Mukarram Jah

Sahebzada Mir Barkat Ali Khan Siddiqi Mukarram Jah Asaf Jah VIII (Urdu: صاحبزادہ میر برکت علی خان صديقى مکرم جاہ آصف جاہ ہشتم‎)(Telugu: మీర్ బర్కాత్ ఆలీ ఖాన్ ముకరం జా ఆసాఫ్ జా) (born 6 October 1934), less formally known as Mukarram Jah, is an Indian king who became the titular Nizam of Hyderabad upon the death of his grandfather in 1967.[1]

Mukkaram Jah
Prince Mukarram Jah, the last Nizam (5613295569).jpg
Born (1934-10-06) 6 October 1934 (age 85)
Hilafet Palace, Nice, France
Regnal name claimedAsaf Jah VIII
Title(s)Nizam of Hyderabad
Throne(s) claimedHyderabad State
Pretend from24 February 1967–present
(Titular Nizam of Hyderabad)
Monarchy abolished1948
Last monarchMir Osman Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VII
Connection withGrandson
Royal HouseHouse of Asaf Jah
FatherAzam Jah
MotherPrincess Durru Shehvar, Imperial Princess of the Ottoman Empire
SpousePrincess Esra Birgin
(1959–1974; divorced)
Aysha Simmons
(1979–1989; widowed)
Manolya Onur
(1992–1997; divorced)
Jameela Boularous (co-wife)
(since 1992)
Princess Orchedi (co-wife)
(since 1994)
ChildrenPrince Azmet Jah Sahebzada Mir Azmet Ali Khan Siddiqi
Sahibzadi Shehkyar
Azam Jah Sahebzada Alexander Ali Khan Siddiqi
Umar Jah, Sahebzada Mohammod Umar Ali Khan Siddiqi (deceased)
PredecessorMir Osman Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VII

He currently chairs the H.E.H. The Nizam's Charitable Trust and Mukarram Jah Trust for Education & Learning (MJTEL).[2][3]


Jah with his mother Princess Durru Shehvar, daughter of the last Caliph.

Mukarram Jah was born to Azam Jah, the son and heir of Osman Ali Khan, the last reigning Nizam of Hyderabad state, by his wife Princess Durru Shehvar, daughter of the last Caliph of the Ottoman Empire, ‘Abdu’l-Mijid II.[4] Jah was educated in India at The Doon School, Dehradun where he finished most of his schooling. He then completed the rest of his education in Harrow, Peterhouse, Cambridge, the London School of Economics, and Sandhurst.[5][6]

Jah was a friend of India's first Prime Minister, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, and stated in 2010 that Nehru had wanted him to become his personal envoy or the Indian ambassador to a Muslim country.[7] His two main palaces in Hyderabad, Chowmahalla and Falaknuma, have been restored and opened to the public, the former as a museum showcasing the era of the Nizams and the latter as a luxury hotel. The Taj Falaknuma Palace Hotel opened in February 2010, having been leased to the Taj Group, after some ten years of renovations.[8]

Like his father, Mukarram was the richest man in India until the 1980s. However, in the 1990s he lost some assets to divorce settlements. His net worth is nevertheless estimated at $US1 billion.[9][10]

Marriages and issueEdit

Mukarram Jah married five times. His first wife was a Turkish princess, Esra Birgin (b. 1936), and they married in 1959.[1][11] Jah left his Hyderabad palace for a sheep station in the Australian outback and divorced his wife, who did not want to move with him.[12] In 1979, he married a former air hostess and employee of the BBC, Helen Simmons (b. 1949 – d. 1989);[13] she converted to Islam and changed her name to Aysha. After her death, he married Manolya Onur (b. 1954 – d. 2017), a former Miss Turkey in 1992, and divorced her after a five-year marriage in 1997.[12][13][14]

He married Jameela Boularous (b. 1972), from Morocco, in 1992.[15] In 1994, he married[16] Princess Orchedi (b. 1959), who is Turkish.[5][17]

Nanny carrying the prince from board after arrival in Bombay, 1934
Mukarram Jah with his younger brother Muffakham Jah

Sons and daughtersEdit

By Esra Birgin, Mukarram Jah had one son and one daughter:

  • Walashan Nawab Sahibzada Mir Azmet Ali Khan Siddiqi Bayafendi Bahadur (b. 1962), also known as Azmet Jah (heir apparent), married 1994, has worked as a cameraman.[5][12][18]
  • Sahibzadi Shehkyar Unisa Begum (b. 1964), unmarried and without issue[19]

By Helen Simmons he had two sons:

  • Walashan Nawab Sahibzada Mir Alexander Azam Khan Siddiqi Bayafendi Bahadur (b. 1979)[19]
  • Walashan Nawab Sahibzada Mir Mohammod Umar Khan Siddiqi Bayafendi Bahadur (1984-2004) deceased due to drug overdose[19]

By Manolya Onur he had a daughter:

  • Sahebzadi Nilufer Unisa Begum (b. 1992)[13]

By Jameela Boularous he had a daughter:

  • Sahebzadi Zairin Unisa Begum (b. 1994)

Full styleEdit

His Highness Prince Rustam-i-Dauran, Arustu-i-Zaman, Wal Mamaluk, Asaf Jah VIII, Muzaffar ul-Mamalik, Nizam ul-Mulk, Nizam ud-Daula, Nawab Mir Barakat 'Ali Khan Siddiqi Bahadur, Sipah Salar, Fath Jang, Nizam of Hyderabad and Berar.

Military titles

Honorary Lieutenant-General


The palaces he owns


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Zubrzycki, John (2006), The Last Nizam: An Indian Prince in the Australian Outback, Pan Macmillan Australia Pty, Limited, ISBN 1-4050-3722-9
  2. ^ Hyderabad at
  3. ^ Nizam Mukarram Jah Trust at
  4. ^ "Princess Durru Shehvar passes away", The Hindu, 9 February 2006
  5. ^ a b c Buyers, Christopher (August 2008). "Hyderabad: The Asaf Jahi Dynasty Genealogy". Retrieved 30 December 2008.
  6. ^ Singh, Kishore (30 March 2007), "India's wealthiest man the country forgot", Business Standard
  7. ^ "Nehru had big plans for me, says Mukarram Jah", The Times of India, 14 March 2010
  8. ^ Taj Falaknuma Palace, Hyderabad - Opening February 2010, February 2010, archived from the original on 22 March 2010
  9. ^ Natwest Bank account freeze
  10. ^ Costliest divorce in India
  11. ^ Guruswamy, Mohan (May 2008). "Books: The Last Nizam by John Zubrzycki. Picador India, Delhi, 2006". City of Hope: a symposium on Hyderabad and its syncretic culture. Retrieved 30 December 2008.
  12. ^ a b c Dalrymple, William (8 December 2007), "The lost world", Guardian
  13. ^ a b c "Turkish Beauty Fights for Justice", The Times of India, 21 March 2006, archived from the original on 20 January 2010
  14. ^ Shrivastava, Namita A (19 March 2006), "Princess diaries", The Times of India
  15. ^ "Nizam lands in $7-lakh soup", The Telegraph, Calcutta, India, 24 March 2006
  16. ^ Leonard, Karen Isaksen (2007), Locating Home: India's Hyderabadis Abroad, Stanford University Press, p. 111, ISBN 0-8047-5442-X
  17. ^ Parasher, Paritosh (31 August 2001), "Nizam's descendant faces unpaid wages charge in Aussie court", Indo-Asian News Service
  18. ^ Farida, Syeda (10 February 2005), "I belong to a lot of countries", The Hindu
  19. ^ a b c Soszynski, Henry (20 June 2005). "HH Walashan Nawab Mir BEREKET ALI KHAN Mukarram Jah". Retrieved 30 December 2008.
  20. ^ Buyers, Christopher. "The Asaf Jahi Dynasty: Genealogy". The Royal Ark. Retrieved 16 July 2010.
  21. ^ Buyers, Christopher. "The Imperial House of Osman: Genealogy". The Royal Ark. Archived from the original on 15 June 2006.
  22. ^ Harun Açba, Kadın efendiler: 1839-1924 (2004) p.214-215

External linksEdit

Mukarram Jah
Born: 6 October 1934
Titles in pretence
Preceded by
Osman Ali Khan, Asif Jah VII
Nizam of Hyderabad
1967 – present
Azmet Jah