dancing, sir. I so understand. With bells
on his feet, like nautch girls. Also dresses up like
a Hindu God, I’m told. You are right, sir.
He also compresses all offers. Doesn’t leave him much
time for his concubines… …not to speak of
the affairs of state. Goes he really have 400 concubines? I believe that’s the count, sir. And 29 muta wives.
What the hell are muta wives? Muta wives, sir.
That’s temporary wives. Temporary wives.
– Yes, sir. A muta marriage can last
for 3 days, 3 months or 3 years. Muta is an Arabic word.
– And it means temporary. No, sir.
– No? It means, enjoyment, sir. Oh! Oh, yes. I see. Most instructive. What kind of a king all
this makes him, Weston. All these various accomplishments. Rather a special kind,
sir, I should think. Special? I’d have used
a stronger word, Weston. I would’ve said a bad king. A verminous, effeminate,
irresponsible, worthless king. He’s not the first
eccentric in the… No, I know he’s not the first but he
certainly deserves to be the last. We’ve put up with
this nonsense long enough. Eunuchs, fiddlers,
nautch girls, muta wives and… …God knows, what else. He can’t rule, he has no
wish to rule and therefore… …he has no business to rule. There I would
agree with you, sir. Good, Good.
I’m glad to hear that. I was in mind to recommend
you for a higher position… …when we take over. Takeover, sir? Takeover, Weston. And any suspicion you
hold a brief for the king… …would ruin your chances. You remember that. Maqbool
– Sir. Bring the betel leaf case
– Right, sir. Mirza, where did you get this,
this ‘Wasli’. Oh, consider it a jewel
among refuse. That’s all. You know that
scrap-dealer at the corner… …of the cattle-market?
– Yes. I struck a deal for
50 rupees with him. Did you like it?
– It is good. Has to be good. It
belongs to Munshi Shamsuddin. If you come to my place,
I will show you a better… …wasli than this. It was in the drawing room… …now my wife has put
it up in her bedroom. ‘Your.’ ‘Where the sun has been.’ Mir, there is an
important principle in chess… …that is never broken.
– What’s principle? If you touch a piece, it is
obligatory to move that piece. That’s the limit. I always… You always pick up a piece,
think for a moment and… …then move another piece.
This is what you always do. In the last game, you
picked up the knight and… …then moved the pawn.
Then you picked up the rook and… Oh, let it go. I made a mistake. I will be careful in future.
Why are you getting annoyed? Come on. Make your move. Oh God! Come, my pawn.
In the name of god. Sir, Munshi Nandlal
of the Jawai is here. Oh, oh. Bring him here. Come, Munshi. Please come. Greetings.
– Greetings. You have remembered
us after a long time. Munshi, there was a
mention of you just a while ago. You will live a long time. It is your kindness, sirs.
I hope I am not interrupting. Interrupting? No, not at all.
What are you saying? Now that you are here, we
cannot think of anything else. Please sit down.
– You are most kind. Come. Sit. Aha! A game was being started. Yes, actually
– Then. I must leave. Oh, no. There is no need. Munshi, we have been
playing for a long time. This is the 4th game today. Is that so?
– Please sit down. Great, great. The game of
kings and the king of games. I feel great pride in
the fact that this is a game… …invented in India. Oh, is that so? – This hasn’t
come from Iran? No, not at all. It went from India and
reached all foreign lands. Great. You’ve are very smart. You are playing as per
Hindustani rules, aren’t you? Are there any other rules?
– Yes. The English rules. Now, this chess has
also come under the purview… …of the Company, has it? Superb! I have learn it from Mr. Cullen
of La Martiniere School. I go there to teach him
Urdu and Pharisee, you know. All right. Munshi, what is
the difference between the two? Nawab, there is not
much of a difference. In the English version, the
Minister is called the Queen… …and both are
opposite each other. Is that so? And the pawn’s first
move can be two squares. Two squares?
– Yes two squares. And if it reaches the
opposite end, it becomes a queen. Oh, these
Englishmen do wonderful things. But what’s the use of these changes?
– The game gets over faster. Why? Do they find our game slow? Yes, they find
our transport also so. That’s why we are
to have railroads soon. And wire services. Wire houses have
already come but I don’t… …like them one bit.
– Why? Bad news travels so fast.
– Bad news? Haven’t you heard anything? We don’t hear anything.
We only play. Mir Sahib, laughing it off
won’t rid you of the problem. I have heard that the Company
is going to take over Avadh. Oh my god! I had come here just
to communicate this news. Munshi, you play the game as
per English rules but still… …haven’t understood their moves? Oh, brother. This battle in Punjab,
this battle in Nepal… …this battle in Afghanistan. For all these battles,
the need is money and… …the Company is broke. Where will it get the money from? From the king of Avadh. But how? It’s a simple idea. Tell the king that the
government is not happy with… …you pay the penalty or
the Company will take over. The king quietly pays the money… …the Company’s heard
the jingle of the gold coins… …the objection gone, the king
is free, the Company is happy. You folks think that this time
too the Company wants money? What else? They are
always short of money and… …they spend on
railroads and wire services. Your impression
could be right. Mir Sahib. But I suspect the
motives of Lord Dalhousie. I have heard that their
armies have reached Kanpur. Oh my god! What would happen if, by any
chance there were to be a war? Mir Sahib.
– Yes. Get me that sword.
– What!? Sword.
– The sword!? Go on and bring it here.
