Joined: 19 December 2015
LEISURE IN AFTERNOON...
"Kab tak pura thik ho jayenge hum?" [By when will I recover completely?] Jalal asked the Hakim Sahab a bit restlessly while keenly watching the process of dressing the wound. The royal physician smiled affectionately seeing the eagerness of the young emperor. "Aap to thik ho hi gaye hay Shahenshah! Baas kuch din or, fir pahele jaise chala payenge aapne baya haat ko. Srif aram ki zarurat hay. Ek hapte taak bistaar se zyada hilna mat, thik ho jayenge." [You have already recovered Majesty! Only matter of some days, then you will be able to move your left hand normally. Only rest is needed. Don't get off from bed for only one week, you will be ok.]
Jalal grimaced to see his left arm... still paining and yet to get back the whole strength. The tissues of the hand have been severely ruptured due to the direct contact with poisonous arrow for a longer time compelling the injury to take much time of recovering. With an irritated mind he changed his glare to the sky. The beautiful sunset in the land of sands somehow helped to charm the spoilt mood. The bandage having tied, he slowly lifted his left hand and stretched it. It has recovered a bit. The physician who was watching his gestures started smiling in appreciation. "Kamal hay Shahenshah! Jis zaherile tir lagnese bare bare haathi bhi maut ka ghat utar jata hay aap kitni ashani se uss zaher ko kaabu me kar liye hay!" [Great Majesty! This poisonous arrow leads even the big elephants to death, and you have defeated that so easily!]
"Yeh mera nehi aapke dawaiyon ka kamal hay Hakim Sahab!" [All credits goes to your medicines, not me!] Jalal smiled back decently. "Abhi kuch aisa dawai bhi dijie jisse yeh ghao bhi bhar jaye or hum jaldi se shamsheerbazi karne ki layek ho jaye!"[Now give me some medicines to heal the wound fast so that I become able for swordfight again.]
"Thora or waqt dijie Shahenshah," [Give some more time majesty,] the doctor chuckled. "Aapki jaan ki asha chor die the hum... Sare badan me zaher fail gaya tha; na jane kitna khun nikal gaya tha uss din aapke sarir se... Aap itni jaldi chal fir payenge yeh to humlog soche hi nehi the Jahapanha! Itni jaldi thik ho rahe hay aap, to ek chota sa zakhm varne me or kitna waqt lagega?" [We had already lost all the hopes of your life... the poison had spread in the whole body badly...We didn't expect you to start walking in this little time! You are recovering so speedy, then how much time will it take to heal the wound?]
Jalal passed a reluctant smile and looked at the setting sun. "Hume bohot jaldi durust hona hoga Hakim Sahab. Bohot jald durust hona hoga... Ek Shahenshah aram karne me waqt zaya nehi kar sakta!" [I need to be cured very soon hakim Sahab! An emperor has no time to rest!] He uttered with a serious frown in brows, his eyes were expressing deep worry.
"Salam Aleikum Begam Sahiba..." Jalal turned back hearing the addressing of the physician. Jodha had entered into the room. She came towards the seat near window where Jalal was sitting and signed the doctor to go out. The royal physician bowed down to his and her highness and left the room leaving them alone together.
"Dur khari kya kar rahi hay? Aiye..." [Why are you standing there? Come...] Jalal stretched his hands to her smilingly after giving extra effort to his left arm. Jodha's eyes glowed seeing him to be successfully recovering, and spontaneously she almost ran to his embracement and kept her head on his broad chest hugging his body. Jalal affectionately placed a mild kiss on her hairs and shut his eyes with immense peace. The melted twilight fell on their head like a divine blessing; they came closer and get mingled in each other.
Everything in this world is so perfect, if only those two little lives had been present with them today! Jodha thought... a huge agonized sigh automatically came out of her heart, the corner of eyes suddenly became cloudy.
Jalal tightened his embracement and held her chin up to kiss away the tear just going to fall. "Or aanshu nehi, Jodha! Bohot sare aanshu baha liye hay aapne! Or nehi!" [No more tears Jodha! You have shed a lot of tears... no more!] He whispered, his voice sinking in despair, but with a firm determination in it!
"Kya karu! Bhul nehi pate... kaise bhul jaye... mere bacche..." [What should I do! I can't forget... how to forget... my sons...] Jodha could not complete the sentence to control the sudden crack in voice due to emotional outburst. She clutched Jalal's shoulder and poured her face inside his chest and inhaled deeply.
