The Mufeed Ul Annam School on the map of Hyderabad 1913

Mufeed-Ul-Annam (on the map it is Mufid-Ul-Annam) is the school run by the community and is located on the map of Hyderabad from 1913. This map was created by the Hyderabad Municipal Survey during 1912-1915. The mapping of Hyderabad was part of a plan for urban Hyderabad after the floods of 1901 by the Nizam’s administration and was led by an engineer Leonard Munn (1878-1935). The need for modern education to get employed in the bureaucracy of the Nizam prompted this founding of the school in 1882 which offered modern education to the children of the community members. This is a major aspect that enabled agency by creating the circumstance for progress in the community members by providing access to education in a time when there were not many schools. Since its founding, all the members of the school until the middle of the twentieth century were educated in there and went on to make significant contributions to the civic life and well-being of the city of Hyderabad.
The school is one of the major institutions of the Brahma Kshatriya community and across from that on the map was the house of Raja Roop Lal whose half-brother Raja Bansi Lal was the founder of the school- they were zamindars or landowners.
Map courtesy: @krishnakriti_foundation Kalakriti Archives, Hyderabad


Chowgda or the spice box

The chowgda is a spice-box that has been passed down from the generations in the family I am married into- the Waghray family of Kachiguda, Hyderabad. They have lived in Kachiguda for the past 50 years or so and before that they were a part of an extended family in Alijah Kotla, Charminar, in the Old city of Hyderabad, Telangana.
The chowgda housed the spices like zeera (cumin), rai (mustard), methi (fenugreek), turmeric/haldi (curcumin), mirchi (red chilly powder). But since some spices react with, in this case the pital (brass- an amalgam of copper and zinc), the inner lining or khalaiye, was laid which was made of tin that would be replaced regularly to keep the metal out of the food.

The chowgda or spice box was in use in the family when the number of people in the family were 50 and above, adults and children included. Sitting together for a meal meant bringing a group of your peers to share a large plate/ paraat and food was served in your plate only if there were 5 people available. This was a way to avoid wastage but also to make the food go around sufficiently and take care of a large family.

Cooking for the family was a routine that continued throughout the day due to the fact that so many mouths had to be fed- breakfast, lunch and dinner. My source is Meera Devi, my husband’s aunt, who would say that the three square meals were actually two meals- brunch and dinner with a small chai-snack in between at 3 pm. Her way of life has not changed much to this day as she prefers eating a brunch style meal at 10 am and dinner at 6 or 7 pm.

Shashi Sehgal, my husband’s second cousin, living in California since 1986 had this to say, “I have heard the same story from my dad, Padma bua and Laikh Raj Chacha about the meals. The other thing they talked about was how the dadis (grandmothers) took turns to do the cooking. Some did the chopping of the vegetables, some made the rotis and some made the dal. The ones who made the brunch, rotated out so a second group made the dinner. Every few days they changed shifts. Baa dadi was the matriarch of the family who was the only lady of her generation that was alive for a long time, the others had passed on when the nine siblings were still children.”

For a long time now, people have moved on to steel spice boxes which are easy to use/ clean and also a non-reactive metal if it is of a good quality.

I also wonder, what location of the brass factory in India did this chowgda arrive from? In a way that metal items in homes in India get utilized, it has a BL sign engraved on it, BL for Bidri Lal, by husband’s great grand father and it has it’s tell tale signs of wear and tear. Was the factory from Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh? What manufacturing was happening then and who were the local retail sellers for this product? Where are they now in Hyderabad and what are they engaged in at this time? Some questions remain unanswered and continue to linger.

by Hema Malini

Brahma Kshatriyas of eminence in Hyderabad

Heads of Institutions

Director, Customs                                          Dilsukh Ram Sekhar

Director, Endowments                                   Raja Trimbak Lal Thakore

Chief Conservator of Forests                      Daulat Rai Sahgal

Addl. Director Medical Services                   Dr. Mrs. Annapurna Vigg

Director, Education                                        Dr. N. Ram Lal Waghray 