Show it to Munshi. Oh, not like that. Take
it out of the scabbard. Do you know to whom
this sword belongs? No, sir. Mir Sahib, you may tell him. This sword belongs to
Mirza Sahib’s grandfather’s… …great grandfather. He and my grand
father’s great grandfather… …were together in the
army of Nawab Burhan-ul-Mulk. They were so brave, these two,
that the enemies of… …Avadh trembled
when they heard of them. The Nawab had awarded
them fiefdoms for their… …bravery and valor. And we, their descendants,
are enjoying the fruits… …of the fiefdoms till this day. After all, some blood from
these illustrious persons must… …be running in our veins.
What do you say, Mir Sahib. Be what it may. They cannot
stop us from playing chess. This is ridiculous. We are talking of war and
he is concerned with chess. Don’t worry, Mir Sahib.
We might have invented chess… …but the English
have also made progress. The pawn moves two squares now. Nawab, please excuse me. So soon? That you let me enter
while you were playing… …chess was enough. When Mr. Cullen plays chess,
no one dares enter the room. That’s something!
– All right. Munshi, go and tell your
Mr. Cullen, it is not enough to… …learn the Hindustani language,
it is also necessary… …to imbibe the
Hindustani etiquette. Definitely. I present greetings.
– Greetings. Greetings.
– Please come. The grandsons of the officers
of Nawab Burhan-ul-Mulk… …are preparing to start
their game when elsewhere… …preparations are afoot
for a game of another kind. Lord Dalhousie, who sits
in Calcutta, is sending an… …urgent message. You can make a guess
about the importance of the… …documents from the speed
of the horses of the riders. After completing the
600-mile distance from Calcutta… …within 5 days and after
changing horses 30 times… …they handed over the orders
to General Outram in Elchi… …on the evening
of 31 January, 1856. Please bring the wash basin. Friend, you finished so soon?
You’ve hardly had anything. Mirza, you know
very well that I eat less. Call Maqbool, okay?
– Okay. What?
– The master is calling you. Hiriya… Hiriya… Forgive me. That was a mistake. Here is my move. Check. Master… Madam is calling you. Master, Madam has called for you. What’s the matter. How do I know that, sir? Master. Tell her that I’m coming. Did you like the biriyani? Is she calling you to ask you that? Child, the master
said that he is coming. When is he coming? He did not tell
me when he is coming. Hiriya.
– Yes. Go and tell him that my
headaches. Come immediately. Oh, God! Why did you not tell me.
I would have applied sandal wood balm. Just do what you are told.
– Yes. Check. She has a headache. She’s said that she
has a severe headache. She’s called you immediately. Oh, go on and see her. Tell her I’m coming. All right. If I sit all night at a dance
show, she doesn’t complain… …but if you sit in your
own home and play an excellent… …game, she pesters you. Just go and come. In the meantime, I will
think of a reply for this move. She has a head ache. And also give her my regards. And don’t change the
pieces while I am not here. Oh my god! Can I
ever commit such a vile act? Hiriya was saying, god
forbid that you have a headache. What is it to you?
– What do you mean? As if you care for my headache. But I… If I were to be breathing
my last you would not even… …pour water in my mouth. What kind of talk is that, my queen?
I have left my game incomplete… May a fire consume this game. This accursed game
is a game of fools. Now, my queen, this
is such a wonderful game. Do you know, this is
a Hindustani game and… …is now played across the world. The whole world is a fool. My queen, after I have
started playing chess my… …understanding has
increased by a hundred percent. I think far ahead now.
– Even then you do not think about me. What do you mean? I came
immediately as Hiriya told me… …leaving my game halfway. It was far better when you
remained at the apartment… …of that witch Daumini. At least I knew that
you are not coming home. Now you don’t meet me
even though you are at home. It is the wife’s
death on the chess mat. Day and night, you
shift rooks and knights with… …lowered heads and here I am
praying that god, when will… …this game be over
and you come to take rest. God! Your game is never over.
I become mad waiting for you. When I can’t do anything else,
I listen to stories from Hiriya. That moron knows only
three stories and can tell… …only those and no more. And you, along with
that moron, Mir Sahib… My queen, why do
you curse my friend? You are annoyed with me.
Tell me anything. The accursed fellow plays
games all day and has no… …idea what games his
wife plays at home all day. Oh, for God’s sake!
Why do you spread rumors? Rumors? The whole
of Lucknow knows that… …Mir Sahib’s wife is
having an affair with another man. If there is one who doesn’t,
it is your useless friend. Look, you have an ache
in your head, don’t you? Let my enemies have a headache.
– What!? There is no pain. Then why did you call me? All right then, I’m going. No.
– Hey! Stay here with me.
– What are you doing? What are you looking at. Your eyes.
– My eyes? They have become red,
looking at those… …accursed chess pieces.
– Really? Tonight, I won’t let you go back. That poor Mir Sahib
would be waiting… Forget chess sometimes.
For my sake. What are you doing? In this cold weather! Don’t be annoyed. Don’t turn away
your face like that. The matter is that…
– You don’t like me. I want you, my queen.
I will prove it. I will prove it tomorrow itself. Today my mind was elsewhere. Mir Sahib was waiting outside.
And the game is unfinished. You only want your game. All right. Let’s do this. Tomorrow, I will finish
with the game early and have… …dinner with you. You will know tomorrow
how much I love you. Agreed? Agreed. Hiriya!
– Why do you call, madam? Come here and tell me a story. I have to keep awake all night. Was the pain severe?