"Bhulenge kyu... Kya koi apne khun ko bhul pata hay? Par aanshu maat bahaiye." [Why would you forget? Can anyone forget her own blood? But don't shade tears.] Jalal picked her face up. "Aab inn sare dard or sare aanshuyon ko aapne takat ki tarha istamaal karna sikhna hi hoga Jodha! Nehi to yehi dard firse hume saas lene nehi dega!" [Now we have to learn to use these pains and tears as our strength! Else they will not let us breathe again!] His eyes suddenly clicked in an immense rage. "Sikh thi yeh haatsa humare liye! Zindegi ki ek bari sikh... Bohot bari sikh jisne zindegi ko uthal-puthal kar diya!" [This was a lesson for e! The greatest lesson of me...that devastated the whole life!] His voice almost muted, eyes shivering in a vicious excitement... Jodha touched his lips with fingers to prevent him but he went on. "Bhai tha na o Kasim humara? Humara chachera bhai... humare abbu ke aapne khun ka rista tha... Jodha, iss siyasat me sabse bara ghao aapne khun ke ristyon se hi aata hay! Ek shahenshah ka sabse bara dusman uska bhai hi hota hay..." [That Kasim was my cousin, wasn't it? He had direct relation of blood through my father... Jodha, in this politics one gets the greatest wound from his relatives only! A brother is always the biggest foe of the emperor... ] He closed his eyes to control himself and eventually his voice drowned in a sudden thrust of tears. "Yeah Khuda!!" He exclaimed in a deep grief and agony. Then clenching Jodha's hand suddenly he exclaimed- "Baas or nehi Jodha! Hum or humare kisi risteydaar ko nehi bakshenge! Kisi ke liye aapne dil ko dimagg par kabu pane nehi denge... Chahe o mere bhai Mirza hi kyu na ho!" [Not more Jodha! I will not spare any of my relatives anymore! I will never let my heart to win over my mind for anyone... Let him be my brother Mirza!]
"Mirza?" Jodha frowned in confusion with his sudden mention of this name. She remembered his concern about the delicate situation in Kabul; she remembered his thoughts about Begam Mah-Chuchak in morning; she remembered the savage attempt on his life by Abul Mali which nearly brought him in front of death; even she remembered the cascade of those coded letters too, that she had found once on Jalal's table... "Aman ke Parindey" She could remember... Some coded language in a girl's handwriting- coming from Kabul... Kabul and Mirza Hakim are highly connected with each other...
"Kabul ke bare me soch rahe hay aap?" [Are you thinking about Kabul?] Jodha asked Jalal, who had become quite unmindful for a while.
"Nehi... Mirza Hakim ke bare me soch rahe hay!" [No. I am thinking about Mirza Hakim!] Jalal sighed...
Jodha kept on staring at him. Mirza and Kabul... Kabul and Mirza... direct connection between each other... but surprisingly young Mirza Hakim does not exist in the list of the enemies of the emperor rather he is the only one on whom His majesty can rely completely among all the power-hungry faces in Kabul... Can Mirza ever go against his brother too?
"Mirza kabhi..." Jodha gulped. "Aapke birudhh nei jayenge Shahenshah!" [Mirza will... never go against you!]
"Hum umeed kar sakte hay. Yaakin nehi..." [I can hope... but I can't trust...] Jalal uttered.
Jodha became quiet for a while and observed Jalal. The desolated shadow from face has not got over yet, the chin has become more rigid. His eyes show the mirror of his mind, which is calculating about some grave matter, and Jodha is well versed on the language of his eyes. She remembered the special message coming from the embassy of Kabul today... something has happened which is disturbing his majesty.
"Kya khabar mila hay Kabul se? Kuch bari anhoni ki taraf ishara kar raha hay kya?" [What news have you got from Kabul? Is it pointing towards any big danger?] She asked.
"Anhoni ho bhi jay to hum itni dur se usse rok nehi payenge..." [If it really comes I will not be able to stop that from this far...] Jalal said unmindfully. "Mah-Chuchak Begam bimar hay... sab uss baat ka mouka le raha hay... Par Mirza Hakim ho itni jaldi kyu bulaya liya gaya... kyu!" [Mah-Chuchak Begam is sick... everyone is taking the opportunity... but why Mirza is called in so haste??] He nodded his head restlessly. "Aag se khel rahi hay Shahzadi Fakhrunnisa... Kayi uss aag me o khud hi na jwal jaye!" [Princess Fakhrunnissa is playing with fire... Hope she won't burn herself in that...]
"Kya?" [What?] Jodha looked confused, but Jalal did not answer anymore. Jodha could understand he is not willing to share this particular portion of Kabul politics with Jodha. "Agar aap nehi batana chahte to hum aapse poochhenge nehi.. Par itna janna chahenge ki kya iss samamsya ka hal hay aapke paas?" [If you don't want I will not ask you. But I would like to know whether you have the solution.] She asked.
