Sardar Muhammad Ibrahim Khan

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Bani-e-Kashmir Sardar Muhammad Ibrahim Khan
Sardar M. Ibrahim Khan.jpg
Sardar Muhammad Ibrahim Khan as the, 32 years old, first President of Azad Kashmir.
President of Azad Kashmir
In office
In office
In office
In office
Personal details
Born (1915-04-10)April 10, 1915
Kot Mattay Khan, Poonch district, Kashmir and Jammu, British India
Died July 31, 2003(2003-07-31) (aged 88)
Islamabad, Pakistan
Political party Muslim Conference, Jammu Kashmir Peoples Party
Spouse(s) Zaib-un-Nisa Khan

Sardar Javed Ibrahim Khan Son

Sardar Khalid Ibrahim Khan Son

Uft-e-Huma Daughter

Sardar Farooq Ibrahim Khan Son
Religion Islam

Sardar Muhammad Ibrahim Khan (April 10, 1915 – July 31, 2003) also known as Bani-e-Kashmir, "Father of Kashmir" and Ghazi-e-Millat, "Hero of the Nation", was the founder and first President of Azad Kashmir. In 1946, he won the Jammu and Kashmir State Assembly election and became a member of the Praja Sabha. In 1947, during the Poonch rebellion, he led an army of Kashmiri guerrillas against the Maharaja of Kashmir, Hari Singh, after he and his party Muslim Conference passed the resolution for Kashmir's accession to Pakistan in June 1947. Khan and his army were unable to capture the entire Kashmiri territory due to a resolution passed by the United Nations on August 13, 1948. The area they took over was renamed to Azad Kashmir, and became a self-governing division of Pakistan. Khan was elected as its first President at the age of 32. He represented Kashmir in different capacities at the United Nations from 1948 to 1971. He was the grand-uncle of Masood Khan, a career diplomat who has been recently appointed as the President of Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

Early life and education[edit]

Sardar Muhammad Ibrahim Khan was born on April 10, 1915 in Kot Matta Khan, a village in the Poonch District of Kashmir. He received his primary education in his village. He attended college and passed with a Bachelors of Arts in 1935 at Islamia College Lahore and sought higher education abroad in 1938. He obtained his LLB from the University of London in 1943. Khan then obtained a law degree from Lincoln's Inn, and started practicing law at Srinagar.

Professional & political career[edit]

In 1943, Khan was appointed as a public prosecutor in Mirpur. He later worked at the State Advocate General office of Jammu and Kashmir. He left the government job to participate in the liberation of Kashmir movement, and ran for and won the 1946 Jammu and Kashmir State Assembly elections. He went on to serve three more terms in office until he was forced to leave due to old age. He retired at the age of 87. He also established the Azad Muslim Conference.

Role in 1947 Independence Struggle[edit]

Further information: 1947 Poonch Rebellion

On 19 July 1947 Khan held a general assembly meeting at his residence where a resolution was unanimously passed for the State to join Pakistan. The Mahraja, Hari Singh, disapproved of his actions, and Khan left the state and went to Murree. In Murree, he gathered ammunition from private individuals and organizations. With several fellow Kashmiris, he launched a ‘Jihad’ against the Maharaja. On 24 October 1947, he defeated the forces of the Maharaja in the Poonch rebellion and founded the state of Azad Kashmir, which became a self-governing division of Pakistan.

Role as President of Azad Kashmir[edit]

As the first President of Azad Kashmir, he was invited by the United Nations to brief the General Assembly on the situation in Kashmir. Under the leadership of Khan, the annual session of the All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference was held at Kotli in 1954, and a resolution was passed for the establishment of a proper Legislative Assembly in Azad Kashmir. While he and his lieutenants continued to push for a legislative assembly, it wouldn't be until the presidency of Yahya Khan that the Azad Kashmir Legislative Assembly would be formed. Khan was elected president of Azad Kashmir for the second time on April 13, 1957, and for the third time on June 5, 1975. Sardar Ibrahim was very close to Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and formed the Azad Kashmir chapter of the Pakistan Peoples Party. In 1977 Zia-ul-Haq dissolved Bhutto's government, and offered to allow Khan to continue as president as long as he stopped supporting Bhutto. Khan refused to betray Bhutto, resulting in his termination as president through a proclamation issued by General Ziaul Haq, the Chairman of Azad Jammu and Kashmir Council, on October 30, 1978. Khan however was re-elected again as the President of Azad Kashmir in August 1996. He remained in office until August 2001.

Political offices
Preceded by
Post Created
President of Azad Jammu and Kashmir
Succeeded by
Captain Syed Ali Ahmed Shah
Preceded by
Dost Muhammad Khosa
2nd term
Succeeded by
Khurshid Hassan Khurshid
Preceded by
Sardar Mohammad Abdul Qayyum Khan
3rd term
Succeeded by
Muhammad Hayat Khan
Preceded by
Sardar Sikandar Hayat Khan
4th term
Succeeded by
Sardar Muhammad Anwar Khan


Further reading[edit]