Emperor Shah Jahan

On 5th January 1592, a son was born to Emperor Jahangir and the Rajput Princess Manmati who was destined to be the fifth ruler of the Mughal Dynasty. He was named Prince Khurram but on ascending the throne he was titled Shah Jahan, the lord of the world.

The will to acquire the empire of Hindustan made Prince Khuram to rebel against his father in 1622. However, he was forgiven and and ascended the throne on the death of his father in 1627. He started his reign from 24th January 1628 in Agra. His rule was prosperous and peaceful. He enjoyed the good work done by his father and grandfather. He had all the male members of his family killed to rule without any hindrance.His tolerance for other religions was minimal since glorification of Islam was motive force. The Mughal rule reached its zenith in his time.Shah Jahan fulfilled his ambition of expanding his `kingdom towards the south by a successful alliance with the Adilshahi Dynasty and the defeat of the Nizamshahi Kingdom .While conquering the north-west frontier of his his empire, he was not able to integrate the regions of Kandhar, Balkh and Badakshan (in central Asia) into his kingdom. He was a misanthrope. He considered people no more than commodities.

Shah Jahan is known for his passion art and architecture. Taj Mahal is his crowing achievement. The blindingly beautiful Taj Mahal is his symbol of his lve for his wife, Mumtaj Mahal. It was a love at first sight when he saw her in Meena Bazaar for the first time. After five years of courting he married her in 1612. During their 14 years of marriage they were blessed with 14 children. And Mumtaz Mahal's demise was due to her fourteenth childbirth at the Deccan. On her death bed she asked Shah Jahan to build a symbol of love and it took over 22 years to fulfill her wish.

Shah Jahan was known for his passion for architecture from his teenage. He began renovating the old monuments and constructing the new ones as well. All his undertakings were lavishly supplemented with funds in order to deliver the best results. His legendary architectural portfolio includes first of all Taj Mahal and later the Pearl Mosque, Masjid-i-Jahan Numa also known as Jama Masjid (situated in Delhi). The Red Fort in Old Delhi was part of the capital Shahjanabad built by him. His fabled "peacock throne" was pure regal splendor.The Shalimar Gardens, several sections of Shahi Quila, the Jahangir Masoleulm at Lahore and the Black Pavilion (Shalimar Bagh) at Srinagar were also built by him. A typical blend of Persian regal sophistication and Hindu engineering is visible in all his structures.

Shah Jahan's reign begun in 1628 and came to a sudden end in 1657. His health started to deteriorate and this fact started the war of succession between his sons. Amongst his four sons Dara Shikoh, Shuja, Murad Baksh and Aurangzeb, it was the last one who won the war of succession and ascended the throne. Aurangzeb imprisoned his father Shah Jahan inside the Agra fort until his death in 1666. Even during his confinement, he had immense love for Mumtaz Mahal. He was buried next to Mumtaz Mahal in Taj Mahal after his death.