"Muskil aya to hal aapne aap nikal jaati hay meri jaan!" [Solution comes out automatically in the problem my dear!] Jalal smiled broadly. "Baat yeh hay ki yeh masla abhi bhi humare haat ke bahar hay. Jo ho raha hay humare pith pichhe ho raha hay. Hum aagli baar ke liye taiyaari kar sakte hay, par jo hona hay usse bandh nehi kar sakte! Choriye yeh sab..." [Thing is that the whole matter is out of my hand till now. Everything is going on behind me. I can prepare myself for next, but can't change the fact! Leave these...] he closed the topic suddenly... "Bekar me pura mauhol bigar gaya... Kuch or bare me baat karte hay." He took her hand in his hand. "Bohot dino baad aapki kisi hunar dekhne ko mila! Maashallah kya tir chalati hay aap! Aapko samaz ne me humara sara zindegi kat jayega... Kabhi phoolyon ki tarha nazuk, kabhi aag ki gole ki jaisa raftaar... hay kon aap?" [Got to see your talent after quite a long time! For god's sake, what a great archer are you! I will spend my whole life knowing you... sometimes softer than flowers, sometimes faster than fireballs... who are you??]
"Hona parta hay! Nehi to Shahenshah-E-Hind ke sahdharmini kaise banenge?" [I had to be. Else how would I match beside The emperor of Hindustan??] Jodha enjoyed the praise wholeheartedly...
"Kamal ke tirandaz hay aap Jodha! Inti acchi tir to aapke ghar me koi nehi chalata... Kisse sikhe the aapne yeh?" [Really you are great archer. None is as good as you in your house. From whom had you learnt it?]
"Sujamal Bhaisa se... O bohot bare yoddhha the..." [From Brother Sujamal. He was a great warrior.] While remembering Sujamal Jodha's heart suddenly filled with sigh. "Na jane kya kar rahe honge o! Kaise jee rahe honge!!" [God knows how he is living now!]
TOUGH TIME FOR SUJAMAL...
"Hum aapke kisi bhi prasna ka uttar deneke liye badhya nehi hay!" [I am not bound to answer you!] Sujamal at last lost his patience and fumed in fury. "Humne aapse sandhi kiye, aapke senabal ki sahayata ki pratyasha ki, par iska tatparya yeh nehi ki aapko hume adesh karne ki adhikar mil gaya ho! Hum bhalibhati jante hay ki yudhh kaise karte hay, uski sikh hum aapse nehi lenge!" [I have signed treaty with you, have taken your army's help, but that does not mean that you have got the right to order me! I know well how to win wars, I don't need advice from you!]
Samar Singh, the prince of Raipur smirked in response. "Aap bhale hi yudhhneeti me kushal ho, par kutneeti ki khetra me aap bohot hi durbal hay Kunwar. Aapko pata hona chahiye srif bakyabal or bahubal se yudhh nehi jita jata... uske liye sahi samay ka prayog karna bhi avasyak hota hay!" [Might be you are skillful in wars, but you are very weak in diplomacy. You should know that only strength and words cannot win a war... that needs an action in time too!] He winched. "Itne din beet gaye, aap abhi bhi akraman ki taiyaari bhi nehi kiye. Aap kuch karna chahte bhi hay yeah nehi? Aisa hota raha to Raipur aapko sahayata nehi kar payegi!" [So many days have passed, you have not attacked yet. Do you want to attack or not? If that continues Raipur won't help you!]
"Hum aise hi kaise akraman kar sakte hay? Mughal fauj maujud hay, kafi sare rajya ki senayen bhi upasthit hay or surakhsha prabandh bhi kafi bara di gayi hay; aise me akraman karna nirbuddhita ki parichaay hogi!" [How will I attack this way? There is Mughal army, and also the troops from other states and the security system is high too; attacking this time will be a stupidity!] Sujamal replied."Aab utsaav sampan ho gaya hay, dheere dheere sab laut jayenge, or Amer ko bhi sadharan paristhiti me lautne me samay lagega. Hum ushi samay ki pratiksha kar rahe hay. Bohor jald hi akraman karenge hum!" [Now the festival is over and all are returning, Amer will take time to go back in normal life. I am waiting for the right time. I will attack soon!] He looked irritated. "Hum bohot dino se jungle me baithkar paristhiti takh rahe hay Kunwar Samar Singh; aap soch te hay ki achanak se dur se aake aap humse jyada samazne lage hay?" [I am watching the situation from a long time here in jungle Prince Samar Singh; and you think you understand the situation better than me while sitting in far distance?]
"Hume maat sikaiye Kunwar Sujamal!" [Don't teach me Prince Sujamal!] The prince grunted while shaping his mustache. "Shahenshah pe hamla hua tha, itna accha mauka tha, or aap use haat se jane diya?? Aab uss hamle ke baad pahera or bhi baar gaya hay, or abhi aap akraman ki soch rahe hay?" [The emperor had been attacked, the chance was great and you did not utilize that?? Now the security has got stronger after the attack and you're thinking to attack now?]
