Akbar was the Mughal Emperor. He had three sons(we are not counting who died in childhood). Blochmann in Ain-I-Akbari had given an account of it.
Akbar’s first two sons were twins: Hassan and Hussain born out of a concubine named Bibi Aram Baksh. Both of them died in childhood due to unknown reasons.
Prince Salim, popularly known as Emperor Jahangir, was Akbar’s first surviving son. Jahangir’s mother was Mariam Zamani, the daughter of Raja Bharmal of Amber. He was born on 31st August 1569. As a custom, Akbar went to meet his son Salim after a long delay.
The mother of Salim to be Raja Bharmal’s daughter was recorded only in one book of the Mughal era. That book is Khulasat-ut-Tawarikh, written by a Punjab Historian Sujan Rai Bandar, during Aurangazeb’s reign in 1695. He had written about the history of Hindustan, in which Mughal history was just a part of the book.
Sujan Rai mentions in his book that the Amber princess, the third wife of Akbar was Salim’s mother. First of all Amber princess was the fourth wife. He had missed the second wife who was the granddaughter of Munim khan whose wedding was celebrated in 1557. He had missed it because he was not in the Mughal court.
No other historical chronicle of Akbar or Jahangir had given the identity of Salim’s mother. Jahangir refers to his mother as Mariam Zamani in his memoir and does not gives her identity. He mentions Raja Bharmal’s daughter to be a lady in his father’s harem. He does not mention Rajabharmal’s family members as his mother’s relation.
The Rajput chronicle is silent about it. Akbarnama mentions about the Jaisalmer princess, wife of Akbar giving birth to a girl baby and passing away in 1 year, but is silent about Amber princess giving birth to Salim.
A Firmann of Salim’s mother had been traced, even there her identity was not given. She has addressed herself by her title Wali Nimat Mariam Zamani, mother of Emperor Jahangir.
Since Sujan Rai, a historian during the Mughal era had documented that Raja Bharmal’s daughter was Salim’s mother we will accept.
Prince Murad was the second surviving son of Akbar. He was born through a concubine. Murad was born on June 7th, 1570. He passed away at the age of 30 years.
Akbar celebrated the birth of both Salim and Murad in the same way so that Murad does not get a feeling that he was born through a concubine.
Prince Daniyal was born through a concubine on September 9, 1572. He was left under the care of Raja Bharmal for a period of 6 months. When Akbar went for the conquest of Gujarat he took his pregnant wife with him.
Since she came near childbirth and could not withstand the journey, Akbar left her in saint Daniyal’s house in Ajmere and went to Gujarat with his harem. In the saint house, Daniyal was born. After one month Akbar sends his son to Amber which was nearest to Ajmere.
Daniyal was left under the care of Raja Bharmals wife who was an elderly person. This Akbar did for his son’s safety and also to honor RajaBharmal. He picked up Daniyal after 6 months when he went to Agra.
There are also historical records that Daniyal’s mother could be the legendary Anarkali. The first historical mention of Anarkali was found in the travelogue of the British tourist and trader William Finch, who came to Lahore from 1608 to 1611.
According to Finch’s account, Anarkali was one of the wives of Emperor Akbar and the mother of his son Daniyal. Akbar developed a suspicion that Anarkali had an incestuous relationship with Prince Salim(Jahangir) upon which he entombed her within a wall of his palace where she died.
Jahangir as a token of love ordered a magnificent tomb built for her. Edward Terry who visited a year after William Finch writes that Akbar had threatened to disinherit Jahangir, for his liaison with Anarkali, the emperor’s most beloved wife. But on his death bed, Akbar repealed it( Early Travel in India, 1583-1619.Page no 166,330.)
But the account of the British traveler is falsified when one comes to know that Daniyal’s mother died in 1596 which does not match the dates inscribed on the sarcophagus that is 1599.
Probably, Daniyal was Akbar’s favorite son. Akbar wanted Daniyal to ascend the Mughal throne after him. But, Daniyal died during Akbar’s life in the same year, a few months before Akbar. Later, Akbar supported Khurao(his grandson) to succeed him. But, due to the intervention of Hamida Bano, Ruqaiya Sultan, and Salima Sultan, he crowned Salim as his successor with the title of Jahangir.