– Very much so. She was beating her
arms and legs with pain. I was afraid I might
have to press her head. Check. The next morning
General Outram summoned… …the king of Avadh,
to the Residency. Resident Sahib, it is possible
that the Sultan-e-Alam may… …lose his senses
when he hears about this. It would never have
occurred to him that the Company… …would treat him like this. God alone knows how
much indignity and hurt… …this decision will bring him. When His Majesty hears of
this new treaty he will be… Just sum it up,
Weston, will you? – Sir. His Majesty will be
shocked to hear this. Will you tell the Prime Minister
that I’d like His Majesty to go… …through the treaty
and let me know his views… …as soon as possible, It is
a matter of the utmost urgency. Will you tell the Prime Minister
that I’d like His Majesty to go… …through the treaty
and let me know his views… …as soon as possible, It is
a matter of the utmost urgency. But what is the need for
the new treaty, Resident Sahib? What will happen to the
treaty executed 20 years ago. Reply to him, Mr. Resident.
Why the new treaty? What happened to the old one? Will you please tell the
Prime Minister, that despite… …repeated warnings, from our
government, His Majesty has… …made no efforts whatsoever
during the last 10 years… …to improve the
administration here. And since this has
caused considerable distress… …amongst the common
people of the province… …our government has no
alternative except to… …take matters
into their own hands. Will you please tell the
Prime Minister, that despite… …repeated warnings, from our
government, His Majesty has… …made no efforts whatsoever
during the last 10 years… …to improve the
administration here. And since this has
caused considerable distress… …amongst the common
people of the province… …our government has no
alternative except to… …take matters
into their own hands. The Prime Minister wishes
to know how there can be talk… …of misrule when
the people are so happy. The Prime Minister wishes
to know how there can be talk… …of misrule when
the people are so happy. Just ask the prime minister Have you read Colonel
Sleeman’s report, Have you read Colonel
Sleeman’s report, I am aware of this report. But Colonel Sleeman had
gone on a tour of the country… …contrary to the king’s wishes. In spite of this we had
borne all the atrocities of… …Colonel Sleeman
and his 1100 men. We arranged elephants and camels for
them and also arranged for their food. If despite all this
Colonel Sleeman has given a… …report against us,
then it’s our ill-fortune. Had Colonel Sleeman
had undertaken a tour of… …West Bangal, which is under
the control of the Company… Mr. Khan,
it’s no use wasting words. The Governor General’s
decision is irrevocable. Unfaithful fellows! Something
is lifted from the house… …while you sleep? I will have each
one of you put in jail. Useless fellows. You
have been stuffing yourself… …for years and have
now also started stealing. Sir…
– I don’t want excuses! I present greeting,
Mirza Sahib. – Greetings. Now, why do you stand
around with heads down? Get lost. Go search for it. Sir, what is the matter? Matter? Some idiot has
stolen my chess pieces. Oh my god! Actually, it is my fault.
I left them outside. I should have
locked then up in a trunk. How can you trust
anyone in these bad days. People steal the collyrium
from one’s eyes. – That’s right. What will happen now? I don’t have them or I
would have brought them. Mirza sahib, why
don’t we to the market. We’ll buy a set there. Mir Sahib, today is Friday. Which shopkeeper would have
kept his shop open for you? Oh, for God’s sake! I had come with some
new moves in mind and… …the market also
had to be closed. The whole evening was spoilt. Anyway, the rest of
the life would be… …gone through somehow. What is
the worry that is left? Mir Sahib.
– Yes. Do you know our advocate?
– Mr. Abajani. Do you remember the left
corner of his drawing room? Left corner… Left… I certainly remember it. Please sit down. I will
go inside and inform them. He has had me blow up
thousands of rupees… …for fighting cases.
– But not from me? He shouldn’t refuse,
if we ask for a day. That he shouldn’t. Chuttan Mian, greetings.
– Greetings. Is the advocate at home?
– Yes, sir. Yes, sir. He is resting. He is lying down. Unconscious. We’ve called the doctor.
Please sit down. Please sit down. He was laughing and
talking till morning. If God desires, he will
return consciousness very soon. By the grace of God. May God ensure that he,,
recovers soon. – yes, yes. Amen, amen Sir, if you don’t mind…
– No, no. Please carry on. Come on, my pawn. Abajani is conscious now.
He is conscious now. Come, he will be
very happy to see you. Come. Sir, the advocate
doesn’t seem to be in his senses. He is conscious. He just
spoke to me. Just wait a while. Mirza Sahib and Mir
Sahib have come to… …ask dear father ‘Kanha, I have lost to
you and forsaken everything…’ ‘Kanha, I have lost to
you and forsaken everything…’ ‘Kanha, I have lost to
you and forsaken everything…’ ‘… Listen to me Hari
I will not curse you… ‘… Listen to me Hari
I will not curse you… ‘Kanha, I have lost to
you and forsaken everything…’ ‘Kanha, I have lost to you.. ‘Kanha, I have lost to you ‘He teases me everyday,
he doesn’t let me go.’ ‘He teases me everyday,
he doesn’t let me go.’ ‘He teases me everyday,
he doesn’t let me go.’ ‘My friends at
the shore look at us’ ‘Leave me do not touch my veil’ ‘Leave me do not touch my veil’ ‘Everyone looks at us. ‘Kanha, I have lost to
you and forsaken everything…’ ‘Kanha, I have lost to you ‘Kanha, I have lost to you.. ‘Kanha, I have lost to you ‘Kanha, I have lost to you ‘Kanha, I have lost to you What’s the matter? What’s this? Control yourself. Has the Resident
recited a poem to you? Only love and poetry can
bring tears to a man’s eyes. What is the matter,
after all, Madarruddaulah. King, your graceful
head will be shorn of its crown. Bravo, Sohrab, my son. Play and win. Two for one.