"Shahenshah ko srif chota sa chot aya tha Kunwar, itna bhi kuch nehi hua tha jisse unke pran-sankat ho sake or Mughal fauj ki manobal tut jaye! Amer me uss sandhya me bhi bibah-utsav jaari tha!" [The emperor had only got a small wound Prince, nothing life-threatening had happened to him that could have broken the self-confidence of Mughals! Amer was celebrating that evening too!] Sujamal answered in an angry tone. "Or aapne Maan Singh ke vivah ki raat me Shahenshah par hamla karne ki nirbudhhita kaise ki, o bhi hume bina batake? Isse humari kabile me kitna hungama ho sakta tha aapko pata bhi hay?" [And how did you plan to attack on emperor at the night of Maan Singh's marriage like an idiot, that too without telling me? Can you understand how gravely it could have told upon our tribal village?]
"Humara durvagya ki o hamla safal na ho paya, par Iswar ne hume dusra mauka diya Shahenshah ke upar or ek hamla karwake... Parantu aap kayeryon ki tarha uska koi sadbyabhaar nehi kiye!" [Unfortunately that attack was not successful, but God had given us another opportunity by that attack on the emperor... but you did not utilize that like a coward!]The prince smirked sarcastically. "Aisa lagta hay ki Shahenshah ki jivit rahene se sabse zyada khusi aapko ho rahi hay!" [It looks like you are the happiest one to see the emperor still alive!]
"Kripaya aap humari baat ghuma firakar na samjhe!" [Please don't take my words wrongly!] Sujamal retorted, but in mind he can't deny that he was actually happy. He was very much tensed when the first news of attack came through some spy... he had a golden opportunity to defeat Amer if the emperor falls down suddenly, but he was not thinking about that. Instead of praying for his victory, he was praying for the emperor of the enemies... he was praying for the happiness of his sister... she has gone through a lot of turmoil and storm in her life till date... how would he, being her brother, even think about snatching the strongest support of her life from her?
But the strategies, the politics demand the opposite! What should Sujamal do now?
"Kunwar Sujamal! Kaha kho gaye?" [Where have you lost Prince Sujamal?] Prince of Raipur brought him back to real world. "Hum aapse spast rup se uttar mangne ke liye Raipur se yeaha chalke aye hay. Humare bich prastav hua tha ki hum aapko Amer jitne me sahayata karenge, badle me aap hume Dhundhalgarh ke killa, jo Amer ne humse har liya tha, wapas kar denge... Aab agar aap pichhe hatenge to hum aapko aise hi nehi jane de sakte..." [I have come here from Raipur to get a clear answer from you. We had decided that I will help you defeating Amer and you will give me back Dundhalgarh fort which Amer has snatched from ud... now if you go back at the nick of time I will not let you go...]
"Hum pichhe nehi hat rahe hay! Amer ki maharaj ke prati aapse kahi zyada krodh humara hay! O humse chhalpurbak humara adhikar chhin kar humare jo aapman kiye the o hum kabhi nehi bhulenge! O humse sab kuch chhin liye!" [I am not going back! I have rage on the king of Amer more than you do! He has snatched my right by deceiving me and insulted me in such a way that I would never forget! He have snatched everything from me!] An irritated Sujamal fumed up. "Parantu aapko bhi samajhna chahiye ki hum ek rajya ki rajkunwar hay, aapka senapati nehi ki hume aapko spastikaran dene ki avasyakta pare!" [But you should also understand that I am a prince of a state, not your commander general who needs to give you explanation.]
"Hum spastikaran nehi maang rahe hay Sujamal Singh! Hum baas yehi jaanna chahte hay ki kayi aap aapne rishtedaaryon ke upar vaar karne me samarth hay bhi yeah nehi?" [I don't want your explanation Sujamal Singh! I only want to know whether you are actually able to fight against your relatives or not?] Samar Singh frowned. "Pichle bar Amer se naata torke uske biruddh jakar jo galti aapne ki thi, usse dohrane se kya darr rahe hay aap? Kayi aap akhir me Amer se sandhi karke humare uphaas to nehi banayenge na?" [Do you fear from repeating the same deed that you had done last time by going against Amer? Are you sure that you will not make our fun at the end by joining hand with Amer?] He came closer to Sujamal. "Agar hume aisa kuch gyat hua Sujamal Singh, to aapko di dui mitrata ki vachan ko todne me hume samay nehi lagega..."[If I get know about something like this, then it will not take much time in breking my promise of friendship with you!]
"Aapko humpe sandeh hay?" [Do you have doubt on me?] Sujamal questioned in a low tone.
"Hume aap ke iradyon par varosa nehi!" [I have no trust on your intensions!] The prince answered.
