Famous Fountain Pen cum Pistol
Famous Fountain Pen cum Pistol that Maharaja Hanwant Singh of Jodhpur used in pointing out at V. P. Menon (an Indian civil servant who was the Constitutional Adviser and Political Reforms Commissioner to the last three Viceroys during British rule in India). was secretary of the Ministry of the States, headed by Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
A gold-plated pen hiding a secret pistol gifted to the last Viceroy of India, Lord Mountbatten, for his protection by the then Maharaja of Jodhpur.
The Maharaja of Jodhpur constructed it for himself in case he found himself in a situation where he was forced to sign a document he did not want to sign, such as one legalizing the killing of an enemy,
The 1948-built pen, which is also known as a “pencil pistol,” has a 2 3/4″ smooth-bore barrel with a replaceable propelling pencil mechanism and a hidden trigger.
‘Gun Shop Jodphur, 1948’ is written on the object’s outside body.
According to the legend, V.P. Menon persuaded Maharaja Hanwant Singh to travel from the Imperial in Delhi to visit Mountbatten when Hanwant Singh wanted to support Jinnah in support of an independent Jodhpur because Jinnah had promised him numerous benefits.
Hanwant Singh was forced to compromise and sign the document after the two met Mountbatten, who declined to make as many assurances as Jinnah but sternly warned that she would be responsible for any problems with security if Jodhpur became independent.
But not before things became ugly and the Jodhpur Maharaja made a shooting threat on Menon. He pointed a pen, which was actually a hidden gun, he had in his pocket at Menon.
Thankfully, Lord Mountbatten entered and calmly took the Pen-Pistol away as a “gift” to diffuse the tension.
The Mountbatten family kept this unusual weapon, which was eventually auctioned in 2010.
The maharaja grew increasingly impatient with the wait and finally, after being let inside Menon’s office, pulled out the revolver and threatened to shoot him in a mocking manner. On the scene came Mountbatten. “The maharaja gave Mountbatten the pistol as a gift and explained that he was showing Menon his new invention,” Elgood writes.
After Mountbatten’s death, the pistol was auctioned at Holts in 2010 and was bought by a private collector.