After the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh on July 30, 2013, Hyderabad got a new status as the capital of two states-- Andhra Pradesh and Telangana-- for 10 years. That is the future of India's one of the revered cities, but what precedes Hyderabad's glory is its history.
Roll back to the Nizam era from 1724 to 1948. As famously ruled by the Muslim rulers, Hyderabad would have been a separate country or a part of Pakistan, but the credit of making it a part of India goes to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, then home minister and Deputy PM of India, who led Operation Polo.
In 1947, at the time of the partition, India had a numerous princely states and the British gave them an option to either merge with India or Pakistan, or stay as independent state.
Back then, the State of Hyderabad was the most prosperous state in India having its own army, airline, telecommunication system, railway network, postal system, currency and broadcasting service.
The Nizam, Osman Ali Khan, Asif Jah VII, was not prepared for Hyderabad's accession by Indian government. Despite Sardar Patel's request, he declared Hyderabad as an independent state on India's Independence Day on August 15, 1947.
Unable to accept the idea of an independent Hyderabad in India, Sardar Patel sought the advise of the governor general of India, Lord Mountbatten. As the British were afraid of Muslim retaliation, Lord Mountbatten advised him against using force.
Understanding India's concerns, Lord Mountbatten asked the Nizam not to accede to Pakistan.
Although Hyderabad had a Muslim ruling, its Hindu population (85 pc as per the 1941 census) outnumbered Muslims. Yet, the Nizam didn't want to be part of India.
An unhappy Sardar Patel described the idea of an independent Hyderabad as "an ulcer in the heart of India - which had to be removed surgically." Despite Lord Mountbatten's warning against the use of force, the Nizam's adamant stand prompted India to use military action.
Though stubborn, the Nizam knew his weaknesses. His army comprised 24,000 men, of whom only 6,000 were trained. On 24 August 1948, he sought the UN intervention. But that was seen as foolish as it was certain to provoke India to initiate army action.
The Nizam was supported by the Majlis Ittehadul Muslimeen and the Razakars, a private militia organized by Qasim Razvi. They went on the rampage unleashing violence. India couldn't tolerate and it launched Operation Polo on September 13, 1948 at 4 am.
What also preceded Operation Polo was the information that Hyderabad was planning to ally with Pakistan in future wars against India.
Indian troops invaded Hyderabad from all points. Left with no option, the Nizam surrendered on September 17 at 5 pm. That was the end of the Nizan rule and Hyderabad became a state of India.
Though Hindus welcomed it, the Muslims termed it an unlawful invasion. Some Muslims migrated to Pakistan. Today, Karachi has a sizeable Hyderabadi muhajir population. The Muslims, who migrated to Pakistan, have left behind huge properties which are now under the control of Indian government.
Now, with formation of Telangana, Hyderabad with over seven million population has added another new chapter to its history as being the capital of two states.