--> Skip to main content

Persian Ramayana Manuscript at Raza Library in Rampur in Bareilly in Uttar Pradesh

The 300-old Persian manuscript of Ramayan at Raza Library in Rampur in Bareilly in Uttar Pradesh was written by famous scholar Sumair Chand in Persian in 1715 AD during the reign of Mughal Emperor Farrukhsiyar. The Ramayan was written in gold and precious stones were used in illustration.
Times of India reports 
The Persian Ramayan starts with the Arabic Islamic verse 'Bismilla-e-rehman-e-rahim' (In the name of Allah, the most beneficent, the most merciful), like other Islamic religious books, including the holy Quran. In the 19th century, during the period of Nawab Yusuf Ali Khan of Rampur state, this 300-year-old Ramyan was brought to the Raza Library. 
Professor, SM Azizuddin Husain, director of the library, told TOI: "During the revolt of 1857 against the British, the English Army captured and ransacked Delhi and Lucknow libraries and looted the precious manuscripts. Rampur nawabs were great patrons of valuable manuscripts and they had purchased these manuscripts, include this Persian language Ramayan of Mughal era, for the scholars." 
The translation of the Hindu religious books during the Mughal era has a rich history. Professor SA Azizuddin Husain, a noted historian of India, says, "Mughal emperor Akbar decided to translate all the 'Indic religious' books and for this, he had established the department of translation called 'Darut Tarjuma' at Fatehpur Sikri. Mahabharat and Ramayan were translated into Persian language." He added that Sher Jallaluddin of Thanesar, presently the area of Kurukshetra, also translated Mahabharat into Persian and Sheikh Saadullaha of Panipat did a poetic translation of Ramayan and this tradition was followed by Sumair Chand during the 18th century.