Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Anglo–Khajjak battle 1841



"Balochan-i-Marri bar koh minazand, wa mardumi Khajjak dar maidani goi shujaat mi rubayand" Translated from Persian in English language the- proverb will read as follows - "Marri Baloch are proud of their mountains whereas Khajjaks are proud of their bravery in the plain area.

In 1839, Misri Khan Barozai, the head of the Panni tribe, tendered his services to Shah Shuja and was taken into British service with a number of his followers, who were styled incorrectly the " Baloch Levy." In March 1841, Mr. Ross Bell, the Political Agent in Upper Sind, deputed one of his assistants with a detachment of troops, under the command of Colonel Wilson of the Bombay Cavalry, to collect the arrears of revenue due from the Khajjaks of Sibi on behalf of Shah Shuja. The detachment was accompanied by Misri Khan, and on the Khajjaks refusing to comply with the demands, attacked the town, but were repulsed with heavy loss, losing fifty- three men killed and wounded and four officers including Colonel Wilson. Reinforcements from Bhag were sent up under General Brooks, but before they could arrive the Khajjaks abandoned their town,the defenses of which were
then demolished. The power of the Khajjaks was thus weakened, and shortly afterwards the
Marris acquired a footing in the Sibi District. They dispossessed the Pannis of Badra and Quat-Mandai and over-ran Sangan. Thus for the Pashtuns of Balochistan, the Anglo-Khajjak battle of 1841 was a turning point for the ascendancy of the Balochs over the Pashtuns and the beginning of the Marri Baloch encroachment in Sibi district.


The Khajaks of Sibi speak Pashtu which has a mixture of Sindi words









Pen-and-ink drawing of Sibi at the end of the Bolan Pass by George Boyd (1800-1850) dated between 1821 and 1844

Afghans of the Frontier Passes: A Study in the Historical Geography of Sibi and Dhader in the Balochistan Province of Pakistan, Volume 2
History of the Pathans: The Ghurghushti, Beitani and Matti tribes of Pathans
Sibi district; text. Compiled by A. McConaghey"