Sunday, May 1, 2011

India's Helen of Troy?

The story of  Baz Bahadur and Roopmati is one in the style of Helen of Troy.

Baz Bahadur was the last independent Muslim ruler of Mandu . Whilst out hunting he stumbled across a group of Hindu girls, one of whom, Roopmati, charmed him by her beauty and her singing. Infatuated with Roopmati, he pleaded that she return with him to his capital. Roopmati agreed.

Baz Badahur & Roopmati

Baz Bahadur, due to his infatuation, neglected affairs of state and allowed his army to deteriorate (oh, no - we know what's coming don't we?!).

Fall of Mandu - Roopmati looks on from the city walls

 In 1561, the Great Moghul's army, lead by Adham Khan attacked Mandu, defeating Baz Bahadur in the battle of Sarangpur on 29 March, 1561. The main reason given for the attack by the ballads was Adham Khan's love of Roopmati.Roopmati died after swallowing a poison tipped diamond when told of the fall of Mandu. Baz Bahadur fled, later to enter the service of the Great Moghul.

I am sure there is a lesson, or two, in there somewhere!

And here is a clip from the 1957 (or '59) Bollywood version of the story. It goes for nearly 10 minutes. At the 8minute 50 second mark there are some nice pictures, in colour, of Mandu Fort.

I have taken the video from youtube and my thanks to Mastkalandr for uploading it.



  1. Sorry about the pop-up add on the video : (

  2. Roopmati deserves her miniature figurine, don't you think :)?