Mir Osman Ali Khan, the richest Nizam, was featured on the cover of TIME magazine in 1937. The magazine referred to the seventh Nizam of Hyderabad as the “richest man on the planet”. With a net worth of approximately $236 billion (Rs 18 lakh 68 thousand Crores) in his early ‘40s, the Nizam spent a luxurious lifestyle. (Note: The net worth has been adjusted for inflation.)
Not many people would know but Mir Osman Ali Khan used the rare Jacob diamond, a 185-carat lime-sized gem as a paperweight, TimesNow reported while quoting its price as Rs 100 crores.
That’s not all, Mir Osman Ali Khan also owned 50 Rolls-Royce cars, including the highly coveted Silver Ghost Throne Car.
According to history, he was the last one to hold the title of Nizam. He was forced to abdicate in 1948, following Hyderabad’s annexation. Still, he managed to serve as the state’s Rajpramukh (governor).
Let’s take a look at the most expensive things owned by Mir Osman Ali Khan:
Mir Osman Ali Khan owned the Golconda Diamond Mines and it was a major source of wealth for the Nizams of Hyderabad. The mines worked as a trading centre of the finest and largest diamonds in the world from the 16th to 19th centuries. As per a report by Business Standard, the Kingdom of Hyderabad became the only supplier of diamonds for the global market in the 18th century.
Mir Osman Ali Khan owned several precious diamonds like Koh-i-Noor, Hope Diamond, the Darya-e Nur, Nur-Ul-Ain Diamond, Princie Diamond, Regent Diamond, and Wittelsbach Diamond.
Gold and jewels
As of 2019, Nizam’s gold and jewels contributed $2933537733.42 to his net worth, the Hindustan Times reported. You read that right!
It was said that the Nizams of Hyderabad possessed more jewellery than India’s other royal houses. If reports are to be believed, the Indian government bought 173 jewels, and that included 2,000 carats of emeralds and 40,000 chows of pearls. It also contained a mix of gemstones, pendants, earrings, necklaces armbands, bangles, cufflinks, and more.
Mir Osman Ali Khan also owned the historic Jacob diamond, the fifth largest polished solitaire in the world that was named after the original owner Alexander Malcon Jacob, Times Now reported.
Rolls Royce cars
The eighth Nizam of Hyderabad, Prince Mukarram Jah, has a special space for cars in his heart and garage. As per the Wire, he inherited a scrapyard from his grandfather, Mir Osman Ali Khan. Between 1907 and 1947, the Hindu Business Line claims that Rolls Royce sold 36,000 of its luxury cars globally. India managed to get 1,000 of these Rolls Royce cars and Mir Osman Ali Khan bought 50. He owned a Barker-Coach-built Rolls Royce Silver Ghost that he purchased in 1912.
That’s not all, Mir Osman Ali Khan utilized his massive net worth to build several public institutions for the people of Hyderabad. The famous Osmania General Hospital is still a famous medical centre in the city. He also opened the State Bank of Hyderabad and the Osmania University. He also commissioned the construction of the Begumpet Airport, Hyderabad High Court and the two reservoirs, Osman Sagar and Himayat Sagar after the Musi River floods of 1908.