Saif Ali Khan is often called ‘the Nawab’ by many of his fans. However, the scion of the Pataudi family had once revealed in an old interview that ‘there was no inheritance’, only a privileged upbringing. He also revealed that he had to ‘earn back’ the house that he is supposed to have inherited, the Pataudi Palace.
In an old interview to Mid-Day, Saif said, “I’ve learnt that you cannot argue against narratives — whether or not they’re true. People have a certain fixed notion. For that matter, even [with] Pataudi [palace], when my father [Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi] died, it got rented to Neemrana Hotels. Aman [Nath] and Francis [Wacziarg] used to run [the hotel]. Francis passed away. He’d said that if I wanted [the palace] back, I could let him know. I said: I want it back. They held a conference, and said, okay, you have to give us lots of money!”
He added that he had to ‘re-buy’ the house with his own money. He added that he consequently earned the money to do so. “So, even the house I’m supposed to have inherited has been earned back through money from films. You can’t live off the past. At least we can’t in our family, because there was nothing. There is history, culture, beautiful photographs; and, of course, some land. It has been a privileged upbringing. But there’s been no inheritance,” he explained.
Later, in an interview to Bollywood Bubble, Saif clarified his statements and said that he had signed a lease. “It wasn’t really re-buying, it was like clearing a lease.” He added that money hasn’t been easy exactly for him, but he also recognises his privilege and doesn’t want to compare himself to others less fortunate than him.
In another interview, Saif had explained he arrangement. “My father leased it out and Francis (Wacziarg) and Aman (Nath), who ran a hotel there took good care of the property. My mother (Sharmila Tagore) has a cottage there and she was always very comfortable,” Saif had said. “It was a fair financial arrangement and contrary to reports, I did not have to buy it back because I already owned it,” Saif said. After the death of his father in 2011, Saif Ali Khan wrapped up the lease.
On the Kapil Sharma Show, Saif had opened up about being a landlord and joked that his earnings from his ancestral home go to his mother Sharmila Tagore. He said, “Vo meri maa le leti hain (My mother takes all the money).” Jokingly, he added, “Main sirf naam ka Nawab hoon (I am only a Nawab in name).”