Arail: The village with long trail of history


Arail is an ancient village, was an headquarters of the pargana of the same name, that lies opposite the fort of Allahabad , on the right bank of Yamuna just near its confluence with the Ganga ( Sangam). Owing to its position at the junction of two rivers a lot of pilgrims visit the place to have a bath on the great festivals.

It is undoubtedly place of antiquity but nothing is known of its early history except rare mentions in some books like I found the first mention of Arail in the expeditions of Sikandar lodhi while he was returning from Bihar.

In the medieval history , It is reported that Arail was a kind of holiday resort and place of pilgrimage for the Baghela Rajas of Bhata ( in Banda) and Gahora (later known as Rewa). They frequented this place and lived on the banks of this place off and on.

However the most important record of Arail is associated with the life of Humayun.

We known that the Battle of Chausa was a notable military engagement between the Mughal emperor, Humayun, and the Afghan, Sher Shah Suri. It was fought on 26 June 1539 at Chausa, 10 miles southwest of Buxar in modern-day Bihar, India. Humayun tried to win the battle through diplomacy but owing to the cunning moves by Sher Shah , almost the entire army of Humayun got killed in the night and Humayun had to escape from the battlefield to save his life. Sher Shah was victorious and crowned himself Farīd al-Dīn Shēr Shah

The Emperor survived by swimming across the Ganges using an air-filled “water skin” and managed to reach Arail . At this juncture , Raja Birbhan , the ruler of Gahora , who was at Arail at that time , came to his rescue , he drove back the chasing Afghan troops , entertained the Emperor and his party at Arail for a few days , supplied them with the necessary provisions , helped him cross the river , escorted them to Kara where Humayun finally felt at home. Bereft of his family and fortune the crestfallen Emperor could enter Agra in the second week of July 1539.

It is mentioned in Humayun Nama that if he had succeeded in arriving at the imperial capital at all was due to the help given him on the way by Raja Birbhan of Arail

When Humayun regained the throne after years , he called on Birbhan who produced Dalpat, his sister’s son, in the service of Humayun and got a farman for the conferment of Bhojpur issued in his (Dalpat’s) favour. Ever since the Mughals were grateful to the Baghelas for their act of kindness to the forefather.

Akbar too was always grateful to the Baghela Chief due to their help extended to his father in the time of adversity. Akbar granted Raja Rāmcandra Baghela the pargana of Arail and Piyāg ( Prayāga ) , together with its dependencies , as Jagir in CE 1569 renaming the place as Jalalabad Pargana but the name could not gain prevalence. He is reported to have restored an old fort here but today there is no sign of that fort.

There are two famous old temples in Arail named Beni Madhav and Someshwar Nath. It is mentioned in the books that Aurangzeb had made rozinah grant to the Someshwar Nath Temple.

During one of his trips , Aurangzeb visited the temple in 1674 and gave grants to the temple both in form of land & money. The pujari of Someshwarnath Temple is in the possession of the original firman for the rozina grant for the temple.

During the Nawabi Arail was included in the territory of Sirkar of Tirhut.

Today Arail has no signs of its ancient history except those two temples. It is transforming rapidly into a satellite township of trans-Yamuna Allahabad.

The most famous icon today is Naini road to Arail that has regularly been photographed for for its scenic beauty.


• Muntakhab al Tawarikh – Badayuni
• Ain e Akbari – Abul Fazl
• Humayun Nama – Gulbadan Begum
• The Life & times of Humayun Ishwari Prasad.
• S.N Sinha, Subah of Allahabad under the Great Moghuls (1580-1707) page 118
• The Mughal Emperor Humayun – Rama Shankar Awasthi

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Khalid Bin Umar

Khalid Bin Umar is a history buff, a voracious reader of history and literature with an interest in heritage, Sufism and biographies. Endowed with command over languages he loves to explore and write primarily on the micro historical accounts.

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