General Manager, I.D.P.L.                            Roop Lal Shah

Secretary, Railway Recruitment Board          Govind Lal Waghray 

Chief Commercial Superintendent & GM Central Railways      Arjun Pershad Sekhar

Chairman, APSRTC and Hyderabad Allwyn Metal Works           Guru Pershad Sekhar

Eminent Doctors

Personal Physician to the Nizam  Major Dr. B. Shiv Raj Shah

Professor, Osmania Medical College     Dr.Satyanarayan Sahgal

 Suptd, Sarojini Devi Hospital                  Dr. P. Ramchander Desai

 RMO, Osmania Hospital                         Dr. Tulsi Das Sekhar

 Head, Orthopaedic Dept. Osm, Hospital     Dr. Dharam Rai Thakore

 Suptd, Fever Hospital                                Dr. KaranPershad  Sekhar

 Suptd, Osmania Hospital                       Dr. Vijender Nath Waghray

 Suptd, Osmania Hospital                     Dr. Binode Kumar Sahay

 Cardiologist, Gandhi Hospital              Dr. Bansi Lal Vigg

 Suptd, Maternity Home, Sultan Bazaar        Dr. Chandrakala Sahay

 Suptd, Sadhuram Eye Hospital       Dr. Shyam Sunder Pershad Kapoor

Director, Medical Services                             Col. Kailash Nath Waghray

Minister in Laik Ali Cabinet: Raj Mohan Lal, Bar-at-Law

Chief Justices of High Court : Bisheshwarnath Waghray, Bal Mukund Waghray, Manohar Pershad Sahgal

First Woman Session Judge: Smt. Daya Devi Burman Mahendra

Judge, High Court and Chairman, A.P Administrative Tribunal:  Upender Lal Waghray

Sessions Judges : Shanker Pershad Mahendra, Ram Lal Kishen Waghray, Jitendernath Waghray, Nauratan Lal Waghray, Mohan Lal Waghray, Mahesh Narayan Mahendra, Rupender Pershad Sahgal

Prominent Members of BKC

Chairman, Political Reforms Committee:  Rai C. Bal Mukund Waghray
Chairman, Backward Classes Commission: Manohar Pershad Sahgal
Secretaries to Government:  H. Ram Lal Shah, Tribhuvan Lal Mahendra, DilsukhRam Sekhar, Bhupender Nath Waghray, Narsing Raj Sahgal, Guru Das Sahgal, Gul Bahadur Sahgal
Chief Engineers: Bala Pershad Sekhar, Veernath Rai Shah, Laxminarayen Kishen Waghray, Shivender Bahadur Sahgal (Railways)                        
Asst. Accountant General: Manohar Lal Waghray
Secretary, Exhibition Society: Bhavani Rai Shah
Legislators: Man Mohan Lal Shah, Khushbadan Lal Mahendra 
Social Workers: Suraj Bhan Waghray, Daya Devi Burman Mahendra, Dr. Padmavati Shastri Waghray, Gayatri Devi Waghray, Laxmi Raj Shah, Hemchander Pershad Ghai 
Army Service: Col. Kailash Nath Waghray, Major Dr. B. Shiv Raj Shah, Major. Shanker Lal Desai, Lt. Col. Bishendar Bahadur Sahgal 
Freedom Fighters: Mahipatram Sahgal, Barrister Kishan Waghray, Karan Rai Sohni, Khushbadan Lal Mahendra, Pramila Mahendra, Amarnath Burman Mahendra , Dr. Parmavathi Shastri Waghray, Amolak Ram Waghray

Excerpted from the Green Book published by Amolak Ram Waghray. In the picture shaking hands with Prime Minister Nehru is Bala Pershad, Chief Engineer at the inauguration of the Nizam Sagar Dam. Also in the picture is H. Ram Lal (black shervani, extreme right in black eye glasses) who was also the secretary to the government. Picture courtesy Raj Kumar Waghray.

The history of the Quomi fund

The following is a brief outline of the history of the Brahmakshatriya Educational, Social, and Welfare Society and of its activities.

In the latter part of the nineteenth century, due to the influence of the British Empire, it became necessary to have modern education with English as the medium of instruction. As there were very few schools offering modern education in Hyderabad, some elders of the Brahmakshatriya community, under the leadership of Raja Bansi Lal, started the Mufeed-ul-Anam school in 1882, which offered modern education and gave a good opportunity to the children of the community.

In the early twentieth century, it became difficult to obtain employment without higher education. Since the facilities for higher education were insufficient in Hyderabad, it became necessary for community members to go either to other states in British India or to England in order to pursue higher education. Due to financial constraints, the members of the Brahmakshatriya community could not afford to send their children outside the state.