Two for one. Great, Sohrab. Come, place your bets.
Place your bets with open hearts. Which of them is
Rustom and which is Sohrab. The black one is my Sohrab.
Sir. Go on, place your bet. Listen.
– Yes, tell me. Place one rupee on Rustom.
– Yes, very well, very well. Mir Sahib, why are
you wasting your money? It is not for decent
people to bet on rams. What do you say, sir? Come on, fight! We won! Place your bets and win big! Come along. The great King,
the king of Avadh informs… …everyone that the ones
who are spreading the rumors… …about the imminent take
over of the sultanate by the… …Company will be arrested by
the order of the government… …and that they will
be proclaimed criminals… …and be severely punished. The public must know that the
forces of the Company is not… …being amassed in the
country with any such motive but… …have come for the
security of the Rajah of Nepal. Mirza Sahib, why do
they spread rumors? Henceforth, if someone
even speaks of Company forces… …I swear I will
pull out his tongue. What a lovely day… and
we are bereft of chess. Mir Sahib, the solution of
every difficulty is there… …what is needed is
only someone to search it. Come, let’s go to the house. Drink a little water.
Yes. Enough, enough. Betel. – Maqbool. Have more water. Yes, sir.
– Bring the betel leaf case. Great. Wonderful. Mirza Sahib, sometimes I
feel enamored with your brains. Greetings. Now, come on. Are the pawn fine?
– Yes. The king and queen are fine?
– Yes. But don’t make a mistake
between the yellow knight… …and the rook. Listen. The bishop is the tomato. The lemon the knight
and the chilly the rook. The bishop is the tomato. The lemon
the knight and the chilly the rook. Maqbool.
– Yes, madam? Has Nawab Sahib arrived?
– Yes, madam. Is he alone?
– No, madam. Mir Sahib is with him. I hope they are not playing chess. They are. But not with
pieces but with lime and betel. Who knows what magic
charm there is in chess? Oh! What are you doing,
Mir Sahib. That is the knight. The lemon is the knight.
The tomato is the bishop. Who has done that? Maqbool Mian. Oh, Maqbool Mian. Mir Sahib. – Yes. If you have no objection… …from tomorrow, we
will play at your house That’s too much. The house
is yours. You are most welcome. Thank you. Maqbool. Present these
vegetables to madam on my behalf. You all have
betrayed me. All of you. I trusted you more
than even my own relatives. I entrusted to you all
the responsibilities of the… …administration of the
state and what have you done? Besides filling your own pockets,
what have you done? Nothing! Mr. Sleeman did tell me to
be careful of you all but I… …used to ignore him.
Now I realize he was right. What he said about was
also not wrong, Madaruddaulah. About me, Sultan-e-Alam?
– Yes, about you. What mistake has
been done by this slave? You are asking me this? Could you not have throw
this piece of paper at the… …face of the Resident? Could you not have asked
him what right he had to break… …the previous treaty in which
it is clearly written that while… …the company can take over
the administration of the… …sultanate but it
cannot take my title away? The mistake, of course, is mine. It would have been better
if I had refused to sit… …on the throne. But it was my boyhood.
These diamonds, these jewels… …this glamour, this attraction,
this royal splendor… …tempted my heart. But when I was enthroned, I
did try to be a proper ruler… …and to some extent,
did succeed in doing… …a good job of it. Am I wrong, Mudaruddaulah? Absolutely not, King Do you remember my army,
Diwan-e-bahadur? How can I forget, Sultan-e-Alam? Do you remember what frolic
there used to be every day? What lovely names I
had kept for our platoons. Banka, Tirchha,
Akhtari, Nazreen, Ghangor. And our ladies army? Exquisite, lovely,
beautifully attired. Arab stallions,
when they trotted past… …what a beautiful sight
it used to be! How lovely! But the Resident
did not relish all this. Richmond Sahib. He said
what is the need for this army? The English army is there
to protect your borders and… …you are paying its salary too. Then why do you
need to take this bother? Very well, Richmond Sahib.
Your wish is my command. We will remove this bother too. What should I do now? You tell me what I could do? If the king shouldn’t be
worried about his subjects… …what should he do? If a king does not rule,
what does he do? I have received a
reply to this question, too. Richmond Sahib did not
tell me. No one told me. It came on its own. Do you remember that
song of mine, Madaruddaulah? Which song, King? ‘The night passes
away in suffering. ‘ ‘… to which country
has gone my soul mate’ Undoubtedly, I remember. Do you know when and where
I had thought up this song? No, sir. Here. Here. On this very throne.
During the full court. The whole scene is before my eyes. A man is standing before me
and his plea is being heard… …when suddenly, an
unusual thing occurs. His voice stops
reaching my ears and after that… The night passes
away in suffering. ‘… to which country
has gone my soul mate’ My soulful eyes… …are tearful. They are yearning,
and waiting for you. ‘When your horses
left from my doorway. ‘ ‘… I took leave of my senses,
crazy woman that I am…’ ‘The night passes
away in suffering. ‘ ‘… to which country
has gone my soul mate’ Bravo! Great! And this was my reply. This. No, Madaruddaulah,
I wasn’t fit to be king. But had my
subjects complained to me? Had they said,
Jaan-e-Alam, leave the throne. We don’t want you.
