Yousaf Aziz Magsi

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Nawab Yousaf Aziz Magsi (b. 1908 in Jhal Magsi, Pakistan) was a prominent Baloch leader from the present-day Balochistan province of Pakistan. He hailed from the Magsi tribe headquartered in Jhal Magsi, the ancestral home of the Magsi. His title was Nawab, which means "ruling prince" or "tribal chief". His father, Kaiser Khan Magsi, was the Nawab of the Magsi tribe.

Education[edit]

Mir Yousaf Khan obtained his education at home. He was able to master Arabic, Persian and Urdu within a few years. Then he was taught English by a private tutor for two years.

Exile[edit]

In 1922, because of some family problems Yousaf Magsi's father Nawab Kaiser Khan and Yousaf himself had to go into exile in Multan. Yousaf Khan stayed in exile in Multan until 1929.

Balochistan's Lament[edit]

Mir Yousaf Ali Khan was impressed by the revolutionary atmosphere of Punjab and was drawn toward the Indian National Congress' struggle for independence from British rule. He was filled with a desire to launch a similar struggle in Balochistan. His first step in this regard was an article he wrote, titled "Balochistan Kee Faryaad" or "Balochistan's Lament", which was published in a weekly newspaper, Hamdard, on November 17, 1929. As a result of this article, a special Jirga held in Kalat on July 17, 1930 sentenced Mir Yousaf Ali Khan to one year of solitary confinement in Zehri and an 11,000-rupee fine.

Anjuman-i-Ithihaad i Balochaan[edit]

During the proceedings of the above-mentioned Jirga, Mir Yousaf Ali Khan was held in Mastung Jail. While he was in jail, members of a clandestine political party (Anjuman-i-Ithihaad i Balochaan), who were also deeply impressed by the struggle of the Indian National Congress, contacted Yousaf Ali Khan. They helped him during his solitary confinement. In 1931, after completing his sentence, Mir Yousaf Ali Khan came to Quetta where, along with Mir Abdul Aziz Kurd, Nawabzada Mir Abdul Rehman Bugti, Mohammad Hussain Unqa, Malik Faiz Mohammad Yousafzai and others, he officially announced the Anjuman-i-Ithihaad i Balochaan as a political party. Mir Abdul Aziz Kurd was elected as the General Secretary of the party while Mir Yousaf Ali Khan became its President. The Prime Minister of Kalat issued orders to arrest Yousaf Ali Khan once again but Yousaf somehow learned about the plan to arrest him beforehand, so he went and took refuge in Jacobabad, where he started his famous Magsi Agitation.

Controversy over Khan of Kalat[edit]

After the death of the Khan of Kalat, Mir Mehmood Khan II, Prime Minister Sir Shams Shah lobbied Mir Mehmood Khan II's son Mir Mohammad Anwar Khan to the throne while on the other side, Mehmood Khan's brother Mir Azam Khan claimed to be the rightful heir to the throne of Kalat. Anjuman-i-Ithihaad i Balochaan announced their support for Mir Azam Khan and successfully launched a struggle to appoint him as the Khan of Kalat. After Mir Azam Khan became the Khan, Sir Shams Shah was fired from his position as the Prime Minister of Kalat.

Nawab Yousaf Ali Khan Magsi[edit]

In 1932, Mir Yousal Ali Khan's elder brother Sardar Gul Mohammad Khan Magsi (who had become the Nawab of the Magsi tribe after Kaiser Khan) was impeached, and in his place Yousaf Ali Khan was elected as the chief of the tribe.

Return from Europe[edit]

In 1934 Nawab Yousaf Ali Khan went to Europe and stayed there for eight or nine months. On his return to Balochistan on January 31, 1935, he resumed his struggle with great vigour and zeal.

1935 earthquake and death[edit]

On May 31, 1935, Quetta was hit with a devastating earthquake which claimed thousands of lives. Among the casualties was Nawab Yousaf Aziz Khan Magsi.

See also[edit]

References[edit]