Sunday, April 10, 2016

Four Sons of Nawruz Khan of Lalpura, Afghanistan

This photograph of four sons of Nowruz Khān, ruler of Lalpura, Afghanistan, is from an album of rare historical photographs depicting people and places associated with the Second Anglo-Afghan War. The young men are wearing handsome traditional Afghan garments and pointed shoes called paizaar, usually adorned with gold-thread embroidery. The photographer, John Burke (circa 1843–1900), accompanied the Peshawar Valley Field Force during part of the war, and became one of the first photographers to take pictures of Afghanistan’s people, rather than simply of military personnel. The khan was the most important chief of the Pashtun Mohmand tribe living in the hill country northwest of Peshawar and a rival of Amir ʻAbd al-Raḥmān Khān. (Credit: Library of Congress)

Malik Morcha (from Tarakzai clan of Mahmands) was the progenitor of the Khans of Lalpura and Morcha Khels. Malik Morcha was a contemporary with Mughal Emperor Akbar. In 1586 A.D, he joined by the other Ghoria Khels , having nominated Jalala (son of Pir Roshan), their leader, revolted against Mughals and stormed the fort of Bagram (Peshawar) killing Syed Hamid , the Mughal faujdar. Later Akbar won him over by conferring on him honours and awards. He along with his other family members, joined the Mughal service. Later he was appointed commander of the Mughal fort at Dakka, of which he and his sons acquired the hereditary command. (W.R.H.Merk, "Report on Mohmands", p-20)