In your rule, we are sorromul… …we are upset, then, by God,
I would separate myself… …from both throne and crown. But my subjects did not say that. And do you know why
they did not, Madaruddaulah? They did not say this
because I never hid from them… …my true nature. They
knew what kind of a king I was. And even so, they loved me. Today, even after ten years,
I see love in their eyes. They sing my songs in
the streets and by lanes. Madarudaulah, just go and
enquire of the Resident… …how many kings of
England wrote songs… …and how many of Queen Victoria’s
subjects sing their songs? The government is
sending its armies. Why? They are afraid that the
people of Avadh might stand… …in their way. They know that the people of
Avadh also know how to fight. From among our awesome subjects… …the Company army’s
best troops are taken. Is that not an odd thing,
Madruddaulah… …it is from our hungry,
oppressed, awesome… …subjects that the best
troops of the Company army… …are admitted? My ancestors have already
given you half of Avadh… …now you want also the
little area that remains. You want my desire too. This is my punishment. This is the
punishment for my mismanagement… …and mal-administration. But if my subjects are so
oppressed, then why don’t… …they go and seek asylum
in English-controlled areas? Why don’t they go to you
and say that you save us from… …this useless king. Why? Madaruddaulah, go and
tell the Resident that… …I will not give him the
throne just for the asking. He will have to fight me to get it. I don’t like this
damned business at all, Ferra. Not one bit. And it certainly won’t renown
to the credit of John Company. You know my views on Sind. – I do. We have even worse
justification for confiscation… …here than we have in Sind. Mind you. Whatever I
wrote in my report. I fully endorse what
Sleeman said. The administration here is excretory. I don’t like that fat king either,
but a treaty is a treaty. I don’t know if they fully
realize that the king would be… …perfectly justified in
insisting on the validity of the… …earlier treaty and
refusing to sign the new one. But, wasn’t the treaty
of ’37 abrogated by the… …court of directors…
– So it was. But by an inexcusable
omission on the part… …of our government, the
king of Avadh was never informed. Oh dear! Therefore, I know we are
fully entitled to take over the… …administration but we cannot
dispense with the king and… …we cannot
appropriate the revenue. Nevertheless, I am called
upon to do my damnedest to… …make him sign an abdication
so that we don’t lose face… …wile regaining the kingdom. He moves out. We move
in or rather march in… …the troops are straining
at the leash at Cawnpore… …and we take over. But what if he
should refuse to abdicate? We still take over, Ferra. The annexation of
Avadh is a fait accompli. Our intentional purposes were already
standing on British territory and our… …gracious Queen already has
5 million more subjects and… …over a million pounds
a year more in revenue. No. No, no, no. The
question is not whether he will… …abdicate but whether we can
ensure a peaceful take over… …and I am afraid, the
answer is no, we cannot. You know Avadh does
not lack fighting men. Some of the pluckiest lads in
our own troops are from here. The king has his own troops
and so do a number of the… …feudal barons who stand
to lose by our action and if… …these people rise in defense
of the province, we will have… …no choice but to order
his own sepoys to fire on… …their own brothers. You see the dilemma.
– I do, indeed. If he… If he decides to
abdicate, he loses the throne… …of course, but
there are compensations. He has a hundred
thousand rupees a month as an… …allowance and he will have to
give up all pretence of having… …to rule but who
knows what he’s going to do. Does anyone ever know?
Does he know himself? He’s certainly the
biggest bundle of contradictions… …I have ever come across. I mean a devout man
who prays 5 times a day… …never drinks and keeps a
harem the size of a regiment. The king sings, dances, lusts
his wives, plays the tomtom… …flies kites
from the palace roof. And struts along the stage
surrounded by frolicking nautch girls. My God, Ferra, I have
had dealings with antimonies… …before but none to
hold a candle to this laddie. I can’t make him out. Can you? Well, he can be obstinate. He
is the only king in the entire… …Avadh dynasty who has
refused to be treated… …by an English doctor. Who does he consult then? Quacks from what I can gather.
– Stubborn fool. I rather fear is that
he’s decided to be obstinate. I sent him the draft treaty
two days ago.. …I asked for a quick reply and none has
yet come and time is running out. Five days to go and
still no word from the king. You know what that means? I
shall have ask for an interview. I just get the wind
up to think of this. I know you don’t
like them. – Like them. The very thought amands me,
Ferra. Can you think of
anything more preposterous… …than the royal embrace? And upon my soul, Ferra,
what’s that extraordinary… …perfume he uses? You mean this? My God, man. That’s it. Its attar, sir.
Everyone uses it here. – Attar? An extract of rose.
The Damask rose, I think. Damask rose? Do you know my
uniform still reeks of it… …three months
after the interview. It’d be a damn sight more convenient
if he would impart it to his… …women folk. At least one would be
spared the extreme proximity. Have you considered
speaking to the Queen Mother? I have. I have, indeed. In fact, I am going to
see her tomorrow morning. I understand she is
a very sensible woman. Look, she is known to
have given him good advice… …in the past.
– So I am told. But I damned if I know
what defines good advice… …in the present instance,
Ferra. Good for whom? Good for him?
Good for us… …good for the Company,
good for the people? And why should she
intercede on our behalf? Why shouldn’t she
take the king’s side. After all, he is her own son
and we are throwing him out… …are we not? I don’t like it, Ferra.
I don’t like it at all. Yet, we have to go through
with it. That’s the problem. And that’s my complaint, doctor. There’s nothing you can
prescribe for it. Nothing. Rafique Mian! Oh, Mir Sahib.