Sujamal kept on gazing at his nonchalant face with fierce eyes...
NEW HOPE FOR SARIFUDDIN...
Here in the secret army camp of rebel Kunwar Sujamal in the core of the jungle, Sarifuddin's apparent peaceful life had already filled up with worry and fear...
When Kunwar Sujamal gave Sarifuddin shelter, promised him to help them in their plan of creating riot and dethroning the emperor, Sarifuddin had thanked his God for blessing him with this sudden opportunity to arrange everything again. The first day spent happily and safely with enough food and drink too; the second day went on with lazy chitchatting with Sujamal, but he even did not care to discuss about any strategy with him... then the third day came, he was prevented from going anywhere without any guard... he slowly understood that he has been house-arrested under the eyes of Sujamal... Kunwar Sujamal is making him scapegoat in his upcoming diplomatic strategies with the Mughal dynasty!
So now Sarifuddin is waiting... waiting for the day when he will be presented in front of the emperor in Dewan-E-Khas like a prisoner, and the arrogant princess of Amer, the darling queen of the emperor will announce his punishment in front of the whole court! And also is searching for the slightest ray of hope... to save himself, to reconstruct those dreams of the throne by linking up with his old friends...
With all these heavy loads in heart, and the eagerness of that hope in eyes, Sarifuddin was roaming aimlessly in the camp of the tribal village. The irritating tribal guard who has been appointed as his servant is still stuck behind him! No way out to flee from here... Why the hell did he fall on the trap of Sujamal! Why!!
He has got the latest news of Amer... Emperor has been shot with an arrow. It could have taken his life but he luckily was saved, nothing changed with this vital incident except the security system and spies becoming over-active suddenly. Was it Abul Mali who planned the attack? Had he got Sarif's last message? What is the condition of Agra and his father is still unknown to him... He can sense that their team has been fragmented into pieces... what to do! How to save this sinking ship... his destiny has pushed him in a grave darkness... how to get away from it...
Suddenly a slight of hope flashed in front of his eyes... not as steady as sun, but as sudden and sharp as a lightning bolt in a new moon night...
"Raipur ka Shahzada Samar Singh??" He almost shouted in mixed astonishment and glee. The young man was stepping out of Sujamal's camp with a disgusted look, he put a glance on his face after hearing his voice and his face filled up with a happy smile along with a sheer curiosity. Mirza Sarifuddin Hussain- an important officer of Akbar's court- that he could recognize in once glance... Samar Singh knows Sarifuddin. It was hardly possible to see a Rajput-Mughal friendship that time, but was not fully impossible. Samar Singh had that type of almost impossible friendship with Sarifuddin a long ago when Sarifuddin was in charge of Ajmer and other Mughal territory of Rajputana. The friendship was not founded by a pure bond of heart, rather it was more a duty of gratitude from Samar's part. Samar Singh's life was saved accidentally by the troop of Sarifuddin when he was lost, thirsty and injured in a lonely dessert while going for an adventurous trip; Samar had to bind himself in the bond of friendship with Sarifuddin that day, and he had committed to help him in any odd situation despite knowing that perhaps they would never meet again... But in this very adverse situation for Sarifuddin, his destiny sent Samar Singh, his grateful old friend to him as his savior...
"Sarifuddin Sahab! Aap yeaha??" [Sarifuddin Sahab! You here??] Samar Singh ran to talk with him.
"Samar Singh! Kaise hay aap?" [Samar Singh! How are you?] Sarifuddin grinned, and looked at the guard from the corner of eyes. The guard is looking casual today...
"Hum to thik hay... Parantu aap yeaha aise?? Yeh haal kisne ki aapka?" [I am alright but what are you doing here?? Who did this to you?] Samar was triggering questions one after another...
"I will tell you. Come to my tent." Sarifuddin smiled gently and hugged him out of courtesy. "Hume aapki madat ki zarurat hay Samar Singh!" [I need your help Samar Singh!] he suddenly whispered in his ears.
THE SEAL OF THE EMPEROR...
It was evening in the fort of Amer, and today the excitement of festival has been reduced a bit. The invitees have started departing Amer, the distant family members have started packing their bags; after a long recess, joy and beautiful cherishing moments all are setting off to their own world, the same normal routine life...
In Jalal's room Jalal was looking at the official documents with a deep frown in his brows, and his trustful finance minister was explaining the statements to him. The situation in delicate in capital... the followers of Moin has started movement in protest of his sudden arrest; though the situation is under control, the ministry fears it will not be so easy to imprison a personality like Moin behind the bar for a long time.
