One of the most hated person in Jodha Akbar serial is Sharaf-ud-din. And why wouldn’t he be? After all he has all the high qualities of being a villain. Not just a traitor, he is also a characterless man who in spite of having a pregnant wife, eyes on another woman. And the other woman is none other than Jodha Begum, one of the Begum-E-Khaas of his shehenshah Jalaluddin Muhammad Akbar.
Historical chronicles and documents doesn’t mention much about him but whatever is available we have assembled here. Here is his story:
Mirza Sharaf ud din Hussain Ahrari was the son of Khwaja Mu‘in Ahrari, of Rudkhana-i-Nashib, from his wife, Kuchak Begum. Kuchak Begum was younger daughter of Mir Ala ul-Mulk, Amir from Termiz. Termiz is the southernmost part of Uzbekistan. Khwaja Muin Ahrari was the son of Khwaja Khawand Mahmud. which means Sharaf-ud-din was the grandson of Khwaja Khawand Mahmud. Now, Khwaja Khawand Mahmud not only was a well known saint who knew about medicine but also a Qadl. Emperor Humayun was his disciple.
Going by such a family background, I don’t think so the real Sharaf-ud-din would be as bad as the reel Sharaf-ud-din which we get to see on the daily basis. A person belonging to the family of Qadl’s is not supposed to be bad, least characterless!
Marriage With Akbar’s Sister
Sharaf – ud – din was Bakshi Bano’s second husband. Bakshi was Akbar’s sister from another mother Gunwar Bibi. Her story is very tragic, since she became a widow at a very young age of 20 when her husband Abul Qasim Ibrahim Mirza, the son of Badakshah’s Governor was killed in September 1560.
Later, Masum Khan Kabuli (Mirza Hakim‘s foster brother) arranged the marriage of Sharaf-ud-din with Bakshi Bano somewhere between 1579 to 1581 but definitely before February 1581. However, the serial shows Sharif-ud-din is already married to Bakshi Bano. This is confusing but it is not the first time that Jodha Akbar is making chronological mishap. Few of the people believe that she was married in the same year after her husband died. (But there are obvious doubts) But it is before the filmand serial or after that, is doubtful.
Sharaf-ud-Din’s Position in the Mughal Empire
Mirza Sharaf ud-din Husain Ahrari was Subedar of Ajmer and Naguar. He had an Imperial mansabdar of 5,000. No where in the little history available about him speaks about his treachery, or his ill treatment towards Bakshi Bano. If there had been any instance where he had betrayed Akbar, I’m sure it would have been highlighted just like we know about Adham Khan and Mirza Hakim.
But since there is nothing much available about him, I assume he was just a neutral figure in Mughal Empire. Perhaps, this is the reason why the writer of Ashutosh Gowariker chose him as a central character in the feature film Jodha Akbar. For a writer writing fiction, a character lesser known is a good option as he gets to explore his creative mind without focusing much on history.
No wonder, even Ekta Kapoor’s writer followed the trend – making one doubt whether Sharif-ud-Din was really such a cruel, characterless and a pain of the Mughal Khandan!
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