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Shah Alam

Shah Alam (shä äˈləm) [key], 1728–1806, Mughal emperor of India (1759–1806). Driven out of Delhi in 1758, he nonetheless proclaimed himself emperor after the murder (1759) of his father, Alamgir II. He was under the protection of the nawab of Oudh, however, and when the nawab was defeated by the British at Buxar (1764), Shah Alam was forced to become a pensioner of the British East India Company. In 1765 he officially ceded to the company control of Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa (Odisha). With the support of the Marathas, he was able to return to Delhi in 1772, but in 1788 the city was captured by the Rohillas, who blinded and deposed him. The British restored him to the throne in 1803 when they captured Delhi.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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