Sometimes, history is that obfuscated that you need to knit it from multiple sources. This can happene even in the case of modern history where, in some areas, considerable effort is spent to obfuscate information. This generally happens as a consequence of a change of government – Britain leaving India because of which they burnt many documents or Hitler losing war. The other aspect is to provide a rosy picture to the world – 1857 Rebellion or Stalinist Russia.

Have a look at this. There are some rumours stating that El Edroos, the Commander-in-Chief of Hyderabadi Army was not interested in fighting the war. It is said that he clearly knew that there is no way Hyderabad can survive a war with India and that it’s better to surrender than throwing away the lives of soldiers. So, where is the corroboration?

There are two unrelated references from the book The End of an Era by K M Munshi, Indian  Agent-General to Hyderabad.

At 7 P.M. Mrs. El Edroos came to apologise to me on behalf of her husband for the rude behaviour of Brigadier Habib. She was very friendly. She whispered to me that her husband was an ‘angel’ and that in his opinion the Police Action would not last for more than three days. This was interesting enough.

In the afternoon, Raja Mahboob Karan saw me on behalf of the Prince of Berar. He told me that Naldurg, which according to official estimates was strong enough to stand out for three months, had beeen occupied by the Indian Army within a few hours.

Two innocuous and unrelated passages separated by some pages. Read them together. What do they mean? That a fort that strong will not fall that fast unless it is surrendered or the army retreated. How will that happen if there are no standing orders to prefer retreat over engagement? And when the C-in-C himself is saying the war will be over in three days, what’s in it for us not to believe that the orders came from the top?

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