"Iss farmaan me mohar laga diya humne..." [I am sealing this order...] Jalal commented while stamping the paper. "Aap Agra jaakar elaan kar dijie ki Agra me chain or aman mehfooz rakhne ke liye Shahenshah ne sabhi hungama karne walo ko kabhi bhi, kahi se bhi, bina kisi saabut ke kayed karne ka farmaan jari kiye hay!" [You announce after going to Agra that to secure the peace in Agra the emperor has signed the official order of arresting the chaos-makers from anywhere, anytime without any proof!] He sighed. "Moin ke khilaaf kafi saabut hay, par uske chelayon ka muh bandh karne ke liye darane ke sivay or koi chara nehi!" [We have a lot of proofs against Moin, but we have no way without frightening the followers of him to stop them!]
"Parantu Shahenshah, iss farmaan ko jari karne se prajayon me biroop pravaab par sakta hay; paristhiti or bhi gambhir ho ja sakta hay..." [But Majesty, this order may create different reaction on the subjects; the situation may become more grave...] Todarmal said in worry while looking at the sealed paper. "Halaki Itne dur se humlog Agra ki asli paristhiti thik se samajh nehi pa rahe hay, par hume lagta hay ki agar aisi haal me janta rooth jaye to paristhiti swavabik nehi hoga..." [Though we cannot understand the proper situation of Agra from far, but I think if suddenly the subject becomes angry this time the situation will not become normal.]
"Par hum haat uthakar baith nehi sakte. Khwaja Moin ke saathiyan awam ko kisi na kisi tarha se humare khilaaf khara karne ki puri kosish karege." [But we can't sit mum. The companions of Khwaja Moin will try to provoke the subjects against me by hook or crook!] Jalal told while thinking deeply. " Khair, aap kal Agra ke liye raoyana honge; aapke Agra pohochte pohochte haalat me badlao ayega. Aap haalat samajhke waisa hi faisla lijiega... Par hum nehi chahte hay ki kisi bhi tarha se ek bhi maasum ka khun bahe. Agar aisa hua to Agra me aag lag jayengi!" [However, you will set for Agra tomorrow, and things will change till you reach there. Take the decisions according to situation... But I don't want that by any means a drop of blood sheds from any innocent. If this happens Agra will burn!]
"Jee Jahapanah! Par hume lagta hay ki iss samay Agra ke awam ko aapki zarurat sabse zyada hay!" [Yes my lord! But I think this time the people of Agra needs you the most!] Todarmal bit his lips. "O log aapko maante hay; agar aap hote ho sayad koi unhe dikvrast nehi kar pata..." [They obey you. If you were there they would not been provoked so easily...]
"Hume pata hay ki Agra ko humari zarurat hay. Par kya kare!" [I know that Agra needs me but what to do!] He sighed tiredly. "Hakim Sahab ka hukum hay ki hum kamse kam ek hapta bistaar se uthne ke bare me bhi na soche... Nehi to kal tak to hum Agra pohoch bhi gaye hote!!" [Doctor has ordered me not even to think about getting up from bed for a week... Otherwise I would have reached Agra by tomorrow!] He shook his head. "Todarmal Sahab, Agra pohochte hi aaplog hume turant Agra ke khabar bhejiyega... Hum do-tin din me yeaha se nikalne ki koshish karte hay!" [Todarmal Sahab, you do send me the latest news of Agra just after reaching. I am trying to set off within 2-3 days!]
"Nehi Shahenshah! Aapke swasth sabse zaruri hay... Aapko jaldbazi karne ki koi avasyakta nehi. Hum kal zyada tar sipahi or baki adhikarikyon ko lekar ja rahe hay, sab kuch samhal lenge..." [No majesty! Your health is most important... you need not to hurry. I am going tomorrow with maximum troop and other officers, we will manage everything...]
"Hmm!" Jalal nodded. "Kya Aziz Koka ne yeh kaha hay paigaam me ki jo log Moin ke azadi chahte hay unme se aam aadmi kitna hay or kitne saajish me moujud naamo me se hay? Takhtish kijie... hum ek bhi baagi ko hungama machane nehi denge!" [Have Aziz Koka told that how many commoners are there in the team of protestors and how many are from suspect list? Investigate... I will not let a single rebel to create any pandemonium!]
"Sab miljur kar hi to hay Shahenshah. Baagiyan aam prajayon ko beheka raha hay. Or Agra me aisa koi bhi nehi jo awam ko samjhaye. Khwaja Moin ne kya apradh kiya hay o samajhne ki or samjhane ki sakti Agra me kisi ke paas nehi hay huzur, yehi karan hay awam ki rosh ka..." [Everyone is together Shahenshah! The rebels are provoking the subjects. Now none is there in Agra who will make the subjects understand. None is there in Agra who has the ability to understand or make people understand about the seriousness of the crime that Moin had committed, and that's the main reason of the mass's rage. ]
"To awam ko satya samjhane ka avasyakta hi kya hay Todarmal ji? Kuch aisa samjhaiye jo unhe samajhme aye!" [Then why to make the subjects understood the truth, Todarmal ji? Make them understand such things that they will understand easily!] An amused tune of a modulated and elegant voice came from behind. Todarmal stood up and bowed down. It was Jodha, her highness...