Some members of the community decided to start a society whose purpose was to collect funds through regular subscriptions from every earning member of the community (Rs. 2/month) and additional donations from members who could afford it. The society was called the Brahmakshatriya Educational Loan Society (Brahmakshatriya Kharzai Talimi), popularly known as the Quomi Fund. The society was started in 1926 and it began advancing loans to needy students of the community, in order for them to pursue higher education in India, as well as abroad. The loan was repayable when the person got employed and the interest charged on this loan was nominal. The same practice is being continued till this day.

In the 1940s, Rai Raj Mohan Lal donated an amount for starting a widow fund. The amount donated had to be deposited and the interest thereon had to be utilized for payment to widows of the community who had no other source of income. In the 1950s, Justice Manohar Pershad donated an amount for the same cause; but added that part of the interest should be utilized for granting scholarships to the deserving poor students of the community. Meanwhile, in the 1960s, Dr. V.N. Waghray donated an amount for starting a scholarship in the name of his mother, Heera Lakshmi Bai, to be awarded to a meritorious student who wished to pursue an education in medicine. In addition, some members of the community who have gone and settled in the United States have periodically gathered and donated funds to the Quomi Fund.

The Brahmakshatriya Mahila Mandal was started in 1976, by a few enterprising ladies of the community, under the leadership of Srimati Urmila Waghray and Srimati Daya Devi. The aim of the Mandal was to help the ladies of the community earn an additional income by making and marketing pickles, jams, jellies, etc. and also by grinding and selling masalas. The Mandal also started conducting classes for training the ladies in the embroidery and stitching of bedsheets, pillowcases, tablecloths, etc.

Apart from this, the children of the community were made to participate in cultural activities by conducting the Dussehra Sammelan, which gave an opportunity for the members of the community to interact with each other and to maintain relationships. Another activity of the Mahila Mandal was the publication of the Directory of the Brahmakshatriya Community. The directory came in handy as a guide for the preparation of lists of invitations at the time of marriages and other ceremonies and also for looking for suitable matches for the children of the community. An additional column indicating the blood group of the members was added in subsequent issues to help meet medical emergencies.

The Brahmakshatriya Mahila Mandal and the Brahmakshatriya Educational Loan Society were merged and a new society, the Brahmakshatriya Educational, Social, and Welfare Society, was formed and registered in the early 1980s.  The society’s registration number is 2052 and it is based in Aitebar Chowk, Hyderabad. The society is run by a managing committee, which is elected by the general body and consists of an Honorary President, Honorary Vice-President and six managing committee members to conduct the affairs of the society. Under the auspices of this society, a few younger members of the community: Anil Kishen Waghray, Susheel Raj Shah, Laxman Kapoor, Arun Kumar Sohni, Satish Chander Lal, and others, have started a corpus fund.  A collection of Rs. 300 per annum from every earning member of the society is taken for this fund. The funds collected are being used to pay a token amount on the death to the bereaved family of a member of the community.

Recently, the cost of medical treatment has become prohibitive, and in the case of illness; it has become difficult for the members of the community to afford treatment at good hospitals.  It is felt that medical insurance has become essential; however, individual members of the community are not in a position to pay the premiums for it. Hence, a plan has been envisaged, wherein a group insurance can be made for the members of the community. Under this plan, a corporate hospital (Kamineni Hospital) has been approached to render medical treatment. So far, the response from the members of the community has been poor. However, efforts are being made to convince the members to join the plan by paying a reduced premium for medical insurance.

by Govindlal Waghray

Kishen-Waghray Family circa 1956-57

Here is a photograph of the Kishen- Waghray family, from the years 1956- ’57. The following are the name listed of the people on the photograph. Check it out and see if you recognize your family members. 


Renuka Devi Kapoor (Waghray), Harish Narayan Mahendra, Naval Kishori Waghray (Mahendra), Dushyant Kishen Waghray, Anil Kishen Waghray, Ranjana Raj Shah (Kishen Waghray), Prahlad Kishen Waghray, Mukund Narayan Mahendra, Vijaylakshmi Narayan Mahendra (Waghray)


Savitri Bai Kapoor (Waghray), Sarla Devi Waghray (Sohni), Shama Bai Waghray (Shah), Mahalakshmi Bai Waghray (Mehra), Laltha Bai Waghray (Shah), Geeta Bai Waghray (Shah), Heeralakshmi Waghray (Sahgal) [Munnan Jiya], Susheel Kishen Waghray, Susheela Devi Waghray (Shah), Shanti Devi Narayan Mahendra (Waghray)


