Friday, 16 January 2015

The role of Panni Afghans in Indian history

A great number of the Afghans belonging to Panni tribe from present-day Baluchistan [1] migrated at an early period to India , where from time to time , they have made themselves conspicuous under various dynasties and rulers. Farid-ud-Din Ahmad furnishes more information on the Pannis in "Risalat-ul-Ansab Afghaniah", wherein he writes;

"This is the account of Ghurghushtis. Of them, the Panni nation do not inhabit their own country , on account of some fault , they were expelled from their country upon which they moved to the mountains of Jaypoor (Jaipur), Ahir , Joodhpoor(Jodhpur); others, whom they call Dhondhar, settled here. At present, which is the year 1217 of the hijra, they inhabit a hundred large villages , each containing from 1,000 to 5,000 men. They mostly occupy themselves with traffic and many of them are rich : they carry merchandise to Deccan: others subsist on various employments . They all dwell in Dhondhar."

A big number of them migrated to India at the same time of Sultan Bahlol Lodi acquired sovereignty in India. Soon after coming into power he appealed to his countrymen for a mass migration to strengthen his forces . This appeal , coupled with the fact that the lands at home having became too limited to sustain them and too barren to afford sustenance , induced the Pannis , like clans of other Afghan tribes , to seek their fortune in Hind.  The Pannis of Marwar, under the leadership of Mian Buthan Panni helped Haji Khan when he was attacked and surrounded by Rana Odae Singh and defeated him.[2]

"Hindustan", says an Afghan writer, "was filled, so to say with Afghans of different tribes, but with exception of Barets (Barechs), chiefly of the tribes dwelling nearest to the Indus and of Southern Afghanistan, during the reign of Sultan Bahlul, the Lodi, the first of the Afghan or Patan rulers" [3]

The Pannis were provided for and located in Dhondhar in the Maiwat territory by Sultan Bahlol Lodi . As late as the year 1802-3 AD, a large colony of Pannis is mentioned settled in the hills of Jaipur, Amber, Jodhpur and in the adjacent Dhondhar tract. Subsequently , during the Mughal rule, they followed the footprints of the Mianas, and moved southwards to seek their fortunes in the service of the independent sovereigns of Deccan.. [4]

In the time of Sultan Sher Shah Sur, the fortress of Rohtas in Bihar, one of the strongest places probably in India, and where Sher Shah kept his treasures, was held by garrison of 10,000 matchlock men or troops armed with fire-arms, and the command over them was entrusted to Ikhtiyar Khan Panni, one of his Amirs.[5]

Pannis in Bengal

Kalika Ranjan Qanungo in his book ''Sher Shah and his times" writes that Afghan settlers in Bengal in the time of Sher Shah were drawn from the tribes of Kakars, Panni, Bettani, Ustarni (an allied tribe of Sherani), Tarin, Mahmud Khail kinsmen of Musakhail Panins and Kakars). [6]

Jahan Khan Panni and Jamal Khan Panni were the two generals of Sultan Daud Karrani known to us. [7] 

According to an inscription, the Atia mosque was built in 1609 by Sayyid Khan Panni, son of Bayazid Khan Panni, in honour of Pir Ali Shahanshah Baba Kashmiri. . [8]

Atia mosque built by Sayyid Khan Panni

Wajid Ali Khan Panni also known as 'Atiyar Chand', 'Chand Mian' and 'Bengal's second Muhsin', was descendant of Sayyid Khan Panni . He was an educationist, philanthropist, and social activist, who belonged to the national elite. He was a zamindar (landlord) who was credited with establishing a number of educational institutions, small hospitals and dispensaries , and with building roads and canals. Among educational institutions  is Karotia college in Tangail district. He participated in non-cooperation movement against British rule and was jailed for 15 months. His sons Khurram Khan Panni and Humayun Khan Panni were legislators and ambassadors.; [9][10]

Panni nobility under Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb

Panni Mansabdars who held or reached the rank of 1,000 zat and above , during the period, 1658 to 1707.

1- Ranmast Khan Panni, 5000 zats
2- Daud Khan Panni, 4000 zats, 4000 sawars
3- Sar Andaaz Khan panni, 2000 zats, 1000 sawars
4- Shabbir panni, 1500 zats, 900 sawars
5- Malik Jewan Panni , titled Bakhtiar Khan, 1000 zats, 400 sawars  [11]

Daud Khan Panni

Daud Khan Panni held the highest rank of 7000 zat of the Mughal nobility at the time of his death in 1715. He served as Nawab of the Carnatic and later Viceroy of Deccan. According to Raverty, he belonged to Barozai branch of Pannis  In 1703, Daud Khan was appointed as the Nawab of the Carnatic. Before he was made Nawab, the Emperor Aurangazeb appointed him as a leading commander of the Mughal Army in 1701. According to The History of India by J. Murray 1841, , Volume 2, p-573) , Daud Khan Panni was renowned throughout India for his reckless courage and whose memory still survives in the tales and proverbs of Deccan.

The Panni rulers of Kurnool

The Panni officers of Mughal established an independent principality at Kurnool (Andhra Pradesh, South India) after decline of Mughal empire.  [12]

Panni Nawabs of Kurool ;

1- Khizr Khan Panni (.....1674)
2- Daud Khan Panni (1674-1712)
3- Ali Khan Panni   (1712-1717)
4- Ibrahim Khan Panni (1717-1731)
5- Alif Khan Panni (1731-1744)
6- Bahadur Khan Panni or Himmat Bahadur (1744-1751)
7- Munawar Khan Panni (1751-1792)
8- Alif Khan (1792..)
9- Munawar Khan (....1816)
10- Ghulam Rasool Khan (1823-1838)   [13][14]

Delhi Gate at Arcot Fort (Tamil Nadu, India), built by Daud Khan Panni .

