Hyderabad (Rahnuma) Often over morning tea with our grandparents we would indulge ourselves in their stories about the glory days of Hyderabad. We would hear about the huge palaces and the bright night sky that looked over them. We would listen to them talking about the never sleeping markets of the Old City that served so many delicacies and sold royal clothing on every step of the way. We heard stories of a time when kings and queens from around the world would come to Hyderabad for its architecture, food and beauty.
While we keep those stories close to our heart, one man decided to shares these tales and history of our glorious heritage with others. Heritage Curator Dr. Haseeb Jafferi, PhD and a maternal descendant of the fourth Nizam who works as a L&D specialist for a major BFSI company, has taken upon himself to share with the world and anyone who listens details of Hyderabad’s heritage and culture through ‘SufiTrails’. Dr. Jafferi founded SufiTrails to help people get familiar with the rarely remembered culture and heritage of the great city of Hyderabad.
Sufi Trails over the years has organised many events for the people to better understand the past glory of the great city of Hyderabad and the culture of Hyderabadi people. Events such as ‘Walk to First Lancer’ where people received a chance to revisit the old winds and streets of Hyderabad and understand better what their city used to be like in the past.
Dr. Jafferi has spoken on many topics over the years but the one of the most appreciated of his speeches was a speech that he presented about ‘Adab e-Paandaan’ or ‘Manners of Chewing Paan’ at a Hyderabad literature Festival.
Dr. Jafferi also organised a walk to the Paigah Tombs on 28th July 2019 focussed on highlighting the intricacies of the fascinating Paigah Tombs. The Paigah Tombs which are located a mere 10kms from Charminar hold a part of Hyderabad’s history that dates back to the 18th century during the reign of the second Nizam. Abdul Fateh Khan Tegh Jung who was rendering services to the Nizam, founded the Paigah nobility.
After the death of Tegh Jung in 1786, he was buried at the entrance of what is known as the Paigah Tombs. At the end of the Paigah Tombs’ walk students were invited to share their experiences and draw inspiration, amalgamate observations which would help them evolve as better individuals in the future.
People today would be surprised to know that the two things that Hyderabad is most known for today, Irani Chai and Biryani were never originally associated with the Hyderabad culture or that Nawab Salar Jung Bahadur used to ask for pan to be served to his guest as a polite gesture of letting them know that it was time to leave. These are the types of things that Heritage Activist Haseeb Jafferi learnt as he grew up and now he wishes to share with his fellow citizens. Jafferi believes that this culture belongs to every proud Hyderabadi.
At a time when Indians are seeking to retain their cultural identity, and yet embrace globalisation and the Information Age, Dr. Jafferi is one individual working to show the world what it means to be ‘Hyderabadi’ and inherit a culture so diverse and sophisticated. Hyderabadi’s from all walks of life are immensely appreciating Jafferi’s efforts, and we look forward to hearing more from him in the near future.