– Yes? This is more comfortable
than my own drawing room. No noise, no uproar.
We’ll think up good moves. It is just your affection, sir. Please fetch
something for the guest. And yes. Please tell my
wife that Mirza Sahib will also… …be with us for the evening meal. And Rafique Mian. Betel leaf. Mir Sahib.
– Yes? Don’t forget to show me the wasli
that your wife likes so much. Yes, of course.
Please sit down now. Madam.
– What is it? Master is asking for betel leaf. Mirza Sahib is with him.
He will be here for dinner. Take the betel leaf. Have you soothed your wife? She was very annoyed last night.
She was spitting fire. It is a peculiar problem. Come on, my pawn.
In the name of God. Mir Sahib, if there is a wife,
then every problem is peculiar. What is your view? Whatever peculiar
problem there might be, friend… …there is no problem here. Something untoward has happened.
– What’s happened? He is at home. He’s
playing in the drawing room. He’s playing.
– Chess. Chess?
– Chess! With Mirza Sahib.
He’s never played at home before. God, I’m feeling very upset.
Akheel, I hope he is not suspicious. So, uncle is playing chess.
– What if something untoward happened? It cannot happen. When there is an
open mat before one… …you cannot see
anything but the pieces. Yes, of course! That is
what he also has been saying. The elders might
have lowered heads, sir… …I pride myself
on my good fortune. Even if you take a lamp and
look for one, you will not… …be able to find a better
and more loving wife than my own. She is gifted with such
a nature that she never… …gives any cause for complaint. Four!? Five!? And she loves chess.
– What are you saying? Oh, yes! One day I told her how
the game is played and… …till this day, if I am getting
late, she reminds me and… …says hurry up, Mirza
Sahib must be waiting for you. Wonderful! And when I come home late
at night, she massages my… …head with the oil of
almonds so that I might… …get sleep quickly. Oh God! Oh, where are you going?
– To get that wasli… And give my regards to you wife. And don’t you change
the pieces when I am gone. Oh God! No, no. Don’t come out yet.
It is not all right yet. Tell me, what is the problem? He is trying to hide. I can also see that he
is trying to hide. But why? They are after him. Who is after him? What
has he done, the princeling? Has he beaten somebody? What is this? Oh, why don’t you speak? Do
you have curd in your mouth? What happened?
– Nothing. Then who is after him?
Who is after him? The army. The army is after me.
– The army? Whose army. Our army.
– The king’s army. The king’s army.
– I see. Yes, uncle.
There are indications of war. The Company’s army
has reached Kanpur… …and there is forcible
drafting into the king’s army. They have a shortage of soldiers. They have caught lots
of people and took them away But you also know all this? Brother Akheem just told me.
– All right. The government officers
are searching in every house. They had come to my house, too. But he jumped out of
the window and ran away. Yes, sir. Friend, did someone
see you running away? I can’t say, uncle. But
there was an official rider. I had also heard the
beat of the horse running. When?
– Just before you arrived. But… what was
the need to hide here? No one can come into my bedroom. Sir, I…
– Oh, he was afraid. He behaves like a child. He’s
got a heart like a little bird. Look. He’s trembling
like a leaf, the poor fellow. Yes. Give the
fellow a glass of hot milk. Anyway, my young friend,
you are absolutely safe here. Absolutely. Oh God! Oh my god! There are searches being
done in houses, Mirza Sahib. There is compulsory
drafting into the army. Oh, Mir Sahib. You have
forgotten so soon what… …punishment will be meted
out to anyone spreading rumors? Which idiot is spreading rumors? I have been told by Akheel.
– Akheel? The son of Nawab
Ateek-ur-Rehman’s who’s, my nephew… When did he tell you?
– Just now. – Just now?
– Oh! He’s hiding in my bedroom. He gets subdued like a child.
Got a heart like a little bird. And was trembling with fear. Mirza Sahib, the king’s
soldiers haven’t got their… …pay for the last several months
so, they are not likely to fight. Now, I’ll have to do something. You mean, you are going to fight? For God’s sake! Why should I fight? Oh, Mir Sahib.
Come on, make a move. Oh! How can I play, Mirza Sahib?
Now, even this house is not safe. Then what should we do?
Do we go back to my house? No, no. There is no question of that.
– Then, what? What we’ll do is… Oh, they are coming back. Why are you getting up?
What are you doing? Don’t look outside, for
God’s sake. They will see you. But they are not
looking for anybody. You rest assured, Mir Sahib,
there is no need to be afraid. Why are you looking at me? Why are you laughing? I am laughing at my friend
and Nawab Burhan-ul-mulk’s… …platoon-head’s descendant,
Mir Roshan Ali Mian. Mirza Sahib! Mirza Sahib,
come back to your senses… Yes. Listen to what I have to say.
– Yes, tell me. Come let’s run away from here. Run away? And friend,
leaving the chess behind? No, friend,
taking the chess along. But we won’t play
either here or at your house. Then where will we play? Let’s do something. Across the Gomti river,
there is a small village. There is a lonely
mosque where no one comes. Not even the sparrows come.
We’ll play there comfortably. There will be no trouble.
Do you understand? – Near the river…
– Have you seen that mosque? With these very eyes, my
dear sir. With these very eyes. We will go at sunrise and
return when the sun has set… …and no one will
recognize us in the dark. We will take the mat under
our arm along… …with the chess pieces
and the betel leaf. And food.
