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Fergus Nicoll earned a degree in Oriental Studies (Sanskrit) from Oxford University and a PhD from Reading University. He worked as a teacher in northern Sudan before joining the BBC African Service in 1988. He moved to the Cairo Bureau in 1992, served as World Affairs Correspondent, is now a presenter on the BBC World Service radio program ‘World Today.’ In 2004 he published a biography of the Mahdi of Sudan. His book on the life of the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan was published in 2009.