Notes and References
1. Pannis are Ghurghusti Pashtuns

2. Haroon Rashid,"History of the Pathans", VOL.III, p-92

3- H.G.Raverty, Notes on Afghanistan and part of Baluchistan, p-640

4. Haroon Rashid, "History of the Pathans", VOL.III, p-92

5- H.G.Raverty, Notes on Afghanistan and part of Baluchistan, p-640

6. Kalika Ranjan Qanungo, "Sher Shah and his times", p-320

7. Baharistan-i-Ghaibi, I, p-147,Bengal-Arakan relations, 1430-1666 A.D

8. The Islamic heritage of Bengal - Page 49 - Page 40

9. Historical Dictionary of Bangladesh By Syedur Rahman, page-229

10. The Muslim Heritage of Bengal: By Muhammad Mojlum Khan, page-321

11.  The Mughal Nobility Under Aurangzeb: M. Athar Ali

12- H.G.Raverty. Notes on Afghanistan and part of baluchistan, p-647

13- Select letters of Tippoo Sultan to various public functionaries: including ...

1 comment:

  1. Bara-Basti Pathan's nobility in india. Nawabs of Karnool and Kadapa Belong to Panni Pastun Tribes.
    Daud Khan ( 6 September 1715) aka Daud Khan was a Mughal commander, Nawab of the Carnatic (Arcot) and later Nawab of Kurnool. He was an ethnic Pashtun and was from Bara-Basti Jaipur his Forefather migrated to Dhadhar (Sibi)(Khorasan)

    Daud Khan Panni, the deputy of the Mughals in Deccan concluded an agreement with Maratha King Sahu in 1711.

    Zulfikar Khan recognised this agreement and granted Sardeshmukhi and Chauth of the Deccan to Sahu.

    Mughal empire under Aurangazeb, who took control in 1686. The town was the capital and seat of ruling princes, styled Nawabs.

    The Pathan general Abdul Wahab conquered king Gopal Raja and ruled over the country for 16 years.

    Historical interest are the ruins of a royal fort dating back to the medieval kingdom of Vijayanagar, which flourished from the 14th to16th century.

    1674 -1703 : Nawab Khizr Khan Panni

    1703 – 1710: Nawab Daud Khan Panni

    1710 – 1724: Nawab Ibrahim Khan Panni

    1724–1733: Nawab Alaf Khan 1 Panni

    1733–1751: Himayat Bahadur Khan

    1751–1792: Nawab Ranmust Khan

    1792 – 1815: Nawab Alaf Khan 11

    1815–1823: Nawab Munawar Khan

    1823–1839: Nawab Ghulam Rasul Khan Panni
    1940-1956: Nawab Shuja-ul-Mulk
    Now currently Nawab Alaf khan Son of Shuja-ul-Mulk.

    The Royal Title, legacy and eminence of the Kurnool Nawabs continued after the siege in 1839. Nawab Dawood khan Panni succeeded Nawab Ghulam Rasul khan who was succeeded by Nawab Shuja Ul Mulk .
    Nawab Shuja Ul Mulk had four sons and two daughters namely Nawab Dawood khan II, Nawab Alaf Khan, Nawab Anis ul Mulk and Nawab Azam Ali Khan.
    Most of the royal descendants eventually migrated from India to Pakistan, UAE and USA.
    Nawab Dawood Khan was the heir to the Royal Title during the Partition of India in 1947. He studied in UK and Aligarh Muslim University in India, he was also active in the freedom movement in Aligarh. Nawab Dawood Khan immigrated to Pakistan after the end of British Raj. Amongst the current royal descendants is Nawab Colonel Asad Ullah Khan eldest son of Nawab Dawood Khan. Nawab Asad Ullah received the Sword of Honor at the Pakistan Academy . His three brothers Nawab Alaf khan, Nawab Anis ul Mulk and Nawab Azam Ali khan decided to stay back in India and are succeeded by the current generation of the nawabs of Kurnool Family. Nawab Alaf khan a towering and handsome personality excelled in business and football . His eldest son Nawab Shaji Ul Mulk is the current chairman of MULK HOLDINGS a multinational conglomerate and ranked Number 9 by FORBES in the Top Indian Leaders in the Middle East . His other two brothers Nawab Shafi Ul Mulk ( Also listed in the Forbes top 100 Indian Leaders ) and Nawab Amair Ul mulk are established business men in Dubai . Afshan, Anjuman Ameen and Farzan Naveen are the three daughters of the late Nawab Alaf khan.
    Kurnool city served as the capital of Andhra State from 1953–1956, until in 1956, the Telangana region was merged with Andhra State to form Andhra Pradesh state, and its capital was shifted from Kurnool to Hyderabad as there were only camps like A-Camp,B-Camp,C-Camp etc., and due to lack of capital city infrastructure in kurnool for good governance and Hyderabad was already a well established capital with city infrastructure and well-governing facilities were there in Hyderabad as the city served as the capital city to the princely state of Asaf Jahis from 1763–1948 and as a capital city to the Hyderabad State from 1948–1956 .