Mirza Taqi Khan
Prime Minister of Iran from 1848 to 1851.
Mirza Taqi went to Russia and Turkey on government assignments and after his return in 1847, he was appointed to the court of the crown prince Nasiruddin. After the death of Muhammad Shah in 1848, he helped the prince to succeed to the throne and in return was appointed chief minister.
Mirza Taqi tried to introduce various reforms. He launched a crash programme to industrialise his country by spreading education. He built a network of secular public schools across the country. Just outside Tehran, he established the university, Dar al-Funun or 'house of wisdom', where students could study foreign languages, science, technical subjects, and the history of Western cultures.
Reforms such as these antagonised other notables who along with the Queen Mother persuaded the Shah to dismiss him.
In 1851 Mirza Taqi Khan, also known as Amir Kabir, 'the Great Leader', was dismissed from his high position and was exiled to Kashan. He was reported to have been murdered on the Shah's orders.
Compiled by:M. Nauman Khan / Ghulam Mohiuddin