Krishna Devi Shah (Kapoor), Nirmala Mahendra (Shah), Prem Kishen Waghray, Vijender Lal Shah, Laxminarayan (R. L.) Kishen Waghray, Gopi Kishen Waghray, Shyam Kumari Kapoor (Thakore), Tej Rai Kapoor, Gopal Kishen Waghray, Sumitra Devi Sohni (Waghray), Chain Rai Kishen, Nirmala Devi Desai (Waghray)


Iqbal Kishen Waghray, Bal Mukund Waghray, Navnihal Kishen Waghray, Ashok Sohni

by Nina Lal

The women and girls at the wedding of Shri Parmanand Das Waghray 1945

Lal-Waghray Family.png
The women and girls at the wedding of Parmanand Das Waghray 1945 with compliments from Savitri Bai


1 ??, 2. Chandrakala Devi Sohni (Thakore), 3. Godavari Katti (Shah), 4. Heeralaxmi (Jiji) Mahendra (Mahendra), 5 ??, 6. Dr. Kalavati Thakore, 7.  Jaya Devi Mahendra (Waghray) [Jaanu Bua], 8. ??, 9. ??, 10. Leelavati Vohra (Thakore), 11. ??, 12. Malti Devi (Bhanu Bua) Desai (Waghray), 13. ??, 14. ??, 15. Kaushalya Devi Waghray (Waghray), 16. Rukmini (Rukhan) Sahgal (Mahendra), 17. ?? (Question marks are those folks not yet identified.)


1. Premavati Waghray (Thakore), 2. Damyanti Waghray (Shah), 3. Premlata Waghray (Shah)? 4. ??, 5. ??, 6. Kailash? 7. Susheela Devi Desai (Kapoor), 8. ??, 9. Shanta Mahendra (Shah), 10. ??, 11. Prema Devi Sohni (Waghray), 12. ??, 13. Vijaylaxmi (Halli) Penmetcha (Sohni), 14. ??, 15. Meera Devi Waghray (Meera Bua), 16. Chinamma (d/o Manik Lal Waghray), 17. ??, 18.??.


1. Phool Kunwar Waghray (Shah), 2. Sunder Bai Sahgal, 3. Shakuntala Rai Gayhee (Waghray), 4. Gangu Bai Sohni (Waghray), 5. Janki Bai Sekhar (Thakore), 6. ??, 7. ?? , 8 – baby in lap of 7,9.  Laxmi Bai Waghray (Mahendra), 10. Urmila Devi Waghray (Sahgal), 11. Permanand Das Waghray, 12. Savithri Bai Waghray (Sahgal), 13. Pushpa Devi Vohra (Waghray), 14. Haroo Bai Waghray (Shah), 15. Shama Bai Waghray (Shah), 16. Maya Devi Vohra (Waghray) in lap of Shama Bai, 17. ?? , 18 – baby in lap of 17, 19. Ishwari Bai Sahgal (Shah), 20. Kashi Bai Waghray (Tandon)


1. Durga Bai Waghray (Mehra), 2. baby in lap of 3, 3. Tara Bai Waghray (Sohni), 4. Jaya Bai Mahendra (Waghray) [Jaya Dadi], 5. Krishna Bai Sohni (Waghray), 6. ??, 7. ?? , 8 – baby in lap of 7, 9. ?? , 10. Dullu Bai Thakore (Mahendra), 11. Mahalaxmi Bai Thakore (Waghray), 12. Susheela Desai (Thakore), 13. Deva Bai Desai (Waghray), 14. baby in lap of 13, 15. Savitri Bai Mahendra (Waghray), 16. Vainu Bai Mahendra (Waghray), 17. Shyama Bai [Gujarat] Desai, 18. Kaveri Bai Thakore (Sohni), 19. Vidya Gowri Kapoor (Sahgal), 20. Veermati Bai Waghray (Thakore), 21. Heera Laxmi Thakore (Mahendra), 22. baby in lap of 21. ??


1. ??, 2. Deva Devi Sahgal (Waghray), 3. ??, 4. Heera Laxmi Kapoor (Sekhar), 5. Mrs. Chander Bhagya Mahendra (Sekhar), 6. ??, 7. Chandrakanta Kapoor (Sohni), 8. Rajeshwari Mahendra (Sahgal), 9. ??, 10. Kusum Kunwar Kapoor (Waghray), 11. Padma Devi Shah (Sahgal), 12.??

(The questions marks denote that the person in the picture has not been identified yet).

by Govind Lal Waghray and Nina Lal