"Kshama karna; hume aise aap logo ki baato me ghusna nehi chahiye tha.Hum baas kuch kam se aye the..." [Excuse me, I should not have poked into your discussions. I had come in some other work only...] Jodha sought an excuse from under her veil before entering into the room. She picked up something from a table and was about to go, but Jalal stopped her...
"Jo baat karna suru kiye the usse pura to karke jayiye Begam Sahiba!" [Complete the sentence you started Your Highness!]
Jodha turned back and smiled decently. "Hume pura baat nehi pata hay Shahenshah; aise me ek gambhir bishay par aapni maat byakt karna murkhta hogi..." [I don't know about the whole matter your majesty; this way it will be foolish to voice my opinion in such a grave matter...]
"Aapko aapni raay zahir karne ki pura azadi hay Jodha Begam; hum chahte hay ki aap khulkar bataye. Sayad aapki baat sabse zaruri ho!" [You have the complete freedom to share your opinion Jodha Begam; I want that you explain properly. Maybe you have the most important point!] Jalal assured. "Bataiye, kya kahena chaiye hume awam ko?" [Say, what should we say to the subject?]
"Hume sari baat nehi pata, par andaaza hay ki sarayantra me samil kuch log Khwaja Moin ka griftaari ko samne rakhkar shanty bhang ki chesta kar raha hay... O log Shahenshah ke naam par mithya kalank lagana chahte hay, or awam o man raha hay..." [I don't know the whoe story, but I can guess that some conspirators are trying to break peace by issuing the arrest of Khwaja Moin... They want to defame the emperor, and the commoners are coming under their provocation.] She smiled... "To hume unhe kuch aisa samjhana chahiye awam ko jo o log or bhi jaldi se man jaye... Todarmal sahab, aap kahe rahe the na ki awam ka prashna hay khwaja Moin ne kya aapradh kiya hay, to unhe uss aapradh swikar karwake awam ke samne pesh kijie!" [So we should make them understand something which they will agree more easily... Todarmal Sahab, you told that the greatest question of Awam is what is Khwaja Moin's offence, so present him in front of them with his confession.]
"Par isse kya hoga?" [But will it work by any means?] Todarmal looked confused while Jalal picked a brow with a satisfied smirk shining at the corner of his lips.
"Hoga Todarmal Sahab, hume gyaat hay hoga. Srif yeh dhyaan me rakhna hoga ki o jis aapradh ko swikar karenge o kuch aisa ho jisse awam maaf na kar paye... Hume biswaas hay ki Agra ki awam Khwaja Moin pe jitna varosa karte hay, usse kayi adhik sraddha or prem o unke shahenshah se karte hay. Iss sraddha or prem ko kaam me lagana hoga..." [It will work Todarmal Sahab, I know it will. Only keep in mind that the offence should be unforgivable for the subjects... I believe the subjects of Agra has more respect and love for their emperor that their belief on Khwaja Moin. We have to utilize this love and respect...]
"Parantu Begam Sahiba..." Todarmal was not at all convinced. "Khwaja Moin ke aapradh- Satruyon ke sath milkar desh me dharmiya ved lagane ki chesta, shahenshah ki birudhh sarayantr karna, dharm ko samne rakhkar Hindustan ko satryon ke paas bech dena... yeh sab bari bari tarrk ki baate sadharan jan kaise samjhenge? Ulta aise me unpar birup fal ho sakta hay..." [The crimes of Khwaja Moin- trying to divide his nation by joing hands with the enemies, saling own country in the hand of enemies in the name of religion- will the common people understand these heavy logics? It will rather tell upon the situation...]
"O sab bare bare baaten nehi samjhenge, par shahenshah ke jaan lene ki kosish- yeh gunah-e-azim agar o qubul kar le to?" [They will not understand these big words, but if he confesses about the greatest crime- of attempting on the emperor's life?] Jalal smirked. "Agra ki awam unke shahenshah se bohot pyaar karte hay Todarmal sahab, jo usse marne ki kosish karega usse o log nehi bakshenge..." [The people of Agra love their emperor too much Todarmal Sahab, they will not spare him who would try to kill him.]
"Par unhone to..." [But he is...]