– And food. We have to eat only once. We’ll have kebabs
and bread from a shop. And arms. We will
have to keep arms with us. Those who roam around
unarmed in the kingdom of… …Nawab Wajid Ali Khan,
don’t come back home. Oh! We’ll take them. Pistols. Begum Saheba has seen the treaty. I have come to you,
Begum Saheba, because I know… …I can trust you to
give your son good counsel… …as you have done in the past. I have come to you,
Begum Saheba, because I know… …I can trust you to
give your son good counsel… …as you have done in the past. What if Begum Saheba would
advise her son to take on… …the British forces? What if Begum Saheba would
advise her son to order his troops.. ..take arms against British forces! That, if I may say so,
would be most imprudent. That, if I may say so,
would be most imprudent. I have come here
with only one purpose. To ensure that His
Majesty signs the new treaty and… …I would be greatly
beholden to the Begum Saheba… …if she would request
His Majesty to do so. I have come here
with only one purpose. To ensure that His
Majesty signs the new treaty and… …I would be greatly
beholden to the Begum Saheba… …if she would request
His Majesty to do so. Resident Sahib, how can I
tell him to sign a treaty that… …I have myself not understood, Wajid Ali Shah was
enthroned with the consent… …of your government. If he did not turn out to be
a good king… …then why was the Company silent?
Why he was not helped? Why was the administration
in the country improved? Why was it decided to
dethrone him after ten years? Has my son ever brought
disrepute to your government? Resident Sahib,
you have forgotten. When a year ago, you
had come to Lucknow… …your welcome
was done so grandly. Have you seen in any
part of Hindustan, a better… …reception and hospitality? Does the Begum Saheba
appreciate that His Majesty… …is being offered the
most generous compensation… …for the action our government
is forced to take against him? Does the Begum Saheba
appreciate that His Majesty… …is being offered the
most generous compensation… …for the action our government
is forced to take against him? Is the Governor-General
a servant to the Company? Is the Governor-General
a servant to the Company? Yes, he is.
– Yes, he is. Is he also the servant
of the Queen of England? Is he also the servant
of the Queen of England? Yes.
– Yes. Does the Queen of England
realize how her servant… …is treating His Majesty
who is the servant of the… …Almighty God and nobody else. Does the Queen of England
realize how her servant… …is treating His Majesty
who is the servant of the… …Almighty God and nobody else. Resident Sahib, tell the
Governor-General that we… …do not want compensation.
We want justice. If the servants of the
Queen cannot give us justice… …we will ourselves to
Queen Victoria and make a plea. Today the Resident
Sahib had gone to visit the… …Queen Mother and she told
him that she will herself go… …to London, so that she
can make a plea for justice… …to the Queen of England. The Queen Mother
is convinced that… …Queen Victoria will free
the rule of the king of Avadh. There is an intimation received
from the land lords across… …the land of Avadh.
They await your instructions. If you say so, they are
ready with a hundred thousand… …troops and a
thousand cannons to stop the… …speedy advance of
the English forces. ‘When we are leaving
the city of Lucknow. ‘ ‘… what should we say
what we went through. ‘ ‘When we are leaving
the city of Lucknow. ‘ Company Bahadur, you
will take the crown away… …from my head but how
will you make me bow it? The English government
has offered me compensation. If not in the capacity of
the king of Avadh, but even as… …an ordinary citizen
of Avadh, I must thank it. The Resident Sahib may be
informed that I will consider it… …my extreme good fortune
if he would visit me at… …8 am tomorrow morning, but
before he comes, all action… …on all fronts be stopped,
the cannons be dismounted… …and the arms of
the guards be taken away… and have it announced that… …when the
English forces come into Lucknow… …our subjects must
make no effort to resist them. Oh, Mir Sahib,
Where is your mosque? I see the whole
scene before my eyes. The tamarind tree in the courtyard. Is it possible that the
English army has killed you mosque? May not God so ordain. Let us ask this young fellow. Hey, you. Come here. There used to be a mosque here,
in ruins and lonely. No?
– There is a mosque. Two miles away. Is it an old mosque?
– That has been recently made. Mir Sahib, did you see
that mosque in your dreams? Say something. Mirza Sahib,
I made a mistake again. That mosque was in Kanpur. I had seen it in my childhood
that’s why the silly mistake. What should we do, Mirza Sahib
such mistakes do occur. Such wonderful words has
Ustad Marhoom has spoken… ‘Past civilizations… Pour ashes on your poetry.
Tell me where should we sit. In the middle of
this field of sesamum? Please sit in our
sitting room. It is close by. Who else is there?
– No one. Everyone has run away. Why? To Sitapur.
– Why? The English army is coming, sir.
What if the kill them? You didn’t run away? I wanted to see
the English army, sir. You are not afraid of them? I like their red uniform
very much. They are coming today. They will be coming
down this very road. If war breaks out,
how shall we return? You have come so far and
are talking of going back? No. Who’s talking of returning? Then we will wait.
– Absolutely. We’ll play.
– Absolutely. Let’s go to your house. Come along. What’s your name?
– Kallu, sir. All right. Kallu? Let it be, Kallu.
We have a mattress. What are you playing
– Yes, chess Kallu Mian, do you know
how to fill a pipe bowl? Why not, sir? So fill it for us.
All the things are here. Will I get some reward, Nawab Sahib?
– Yes, of course. And listen. Will you
bring something to eat? – Now? No, not now. When we are hungry. You get food fit for
Nawabs at the crossroads. – I’ll run and get it.
