The founder of the Hyderabad state was Asaf Jah (also Mir Qamar-Ud-din Chin Quiz Khan). Emperor Farrukshyiar conferred on him the high sounding title of Nizam-ul-Mulk, meaning ‘Deputy of the whole empire’.
Asaf Jah became the governor of the Deccan for the first time in 1713.
After the fall of the Sayyid brothers he became the Wazir of the Empire and the governor of the Deccan. But being disgusted with the frivolities of the court he left for the Deccan in 1723. The emperor conferred on him the title of Asaf Jah.
Asaf Jah was expected to retain the Mughal territories in the Deccan and to prop up the crumbling empire. But the Nizam was defeated by the Marathas in the battles of Bhopal and Karnal. He could not assist the emperor in checking the invasion of Nadir Shah as well. These defeats reduced the prestige of the Nizam to a great extent.
But Asaf Jah was not altogether unsuccessful. He established his authorities at Arcot and at Trichinapolly. Under him Hyderabad became a powerful state. He had never raised the banner of revolt against the emperor. But he always behaved like an independent ruler. He had declared war or concluded peace like an independent ruler.
Nizam Asaf Jah, who died in 1748, had been described as a most outstanding personality in the declining days of the Mughal Empire.
He, however, was more skilful in diplomacy than in war. He was secular in his outlook. A Hindu, Pooran Chand, was his chief Diwan. However, the dynasty founded by him existed up to the last days of the British Raj.
After the death of Nizam Asaf Jah, a struggle for succession started among his six sons. This caused chaos and confusion in the Deccan. The English and the French merchants tried to take advantages of this situation.