The coronation ceremony of Mír Ghulám Alí Khán

Battle with Mír Thárah Khán at Mírpúr.

took place on the 16th of Muharram 1217 A.H. (1802 A.D.). It is said that on the day of Mír Fateh Alí Khán’s death, a son was born to him, who was called Sóbdár Khán.* Balóch chiefs of different places came to the capital to condole with Mír Ghulám Alí Khán on the death of the late Mír and to congratulate him on his becoming ruler and being blessed with a nephew. Mír Suhráb Khán came for the same purpose and was received well by the Mír, but Mír Thárah Khán, who lived at his own town of Mírpur and had been dissatisfied with some of the Mír’s arraugements, did not come to visit him on such an occasion. He entertained certain vain thoughts and sought an excuse to openly fall out with the Mír. This he soon got.

One day a villager belonging to Mír Thárah’s division stole some melons from the field of another villager belonging to Mír Ghulám Alí Khán’s division. The thief was taken to the Mír’s Kárdár, who kept him in confine­ment by way of punishment. The Kárdár of Mír Thárah, coming to know of this, came with a number of people and by force released the man. In the riot that ensued two or three men of both the sides lost their lives. The matter coming to the notice of Mír Thárah Khán, he assembled his forces to wage war with the Mír. Mír Ghulám Alí Khán, not being disposed to fight with a relation, tried to pacify him with words. But Mír Thárah would not be pacified. At last Mír Ghulám Alí Khán was obliged to send his uncle Mír Mahmúd Khán with an army and some guns to Mírpur. At the Tandrah* of Nindah the two armies met. Mír Thárah Khán had dug a ditch round his camp and placed guns there to repel the enemy. Mír Ghulám Alí Khán divided his army into two columns, one he kept under his own command and another he gave to Táhar Khizmatgár, a servant of his. The action began with a cannonade, then followed musketry firing, and lastly swords were drawn by the combatants. A bloody battle was fought, in which many lives were lost on both sides. Mír Thárah Khán was at last wounded and taken prisoner. He was taken in a litter with appropriate respect, to Haidarábád. In this battle 410 men of Mír Ghulám Alí’s army and 300 of Mír Thárah’s were killed. Mír Thárah was well received and treated kindly by Mír Ghulám Alí Khán. After he was quite cured, he was sent back to Mírpur with some elephants, horses and other presents. This event occurred in the year 1218 A.H. (1803 A.D.).

About the close of the same year, Shujául Mulk succeeded

King Zamán Sháh suc­ceeded by Shujául Mulk.

his brother Zamán Sháh on the throne of Kábul. As Zamán Sháh had proved himself a cruel person, his wazír, Fateh Khán left him and went to Kandáhár, where he instigated prince Mahmúd Khán to claim the throne as a right and promised to espouse his cause. Previous to this, Fateh Alí Sháh Kajár, the king of Persia, had defeated Zamán Sháh and taken him prisoner, at the same time torturing him by passing a red hot iron wire through his eyes. On receiving the news, the chiefs of the State raised Shujául Mulk to the throne. This event occurred in the year 1215 A.H. (1800 A.D).

In 1218 A. H. (1803 A. D.) Shujául Mulk invaded

Shujául Mulk invades Sind, but returns after taking indemnity and tribute.

Sind, with a large army. The people of the province were so frightened that most of them deserted their towns and villages fleeing to the sandy desert of Thar. Mír Ghulám Alí Khán taking an army with him marched to Shikárpur to face the enemy, having left his brother Mír Murád Alí Khán in his own place at Haidarábád. Arriving at Ládkánah he was met by Mír Suhráb Khán. After some consultation, they sent envoys to the king’s wazír Háfiz Sher Muhammad Khán, requesting him to settle the matter amicably. Accordingly it was arranged that the Mírs should pay ten laks of rupees there and then, and promise to pay 5 laks as a tribute every year regularly. The terms were accepted and the king marched back to Kábul. The Mír then returned to Haidarábád.

About this time Muhammad Nasír Khán, the Khán of

Treaty and matrimonial connection with the Khán of Kalát.

