Azam Khan

Azam Khan also known as Iradat Khan was the subahdar of Bengal from 1632 to 1635. His original name was Mir Muhammad Baqir. He succeeded Qasim Khan II who died shortly after the capture of Hughli which was at that time the principal trading and military centre of the portuguese in Bengal.

He hailed from Iraq and came to the subcontinent during the reign of jahangir. The emperor appointed him the Khan-i-Saman. Afterwards he became the subahdar of Kashmir and soon rose to the position of Mir Bakhxi. The trail of his promotion continued under shahjahan who promoted him to the rank of Chief Wazir or Chief Diwan with the title of Azam Khan. Previously he had been honoured with the title of Iradat Khan.

Azam Khan served as the subahdar of Bengal for a brief period, which was on the whole uneventful. The notable event of his time was the coming of a large number of competent people, most of whom were of Persian origin. During the previous viceroyalty the Portuguese power had been crushed but now, in its place, the English got the upper hand during the time of Azam Khan. They received trading facilities from Shahjahan and set up a factory at Pipli in Midnapore.

During Azam Khan's viceroyalty Bengal was threatened by Pratap Singh, the Assamese king (1603-1641), who was encouraged to come into conflict with the Mughals because of their preoccupations with the Portuguese at Hughli during Qasim Khan II's viceroyalty. It encouraged the Assamese ruler to harass the Mughal authorities in Bengal by making sporadic raids in Kamarupa. Moreover, Azam Khan could not keep a close watch on the happenings of the northeastern frontier of the subah. In such a state of chaotic administrative and military situation the emperor felt it necessary to replace Azam Khan by Islam Khan Mashhadi in 1635. [KM Karim]