– Bravo! All right. Take this, son. Will you fight with
the English army, sir? Why not? If someone accosts
us we are not the sort to shirk. What do you say, Mir Sahib.
– Yes. We are most grateful to
His Majesty for granting… …us this interview. We are most grateful to
His Majesty for granting… …us this interview. We also appreciate his
gesture in disarming his soldiers. We also appreciate his
gesture in disarming his soldiers. We regard it, we hope rightly,
as evidence of his concern… …to negotiate the
peaceful conclusion for the treaty. We regard it, we hope rightly,
as evidence of his concern… …to negotiate the
peaceful conclusion for the treaty. I would like, if I may,
to add a personal request… …to His Majesty… …that he please sign this treaty
and formalize his abdication. I would like, if I may,
to add a personal request… …to His Majesty… …that he please sign this treaty
and formalize his abdication. His Majesty shall have
a maximum of three days… …for deliberation. His Majesty shall have
a maximum of three days… …for deliberation. After which the
Company will assume the… …administration of Avadh. After which the
Company will assume the… …administration of Avadh. I hope the king has
understood what I have said. I hope the king has
understood what I have said. What is this? Will you please tell His Majesty
that I have no use for that? This is of no use
to resident saheb. You can take my crown,
Resident Sahib… …but not my signature. You have thought it
out properly, haven’t you? If you want, you
may take back the move. Let it be. As you wish. I am going to win
this game, my dear sir. Oh, throw ashes on this game. These accursed
mosquitoes are sucking my blood. That’s funny. They don’t bother me. These are special mosquitoes.
They want only royal blood. So, sir, here is a check. Bless me. Where is
that idiot boy gone to? Kallu! Kallu! Oh! You have yourself
sent him to get the food. Do you know how to
fill the pipe bowl? I don’t know where the
idiot has kept the tobacco. It’s already afternoon and
there is no sign of the boy… …or of the kebabs and bread. We become so
helpless without servants. Sir, there is
a poem by Marhoom… …and a very good one… ‘Love for you has
made me belong nowhere. ‘ ‘… Neither to the wind, nor
to the winds, nor to the earth…’ Today your mood is very nice. Yes, I am feeling wonderful.
– That’s obvious. The General is
about to win the war. The new moves that I
had thought up have… …swept the battlefield. What a quiet place this is. Here there is neither the
fear of the king’s army… …nor of the English army. Looks like last night
the massage with the… …oil of almonds was a long one. Oh! Not only last night.
It’s done every night. I get lovely sleep. Where was Akheel Mian?
– What? When the massage was on,
where was Akheel Mian? Under the bed? What do you intend
to say by those words? Please make your move. I never expected
anything like this from you. You are speaking in this
fashion because you are… …losing the game. Which idiot is losing?
I have already made my move. It’s your turn. Make your move. How many times have you
beaten me and there has… …not been a bead
of sweat on my brow. You make your move, Mir Sahib. And here you are
getting out of hand. These are not the
ways of decent people. Oh, how am I a decent person? Decent are those whose
wives call just anybody… …into their bedroom and… Mirza! You cannot talk to
me in this fashion. Why can I not?
– You are forgetting your standard. Your ancestors used
to skin the ears and you… …call yourself the son of nawabs. And what was your family? Only till the other day before
they were blowing into the… …stoves in the kitchens of
the rich and clean vessels… But, Meer.. You.. Mir Sahib. What are you doing? Are you in your senses? You’ve lost your head. Remove it. Remove
this accursed pistol. Once I am afire, I don’t look
either to left or to right, Mirza. All right. Open fire. Kill me. But whatever I have said,
Mir Sahib, is true. It’s a lie! I’m willing to swear upon it.
– I cannot believe it. Anyway, one day or the other
the matter will be revealed… …then you will
rue this day, friend. You… you are saying
this so that I get upset… …and lose the game? Mir Sahib, this is an
absolutely mean allegation. Can I ever do such a thing? Do you think I am
such a lowly person? How many times have you cheated me? How many times you
have changed pieces? I never said a thing… The English army, sir. I have brought the food, sir. I have brought the food, sir. There was a big mob
at the crossroads, sir. In hundreds of thousands.
Some were running here… …and some there. That is
why I was late. Take this. Keep it there on the mattress. This money’s left, sir.
– Keep it. The king has abdicated, sir. The white people are our kings now. No one is fighting.
No one is firing a gun. You are right, Kallu. There will be no firing
and there won’t be a war. Wajid Ali Shah will
fulfill his promise. Three days from today, on 7
February, 1856, there will be… …English rule over Avadh. Jaan-e-Alam will leave
his beloved city for ever… …and Lord Dalhousie
would have swallowed… …the last cherry. Come, Mir Sahib.
The kebabs are getting cold. Looks like you have
been resting under a tree. Yes, crows also consider me vile. The English army has
captured Avadh and we have… …run away here and are
fighting over useless things. What could we have done by
being in the city, Mir Sahib. Those who could not
control their wives… …how could they
face the English army. You are absolutely right.
It’s no use being upset. I am not upset about this.
– Then why are you upset? That, with whom
will I play chess now? You have a player here
before you and there are… …kebabs and bread.
Eat on and play on. We’ll go back home
as soon as it is dark. The dark is necessary for
hiding the face, Mir Sahib. Come, while we are at it,
let’s have a quick game. A quick game? Yes, sir. A quick game. At a fast speed, like a train. Mr. Prime Minister,
you get aside. Queen Victoria is coming.


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