Mir Painda Khan

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Mir Painda Khan (died September 1844) was a powerful Tanoli chief of the North-West Frontier region of India. He played a considerable part in fighting the Sikh Empire of the region.[1]

The son of Mir Nawab Khan, from about 1813, Painda Khan began the series of rebellions against the Sikhs which continued throughout his lifetime. To combat Khan, Maharaja Ranjit Singh, sent Hari Singh Nalwa to Hazara as governor, and Singh created a number of forts at strategic locations. Painda Khan became famed for his rebellion against Singh. Painda Khan's rebellion against the Sikh empire cost him much of his kingdom, leaving only the tract around Amb,[2] with its twin capitals of Amb and Darband.

In 1828, Painda Khan gave the territory of Phulra as an independent Khanate to his brother Maddad Khan. This was later recognised by the British as a self-governing princely state.

Painda Khan also took over the valley of Agror in 1834. The Swatis appealed to Sardar Hari Singh, who was unable to help them, but in 1841[3] Hari Singh's successor restored Agror to Atta Muhammad, a descendant of Mullah or Akhund Sad-ud-din.[4]

James Abbott, British deputy commissioner at Hazara in 1851[5] commented that

"During the first period of Painda Khan's career, he was far too vigorous and powerful to be molested by any neighbouring tribe, and when he began to fail before the armies and purse of the Sikh Government, he was interested in keeping upon the best terms with his northern neighbours of the Black Mountains to whom he allowed the privilege of pasture in the small Tupa of Turrowra."[6]

Abbott further described Painda Khan as "a Chief renowned on the Border, a wild and energetic man who was never subjugated by the Sikhs".[6]

General Dhaurikal Singh, commanding officer of the Sikh troops in Hazara, ordered Painda Khan to be poisoned in September 1844,[7] and this resulted in Painda Khan's death.[7] He was succeeded by his son Jehandad Khan.


  1. ^ Richard Burns, ed. Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 23 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1908), p. 219
  2. ^ The Gazetteer of North-West Frontier Province, p. 138
  3. ^ Charles Francis Massy, Chiefs and families of note in the Delhi, Jalandhar, Peshawar and Derajat, p. 435
  4. ^ Imperial Gazetteer of India, vol. 5, p. 92.
  5. ^ The Abbott from whom the administrative capital of Abbottabad takes its name
  6. ^ a b A Collection of Papers relating to the History, Status and Powers of the Nawab of Amb (Punjab Secretariat, 1874), p. 58
  7. ^ a b Panjab On the Eve of the First Sikh War, p.452