Amichand Deen Dayal

After the untimely demise of Raja Gyan Chand in around 1919, there was a hiatus in the studio’s existence. However his youngest son Ami Chand reignited the sparks of the illustrious legacy. The Secunderabad studio was restarted around the late 1920s (studio registers exist from 1932 onwards) and the State patronage of the VII Nizam was regained.

Though fate had willed Amichand to forego the direct learning of photographic skills from his grandfather or father, he skilled himself in photography through distance education. He earned a Diploma Certificate in Colouring Photographs & Miniatures in Oil from the National Art School, Chicago in 1937 and a Certificate of Graduation in Professional Photography from New York Institute of Photography, NY in 1941.

His fast growing body of work and photographic accomplishments saw him become a member of the Royal Photographic Society of Britain in 1935 and earn its prestigious Associateship in 1937. He was also a licenciate member of the British Institute of Photographers from 1938 onwards.

Amichand’s work is a brilliant chronicle of the transfer of power from the era of Mir Osman Ali Khan to the Indian Union. His camera saw the royalty, palaces and hunts eventually yield to the temples of modern India – its industries.

The monarchy gives way to the elected representatives of India; his camera captures key milestone events in the integration of Hyderabad – the visits of Nehru & Sardar Patel, the Nizam becoming the ‘Raj Pramukh’ , the birth of Andhra Pradesh and finally the passing away of the Nizam in 1967.

Through his own six decade long photographic journey, inspite of all the trials and tribulations and the ravages of time, Amichand Deen Dayal persevered to present Deen Dayal to the future generations. Clark Worswick met the aging master in 1978, carted away an invaluable part of the legacy, but helped the world re-discover Deen Dayal through his captivating book Princely India: Photographs by Raja Deen Dayal published in 1980. Amichand’s daughter Hemlata Jain helped organize exhibitions of Dayal’s work in Bombay, Pune and London between 1979 and 1982. Recognizing that Dayal’s work was a national treasure to be preserved for the future, Amichand’s sons selflessly handed over the surviving glass plate negatives, studio registers and photographic equipment to the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts in 1989.

Sardar Patel
Karuna Chaudhari
Gen JN Chaudhari
Nizam-VII Osman Ali Khan
Rabindranath Tagore

Osmania General Hospital

Possibly the first Aerial view of Hyderabad

Elephant carrying Dignitary

Nehru addressing a rally from the Mahabubia grand stand in Fateh Maidan

Nizam greeting Rajagopala Chari

Hand coloured by Amichand
Nizam VII Osman Ali Khan with his grand son Mukkaram Jah

Nawab Moin-ud-Dowla with cricket teams

Nizam VII at tea with his daughters-in-law Princess Niloufer and Princess Durrushehvar

Nehru with Vijayalakshmi Pandit

Nizam greeting Rajendra Prasad

Qasim Rizvi with troops

Sardar Patel with Gen JN Chaudhari at Airport

Mozzam Jahi Market

King Kothi Palace

Nizam VII laying foundation of Church

Aerial view, Rashtrapati road leading to lake

Arts College, Osmania University

Azam Jah receiving princess Ezra at airport

Mukkaram Jah designated as heir apparent

Hand coloured by Amichand
Princess Durrushehvar

Mirza Ismail with JRD Tata
at the Residency