"Unn se yeh gunah qubul karwana hay Todarmal Sahab. Agra me bari chalaki se yeh baat saabit karna hay ki hum par zehrile tir se jaan liya hamla kiya gaya tha jiske piche Khwaja Moin ka haath hay!" [He has to confess this Todarmal Sahab. It has to proved cunningly in Agra that the attempt on my life with poisonous arrow is linked with Khwaja Moin!] Jalal looked at Jodha while ordering who was smiling meaningfully. "Fir yeh farman zari kar dena, or tahekikaat bhi waise hi chalu rahega. Koi yeh nehi kahega ki Shahenshah makroor hay. Shahenshah ke upar hamla... iske upar koi kuch kahene ki bare me sochega bhi nehi!" [Then announce this official order, and investigation will go on too. None will say that the emperor is autocrat. None will dare to raise voice over an incident like attempt of life of emperor!]
Todarmal smiled while bowing down this time. "Jatha agyya Sahenshah!" He was about to leave, Jalal called back. "Or sunie, Mahesh Das ko kahe dijiega ki unhe abhi Agra jaane ki zarurat nehi. O humare sath hi Agra jayenge... Hume unki zarurat paregi!" [Tell Mahesh Das that he need not to leave for Agra now. He will go with me... I will need him further!] He smiled unmindfully.
"Dhanya hay aap! Abhi do din bhi pura nehi hua or aap firse rajkarya lekar suru ho gaye?" [You are great! Two whole days have not passed and you have started your works?] Jodha laughed after TodarMal left the room. Jalal leaned against his pillow and started pressing his forehead. "Kya kare meri jaan! Dekh rahe hay na kya haal chal raha hay Agra me! Par manna parega Begam Sahiba..." [What to do my love! You can see the situations in Agra! But I have to say Begam Sahiba...] He looked at her mischieveously. "Hum ekdin ke liye bimaar kyu na ho gaye, or aap siyaasat me itni siyaani ho gayi? Kya salah di aapne waah! Hum to kaayel ho gaye aapki!" [I fell for only one day and you became so smart in handling politics? What a suggestion you gave! I have become a fan of you!]
"Kyu aapko kya lagta hay, hume srif lep banana or lori gaana aata hay?" [Why do you think that I can't do anything without making pastes and singing lullaby?] Jodha bent lips. "Humara baas chalta to aapse bhi accha desh chala lete hum!" [If I was given chance I would have reign better than you!]
"Accha? To aap hi samhaliye na sab kuch? Hum tabtak aram kar lete hay..aah!!!" [Really? Then you take charge of everything, I am going for long rest!] Jalal smiled while lying completely on the bed...
"O to hum kar hi sakte hay, par aap nehi kar sakte. Aap ek din ke liye hi aapna takht humari haato nehi sounp sakte, or sara jivan ki baat kar rahe hay?" [I can do it, but you can't. You can't leave your duties of throne in my hand for a day, and talking about the life?]
"Khudki zindegi aapke naam kar di hay, or yeh takht kya cheez hay!" [I surrendered my life in your life, what is this throne now!] Jalal laughed. "Ja kaha rahi hay? Zara yeh mohar thik jaage pe rakh dijie na..." [Where are you going? Keep the seal in place please...]
"Dijie..." [Give...] Jodha took the seal and smiled while observing that... "To yehi hay o jiske bajay se aap Begam Jodha ki adesh na man kar rajkarya ki charcha karna suru kar diye hay?" [So this is the culprit for whom you dared to start discussing on politics by disobeying Jodha Begam's orders?]
"Kya karu, faarman zari karna zaruri tha." [What to do, it was important to stamp the official orders.] Jalal gave an excuse. "Aab Shahenshah ka mohar koi or to nehi laga sakta hay na?" [Now none can use the imperial seal on the emperor's behalf, isn't it?]
"O to hay!" Jodha winked in a gleeful and amused face. "Akhirkar iss mohar ka hi to farq hay aapme or humme, hay na?" [After all this seal is the only difference between you and me, isn't it?]
"Accha? To aabki motabik agar aapke paas yeh baadshahi mohar hoga to aapki or Shahenshah Akbar ke bich me koi ved nehi rahega?" [Really? Then according to you if you had this imperial seal with you then there had been no difference between Emperor Akbar and you?] Jalal picked one brow.
"Aisa nehi hay, paranu sayed hum zaruri samay me or aapki anupasthiti me kisiko aapki kami mehsoos na hone dene ki kosish kar payenge..." [Not like that, but perhaps I would try not to let feel anyone your absence in the time of need when you would be absent...] Jodha smiled and kept the seal properly. "Thik hay Shanehshah, hume thora sa kam hay bahar... aap aram kijie..." [Ok Shahenshah, I have work outside... You take rest...] She suddenly giggled... "Aree, aise kya dekh rahi hay?" [What are you watching?]
Jalal was gazing at her face with eager eyes... "Thik kaha aapne! Agra ko kisiki zarurat hay jo humare na-maujoodgi me humara kaam kar sake!" [You are right. Agra needs someone who can do my duties in my absence...] He uttered...
Precap: The secret of the letters in that cascade from Kabul...
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