Kalát died. His sister Máí Zainab put her nephew Mahmúd Khán on the vacant seat of rulership. Though there had been disagreement between the Mírs and the late Khán, Mír Ghulám Alí Khán thought it advisable to renew the old friendship with the new Khán. With that object in view he sent envoys to condole with the Khán’s sister and her nephew on their recent bereavement and to moot the matter of renewing the friendship. Soon a treaty was made and signed by both parties, who promised to remain friends in future and never to transgress the boundaries then existing between their territories. At the same time, a matrimonial arrangement was made by which Máí Zainab gave the hand of her niece to Mír Ghulám Alí Khán. Preparations for the marriage were accordingly made. Máí Zainab came to Bhágnárí where Mír Ghulám Alí Khán also came with his relations and kinsmen. More than 40,000 men met on the occasion and the marriage was celebrated with great pomp. After 3 days Mír Ghulám Alí Khán started for Haidarábád with his bride and attendants.

Shortly after this, Sayyed Zulfikár Sháh, one of the

The Mír’s army invades the Baháwalpur territory, but a treaty is made.

respectable Sayyeds of Uch, being ill-treated by Muhammad Sádik Khán, the chief of the Daúdpótahs, brought a complaint to the Mír. The latter wrote a letter of advice to the Khán recommending the Sayyed to him. But Muhammad Sádik Khán instead of showing kindness began to harass and annoy the Sayyeds of Uch all the more. This angered Mír Ghulám Alí Khan, who sent Táhar Khizmatgár and other headmen, to invade the Baháwalpur territory and to chastise the ruler of the place. When this army arrived in the said territory, they took possession of several places after some fighting. Muham­mad Sádik Khán was at last obliged to sue for peace, which was granted. It was settled that the land granted in charity to the Sayyeds of Uch by the elders of the Khán, should remain in their possession, that the district of Sabzalgarh* be ceded to the Mír and that the Khán’s son Baháwal Khán be given up as a hostage, pending the carrying out of the terms of the peace. Accordingly Táhar with his own forces and the hostage, returned to Haidar­ábád. When he reached Kashmór, which formed the boundary of Sind, he sailed by boat for Haidarábád and dismissed the Balóches who had been with him. In 3 days he arrived at the Tandah* of Háji Mír Khán and halted there, having informed the Mír beforehand. The latter sent his son Mír Muhammad Khán to receive the Dáúd­pótah prince and to escort him to the fort of Haidarábád. The Mír treated Baháwal Khán very kindly, and after keeping him for some time allowed him to depart to his native country. The district of Sabzalgarh was annexed to Sind and thenceforth remained under the rule of the Mírs.

In the same year, a famine occurred in Kachh to such

Famine in Kachh and Sind and the Mír’s generosity in that respect.

an extent that the people of the country flocked to Sind in large numbers, selling their children for Rs. 3 or 4 per child. Corn became a great scarcity in Sind, jwárí and bájrí selling for 6 seers per kórah rupee.* Mír Ghulam Alí Kbán distributed heaps of corn in charity among the poor and famine-stricken people. After some time, when the famine had subsided, the Kachhís returned to their native country. Rái Bhárah, the Ráo of Kachh, hearing of the miseries of his people, wrote a friendly letter to the Mír requesting that the children sold and purchased in Sind be returned to him. Accordingly the Mír ordered Fakírah Khizmatgár*, his chief minister, to collect such children from all the Balóch chiefs and ordinary people, who had purchased them, on payment, from the Mír’s treasury, of the prices paid by them. They were then sent to Bhuj with some trustworthy men of the Mír, through the British Resident. For this act of grace and mercy the Ráo of Kachh as well as the British Gov­ernment were very much pleased with the Mír and felt grateful to him.

After two years of peaceful reign had elapsed, Mír

Death of Mír Ghulám Alí Khan.

Ghulám Alí Khán happened one day to go on a shooting excursion. He shot a deer, which he began to slay. In the act of slaying it, the deer moved its head, and the point of its horn grazed the back of the Mír’s foot causing a wound, which bled profusely. The physicians of Sind tried their best to stop the bleeding by applying acids, which caused a great deal of swelling and pain. Ultimately the wound proved fatal and Mír Ghulám Alí Khán died on the 6th of Jamádissání 1227 A.H. (1811 A.D.)*